Bucket list alert: here are the best places to see the northern lights

Bucket list alert: here are the best places to see the northern lights

by Cecilia Dos Santos
Northern Lights

Do you want to see the northern lights? If you do, you need to add these destinations to your bucket list! The best places to see the aurora borealis are in the Arctic Circle, where the conditions are perfect for viewing them. In this guide, we will tell you everything you need to know about seeing the northern lights. We’ll give you tips on where to go and what time of year is best for catching a glimpse of this natural wonder. If you want to know more about the best places to see the northern lights, read on.

So what are you waiting for? Start planning your trip today!

What are the northern lights?

You might have heard of the northern lights and seen the magnificent pictures that people have taken of them, but do you know what the northern lights are?

The northern lights, also known as the aurora borealis, is a natural light show displayed in the earth’s sky, predominantly seen in the high-latitude regions around the arctic and antarctic. The northern lights are caused by the collision of charged particles in the Earth’s atmosphere with atoms and molecules of gases such as oxygen and nitrogen. This collision causes the gases to emit light, which can appear in various colors, including green, red, yellow, blue, and purple. The northern lights are most commonly seen in the polar regions. They are often described as one of the most beautiful natural phenomena in the world, and people travel from all over the planet to see them. This is why we have it on our bucket list and why you should too!

When can you see the northern lights?

The northern lights are visible at any time of the year, although they are most active during the winter months, when the nights are longer. They are most commonly seen in the polar regions. In these regions, the northern lights are visible on clear, dark nights without any light pollution. They are most often seen from late September to early April.

It is important to note that the northern lights or aurora borealis are a natural phenomenon, and their activity and visibility are not guaranteed. They may vary significantly from year to year and even from night to night. Factors such as solar activity, cloud cover, light pollution, and local weather conditions can all impact the visibility of the northern lights. Therefore, it is important to check the local forecast and try to plan your trip for a time when the conditions are most favorable for viewing the northern lights.

Now, without further ado, let’s go on to our list of the top destinations to see the northern lights.

Tromso, Norway

First on our list of the best places to see the northern lights is Tromso. Tromso is a city in northern Norway and a popular destination for travelers who want to see the northern lights. Surrounded by unspoiled wilderness in the form of fjords and mountains, Tromso is popular all year round. In the summer, the city is known for its incredible nature. This makes it popular for its party life and fishing and hiking trails.

If you visit the city in the winter months, you can take a northern lights tour for an aurora viewing. If you visit from the 21st of November to the 21st of January, the sun actually never rises above the horizon. This means that there is a bigger chance that you get to experience the lights dance. You can go by minivan or combine your trip with a dog-sledding trip. The northern lights in Tromso can be so strong that they are visible from downtown Tromso or even from your hotel!

If you visit the city between the months of November and February, you can go on a whale-watching tour and see the majestic sea animals in the Norwegian sea.

Fairbanks, Alaska

Fairbanks, Alaska, is a beautiful and interesting city that is well worth visiting. Located in the interior of Alaska, Fairbanks is known for its stunning natural surroundings and rich history. The city is situated near the Tanana and Chena Rivers, which offer opportunities for fishing, boating, and other outdoor activities. Fairbanks is also home to a variety of cultural attractions, including the University of Alaska Fairbanks, the Fairbanks Symphony Orchestra, and the Fairbanks Community Museum.

One of the main reasons to visit Fairbanks is to see the Northern Lights, also known as the Aurora Borealis. Fairbanks is located in one of the best places in the world to see the Northern Lights. The city is a popular destination for people who want to experience this natural phenomenon. In addition to the Northern Lights, Fairbanks is a great place to see other natural wonders, such as the midnight sun, which is visible in the summer months. Moreover, the winter solstice is celebrated with a variety of events and activities.

Overall, Fairbanks is a unique and interesting city that offers something for everyone. Whether you are interested in nature, culture, or both, Fairbanks is a great place to visit.

Lapland, Finland

This place is a beautiful and interesting region located in the far north of Finland, near the border with Sweden and Norway. Lapland is known for its stunning natural surroundings, including forests, lakes, and mountains, as well as its rich culture and history. One of the main reasons to visit Lapland is to see the Northern Lights, also known as the Aurora Borealis. Lapland is one of the best places in the world to see the Northern Lights, and the region is a popular destination for people who want to experience this natural phenomenon.

