Where to see the Northern Lights

From the "wallet-friendly" skies of Iceland to cruising round Norway's fjords, Chris Carter picks four of the best holidays for viewing the dazzling display of the aurora borealis.


Iceland: one of the most "wallet-friendly options"


Passing the island's "spectacular" geysers and waterfalls, seeking out the aurora borealis will take you across a "magical frozen landscape and glacial rivers". Once the Northern Lights are shimmering above your head, you will want to capture the phenomenon on film. Tatra Photography has a "travelling hotel" on wheels parked on the Jkulsrln glacier. From there, "guests are driven to the best locations by Super-Jeep and given tuition" on photographing the light display. But don't forget the wildlife staying in the seaside town of Grundarfjordur, visitors can combine viewing the Lights with watching killer whales swimming off the coast.

Four-day full-board with photography tuition from £1,395 (TatraPhotographyWorkshop.com, 0161-408 8988). Five-day Orcas and Northern Lights break from £1,148 per person full-board (WildlifeWorldwide.com, 01962-302086).



"Northern Lights for the Soul", based in a remote Arctic lodge in Kilpisjrvi, Finland, combines the dazzling display of the aurora borealis in the night sky with yoga and meditation, "all in the name of achieving an elevated state of mindfulness", says Felicity Thistlethwaite in the Daily Express. Opt for one-to-one sessions with a meditation expert, unwind in the spa, or hop between the hot tub and the ice hole. For dinner, a special diet has been put together based on the "health benefits of local recipes". Guests can even enjoy an evening in a traditional Sami "kota" hut. Outside, your meal will be cooked over an open fire and, with a little luck, beneath the world's most luminous natural wonder.

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"Who says you can't rock a bathing suit in the Northwest Territories during the winter?" ask Lisa Jackson and Nikki Fotheringham in Canada's Globe and Mail newspaper. A 25-minute flight by seaplane from the Northwest Territories' capital, Yellowknife, takes you to the Blachford Lake Lodge. There, from the comfort of the hot tub, you'll have "stellar views" of the lights dancing overhead. The hotel even offers "an aurora wake-up service until 1am", so you won't miss a thing. Perched on a hilltop in the "wilds" of Canada, Blachford is "dizzyingly dark and exhilaratingly private", says The Sunday Times's Jeremy Lazell. With snowshoeing, ice-fishing, skating and snowmobile jaunts on offer, it's small wonder the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge chose to stop by on their 2011 Canadian tour.


Chris Carter

Chris Carter spent three glorious years reading English literature on the beautiful Welsh coast at Aberystwyth University. Graduating in 2005, he left for the University of York to specialise in Renaissance literature for his MA, before returning to his native Twickenham, in southwest London. He joined a Richmond-based recruitment company, where he worked with several clients, including the Queen’s bank, Coutts, as well as the super luxury, Dorchester-owned Coworth Park country house hotel, near Ascot in Berkshire.

Then, in 2011, Chris joined MoneyWeek. Initially working as part of the website production team, Chris soon rose to the lofty heights of wealth editor, overseeing MoneyWeek’s Spending It lifestyle section. Chris travels the globe in pursuit of his work, soaking up the local culture and sampling the very finest in cuisine, hotels and resorts for the magazine’s discerning readership. He also enjoys writing his fortnightly page on collectables, delving into the fascinating world of auctions and art, classic cars, coins, watches, wine and whisky investing.

You can follow Chris on Instagram.