5 of the Best Places to Witness the Magical Northern Lights
There are many places where you can see the Aurora Borealis, commonly called the Northern Lights, – the colourful ballet that fills the sky during the long autumn and winter nights. From Europe to North America, the natural phenomenon of the Northern Lights is an experience not to be missed.
You will be amazed, even ecstatic if you visit one of these places and are lucky enough to be accompanied by the colours and shades of blue, green and magenta that paint the starry sky.
Not only the skies painted by the northern lights but also the southern lights. This only happens in the southern hemisphere, in places like Patagonia in Argentina, or Chile, New Zealand or Australia. However, as it is easier (and perhaps cheaper) to travel in the northern hemisphere, this list only includes places where the Northern Lights can be seen in the northern parts of the planet.
The islands of Lofoten, Norway, are one of the best places to see the Aurora Borealis. The region is magnificent, even without the northern lights. And, when magical nights happen, Lofoten becomes a surreal setting that involves traditional houses reflected in the calm waters, while the mountains add another extra touch.
Lofoten is not, however, the only place in Norway where you can witness the northern lights, as Tromso is also well known for the high percentage of sightings of the phenomenon.
Undoubtedly one of the most sought-after places to see the Aurora Borealis is Iceland. It is possible to see the Northern Lights in almost the entire territory, but there is a perfect place: the Jokulsárlón glacier and lagoon, more than 250 km from Reykjavik.
Jokulsárlón is known as “The Jewel in the Crown of Iceland”, with an iceberg as a backdrop and the waters of the lagoon to serve as a mirror for the Aurora Borealis ballet. If you don’t want to travel that far, you can even see the light and color show around the Icelandic capital, Reykjavík.
If you want to see this natural phenomenon live, Sweden is another one of the best places on the planet to see the Northern Lights. Abisko is a Swedish region recognized for having clear skies many times – a key factor for witnessing the Aurora Borealis. And in the vicinity, there is even the famous ice hotel where you can sleep. Other locations include Jukkasjärvi and Tärendö.
The list of places where you can see the Northern Lights is not an exclusive phenomenon on the European continent. If you cross the Atlantic, you can see the northern lights in the Churchill region, in the Canadian province of Manitoba. This is also considered one of the best places in North America to witness the appearance of the Aurora Borealis.
In addition, in this area you can also find polar bears, and if the lights do not appear at night in this area of Canada, at least the trip was not entirely in vain. Another recommended place is the city of Yellowknife, where there is even a place called Aurora Village.
With millions of hectares of virgin forest, Alaska’s Denali National Park and Reserve, located about 400 kilometers from Anchorage, is a favorite destination due to the wide-open spaces, mountainous landscapes, and wildlife. The park is also one of the best places in the USA to see the Northern Lights, thanks to the absence of light pollution.
Due to its geographical location, close to the North Pole, the area around the city of Fairbanks is an area where the Northern Lights are most likely to be seen. Other places in the United States where ballet dancing occurs frequently are the Idaho Panhandle National Forest, Aroostook National Wildlife Refuge in Maine. Note that autumn is one of the best times to see the northern lights in the US.
Have you ever had the opportunity to see the Northern Lights? We would love to read from you! Remember to share your experience in the comment section below.