An aurora, sometimes referred to as polar lights or northern lights, is a natural light display in the sky, predominantly seen in the high latitude (Arctic and Antarctic) regions. Seeing this stunning natural phenomenon is on every travelers bucket list. Here are some of the world’s top hotels from which offer incredible sky-gazing opportunities.
Blachford Lake Lodge, Canada.
Blachford Lake Lodge is situated deep in the rugged wilderness of Northern Canada. Perched on a rocky knoll overlooking Blachford Lake, the hotel is a scenic half-hour bush-plane ride from the city of Yellowknife, the capital of Canada’s Northwest Territories, and one of the most popular places in Canada to see The Northern Lights. Secluded and completely wild, Blachford Lake Lodge is the perfect spot for uninterrupted Aurora-watching. To make the most of your stay, ensure you visit during the two prime viewing seasons – summer/autumn (August-October) and winter/spring (December-April).
Igloo Village Kakslauttanen, Finland
While the various log cabin accommodations at Hotel Kakslauttanen are all amazing, it’s the property’s distinct glass igloos that have really put it on the map as an Arctic hot spot. In these toasty little units, guests can observe the stars and Northern Lights from the comfort of their own beds.
Alyeska Resort, USA
One of the state’s top-rated hotels, Alyeska Resort is located 40 miles outside of Anchorage and is surrounded by lush forest and towering mountain peaks. Its relatively remote location makes it a great spot for viewing the northern lights and staff are happy to arrange wake-up calls so guests can enjoy them in all their glory.
Sorrisniva Igloo Hotel, Norway
Carved entirely out of ice, this exceptional hotel looks like something straight out of Disney’s Frozen – and at night, it has the amazing Aurora Borealis just outside its doors to boot. Celebrating its 16th anniversary this winter, Sorrisniva has a short lifespan; opening in January, it will welcome a limited number of guests before melting away in the spring.
Ion Hotel, Iceland
Set amidst a stunning backdrop of mountainous lava fields about an hour’s drive from Reykjavik, the Ion Hotel is a great base for exploring Iceland’s unique environment. And with its floor-to-ceiling windows, the hotel is also the ideal place for viewing the Northern Lights.
Lyngen Lodge, Norway
Located high above the Arctic Circle, Lyngen Lodge is an intimate refuge that houses a maximum of 18 guests. No matter how frigid the weather, visitors will stay warm thanks to geothermic heating, a sauna, and a large open fireplace in the main lounge – and guests can even view the Northern Lights from the comfort of the outdoor Jacuzzi.
5 Million Star Hotel, Iceland
About 1.5 to 2 hours east of Reykjavik by car, the 5 Million Star Hotel (get it?) offers five individual bubble rooms you can book to watch as the Northern Lights wash over the night sky. Each bubble—named Una, Asta, Thorunn, Valdis, and Maria—is “kept inflated by a slight over-pressure from a noiseless ventilation system” that also prevents humidity, and includes “heating elements with thermostat so the bubble stays warm all winter.” That’s key, given the remote location of all the bubbles and the fact average daily temperatures dip to 28 degrees Fahrenheit in January