Where to see Northern Lights in Norway? 🌌
Where could be the best place to see Northern Lights if not the land of the Northern Lights – Norway.
“Gradually, from the darkness appeared a gentle, elusive glare. Thin locks of light glided along the horizon, spilling out against the dark background of the night sky. Then, the others joined them creating a huge curtain of dancing lights. As if alive, it pulsed and played with gentle shades of green, allowing us to hold our breath with pleasure in the magic of the most amazing spectacles on the planet.”
That is how an eyewitness described seeing the Northern Lights in northern Norway, near the city of Tromsø.
Northern Lights are a truly magical sight. It shouldn’t surprise you why in this past this “heavenly dance” was attributed to Gods. For example, the vikings believed that in this way Valkyrie’s come down to collect the souls of fallen warriors in order to take them back to the heavenly halls of Valhalla.
Today, the explanation for this natural phenomenon is much more prosaic, but it still does not take away from the magic of seeing it. This spectacular phenomenon occurs during strong solar storms, when the sun’s solar flares manage to penetrate the earth’s magnetic field. Upon entering the atmosphere, charged particles interact with gases and illuminate the sky. Depending on the gases and altitude, the saturation and radiance of the colours differs and ranges from pink/red to violet, blue, yellow and green.
Northern lights can be observed in both hemispheres of the planet. In the northern hemisphere the phenomenon is called Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights) and in the southern hemisphere it’s Aurora Australis (Southern Lights).
Where to See Northern Lights in Norway?
Out of all the countries where you can see the northern lights, Norway is at the top of the list. The countries dramatic winter landscape, dark nights and most importantly, a well developed infrastructure makes Norway the ideal country where to see Northern lights.
The so-called northern lights belt stretches from the Lofoten Islands to the north cape (Nordkapp), although the lights have recently made appearances in central Norway. The likelihood of seeing Northern lights anywhere along “the belt” is equally high. The best places where to see Northern lights from are the Svalbard archipelago (Spitsbergen, where the black mountains and white glaciers add to the magical views). The rocky north cape (Nordkapp) and without a doubt, the mountainous archipelago of Tromsø.
Northern Lights in Tromsø
Ersfjord is a small village on the island of Sør-Kvaloy in Tromsø. It’s one of the most popular destinations among Aurora hunters . Thanks to the clean air, clear sky and snow-capped mountain peaks Ersfjord is one of the best places in Tromsø where to see Northern lights from. Another place in Tromsø would be the island of Sommarøy in the western part of the Lyngen Alps mountain range, east of Tromsø.
The good thing about going to Norway to see the Northern lights is the countries well developed infrastructure. Variety of offers from local travel companies ensure that you get the best experience, including classic nordic activities such as skiing and snowshoeing. You can even go on a cruise along the coast of Norway and explore the natural wonders that are the Norwegian fjords.
One of the best ways where to see Northern lights from would be under the glass roof of a crystal lavvo in the Lyngen Alps.
Best time to see Northern Lights in Tromsø
For the local residents of northern Norway, the Northern lights are a part of everyday life. After all, every time it comes to winter, colourful auroras appear and illuminate the sky so there is no need to specifically time seeing them. It’s a completely different story if you’re travelling to Norway exclusively to see the Northern lights. Unfortunately, it’s not possible to produce an exact schedule of appearances. In places like Tromsø they can sometimes be seen nearly 24 hours a day in winter.
Nevertheless, you can attempt to plan your trip based on certain conditions under which the likelihood of seeing the Northern lights increases.
The chances of observing the Aurora Borealis are the highest during October till the end of March, usually between the hours of 6:00 PM and 1:00 AM.
The Northern Lights love showing up on dry, cold winter days, which are the most common in November through to February. The “ideal” conditions are usually found in December.
The sky should be clear of clouds, without snowfall and strong winds (which can drive clouds). If possible, you may want to avoid full-moon nights, as the light from the moon can sometimes be too bright and reduce the contrast, rendering the Aurora Borealis to look less spectacular.