If you’ve always dreamed of seeing the beautiful phenomenon called the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis) come visit us in Iceland next winter.
This natural phenomenon is rather unpredictable hence the name: “Hunt for the Northern Lights”. There are a few pointers that we can offer to help you figure out the optimal time for your trip to Iceland or the best nights to go out.
1)What time of the year? The tours are offered from September to beginning of April. It is in theory possible to spot the lights in August and late April too, but the chances are much smaller and during inconvenient times of the night – therefore we do not operate tours in this time. From May to July it is not possible to see the Northern Lights, as nights never get completely dark in summer in Iceland. Now which of September to March are the best months? The answer is not that clear. September is usually not the best choice but October to March do not differ so much – feel free to plan your vacations when it fits you:)
2) The only factor that is absolutely certain is the Lunar cycle. If at all possible choose travel dates that coordinate with New Moon or Quarter Moon since moonlight on non cloudy days tends to wash out weak Aurora displays.
3) Once you arrive to Iceland, keep an eye out for the weather conditions in terms of clear or cloudy skies and ask the locals for advice on reading the weather forecasts. Icelandic weather is known to change rapidly, what you see on the screens the night before or in the morning does not always stay true come night time. Unfortunately weather is not possible to plan, do not waste your time by checking long term weather forecasts.
4) Let us translate the scientific part of it – that is the tricky part. We can tell you what is going on in terms of energy, solar wind and such. We do not operate our Northern Lights Tours unless there is a good possibility of a display.
5) A recommendation – for your benefits… Do dress warmly; bring windproof overcoat, hats, scarfs, mittens and warm shoes. You will enjoy the show much better toasty warm. It can get cold out there at night, it is Iceland after all.
Continue reading 10 tips how to take a photos of Northern Lights.