Aurora Borealis are beautiful dancing displays of blue, green and sometimes yellow light that occur in higher northern latitudes. They are a product of electrically charged particles released by the sun and Earth’s atmospheric elements. The colours come from different elements that they interact with - for instance, the blue comes due to nitrogen and yellow-green due to oxygen. Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights, as they are most commonly known to be, are best seen during the cold, dark months of winter.
The chase for Northern Lights is synonymous to the endless wait to catch a single glance of your lover. The glamour and beauty of the Northern Lights lie in their naughty and playful nature, whose pursuit will drain all the patience in you. Their unheralded appearance in form of a graceful dance shall flush out all your weariness in seconds. Here are some places to spot the Northern Lights and make your dream come true.
The birthplace of Santa Claus and the land of midnight sun, Finland definitely scores high on the Aurora Index. If you have a penchant for fancy things, Finland will interest you with its luxe accommodations that let you lounge in your room while the Northern Lights dance their way to glory. While most of us may not be able to afford a room in a fancy igloo with a glass-roof, you can definitely make yourself comfortable and watch the illuminating lights while you walk by.
If there was one Scandinavian country you had to travel to, it would definitely be Sweden. From the sweeping, montane countryside in the south and the dense pines of the north, Sweden is a world full of wonders spread out from the Baltic Sea to the Arctic Circle. With insubstantial population located in the northern region of Sweden, it is unperturbed by the vices of human habitation. As a result, it gives you a clear chance of spotting the Northern Lights. The higher up in the north you go, the better it is for you to see your celestial fix. While you are waiting for the elusive experience, we recommend that you get your hands on some reindeer meat and hot coffee to warm yourself up (a little rum or whiskey won’t be a bad idea as well).
Of polar bears, reindeer, walruses and Arctic foxes, Norway was once infamous for its Viking population. Even after so many years, their legend lives on. Yet adventurers from across the world come to satiate their wanderlust. When we talk about Aurora Borealis, the first word that comes to your mind is Norway. While Norway was ostracised because of its notorious weather and boisterous nature of the Vikings, today it is the most preferred destination to catch the Northern Lights.
The land with monstrous glaciers, feisty volcanoes, snow-cloaked mountains, mighty valleys and hot geysers is pinned on every traveller’s dream list. With such a diverse landscape, visiting Iceland is an experience that is unique on its own. Top it off with a visual treat of the Aurora Borealis and your journey is made memorable. A perfect reflection of the disco lights on the glassy waters will leave all your senses captured with joy.
This off-the-beaten-track destination, is indeed, an eye-candy for all nature lovers. Less civilisation and more internalisation are what you will experience here. While it is one of those very last destinations you’ll ever want to visit, it is also one of the most breathtaking odysseys you’ll ever take in your lifetime. And your efforts will all be worth it when you spot the Northern Lights in the middle of nowhere, dancing exclusively for your pleasure. Soak up the midnight sun, witness a glacier calving or be dazzled by the magic of the Aurora Borealis, Greenland, by all odds, is an unexpected surprise.
And last, but not the least, is the land who carries the sigil of a maple leaf. While everyone flocks to Canada for the Niagara Falls, we recommend you to cut the normal trail and head up north to witness the iridescent Northern Lights. Head to Yukon or the Aurora Village in Yellowknife, and you won’t be disappointed when you look up at the sky.
Author: Winnie Karnik