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Skiing under the northern lights in Harstad, Northern Norway - Photo: Frank Andreassen/www.nordnorge.com/Harstad
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Skiing under the northern lights in Harstad, Northern Norway Photo: Frank Andreassen/www.nordnorge.com/Harstad

What to do under the northern lights

There is much for visitors to do under the northern lights in Northern Norway and Svalbard. Here are a few suggestions for activities and excursions.

Aurora is an unpredictable lady, and you never know when she will decide to turn up. This diva keeps you waiting, so whenever you go hunting for the northern lights above the Arctic Circle, make sure you set aside the whole evening. Northern lights worshippers do everything from cross-country skiing to building snowmen in order to keep warm and entertained while outside.

However, organised tours are a good alternative.

Experience the aurora at sea

Witness the northern lights as they fill the inky night sky from the comfort of one of Hurtigruten's ships.

Snowmobile safaris

Driving your own snowmobile is a feeling of freedom in itself, and when you do it under the northern lights, you will definitely have an experience to talk about. Several operators offer such tours in Northern Norway and Svalbard. One recommended alternative is a guided snowmobile tour from Sorrisniva Igloo Hotel. There is a similar option in Kirkenes.

Northern lights lectures

Polarlightcenter in Laukvik on Austvågøya in the Lofoten Islands offers presentations, information, courses and exhibitions. The centre is run by enthusiastic northern lights researchers Rob and Therese, who will give you informational and magic experiences.

Dog sledding

In Finnmark you can book dog sledding under the northern lights in the Pasvik Valley, on the Russian border and Northern light tour in Karasjok, the sami capital. Similar offers exist in the Svalbard Islands, well north of the Arctic Circle. Experience dog sledding in this film.

More activities under the northern lights.

An absolutely fabulous trip to see the northern lights

Joanna Lumley, the actress from the BBC series Absolutely Fabulous, had dreamt of seeing the northern lights since she was a child. And finally she got to live out her dream. In a splendid BBC film, she travels across Norway in search of the aurora borealis. For Joanna, as for many others who get to experience the elusive lights, it was an altogether emotional experience. See a clip from the film here.

Chasing the northern lights
If the northern lights do not come to you, you can go to the northern lights. Set off by car into the polar night on the lookout for clear skies.

Joanna Lumley's northern lights guide, Kjetil Skogli, offers rides from Tromsø. You can also go in search of the mystical lights starting from Alta with the company GLØD

If you want to learn how to catch the northern lights on your camera, join an organised outing with Creative Vacations. There is also the Northern Lights Bus in Tromsø.

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Last updated:  2014-03-11
Watch the northern lights from a Hurtigruten ship in Northern Norway - Photo: Stein J Bjørge/Hurtigruten
Watch the northern lights from a Hurtigruten ship in Northern Norway
Chase the northern lights at Kvaløya in Troms - Photo: Gaute Bruvik/www.nordnorge.com/Karlsøy
Chase the northern lights at Kvaløya in Troms
The northern lights are visible in the winter from much of Northern Norway - Photo: Terje Rakke/Nordic Life/www.visitnorway.com
The northern lights are visible in the winter from much of Northern Norway

Interest:  Snowscooter, Riding & Sledding, The northern lights

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Skiing under the northern lights in Harstad, Northern Norway - Photo: Frank Andreassen/www.nordnorge.com/Harstad

What to do under the northern lights

There is much for visitors to do under the northern lights in Northern Norway and Svalbard. Here are a few suggestions for activities and excursions.

What to do under the northern lights

Source: Visitnorway

The northern lights

Watch nature's own theater unfold above you as the most spectacular light show takes center stage: The northern lights with you in the front row.

Arctic Norway is the kingdom of light

The land above the Arctic Circle is known for midnight sun and northern lights, Sami people in Finnmark and polar bears at the Svalbard Islands.

An absolutely fabulous trip to see the northern lights

Follow actress Joanna Lumley as she travels to Northern Norway to fulfil a childhood dream and see the northern lights.

When and where to find the northern lights

For the best chances to see the northern lights, or aurora borealis, head to Northern Norway or Svalbard between late autumn and early spring.

About Northern Norway

Tourist information for Helgeland

You will find four tourist information centers to help you plan your trip to the Helgeland Region.

Key facts about Helgeland

Helgeland is a large and majestic region covering 18,000 square kilometres in the southern part of the county of Nordland.

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