What Are the Best Places to See the Northern Lights?

By Alice Nichols

The Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis, are one of the most stunning natural wonders to witness in person. Every year thousands of people flock to countries within close vicinity of the North Pole to get a glimpse of the colorful display.

The best places to see the Northern Lights are located within the Arctic Circle, which includes parts of Alaska, Canada, Finland, Greenland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. Within this area the lights can be seen from late autumn to early spring.

Alaska:The best place in Alaska for seeing the Northern Lights is Fairbanks. This city has some of the darkest skies in North America and is well known for its annual Aurora Festival.

Canada: Canada offers many dark sky preserves where you can view the Aurora Borealis in all its glory. The Yukon Territory and Northwest Territories are popular destinations that offer excellent visibility year round.

Finland: Finland is home to some of Europe’s most spectacular views of the Northern Lights. The best time to visit is between September and March when darkness prevails for longer amounts of time.

Greenland: Greenland is one of the best places for viewing Northern Lights as it gets dark earlier in November than any other part of Europe. It also has some amazing natural scenery making it a great destination for photographers.

Iceland: Iceland has long been known as one of the best places in Europe to view the Aurora Borealis because it has long hours of darkness during winter months and an abundance of open spaces with minimal light pollution.

Norway: Norway is a great destination for experiencing the Northern Lights as its northernmost reach extends into Arctic Circle and far above Polar Circle where there is more darkness during winter months than anywhere else in Europe. Popular destinations include Tromsø, Alta, Svalbard and Senja Island.

Sweden: Sweden can often experience very cold temperatures but with that comes clear skies perfect for spotting the Aurora Borealis. Abisko National Park is one popular destination as it offers some beautiful natural scenery as well as long hours darkness during winter months.


In conclusion, Alaska, Canada, Finland, Greenland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden are all excellent destinations for witnessing this incredible phenomena. Each country offers different experiences so be sure to research all your options before deciding on where you would like to go!