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Northern Lights chase

The sky above our heads treats us to splendid natural phenomena. If we care to look up, we may witness stunning meteor showers, asteroids, comets or Northern Lights that will take your breath away. While Scandinavia is the best place to observe the aurora borealis, it can also be spotted in the UK!

September to mid April in Scotland

The 2013 is predicted to be a very good year for Northern Lights observations. The magnetic storms that cause the phenomenon will be very active this year and occur around equinoxes, i.e. March-April and September-October. Scotland and its islands – the Hebrides or the Orkney Islands – are best suited for Northern Lights observations. You can visit the standing stones on the Isle of Lewis during the day and chase the colourful lights at night.

The farther north you go, the better

The aurora borealis is more likely to appear in the north. General rule: the closer to the magnetic pole, the better.

Clouds and darkness

You are more likely to spot Northern Lights when the sky is clear, as clouds shade the spectacle. Basically, the visibility of the phenomenon is better, when you choose a dark place for your observations. Therefore, looking for the aurora borealis in a city or its vicinity is not the best idea. It is advisable to drive somewhere isolated, dress up in warm clothes, and look north. Although it may occur at any time, it is best to watch the sky between 10 pm and 2 am.

Where else in the world can you see Northern Lights

It occurs in the northern parts of Scandinavia, in the Troms and Finnmark counties in Norway, in Finland’s Lapland, in Iceland, in northern Canada, in Alaska, and in Siberia. There is also a southern counterpart of Northern Lights. It can be observed in Tasmania and southern New Zealand. Naturally, Auto Europe offers car hire in those places 🙂

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One Response to Northern Lights chase

  1. Single With Kids says:

    We went to Kuusamo in Finland armed with cameras and high hopes in December – but came away without seeing the fabulous nature show. All the more excuse for a repeat visit…. There are some great iphone apps that report on magnetic activity in the area so you can check whether it’s worth your while to get suited and booted in your thermal suits.

    Maybe next time….

    Chrissie

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