Where to see the Northern Lights

The best places to see the Northern Lights

Sweeping across the Northern hemisphere in waves of vibrant color, the ethereal glow of the Northern Lights entices travelers year after year. Believed to be signals from the spirit world (or solar chemical reactions), this beautiful annual phenomenon can be witnessed throughout the Arctic Circle’s sparkling frozen landscapes. From Alaska to Iceland and Norway to Finland, we’ll show you where to see the Northern Lights – Black Tomato style.

This is an out-of-this-world experience. Quite literally. The Northern Lights are a result of charged particles in the solar wind colliding with molecules in the Earth’s upper atmosphere. This means that there needs to be solar activity for there to be any chance of seeing them. And as with any solar activity, the less light the better. Our luxury Travel Experts will ensure that you’re taken to low-light areas for the best possible sightings. Not only this, but we’ll also organize your trip around the best time to see the Northern Lights (between September and April) to give you the greatest chance of spotting this breath-taking natural spectacle.

There are also many places (and ample opportunities) to catch a glimpse of these dancing arcs of color. And with each destination offering something different, you’ll have the chance to seek out the Northern Lights not once but twice. Or thrice – it’s completely up to you. Anytime. Anyplace.

After countless trips to these glittering snow-covered lands, our luxury Travel Experts know the best places to see the Northern Lights. On our ventures, we’ve perched atop rugged cliffs and seen dramatic black sand beaches transform under their glowing hues. We’ve dashed through the snow in sleighs pulled by reindeer and watched as sweeping glaciers and majestic fjords gleam with colorful reflections. And you can too. Just say the word.

Fancy an alternative? Swap the aurora borealis for the aurora australis. The Southern Lights, as they’re also known. This is a great option for those who have already seen the Northern Lights – or who have always wanted to go to New Zealand. Traveling through towering peaks and breath-taking valleys, here you’ll gaze upon star-flooded skies and otherworldly glowing lights as you listen to the echoing call of coastal birds and traditional Maori tales and song.

In this detailed guide all about where you can see the Northern Lights, you’ll find the following:

Where to see the Northern Lights in Norway
Where to see the Northern Lights in Iceland
Where to see the Northern Lights in Alaska
Where to see the Northern Lights in Finland

aurora over the fjords in norway
lofoten isles norway

Where to see the Northern Lights in Norway

Beautiful mountains, blissful seclusion, and mesmerizing landscapes dusted in snow – Norway is one of the best places to see the Northern Lights. Exploring uncharted territory and remote corners of Norwegian countryside, you’ll watch as they flicker over fjords and illuminate the striking Arctic scenery below.

Embracing their mysterious unpredictability, we’ll choose where to go depending on weather conditions and clear skies – even going as far as the Finnish and Swedish border to find the perfect conditions for the lights. And we’ll make many stops along the way, giving you the chance to capture these unique natural surroundings on camera.

Lofoten Islands

Far away from the rest of the world, we’ll curate a bespoke luxury trip to explore the spellbinding winter beauty of the Lofoten Islands (and to hunt for the aurora borealis, of course). By day, you’ll ski down untouched slopes along the Steigen coastline and uncover beaches so remote that few have stepped there before you. At night, you’ll sail beneath the wonder of the Norwegian skies aboard a historical sailing ship. Or cozy up in a glass-fronted sea cabin on a private island. Or both. It’s your choice.


But for the ultimate escape from reality, we’d recommend Manshausen. This picturesque island is lined with glass cabins, offering mesmerizing views of towering mountains and plunging deep-blue fjords – all from the comfort of your bed. Here, it’s just you and the wilderness. Simply sit back and watch through your floor-to-ceiling windows as the Northern Lights dance across the sky.

When to see the northern lights in Iceland
Reykjanes Peninsula, Iceland

Where to see the Northern Lights in Iceland

The wild beauty of Iceland and the natural wonder of the Northern Lights make for the perfect pairing. And because Iceland is close to the North Pole and offers crisp clear skies, it’s one of the best destinations to catch a glimpse of this otherworldly phenomenon.

And after visiting this alluring island many, many times, our luxury Travel Experts have got the low-down on precisely where and when to see the Northern Lights in Iceland – and what to do in the interim. So, whether it’s a family trip or solo adventure you’re after – we’ve got you covered.

Between embarking on husky safaris through frozen terrain and floating in glacial lagoons, you’ll head deep into the darkness in Super Jeeps for a thrilling nighttime adventure. Off road, on snow. The only thing you’ll have to worry about is deciding how to see the Northern Lights. Leave the rest to us.