Before you visit Lapland, it’s a good idea to check the aurora forecast to see if the conditions will be favorable for seeing the Northern Lights. The Northern Lights are most visible on clear, dark nights with minimal light pollution, and the aurora forecast can give you an idea of when the Northern Lights are likely to be visible. In addition to the Northern Lights, Lapland is a great place to participate in a variety of outdoor activities, such as skiing, snowshoeing, and dog sledding. The region is also home to a variety of cultural attractions, such as museums, galleries, and festivals.

Overall, Lapland is a unique and interesting region that is well worth visiting. Whether you are interested in nature, culture, or both, Lapland has something to offer.

Kangerlussuaq, Greenland

Next on our list of the best places to see the northern lights is Kangerlussuaq. Kangerlussuaq, Greenland is a small town located in western Greenland, near the Arctic Circle. The town is known for its stunning scenery, with beautiful landscapes that include forests, mountains, and glaciers. Kangerlussuaq is a great place to visit for people who love the outdoors, as it offers a variety of activities such as hiking, fishing, and dog sledding.

One of the main reasons to visit Kangerlussuaq is for the opportunity to spot the Northern Lights, also known as the Aurora Borealis. Kangerlussuaq is located in an area with relatively low light pollution, which makes it easier to see the Northern Lights. The town is also located near the Arctic Circle, which means that the Northern Lights are visible for much of the year.

In addition to its stunning scenery and aurora-spotting opportunities, Kangerlussuaq is a great place to learn about the history and culture of Greenland. The town is home to a variety of cultural attractions, such as the Greenland National Museum, which houses exhibits on the history and culture of the country. Overall, Kangerlussuaq is a unique and interesting place that is well worth visiting for anyone interested in nature, culture, or both.

Orkney, Scotland

Orkney, Scotland is a beautiful and interesting group of islands located off the coast of Scotland. The islands are known for their stunning natural surroundings, including cliffs, beaches, and rolling hills. Orkney is a great place to visit for people who love the outdoors, as it offers a variety of activities such as hiking, cycling, and birdwatching.

One of the main reasons to visit Orkney is for the opportunity to see the Northern Lights, also known as the Aurora Borealis. Orkney is located in an area where the Northern Lights are visible for much of the year, and the aurora season typically runs from late September to early April. During this time, the Northern Lights are often visible in the night sky over Orkney, and the islands offer many great spots for aurora watching, such as the shores of Scapa Flow and the cliffs of Yesnaby.

In addition to its aurora season and the beautiful night sky, Orkney is a great place to learn about the history and culture of Scotland. The islands are home to various cultural attractions, such as the Orkney Museum, which houses exhibits on the history and culture of the region. Overall, Orkney is a unique and interesting place that is well worth visiting for anyone interested in nature, culture, or both.

Yellowknife, Canada

Yellowknife, Canada is a small city located in the Northwest Territories of Canada, near the Arctic Circle. The city is known for its stunning natural surroundings, including forests, lakes, and mountains, as well as its rich culture and history. Yellowknife is a great place to visit for people who love the outdoors, as it offers a variety of winter activities such as ice fishing, dog sledding, and skiing.

One of the main reasons to visit Yellowknife is for the opportunity to see the Northern Lights, also known as the Aurora Borealis. Yellowknife is located in an area where the Northern Lights are visible for much of the year, and the city is known for its clear nights, which make it easier to see the Northern Lights. During the winter, the Northern Lights are often visible in the night sky over Yellowknife, and the city offers many great spots for aurora watching, such as the shores of Great Slave Lake and the nearby Somba K’e Park.

In addition to its winter activities and clear nights, Yellowknife is a great place to learn about the history and culture of the Northwest Territories. The city is home to a variety of cultural attractions, such as the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre, which houses exhibits on the history and culture of the region. Overall, Yellowknife is a unique and interesting place that is well worth visiting for anyone interested in nature, culture, or both.

Jukkasjarvi, Sweden

Jukkasjarvi, Sweden is a small town located in the far north of Sweden, near the border with Finland. The town is known for its stunning natural surroundings, including forests, lakes, and mountains, as well as its rich culture and history. Jukkasjarvi is a great place to visit for people who love the outdoors, as it offers a variety of activities such as hiking, fishing, and dog sledding.

One of the main reasons to visit Jukkasjarvi is for the opportunity to see the Northern Lights, also known as the Aurora Borealis. Jukkasjarvi is located in an area where the Northern Lights are visible for much of the year, and the town is known for its frequent displays of the Northern Lights. During the winter months, the Northern Lights are often visible in the night sky over Jukkasjarvi. The town offers many great spots for aurora watching, such as the shores of the Torne River and the nearby Abisko National Park.

