Off The Beaten Track: Seeing The Northern Lights 2014
The Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis, are one of the most amazing and awe inspiring natural phenomena you will see in your entire life. Yes, we know that’s a big statement and we stand by it! Here’s the Purple Travel guide to the Northern Lights 2014.
The natural light show is caused when collisions between charged particles in the ionosphere release mass energy and light in multiple colours, which will leave your jaw on the floor. The mysterious Northern Lights 2014 are a wonder to behold and their magical as well as atmospheric formations completely win over anyone lucky enough to actually experience them.
Image via @ GuideGunnar – Arctic Norway
When to see the Northern Lights
Oh! You lucky things, there’s still lots of time to book as winter 2014 has been characterized as the “Solar Maximum Period” and therefore predicted to be the best aurora season in many years. Bear in mind though the lights are visible only under dark skies between the months of September to April, preferably under a clear, cloudless sky.
Usually seen between 5pm and 2am, it is important to be away from artificial light (and to bring a thermos of coffee with you!) No month guarantees better sightings than another but December to February offer the longest hours of darkness, while the months of autumn and spring are likely to offer more stable weather conditions and often see more aurora activity.
Image via @ Image Editor
Where to see the Northern Lights
If you head for the area known as the auroral oval that sits above the Arctic and sub-Arctic, you’ll have the best chance of seeing the lights. The best options and most easily accessible of these destinations are Iceland, Sweden, Finland, Norway and Canada. Our top choices include the Hotel Ranga in the Iceland’s southern countryside, the Aurora Sky Station at Abisko in Swedish Lapland or just outside Tromso in Norway.
Image via @ Timo Newton-Syms
Northern Lights tours are popular and give visitors the best chance of catching the lights. There are actually plenty of options for anyone willing to spend a few days in the icy landscapes. A romantic Northern Light Cruise could be a good honeymoon option, or the Northern Light tour will give the ultimate Arctic Circle Experience.