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Nature can be strange yet so beautiful. It can produce breathtaking sights that may seem magical and even otherworldly. Aurora borealis or “the Northern Lights” as it is more commonly called, is one such spectacular natural phenomenon that causes an amazing display of lights in the night sky. There are only a few places on Earth that you can visit to experience Northern Lights in all their glory. One such destination that boasts of gorgeous natural beauty, unique landscapes, and the most brilliant display of Northern Lights, is Iceland. Experiencing the Northern Lights in Iceland is one of the most popular items on every travel lover’s bucket list. If that is you, here is everything you need to know about witnessing Aurora Borealis in Iceland.

Best Time To Visit

The Northern Lights season or the winter period between September to March is the best time to visit Iceland if you wish to see the Aurora Borealis. But if you are lucky, you may even be able to witness the phenomenon between August and April, if all the conditions align. 

Best Conditions For A Clear Lights Display

The beautiful green and pink coloured lights of Aurora borealis are only produced when all the required conditions are aligned. It naturally occurs when electrically charged particles from space and gas atoms from the earth collide. You have a good chance of seeing a magical display of the Northern Lights if all the following conditions are present.

  • Clear, pitch-black night skies
  • Dry, cold weather
  • Temperatures below 0 degrees
  • Low pollution in the area
  • Less population in the surroundings
  • No street lights, mountains, or buildings around the area
  • High solar activity

Despite the presence of all of the above, it is essential to follow the weather and auroral activity forecasts to increase your chances of witnessing this splendid display of lights.

Best Places To See Northern Lights In Iceland

Due to its location in the northern hemisphere, most natural sites in Iceland are ideal for viewing Northern Lights. However, some places are more likely to show a brilliant show of colours. Below is a list of some of the best places to visit in Iceland for an amazing Aurora Borealis spectacle.

  • Öskjuhlíð, Reykjavík
  • Thingvellir National Park, Southwest Iceland
  • Skógafoss, Southwest Iceland
  • Vik, Southwest Iceland
  • Jökulsárlón
  • Siglufjörður
  • Kirkjufell
  • Asbyrgi Canyon
  • Westfjords

Tips For Viewing The Northern Lights

The best way to view Northern Lights in Iceland is to book a special Northern Lights tour with a travel operator from back home. You can also combine multiple excursions like the Blue Lagoon tour, the waterfall and geyser tours, etc., and experience everything unique and beautiful Iceland has to offer. Here are some more tips for increasing your chances of witnessing the best Northern Lights show in Iceland.

  • Plan a week-long or 10 days long trip to increase your chances of encountering the perfect conditions for Aurora borealis.
  • Choose hotels and accommodations in the outskirts of the cities and towns to ensure there is minimal population and pollution around.
  • Listen to the aurora forecast every day on the official Icelandic Meteorological Office website to get the most accurate forecasts.
  • Try and choose a place with minimal or no clouds.
  • Be prepared to wait in the cold outside for long periods to catch the display as soon as it appears.
  • Keep your cameras ready!

Ready to visit Iceland and witness this breathtaking natural phenomenon? Book your holiday to Iceland with ETW Travel and we’ll help you plan the perfect trip with all the best tours and excursions for a holiday of a lifetime. Call us on 01908 886491 to book today!