Jukkasjarvi, known for its picturesque natural surroundings and frequent Northern Lights displays, is an ideal destination for those interested in holiday traditions. The town boasts the renowned Ice Hotel, constructed entirely of ice and snow, attracting tourists seeking to experience the enchantment of Christmas. Additionally, Santa Claus Village in Jukkasjarvi offers the opportunity to meet Santa Claus and discover holiday traditions from various cultures. Overall, Jukkasjarvi presents a distinct and captivating experience for nature and culture enthusiasts.

Reykjavik, Iceland

Reykjavik, Iceland is the capital city of Iceland and is located in the southwestern part of the country. The city is known for its stunning natural surroundings, including mountains, hot springs, and waterfalls, as well as its rich culture and history. Reykjavik is a great place to visit for people who love the outdoors, as it offers a variety of activities such as hiking, fishing, and whale watching.

One of the main reasons to visit Reykjavik is for the opportunity to see the Northern Lights, also known as the Aurora Borealis. Reykjavik is located in southern Iceland, meaning the Northern Lights are visible for much of the year. During the winter months, the Northern Lights are often visible in the night sky over Reykjavik. The city offers many great spots for aurora watching, such as the shores of the Reykjavik Bay and the nearby Esja Mountain.

In addition to its stunning natural surroundings and aurora-watching opportunities, Reykjavik is a great place to learn about the history and culture of Iceland. The city is home to various cultural attractions, such as the Reykjavik City Museum, which houses exhibits on the history and culture of the region. Reykjavik is also known for its hot springs, which are popular tourist attractions and offer the opportunity to relax and unwind in the warm, soothing waters. Overall, Reykjavik is a unique and interesting place that is well worth visiting for anyone interested in nature, culture, or both.

Saadjarv, Estonia

Next on our list of the best places to see the northern lights is Saadjarv. Saadjarv, Estonia is a small village located in the far south of Estonia, near the border with Latvia. The village is known for its stunning natural beauty, with forests, lakes, and rolling hills that offer a variety of outdoor activities such as hiking, cycling, and birdwatching. Saadjarv is a great place to visit for people who love the outdoors, as it offers a chance to experience the peaceful, unspoiled beauty of the Estonian countryside.

One of the main reasons to visit Saadjarv is for the opportunity to see the Northern Lights, also known as the Aurora Borealis. Saadjarv is located in an area where the Northern Lights are visible for much of the year, and the village is known for its clear, dark skies, which make it easier to see the Northern Lights. During the winter months, the Northern Lights are often visible in the night sky over Saadjarv, and the village offers many great spots for aurora watching, such as the shores of Lake Saadjärv and the nearby Rõuge Põhja-Türisalu Nature Reserve.

Saadjarv, renowned for its breathtaking natural landscapes and opportunities to view the aurora, is also an excellent destination to explore the history and culture of Estonia. The village features cultural attractions like the Saadjärve Museum, displaying exhibits on the history and culture of the area. A visit to Saadjarv offers a unique and fascinating experience for those interested in both nature and culture.

Antarctica

The Antarctica may not be the first place that comes to mind when thinking about viewing the Northern Lights, but it offers a unique and stunning setting for this natural phenomenon. While the Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis, are most commonly seen in the Northern Hemisphere within the “Auroral Oval” spanning across Alaska, Canada, and the Arctic, the Antarctica is located south of this zone. However, the Northern Lights can be seen from nearby islands, such as South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, north of the Antarctic Circle.

Visiting the Antarctica for the Northern Lights also allows for the chance to witness other natural wonders such as glaciers, icebergs, and wildlife like penguins and seals. Additionally, the surrounding islands are home to polar bears, which are a popular attraction for tourists.

To reach the Antarctica, the most common method is flying to one of the gateway cities such as Punta Arenas in Chile or Ushuaia in Argentina and then taking a ship or plane to the continent. Tour companies offer various expeditions to the Antarctica, which typically include accommodation, transportation, and guided activities. Overall, the Antarctica offers a one-of-a-kind opportunity to experience the Northern Lights amidst its unparalleled natural beauty.

In conclusion, there are many great places around the world to see the Northern Lights, including Fairbanks, Alaska; Lapland, Finland; Kangerlussuaq, Greenland; Orkney, Scotland; Yellowknife, Canada; Jukkasjarvi, Sweden; Reykjavik, Iceland; Saadjarv, Estonia; and Antarctica. Each of these destinations offers a unique and beautiful setting for experiencing the Northern Lights, and they all have something to offer for people who are interested in nature, culture or both.

If you are planning a trip to see the Northern Lights, we hope that this blog post has given you some ideas on where to go. If you have any additional questions or comments, please leave a comment below. We would love to hear from you and help you plan your trip today!

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