Those who are passionate about natural landscapes hardly have the dream of seeing one of the most incredible spectacles of nature up close: Aurora Borealis. The play of light, the result of collisions between electrically charged particles from the sun that enter the Earth’s atmosphere, delights anyone! Although I need to face quite cold to see this wonder, I’m sure that many people do not give up that desire.
Paulo and I already had the opportunity to see this wonderfulness on our first trip to Iceland, in 2011. The most amazing thing was that we were not expecting to see the Aurora Borealis the day we arrived. Most of the time, it is only possible to see the phenomenon more clearly in more distant places and not in a big and bright city like Reykjavík, where we were. It was just leaving the bags in the room and when we looked out the window there were the lights in the sky! It was very exciting and one of the most memorable moments of all our trips!
Although it was incredible, we couldn’t hear the famous Aurora Borealis sound – yes, the phenomenon has a very specific sound. Of course, we still want to see this color show again and enjoy the experience with noises and everything we are entitled to! However, coming face to face with a Aurora Borealis as it happened to us is very rare and, if you also have this desire, we will give you some tips on places and times of the year to see the phenomenon 😉
First of all, it is cool to plan the trip for other purposes and have an incredible itinerary in hand, regardless of whether or not you see Aurora. Although this phenomenon happens with some frequency in some countries, it is very important to warn that the Aurora Borealis is not predictable. Of course, in some regions of the world you will be more likely to watch this show and in the colder months the chances increase even more.
If the focus of your trip is really to see the light show in the sky, there are many expeditions and guides in the countries of the Arctic Circle. It is even possible to schedule an expedition in advance here in Brazil. Marco Brotto is well known and has done hundreds of expeditions around the world, I think it’s worth taking a look at the next “hunts”, after all, the phenomenon depends on numerous factors and with specialized guides the chances of going to the right place in time increases a lot.
Now, if you are already planning a trip to one of the destinations that I will list below between September and April, it is also worthwhile to research some expeditions with local guides and specialized companies! As you will be in the perfect time and in the right place, why not take the opportunity to try to see Aurora?
Researching a lot, I saw that the city of Tromso it is one of the best places to see the phenomenon with a certain comfort, after all, there are hotels, restaurants and even an airport. From there it is also possible to make shorter expeditions to smaller villages like Ersfjorden, which is 40 minutes from the city. Lofoten, further south of the country, is also a good option!
Those who followed the vlogs of our trip to the country in 2016 saw that the place is not only amazing for the light show. On this last trip, we didn’t even see Aurora, but getting to know the entire coast of the country was surreal. It is for these and others that I highly recommend going to Iceland, because without or with the phenomenon you will fall in love!
Speaking more specifically about the light show, Glacier Lagoon, in Jokulsarlon, is an excellent observation point! THE Pingvellir National Park, closest to Reykjavík, is also considered a good local.
Almost on the border between Norway, Finland and Sweden – known region of Lapland – it is common to have the light show. Want a more specific point? THE National park Abisko is one of the most famous in the country.
Virtually on the border with Sweden, in Kilpisjarvi, you can often see the lights in the sky. However, far north on the border with Russia, on the banks of the river Paatsjoki, there is also an incredible scenario! The regions of Luosto and Muonio can also be part of your script, see?
The Danish islands can also be great alternatives. Despite the lack of road structure, in the Greenland – in locations like Kulusuk and Ammassalik – and in Faroe Islands it is quite possible to find this wonder!
Did you think you could only see this wonder in Europe? Nothing like that! In the American state of Alaska it is very common to see the phenomenon, especially in the Fairbanks 😉
Of course I am not an expert on this subject, but I think the post already serves as a good starting point for anyone looking for the Northern Lights!
Sources: CNN, Terra via Fodors, Aurora Borealis (Marco Brotto), G1 and Huffington Post