Seeing the Northern Lights is firmly on my bucket list, but seeing the Northern Lights as a family, can it be done? The first question to ask is would they be interested? You can try and gauge their interest at home by taking them outside on a clear night and see what they think? Try and spot constellations together and watch for anything unusual. We once saw a shooting star which was pretty amazing!
If you decide to go on a trip to see the Northern Lights there are many different ways you can try and see them as a family that make it a little cosier and more fun for little ones;
Northern Lights Snow Shoe Walk
Snowshoes make it very easy to walk in areas of deep snow which will help you get to less accessible wilderness areas where it is easier to spot the Aurora. With breaks for a fire and hot drinks or even a dinner this would be a great activity to do together.
Northern Lights Sled Tour
This is a fast and comfortable way to go looking for the Northern Lights. Sit back on warm reindeer pelts in a cosy sled and cuddle up together as you get pulled along by a snowmobile. Moving out over the frozen sea, you move between islands as you search for the Aurora above.
Dinner On Ice
A dining experience like no other! You will be taken to a traditional-style tent, set up on the frozen sea. Sit comfortably in a traditional-style tend set up on the frozen sea. At a table next to a lovely fire you are served delicious courses freshly prepared by a professional chef. You may have to pause your meal if the Northern Lights are showing – simply pop out and take in the display!
Secrets Of The Northern Lights with Pancakes
Learn about the various myths and legends surrounding the Northern Lights, as well as the science behind them. Sitting in a traditional ‘kota’ – a type of native tent – tuck into pancakes made over a fire and listen to your guide as they reveal the secrets of the Aurora Borealis!
Things To Think About when seeing the Northen Lights as a family
Travel with an expert company who will be able to make sure you have the best chance of seeing the Northern Lights. The Aurora Zone is great if you have older kids or fancy going as a couple or with friends.
Viewing of the Northern Lights can never be guaranteed. Activities Abroad say – “It’s a bit like trying to see a lion when you are on safari – you can be in the most likely place with an expert guide, but sometimes the lions just don’t want to be found. The Northern Lights are very much the same and unfortunately, on some occasions, you might be unlucky. Travel with hope rather than anticipation!”
Clouds are the main problem. Quite often the solar activity is creating Northern Lights but you can’t see them as it is hidden behind a cloud. By going on a Northern Lights hunt on a snowmobile you can sometimes escape localised cloud cover.
The Northern Lights most typically appear between 10 pm and 2 am, so a potential sighting will inevitably involve late nights for families, so this is something you should be prepared for. Look for itineraries that create some chance to rest during the day and hope that the excitement keeps them awake!
For families with younger children or for those who want more of a leisurely adventure, some locations offer a more relaxed way to potentially gaze upon the Northern Lights – including the clear-roofed Aurora Bubbles at Nellim and Lousto’s Arctic View Rooms where you can enjoy a view of the night sky from your warm beds. Just wake the children up if they appear.
January – March are considered the best months for Aurora spotting but be prepared for cold. If you go Aurora hunting in late-March or very early April. The daylight hours will be stretching out by then so you’ll have to be prepared for some late nights but this can be a very rewarding time of year in The Auroral Zone.
Seeing the Northern Lights as a family can be done. Experience the magic together it will be an amazing memory to make!