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The Northern Lights

The Northern Lights, or the Aurora Borealis, is a spectacular natural phenomenon that amazes even the most critical viewer. But how does it happen and where can you see natures finest lightshow?
Activities in Tromsø - Aurora Safari Camp in Tromsø - Norway
Tromsø Safari

What are the northern lights?

This cosmic light show begins on the sun itself where solar particles are whipped up to form a solar wind. This travels throughout the solar system and, eventually, comes across the Earth. As these highly charged particles collide with the Earth’s atmosphere they reach mind-bending speeds of up to 45 million mph (72 million kph).
The planet’s magnetic field then redirects the particles towards the poles. As they are deflected around the Earth, the particles release energy which causes the atmosphere to fluoresce. The different chemicals and gases in the atmosphere lead to the creation of different colors.
As the name suggests, the northern lights are found in the more northerly latitudes. You’re most likely to see them between 60° and 70° in an area often called the auroral oval. This includes Norway, Iceland, northern Sweden, Finland, Russia, Canada, Alaska, and southern Greenland.
Things to do in Tromso -Romance under the Northern Lights in Tromsø - Norway
Tromsø Safari

How does it happen?

When the solar winds meets the atmosphere around the magnetic north pole, the phenomenon known as Aurora Borealis is created. When this meeting occurs waves, arches and curls of light move across the sky, and sudden rays of light shoot down from space.
The southern hemisphere has its own version of the northern lights called the aurora australis, or the southern lights. The northern lights can only be seen in certain areas and the display of light varies in intensity, color and movement.
Activities in Tromsø - Northern Lights camp in Tromsø - Norway
Tromsø Safari

When is the best time to see the Aurora Borealis in Norway?

The time period we call magnetic midnight is usually the best period to see the northern lights. It usually occurs some hours before midnight and is when the viewer, the North Pole, and the sun are in alignment. In short, as in all things earth-related it is the sun that decides whether we get to see the aurora borealis or not. It is when the sun hits atoms and molecules in our atmosphere that the sky lights up.
The charged particles of the sun cause the electrons in our atmosphere "to hit the road" - heading towards higher energy orbits while releasing photons that let off light particles. The northern lights can be seen from as early as September to the end of March. While they occasionally travel south of the Arctic Circle, the further north you go in this part of the year, the more likely you are to get "the full show".
Northern Lights Photo Tour in Reine - The ultimate Arctic experience -Activities in Lofoten, Reine, Norway
Joanna Borgiel

Different ways to experience the Northern Lights

Norway is one of the prime locations to experience the Northern Lights and Fjord Tours offers loads of different ways to see them. Check out our exciting list of activities and tours below and find the perfect way for you to experience the Northern Lights!
Tromsø Safari

Aurora Safari Camp in Tromsø

Join in on Aurora Safari Camp in Tromsø and experience the magical Northern Lights! Enjoy an evening in a safe and private camp where you get the opportunity to take unique photos of the dancing Northern Lights.
On this tour, your guide will pick you up in Tromsø and bring you to a private and safe Aurora Safari Camp where you can experience the magical Northern Lights. In the Aurora Safari Camp, you will be served a locally prepared hot soup, as well as hot drinks, and “lefse”, a local sweet snack.
Culinary Northern Lights Cruise in Tromsø- Things to do in Tromsø, Norway
Brim Explorer

Northern Lights Cusine cruise in Tromsø

Experience the unique atmosphere while enjoying an Arctic Tapas dinner made by the local award-winning Mathallen Restaurant. Here you will also get a chance to see the Northern Lights, also called Aurora Borealis. A great meal accompanied by a great view; what could be better?
Northern Lights Photo Tour in Reine, Lofoten - Activities in Lofoten, Reine, Norway
Joanna Borgiel

Other ways to see the Northern Lights

We have several other tours and activities that are not specifically Northern Lights tours, but where you may well see the Northern Lights! Especially in the Dog Sledding & Snow Tours category. Check out those activities HERE, and see all activities HERE.
Happy Northern Lights hunting!

The best arctic experiences

Check out our exciting collection of activities in the arctic here!

Life in the arctic

Longyearbyen, Svalbard, Norway

Norway’s Arctic Climate

Norway’s Arctic is one of the most astounding places on the planet. From the vast untouched snowy landscape, to the breathtaking Aurora Borealis, to the unique wildlife, the Arctic is truly something incredible. Unfortunately, climate change is having a devastating impact on Arctic regions worldwide. If change doesn’t occur rapidly to repair the damage that has already been done, the results will be devastating for Arctic regions as well as the rest of the world.

Polar bears in Svalbard - Norway

Animals in the arctic

It should come as no surprise that the Arctic region is one of the toughest places on earth for wildlife to live. Humans have been able to adapt fairly well to living in this part of the world due to the ability to wear clothing and reside in heated structures throughout the majority of the winter. However, for the animals that are forced to stay outside and venture through the Norwegian fjords and other areas of the Arctic, the climate is much more inhospitable.

Mining community of Longyearbyen, Svalbard - Norway

The Arctic Circle

Sitting at Earth’s most northerly latitudes, you can think of the Arctic as the planet’s hat. The main focus of this area is, of course, the North Pole, however there is so much more to it than that. Surrounding the North Pole is the Arctic Circle which stretches out into different countries, forming a line around the top of the Earth. Let’s take a closer look at this fascinating part of the world.

Aurora Safari Tromsø - Northern lights tour from Tromsø, Norway

How to have the ultimate arctic adventure

When you book a trip to somewhere adventurous like the Arctic, you want to make sure that every second of the journey is packed with as much excitement as possible. But in order to do this, you need to know a variety of things about your destination such as where to sleep, what to do, and what to eat while you are there.