It’s no wonder that seeing the Northern Lights is a bucket list experience for so many travellers – swirling and dancing across the sky in puffs of green, yellow, violet, red and blue, it’s the greatest fireworks show on earth. Caused by charged electrons colliding with gases in the atmosphere, the Aurora Borealis is certainly breathtaking, but can be elusive, which is why you’ll want to give yourself the best chance possible of catching it on a trip to the snowy north. Now Mantis eXtreme is offering a four night trip to Swedish Lapland that does just that, with premium Aurora activities each evening to shift the odds well in your favour. Here are our top tips for making sure you get to trip the light fantastic.
Location, location, location: The key factor in seeing the lights is being in the right place. Even though they’re spotted as far south as Scotland, the polar region is the optimal area, which is what makes the Swedish resorts of Abisko and Bjorkliden so perfectly situated. Light pollution can overwhelm the Aurora – despite how bright they look in photographs, they can be a lot softer in reality. The less competing light, the more likely you are to see the phenomenon with the naked eye. Well away from city light pollution and within a rain shadow, Abisko and Bjorkliden are already one of the best viewing locations on earth, but during the tour you’ll also get to visit the Aurora Sky Station – a truly amazing experience!
Check the forecast: Cloud cover is the major obstacle in seeing the lights, so be sure to check weather forecasts – you can even get ones specifically tailored to seeing the Aurora Borealis. Be aware, though, that weather around the Arctic Circle is unpredictable – it can be a stormy night when you go to bed and clear completely by the wee hours, or vice versa.
Be patient, and be prepared: The best time to see the lights is between 6pm-2am. Each evening of the tour, you’ll head to a different location to spot them. Be sure to dress warmly!
Ask an expert: Joining a tour is a great way to increase your chances, as guides often have years of experience in ‘chasing’ the lights. Our experienced guides are a great source of information, as well as having local knowledge of the best viewing spots.
Use the right equipment: Most tourists reach for their point and shoot or iPhone the minute that they see the lights, but unless you have professional equipment, there’s a good chance that the images you take won’t do any justice to what you’ll be seeing. That’s why your itinerary will include an Aurora Photo Tour in the Abisko National Park, where guests are provided with high quality cameras and lenses, and taught the skills needed to find and photograph the magical phenomenon. Even if you’re a photography beginner, you’ll be amazed at the images you’ll capture!
Many guests report seeing the lights all four nights of their trip, but beyond the lights there are a number of amazing daytime experiences to be enjoyed, from dog sledding to snowmobile experiences, snow shoes to skiing – and of course the comforts of the four-star lodge! Northern Lights tours run from Sunday to Thursday, and cost £1299 per person sharing.
Arrive in the Arctic and take your transfer into the wilderness of Abisko and Bjorkliden.
Settle into your hotel room and following dinner take a look for the Aurora from right outside the
Following breakfast head up into the mountains to explore on a snowmobile tour. Afternoon at
leisure In the evening head into Abisko National Park on an Aurora Photo Tour to hopefully take some pictures of the amazing Northern Lights!
Day at leisure to relax in the comfortable hotel surroundings or hire snowshoes to explore
further afield. In the evening get lifted up into the heavens to the Aurora Sky Station for
hopefully one of the best views of the Northern Lights in the world!
This morning meet your team of huskies and whiz over the snow on an Alaska Trapper dog
sledding adventure! Afternoon at leisure. In the evening take the short walk to the Aurora view
point to again search for the Aurora amongst the stars!
Following breakfast checkout and take your transfer back to the airport.
£1299 per person based on two people sharing on a half-board basis including all transfers and activities as detailed (excluding flights)