When you’re not on the hunt for the lights, we’ll take you quad biking across black sand beaches and diving in electric blue waters between the tectonic plates at Silfra. Even a Jules Verne-esque adventure deep inside Príhnúkagigur Volcano. And with beautiful outdoor spas and soothing thermal pools, off-the-grid relaxation and adventure go hand in hand here. Sounds like this is the place for you? Read our full guide on where to see the Northern Lights in Iceland.

To top it off, we’ll arrange for you to stay at one of our favourite Icelandic hotelsHotel Ranga a luxurious country lodge. Bordering a glistening river filled with jumping salmon and set among the wilds of South Iceland, here you’ll enjoy fresh food, continent-inspired suites, and incredible views of frozen landscapes. And, of course, it’s a prime location for some of the best sightings of the lights. The staff can even arrange a personal “Northern Lights wake-up call” to ensure you don’t miss them. Now that’s what we call service.

alaska aurora
Sheldon Chalet, Alaska

Where to see the Northern Lights in Alaska

Expansive ice fields, towering mountain ranges, and plunging river canyons. No matter where you go in Alaska, you can guarantee it will be jaw-droppingly scenic. Throw in a sighting of the Northern Lights and you’ve got a truly unforgettable luxury travel experience. And for those living in the US, it’s tantalizingly simple to get to. With no need for long-haul flights (or even your passport), getting there is easy. It’s leaving that’s the hard part.

Sheldon Chalet

Perched on an isolated nunatak overlooking Denali National Park and a huge 6,000 feet above sea level, one of the best places to see the Northern Lights in Alaska has to be Sheldon Chalet. A private hideaway at the very summit of the world (and one that’s only accessible by helicopter), this is every escapist’s dream. Heading out into the endless expanse of pristine-powdered terrain that stretches before you, you’ll hike, sled, and rappel to your heart’s content. What more could you want from an Alaskan adventure? Except, perhaps, the blaze of the Northern Lights? Come September to April, you’ll have that too.

Winterlake Lodge

If you’re looking for somewhere a little less remote, we’ll take you to Winterlake Lodge. Here, you’ll spend the day dogsledding and whale watching, before cozying up at the Happy River Cabin to spot the aurora borealis lighting up the sky. But our favorite part? The helicopters. Taking to the skies, you’ll soar over snow-capped mountains, picturesque lakes, and sensational glaciers. Afterall, what better way to explore the vast Alaskan wilderness than from above. But if you want to get right into the heart of it, then we’ll arrange that too. With helicopter-assisted trekking adventures, you’ll find an abundance of wildlife to snap your camera at and leave no stone unturned. You’ll have the best of both worlds.

Full of natural beauty and wonderful sites, it’s no wonder Alaska is one of our favorite places to visit. For more ideas on where to see the Northern Lights in Alaska read our full guide to this captivating state here.

Reindeer sleigh in Finland
northern lights

Where to see the Northern Lights in Finland

A true winter wonderland, we simply cannot get enough of Finland. Between dashing through Arctic wilderness, exploring storybook towns, and visiting Father Christmas at his workshop, here you’ll embark on a truly magical adventure. Sound like the ideal family trip? Let’s get started.

Seeing the Northern Lights is always a memorable experience – especially when seen from a sleigh pulled by reindeer. Near Rovaniemi, we’ll kickstart your luxury trip with a visit to a local reindeer farm. Here you’ll chat to the herders and feed the reindeer a few of their favorite snacks, before heading out for an enchanting evening of aurora borealis hunting, in a sleigh pulled by a few of Rudolph’s friends.

If you’re looking for a more adventurous way to chase the lights in Finland, hop on snowmobiles and ride out into the magic of snowy forests, keeping your eyes on the sky for any sign of flickering lights. Our luxury travel guides are some of the best in the business and will whisk you away from the city lights of Rovaniemi to find the perfect spot from which to admire the sky. Simply sit back and enjoy a picnic of Finnish ‘Makara’ sausages, grilled over flames, and a glass of warming Lappish berry juice, waiting for the lights to appear overhead.

A festive foray mixed with spotting the aurora borealis – this is one of the best places to see the Northern Lights with the kids. Watch as their faces light up with excitement (and the glow of the lights). The ultimate winter family vacation awaits.

Ready to chase the Northern Lights?

Embark on a frozen adventure to the heart of Iceland, catching the Northern Lights on dog sleds, snowmobiles, or Super Jeeps as you go – the choice is yours.