On our planet, natural phenomena are frequent, which fascinate, make you admire them for hours, travel great distances to see them with your own eyes. This fully applies to such a natural phenomenon as the northern lights. Thousands of tourists from different parts of our planet come to Norway every year to enjoy this amazing spectacle. All travelers claim that this trip is remembered for a long time. When does northern lights happen in Norway? Where is it better to observe this phenomenon? We will answer these questions in this article.
Amazing natural phenomenon
Scientists have long explained how and why, from the point of view of science, this glow occurs. It is formed at an altitude of 80 to 100 km during the interaction in the atmosphere of molecules with charged particles of energy that penetrate from space. In other words, the streams of sunlight, reaching the layers of the atmosphere, provoke a bright luminescence of oxygen and nitrogen atoms. This natural phenomenon can be observed at magnetic poles, more precisely, in the zone limited to 67 ° and 70 ° s. sh.
In the southern hemisphere at the magnetic pole to see the aurora is very difficult, because in these latitudes there are no places suitable for human life. In the northern part of our planet, one can find about ten places where ideal conditions have been created for observing an amazing natural phenomenon.
When can you see the northern lights in Norway?
The best time to visit Norway for those who want to see a fantastic natural phenomenon is from December to February. It is best to watch him in the autumn-winter time. From September 21 to March 21 inclusive, the aurora appears almost daily after 6:00 pm.
The opportunity to admire the northern lights in Norway is quite real in August – from the end of the month to the end of September and from the end of March to the second half of April. These are the so-called transition periods. True, the nights during these periods are short, which means that there is very little time to see this amazing natural phenomenon.
Starting in August, you can see a fantastic sunset or a real show of dancing lights turning into the northern lights.
It is best to take a cruise on a liner that follows the coast of Norway. It is advisable to choose a route from Tromso to Trondheim. Many “hunters” for the northern lights visit the polar center, which is located in Norway in the small village of Laukvik. Here you can enjoy the celestial glow, visit exhibitions and presentations on the natural phenomenon.
From Moscow, you can go by boat to the Svalbard archipelago, which is located very close to the North Pole – one and a half hours away. Such expeditions are organized by Norwegian travel agencies. From Oslo, depart flights to the capital of the archipelago – Longyearbyen. If you want to see with your own eyes the northern lights in Norway (we have posted a photo of the natural phenomenon in this article), without leaving the mainland, stay in the cities of Alta or Tromso.
Tips from experienced tourists
The belt of the northern lights covers the territory from the Nordkap to the Lofoten Islands. Often from Tromso and from the Lofoten Islands you can observe the same shine, but from different angles. The farther you are from the coast, the drier the air, the clearer the sky, which greatly increases your chances of enjoying the northern lights in Norway.
Going “on the hunt” should be after 22:00 until midnight, and try to go away from cities. You should not go on a journey to the full moon, so that the light of the night light does not compete with the aurora and does not interfere with enjoying the amazing spectacle.
Features of aurora in Norway
If you come to this northern country in December or January, you can enjoy the true northern lights (Aurora borealis), when the nights are endless and the days are very short. In March and February, the duration of daylight hours increases, so you will have the opportunity to admire the day with endless snow panoramas, and in the evening – the northern lights.
Unfortunately, no one can guarantee you 100% that you will be able to appreciate the northern lights in Norway during your trip. Sometimes it illuminates the sky every day for several weeks, and sometimes due to heavy snowfall nothing is visible.
Every northern lights is beautiful in its own way. Sometimes the glow resembles green stripes that surround the night sky, or green fog. Sometimes the night shine in the sky is a magnificent shimmering canopy that shimmers with blue-green lights with small patches of red and pink. These colored ribbons up to 160 km wide can reach 1600 kilometers!
Dancing like flames in a dark sky, the northern lights captivate and enchant. With a strong flash, it appears for only one or two minutes, and then it “melts”, and you are left wondering whether you saw this miracle or whether it only seemed to you.
Probably no one is surprised that there are many legends about this amazing natural phenomenon. According to the Sami version, the polar fox, running through the fells of Lapland, flung snowy magic sparks with its fluffy tail and lit a fantastic variety of northern lights in the sky.
There are special symbols on the Sami shaman tambourine that denote the northern lights. In the language of the indigenous population of Norway – the Sámi – this phenomenon is called “guovssahas”, which translates as “light that is audible”. Indigenous people are convinced that the aurora is in a special way connected with sound. And in the time of the Vikings, this phenomenon was considered a reflection from the valkyrie swords.
In northern Norway there are many companies that organize snowmobile trips for tourists. Rushing on a snowmobile, you will feel a sense of freedom. And if at this time the sky above you flashes a flickering light, then you will not be able to forget this trip for a long time.
In Laukvik, on the Lofoten Islands, and more precisely on the island of Augustvøya, the Northern Lights Center awaits the guests, where they will be offered interesting presentations and exhibitions. In the province of Finnmark, in the Pasvik valley, near the border with Russia, travelers will be offered to go on a journey under the northern lights by dog sledding.
If you arrive in the Saami capital of the country – the city of Karasjok – then you can take part in the tour under the colorful sky on a special bus, which is called “Northern Lights”. To those who have ever seen these unusual flashes in the night sky, it seems that magical lights are lit only for them – on a certain day and hour, which nature itself designates.