The Northern Lights magical experience in Iceland


When is the best time for Northern Lights’ magical experience in Iceland?

The short answer is “now”. The long answer is that the Northern Lights have been observed in Iceland year-round. The best time to visit Iceland, and thus the country’s best chance of good visibility, is during the winter months of September through April.

But what are the Northern Lights?

They are a natural occurrence seen as clouds of greenish light, typically in one part of the sky.

What are the Best Conditions for the Northern Lights in Iceland?

As a rule, the Northern Lights require darkness on Iceland’s clearest nights, where the skies are totally free of clouds and no moonlight to interfere. It is also essential that lights from settlements do not obscure visibility either.

Weather conditions play an essential role in whether or not Northern Lights can be seen. The lower the temperature, the higher we can expect to see them. During the winter months, it is average for temperatures in the southerly lowlands of Iceland to be around 0 °C (32 °F), while the north averages around −10 °C (14 °F).

What are the Best Places to See the Northern Lights in Iceland?

The Northern Lights can be seen in various parts of Iceland during winter, both in Reykjavik’s capital city and other cities. Still, it’s generally best to go outside the cities with minimal light pollution to experience the northern lights. 

What is the most effective way to experience the northern lights in Iceland?

The most effective way to see the northern lights (aurora borealis) is by taking a guided tour. These tours are available from September to April whenever the lights are expected. If the outings are cancelled or unsuccessful, you will likely get another opportunity to see them for free.

There are many benefits to a guided tour. First, the tour guide knows what to look for and when to expect it. They can tell you how to recognize the northern lights and advise specific sky areas to keep your eyes focused. Another benefit of a guided tour is that guides know all the best places to see the lights, so there are no surprises during your visit. They also let you know when they think it’s best not to go outside due to weather conditions (cloudy skies are not recommended). 

We hope our guide to the Northern Lights in Iceland has encouraged you to come to Iceland and seek out the magnificent aurora borealis. Experiencing the Northern Lights can be a magical experience you will probably remember for many years!

Click the photos below for more information on Northern Lights tours.
Northern Lights (aurora borealis) Iceland
Photo by stein Egil Liland from Pexels

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