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Northern Lights or Aurora Borealis

An aurora is a naturally occurring phenomenon, which is caused by the collision of energised charged particles colliding with atoms in the high altitude atmosphere. In Northern latitudes they are referred to as the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, and give off an amazing natural light show, which is why they are often referred to as the greatest light show on earth. There are some short videos at the bottom of this page to give you an idea what the Northern Lights can look like, as well as one showing The Midnight Sun.

Although they can occur throughout the year, they are best seen when the nights are long and the sky is clear from clouds. This means that visiting Northern Norway, above the Arctic Circle from late November through to early March, can dramatically increase your chances of seeing this amazing sight. However, it must be remembered that it is purely down to Mother Nature, so nothing can ever be guaranteed.

There are a number of ways you can go ‘In Search of the Northern Lights’ on a ship, with the best ones being as follows: –

Hurtigruten

Hurtigruten ships sail up and down the coast of Norway daily throughout the year, and they offer the following options which involve flying to Norway to join your ship: –

Winter Only Short Breaks including Flights

  • 4 or 5 night Arctic Highlights
  • 4 or 5 night Taste of the Arctic
  • 7 night Arctic Wonders including a night in a Snow Hotel
  • 11 night Astronomy Voyage

Year Round for both Northern Lights and Land of the Midnight Sun

  • 5 night Classic Voyage South, from Kirkenes to Bergen
  • 6 night Classic Voyage North, from Bergen to Kirkenes
  • 10 Classic Norwegian Discovery
  • 11 night Classic Round Voyage

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines and Cruise & Maritime Voyages

They offer a number of 14 and 16 night cruises which are ideal for those who perhaps don’t like flying, or just want a longer holiday where the cruise experience is as important as the destination.

Going in Search of the Northern Lights is on many people’s wish list, and there are plenty of other things to try while you are there. Depending which holiday you are on, excursion opportunities include the Snow Hotel to visit or perhaps stay in for a night, dog sledging, a snowmobile safari, a midnight concert in the Arctic Cathedral at Tromso, and many more.

To book your trip or for more information, contact GoCruise with Ian on 08002922850 or 01455821770.

Northern Lights Videos

(page updated October 2013)