Best time and Place to see the Northern Lights

By Kevin Collins | Northern Lights Holidays | Posted 13 Sep 2011

 

Best time and Place to see the Northern Lights

We get asked this question more than any other  question.

Firstly you can never guarantee seeing the Northern Lights. If there was a magic switch somebody would have found it by now! However there are certain places in Europe which record much higher overall levels of sightings. The three most celebrated and visited are Abisko in Swedish Lapland, Ranga in Iceland and Tromso in Norway.

The seasons vary and Iceland, due to the non reliance of snow for the destination to work, has the longest viewing season. This runs from October – March. Abisko and Tromso have a shorter but more intense season running from December – April.

If i was to choose between the 3 destinations I would pick Abisko as the best. Not only does the % of nights during the season when the lights are viewed register the highest but the drama of seeing them up at the sky station is unbeatable. You feel you can reach out at times and touch them!

So having established the best location we focus on the best time. There is certainly an argument to say that the lights are seen at their best when there is low lunar light but from experience it should not be the overriding reason of the timing of your  visit. We have found that what is more important is finding a spot where there is a high chance of a clear night ( Abisko being the best) and then it’s down to the intensity of the solar wind bouncing off the earth’s magnetic field.

However having done this break for many years what is equally as important during a Northern Lights Holiday is to ensure you have a full programme of exciting activities to do during the day. This is where The best tour operators earn their stripes ensuring your break to the Arctic is a once in a lifetime experience with a mix of Husky Dog Sleding and Snowmobile Safaris to name but a few.

 

To see our Northern Lights Holidays click here

About Kevin Collins

Kevin grew up in the wilds of Africa and with family scattered all over the world was introduced to long haul travel from an early age. This turned into a lifelong passion which he has been fortunate to turn into a successful career.

Having spent 20 years in marketing roles in a variety of business environments Kevin set up Weekend a la Carte to provide the kind of experiential breaks that are increasingly being sought after by clients eager to find enriching ways of spending valuable leisure time.

Kevin has increasingly become fascinated with the Northern Lights, and has built up a wealth of knowledge over the years as to how to increase your chances of seeing the Northern Lights taking into account weather patterns, moon cycles , solar pulses and daylight hours. Kevin is also a fervent believer in making sure that the break is action packed so you have a fantastic time , even if the Aurora Borealis does not show.

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