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The Northern Lights

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Overview

In Narvik you can see the magical Northern Lights waving across the sky. It is close to an ethereal experience watching it while it dances and flames playfully on the arctic sky.

Myths and superstition

The Norwegian Vikings named the bridge between the Earth and the home of the Viking Gods "Bifrost". Most likely this bridge is what we refer to as the Northern Lights today, and with this in mind, "Heidall" was the God of the Northern Light in Norse Mythology.

The Folk Belief in the Nordic countries linked the Northern Lights to dead women, particularly to the souls of dead virgins. In China on the other hand, the Northern Light was seen as a warning of impending births.

According to Sami tradition, the Northern Light was a supernatural power that was evoked by shamans during spiritual wanderings. The symbol of the Northern Lights was used on their Shaman drums.

Still in the late 1900's, white garments such as hats and scarfs, should not be used in the winter, as it was believed that waving these against the Northern Lights would make it so angry it would come and get you.

Facts about the Northern Lights

Northern Light is the phenomenon that occurs when electrically charged particles are hurled to the earth from the sun.

When the solar winds get more powerful than normal, the particles (electrons and protons) will collide with gases in the Earth's athmosphere, causing these gases to excite and release energy in the form of electromagnetic radiation which can be observed as a belt around the magnetic poles.

The Latin name for the Northern Lights is Aurora Borealis.

Hunting the Arctic Light - when?

Narvik with its location, is the most ideal place for observing the Northern Lights.

Between autumn equinox 21st of September and vernal equinox 21st of March the Northern Lights appear. The best chances to see it is in the evening, between 18:00 and 01:00 in the night.

We cannot guarantee that you will get to see the Aurora Borealis, but the hunt is really exiting in itself. We can have days and weeks where Aurora occurs in the sky, dancing in her magnificent colors, then the day after we get a blizzard or overcast with no chances to see this beautiful phenomenon. Hence; the more time you spend in Narvik, the greater chance to experience it!

Throughout the entire winter we offer excursions in a magical winter landscape, just perfect for Hunting the Arctic Light.


  • Last Updated:
  • Source: Visit Narvik AS
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Narvik, Norway
The latitude and longitude
68° 26' 18" N / 17° 25' 38" E
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