Anyone been on a holiday to see the northern lights?

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  • Anyone been on a holiday to see the northern lights?
  • hi,

    looking for destination / tour recommendatons for a trip to see the aurora next Feb. Not wedded to any country but the further north the better i guess!



    You do know that it is impossible to predict their occurrence?


    Nope but on my to do list before i die

    Ho hum

    I would love to see them, but they are not the most predictable of things!

    Premier Icon Stu_N

    Not exactly what you’re after, but if it’s all about the northern lights this might work?

    A mate is doing the Edinburgh one in a week or so.

    Saw them from Struie Hill, just north of Inverness – quite amazing!

    yeah, i know its a natural phenomena so nothing is guaranteed, but feb is the only time we can go.

    Premier Icon darrell

    Go to north Norway or Iceland

    Looking into this for next year myself as a poorly-concealed surprise for the missus, Tromsoe seems to be one of the best bets although it’s quite near the coast (more risk of cloud) and not the easiest to get to, nor the cheapest once you’re there.

    From my limited research going when there’s a new moon apparently maximises your chances of a decent viewing. 2012 is supposed to be forecast a good year for seeing them.

    If you’re going to Iceland best bet is supposed to be Akureyri in the north, Reykjavik’s weather is usually unpredictable. We’ve been a few times now and never seen the northern lights either in Reykjavik or out in the sticks.


    Go to the Lofotoen Islands otherwordly location.

    We are going to northern finland at the end of jan/beginning of feb.

    Hoping to see them, but if not the holiday includes so much stuff it won’t be a huge issue (just an excuse to go back I guess).

    We are staying here

    Premier Icon gbichan

    I live in Orkney so am fortunate enough to see them fairly regularly. As has been said its difficult to guarantee a viewing. It’s Sods law that when the solar conditions are right the weather will be overcast! But when they’re putting on a real show you know why they’re called the merry dancers, it really is something to see. Getting really far north for an even better show would be well worth the effort IMHO. It’s something I plan to do myself (as soon as I convince the wife!).


    Read the opening chapter of ’Neither Here Nor There’ by Bill Bryson. He spends a month or so in a place called Hammerfest – Norway. A really good book and will definately inspire you.



    I consider myself fortunate indeed for having seen the Aurora, and I was only about fourteen miles from home, in North Wiltshire. About 1-1.30 in the morning, on the way back from Basinstoke with a mate after seeing our g/f’s at the hospital. (Trainee nurses). Saw something odd out of the window and pulled over not far from Avebury. Mate asks what’s up, so I tell him to get out of the car quick and tell me if he’s seeing what I’m seeing. We stood there for around fifteen minutes gawping like idiots until the lights gradually faded away. Truly magical and genuinely awe-inspiring sight. It’s worth making the effort and hoping; if you do see them it will stay with you for the rest of your life.

    Premier Icon wallop

    I saw them from a plane once, flying back from Los Angeles. It was pretty cool.


    Saw a slideshow from the aurora flights man earlier in the year on Leith hill. IIRC:

    Flight is much cheaper and more likely to see a show on any given day.

    Actually going north eg to Norway will get you a better show when conditions are good.

    grahamt – where did you book that hotel through? looks lovely 🙂


    I’ve seen them about half a dozen times. Ullapool one New Years Eve, Achmelvich, Braemar (I was camping and was woken up by the voices of other campers), Aviemore (on the way down the A9 one night and was originally convinced it was a forest fire – could still see them all the way back to Fife) and once from home in Balerno.


    I saw them from Barry Buddon army ranges at Carnoustie!


    Went to Iceland over Christmas back in 2008/09 I think, was there 10 days, took until the very last night to get any sort of display due to cloud cover, this is what we saw:

    Was very cool and I really want to go up to Tromso or Alaska to see a really good display…

    We booked it with activities abroad. If you are interested then you will need to book quick as they told us they are very busy this year.

    I went to a winter lodge hotel in Kaaresuvanto, Finland, for a week.
    Location was ok, on the Swedish border but a bit too isolated for a week – did snow mobiles, a couple of husky trips, reindeer sleds, ice fishing, etc. Was my 30th and my GF didn’t realise it was in the middle of nowhere + expected more to be included with what she’d booked. My credit card had to come out twice & cost me £1k to do all the stuff I wanted to – not like I was going to be able to go again afterall so made the most of it!
    Loved it but sadly didn’t get to see the lights – that month was pretty much cloud cover all the time.
    Tromso looks like a cool place to be based at though.

    Saw them from 4 miles outside Durham City a few years back. Not proply spectacular from there but I thought it was a laser show or summink till I realised.


    I sat for hours with my 7 year old son, wrapped in sleeping bags in NE Iceland (Asbyrgi) watching curtains of reds and greens chasing each other across the sky. Absolutely magical, one of the best times in my life..

    Mrs Ambrose has seen them when in Bala.

    I’ve seen them from the top of Baildon Moor, not too far from Leeds/Bradford airport. Just the once mind. On a night ride


    I’ve seen them lots of times but not for about 5 years and it is starting to annoy me. I’ve taken to walking the dog late at night away from the town in an attempt to see them this winter. And I will! grrrrrr!


    The sun has been at a quiet spot in its 11-year cycle. It’s just waking up again….


    Timelapse over 6 months, from 50,000 stills.

    That Ice Hotel place does trips. You head out either on a reindeer-pulled sleigh or skidoos out into the middle of nowhere.
    Reasonably pricey, but I reckon it’s probably worth it.
    Ice Hotel Lapland


    Went to Finland skiing in place called Ruka went on overnight snowmobile trip up over the arctic circle and got to see them, absolutely amazing. Genuine awe inspiring moment.

    Decent skiing for a beginner (like me) up there too but the best were the other things we managed to do. Thought I would love snowmobiling but actually it’s better than I ever thought it would be, however dog sledding with Huskies is even better than that so want my own racing pack now 😀

    Premier Icon crazy-legs

    We stayed in northern Finland over millenium New Year, a chalet way up inside the Arctic Circle. Stunning place but very remote!

    On the plus side there was zero light pollution and we had an incredible display on New Years Day. Lying on our backs in the snow, it was about -30 deg C, absolutely crystal clear sky and the northern lights filled the sky from horizon to right above us with a 120deg panorama of colour. Greens, blues, pinks, it was just beautiful.

    And unbelievably **** cold.

    Ho hum

    A second best to northern lights, IMO, would be a good display of Noctilucent clouds.

    You get to see them at night and thankfully they occur in the summer, so you don’t have to worry about freezing to death whilst watching them 😉

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