Is North Cape the Best Place in the World to See Northern Lights in Winter?
The northern lights (aurora borealis) are one of the world’s most captivating natural phenomena. Every winter, thousands of travellers seek out the perfect spot to witness this mesmerizing display of color and light in the night sky. Norway’s North Cape (Nordkapp) is a famously popular destination for northern lights tourism, and many believe it is the best place in the world to catch a glimpse of the aurora.
The Northern Lights Capital of the World
North Cape is located in the northernmost part of Norway, near the country’s border with Finland. This region is known for its long, dark winters, making it a prime destination for northern lights chasers. Not only does North Cape boast more hours of darkness to observe the aurora, but it also has an exceptionally high success rate for catching a glimpse of the northern lights. According to the North Cape tourist center, the region enjoys up to 300 northern lights sightings a year, and over 90% of visitors report leaving with at least one sighting of the aurora.
A Off the Beaten Path to Reach the Lights
The town of Honningsvåg is the official gateway to North Cape. While many visitors opt to take a guided tour to North Cape, adventurous travellers can opt to take the road less travelled to get there. One of the most popular itineraries is to take the Hurtigruten ship from the capital city of Oslo up to Honningsvåg. From there, you can continue north by car, motorcycle, or bicycle to the North Cape Plateau.
The journey to the plateau is full of breathtaking scenery. Along the way, you will have the chance to spot reindeer, spot whales in the sea, and even visit the Svalbard Islands. There’s no better way to appreciate the magnificent beauty of North Cape before reaching the aurora light show.
Breathtaking Lights Show
Once you finally reach the North Cape Plateau, you will be rewarded with a stunning display of the northern lights. The best time to observe the aurora is on a clear night with little or no light pollution. The plateau is the perfect spot to take in the full display of the aurora and its colors, which can range from a faint light green to a vivid red.
If you’re lucky, you may also be able to spot the unique corona effect. This is when the northern lights appear to be pulsing or moving slowly across the sky, creating a spectacular show. It’s an unforgettable experience that is much more visible at North Cape than anywhere else in the world.
No matter the timing or location, catching a glimpse of the northern lights is a magical experience. Of all the places in the world that offer the chance to observe the aurora, North Cape is arguably the best. With its long hours of darkness, its high success rate for spotting the aurora, and its unique and unforgettable scenery, North Cape is undoubtedly a top destination for aurora chasers.
- High success rate for witnessing the aurora
- 300 sightings of the northern lights a year
- Unique “corona effect” visible only at North Cape
The best place in the world to witness the northern lights in winter is undoubtedly North Cape in Norway. With its dark skies and breathtaking scenery, North Cape is a must-see destination for anyone interested in watching the breathtaking aurora borealis.