Aurora Borealis, or the famous Northern Lights, is a fascinating phenomenon of Mother Nature that has kept humanity gazing at the sky in fascination for centuries. In medieval times, before we knew the scientific explanation of Aurora Borealis, it was believed that the lights were an omen of war or famine. The Inuit concluded that the lights were the spirits of hunted animals, such as salmon, deer and whales. The dancing green, blue, red and even purple lights are loved and admired by mankind, which has been searching for the best spots to view this spectacle for years. Here, at last, is the definitive list – the very best destinations to view the Northern Lights.
Almost at the northernmost tip of Sweden lies the small town of Abisko, described as the best place to gaze at the Northern Lights. It’s protected by magnificent mountains, has clear skies and lies in the very centre of the Aurora Zone. There is even an Aurora Sky Station in the Abisko National Park (accessible by chairlift), where you can admire the Aurora Borealis from the tower or terrace, or enjoy the café, souvenir shop and exhibition center. There is a limited amount of tickets per night, so make sure you book in advance!
The best time to scout for the Northern Lights in Abisko is during the months of November to March.
Trondheim is known as the ‘Capital of Northern Lights’, which is why it sees constant throngs of tourists. Just 35 kilometres away from Trondheim, the island of Sommarøy is isolated and quiet, with just 400 inhabitants and a perfect view of the Northern Lights. There is one hotel where you can relax and comfortably watch the ballet of colours in the sky from your window or the terrace. During the fall you can even enjoy the sight of passing whales as they swim near the island.
The best time to scout for the Northern Lights in Sommarøy is during the months of September to March.
Just 9 kilometres from the Russian border lies the small village of Nellim. It only has a few stores, a small harbour and is mainly known for its hotel and, of course, the Northern Lights. It’s extremely isolated and has hardly any light pollution, making it a favourite spot for Northern Lights fans. There are Aurora Camps to be found in the most amazing spots, without anything obstructing the night sky. You can cuddle up around a campfire and wait for the spectacular show to begin.
The best time to scout for the Northern Lights in Nellim is during the months of September to March.
Book a Lapland Reindeer Safari and explore a reindeer farm!
You might not expect to find this country on the list, but it actually has some great locations to catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights. One of the best places to visit is Whitehorse, located in the territory of Yukon. It’s an Aurora Borealis hotspot with plenty of choices from which to watch the night sky, such as cabins, tents, cottages and lodges that you can find near the lake. If you’re unlucky enough not to see the real thing, visit the Northern Lights Centre, where you can watch a state of the art panoramic video, meaning that you’re guaranteed to see the lights which dance in the sky on your visit Yukon, one way or another.
The best time to scout for the Northern Lights in Whitehorse is during the months of December to March.
Book great value at Westmark White Hotel during your stay in Whitehorse.