They were once the fodder of legends about spirits of old maids and superstitions that a mere sighting would lead to good fortune. Perhaps the former is easy to dispel, but anyone able to catch a glimpse of the wondrous Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights) is indeed fortunate.
There are several places on our planet where you can see nature’s most spectacular light show but not everywhere has tall mountains, a grand Arctic landscape, contrasting seascapes, long brilliantly blue fjords and snow covered trees to complement the sky view.
Is Norway the best country where to watch the Northern Lights?
Norway, however, has the highest density of light shows anywhere in the world. And when not in search of the Light Fantastic, you could make the most of this unique land. During the day, you could go dog sledding and get up close to the Arctic coastal nature with fantastic views over Tromsø.
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As you enjoy the ride by a team of huskies, the air around the snow-covered landscape will feel fresh on your face and you may notice some local wildlife – actually the most wild you get is a moose or reindeer – along the way.
Back at the husky ranch, in Bodø, a town located on the peninsular of the coastline, there are puppies to play with and a regional Sami lunch to be savoured.
While in Bodø, there are opportunities to meet with a Sami family. The Sami are the indigenous Finno-Ugric people of the Arctic region who have a rich culture that dates back to prehistoric times. Perhaps they will share their secrets in reindeer herding with you over lunch in a lavvo (a regional tent).
It’s a lot to take in but you can let it out on a trip to Narvik to go howling with wolves at the Polar Park Wildlife Centre. These majestic animals are friendly and are happy to approach and sniff and even give you a wolf kiss – a friendly lick. There’s also brown bears, wolverines, Arctic foxes, elks, and lynx.
Where to Stay
- Thon Hotels has 12 hotels across the region, and offers double rooms from 1400 NOK per night.
- For an authentic experience, stay in an igloo at Sorrisniva Igloo Hotel.
Image credits: Bjõrn Klauer (nordnorge.com), Terje Rakke, Nordic Life & Andrea Giubelli (visitnorway.com), Ole C. Salomonsen, Northern Lights in Tromsø, Norway (c) wikipedia/Gaute Bruvik