Northern lights

Seeing the Northern Lights in Iceland is a unique experience but the Aurora Borealis is elusive. We at Iceland Travel can help you to find the Northern Lights, for we offer some great tours, where you can hunt for this majestic natural phenomenon. 

Iceland is one of the best places on Earth to spot the elusive Northern Lights. Many places, only a short drive away from Reykjavik, offer great opportunities to spot these splendid and majestic lights dancing across the darkened night sky in vivid colors. 

When is the best time to see them in Iceland?

The aurora can be observed in Iceland as early as August and as late as April. The middle of winter is aurora prime time, because it's the darkest time of the year.

Where is the best place to see the Northern Lights?

Iceland is one of the best locations on earth to track down the Northern Lights. Areas that are not affected by "light pollution" are the best places to watch auroral displays. There are many places in Iceland which offer great opportunities to witness these majestic lights, some are even only a short drive from Reykjavik. Many prefer though to drive a little further, to be both in superb condition and great scenery, which offers great photo opportunites, e.g. Kerid crater or Jokulsarlon glacial lagoon.

Is there a forecast or can the be predicted?

It's impossible to predict the aurora accurately. One night they may be a pale milky green, spread thinly across the sky; the following night they could be red and violet and so bright that you could read by them.

What causes the Northern Lights?

Electrically charged particles are released from the sun and and solar winds push them towards earth. When the particles collide with the magnetosphere, they run into oxygen and nitrogen and form the colour bursts we know as the tranquil auroras.

Why the different colours?

The different colours depend on types of gases and altitude. The common pale green is produced when high-energy particles hit oxygen molecules at an altitude of about 100 km. Ruby auroras are born much higher up, or at around 300 km above earth.