The Northern Lights go by many names. Polar Lights. Aurora Borealis. Fox’s Fire. The Glowing Gates.
Scientifically, they are the collisions of solar winds and magnetospherically-charged particles. They exist as electrons moving between higher and lower states of energy, releasing photons and creating one of the most dazzling array of lights on or above the earth.
Culturally, they are vividly featured in the countless myths of Scandinavia, Canada, and the indigenous tribes of the north. They possess mystical qualities and are forever linked with strange beings and fantastical entities living just beyond the veil of our world.
No matter how you know them, however, in order to view them in their full glory, you have to know where to travel, and which of the world’s top viewing spots offer the true majesty of one of nature’s most spectacular light shows:
Iceland is the location of choice for professional photographers seeking the Northern Lights. The island’s flat, stark, natural landscape gives them a clear view right to the horizon. When the lights of the Aurora Borealis shine brightest, they create breathtaking photos unlike anywhere else.
Alaska is a wild place where nature rules overall. Pods of orcas, soaring eagles, towering glaciers – this rugged, untouched country offer something for every naturalist, including the Northern Lights! Whether trekking with your guide across the vast tundra near Coldfoot or viewing the dancing lights from Fairbanks, when you choose Alaska, you have endless choices.
Though the most remote of all the locations on our list, Lapland makes the Northern Lights truly inescapable. This frozen region spans across the northern reaches of Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Russia, and gives intrepid explorers a glimpse of the spectacle, two nights out of three! Choose your view during a reindeer safari. Ride a snow machine to the top of Haldde Mountain to the Northern Lights Observatory. However you choose to experience the phenomenon, Lapland has it all.
The Northern Lights can be seen from almost anywhere in Canada. In British Columbia, they shine off the Rockies and Lake Muncho. Bathers enjoy the spectacle at the Takhini Hotsprings in the Yukon, and their radiant glow pulsates, 300 nights a year, over the central plains of Manitoba. Even in the east, hovering above the restored villages of Battle Harbour, Newfoundland, and Labrador, the Lights make for the ultimate attraction, drawing thousands every year.
Contact us for an incredible encounter with the Northern Lights!