The aurora borealis is usually referred to as the ‘northern lights’ and is a natural phenomenon which many people would love to see. Aurora polaris, or polar lights, can be seen in both the northern and southern hemispheres, although the north is easier to reach for most travellers. The northern lights are a spectacular display of colour, a light show provided by nature, but to maximise the benefits of northern lights holidays to see the phenomenon, care must be taken when planning them.
There are now a variety of holidays available to see the northern lights, with the most convenient and affordable being Iceland or northern Scandinavia. The lights are best viewed between September and April, although close to December is one of the best times to witness them. The further north you travel, the darker it will be and you will have a greater chance of seeing the display. Northern lights holidays may be combined with other activities or sights, like ice diving or driving a snowmobile. Arranging a northern lights holiday is better left to the professionals, who can maximise the chance of the aurora being seen.
Although the aurora can’t be guaranteed, there are ways to increase the likelihood of seeing the lights. For example, choose a destination away from large cities where artificial lights and pollution may cause problems with viewing. Book for as many nights as possible, to allow more time to see the lights and have more chance of getting good weather.