Imagine you were the first person ever to experience the Northern Lights. Suddenly the dark night were no longer dark, but lit up by a fluorizing, ghosty light – dancing over your head in unpredictable movements. Ghosts? Extra-terrestrials? The Gods? It would indeed have been a frightening sight – something impossible to escape from. Even now many norwegians claim the Northern Lights to bring luck if you treat it with respect, but eternal misery if you enrage it. Today we dont escape from the Aurora – we go to the north of Norway to discover it and to encourage it to give us eternal luck…
Nowhere else on our Planet you have easier access to Auroral activity than in the northern parts of Scandinavia and – in particular – Norway. Come here between October and April, and your chance of success could not be better. Norways well developed infrastructure makes it easy to get around here by plane or by car. Many of the biggest flight operators in Europe run flights to Bodø. The Bodø/Steigen area are excellent destinations for your Northern light vacation.
Located on the north end of Steigen, in magical northern lights territory, lies Nordskot Brygge. The warf, the sea, the mountains, the houses – all this makes Nordskot the ultimate Aurora Borealis destination. Come and see the magic.
Beautiful located holiday accommodations, down on the pier at Nordskot. High standard houses with stunning view to the sea. Imagine seeing the northern lights dancing above the Lofoten wall – this is possible at Nordskot Brygge.
How does the Northern Lights occur?
The northern lights are a physical phenomenon that occurs when electrically-charged particles from the sun hurtle towards the Earth. The light becomes visible when the particles collide with gases in the Earth’s atmosphere. This phenomenon can only be observed near the magnetic poles. The polar light in the northern hemisphere is called aurora borealis – or northern lights – while the polar lights in the southern hemisphere are called aurora australis, the southern lights.
How often can you see the Aurora in Norway?
The northern lights are influenced by activity on the sun, and strong solar winds increase and intensify the northern lights. The northern lights are therefore always present. Historically, the chances of seeing the northern lights are best in Northern Norway between October and February because the polar night makes them easier to see.
The solar activity will be extra high, also the coming winter. In particular the wintes to come are forecasted to be the best Aurora-winters in decades. You can check the aurora borealis forecast
Where can you see the Northern Lights in Norway?
The northern lights are visible in a belt around the magnetic North Pole. Because of their location and accessibility, the counties of Nordland, Troms and Finnmark are perfect as a base for experiencing the northern lights. Northern Norway also offers a number of other activities that, combined with the northern lights, can make your trip completely unique.
When can you see the Northern Lights in Norway?
It must be a dark, cloudless night for the northern lights to be visible. Northern Norway during the polar night is therefore the best bet for experiencing the northern lights. Experience shows that the northern lights shine most often and strongest a few hours before and after midnight. The northern lights are strongest when an active area on the sun’s surface faces Earth. Spectacular displays of the northern lights thus occur at roughly 27-day intervals, the time it takes the sun to rotate once. October, February and March are the best months for seeing the aurora borealis.
The lights are at their most frequent in late autumn and winter/early spring. Between the autumn equinox and spring equinox (21 September – 21 March), it is dark between 6 pm and 1 am, and you have maximum chances of spotting the lights. However, the weather is also of importance, and September, October and November tend to be wet and snowless in the north.
From December the weather dries up, and there is normally plenty of snow. If you come in December or January, you experience the polar nights with atmospheric evenings and very short days.
In February and March the days are longer and you see more of the snow-clad landscapes during daytime, and the evenings still offer maximum chances to spot the northern lights.
No guarantee can be given, though. Some weeks, you are treated to fantastic displays, repeated several times during the evening. Other times, the snow falls densely, or the northern lights simply stay away. Naturally, the longer you stay and the more time you set aside, the better the odds.
Myths and legends about the Northern Lights in Norway
There was a great deal of mystery and myths associated with the northern lights in former times. Some considered the northern lights to be an omen of war or plague while others believed the lights were created by dead, old, unmarried women. People were advised against waving white clothing at the northern lights, as this would anger them and cause them to remove you from Earth. Others believed, on the contrary, that the northern lights would wink back if you waved a white garment at them. The Sami people believed that the northern lights had supernatural power, and they used symbols from the lights on their shaman drums.
The northern lights have fascinated and captivated people through the ages, and they are mentioned in texts written by Aristotle, among others. Chinese texts from 2000 BC also describe what may be the northern lights. The earliest explanations and descriptions fuelled the myths and mystery surrounding the northern lights, and it was not until the 17th century that the phenomenon was studied in a more systematic and scientific manner. A connection was gradually discovered between the northern lights and magnetic disruptions, and that the sun’s activity influenced the phenomenon. In 1886, Norwegian physicist Kristian Birkeland formulated the first comprehensive theory on the northern lights based on these previous observations. Birkeland developed and underpinned his theory, and his work came to form the basis for modern research on the northern lights. This research still continues today, and it has given us new information about the sun, the Earth’s atmosphere and near space.