See the northern lights in March
Spring – with its longer hours of daylight and warmer temperatures – isn’t far away and as the aurora’s still in the sky, February and March are a great time to travel to see the northern lights.
Think ‘spring’ and chances are you’ll imagine a hint of green growing on the trees, snowdrops, crocuses and daffodils poking up through the ground, gambolling lambs… but maybe not the northern lights.
The Spring Equinox
Although it’s still somewhat of a mystery to scientists, the period around the spring (or ‘vernal’) equinox is often considered the real peak of annual northern lights activity. Although there is never any certainty of seeing the aurora, traditionally, auroral activity is strong in the weeks around an equinox. The spring equinox is on 20th March and, as we’re still in the ‘Solar Maximum’, there’s still potential to see glory in the skies in February and especially in March.
This is fantastic news if you’re one of the many who people dream of seeing the northern lights as travelling to see the northern lights late in the season has other bonuses too.
Why should I travel to see the Northern Lights in March?
Whether you’re up in Swedish Lapland staying in Jukkasjarvi at the Icehotel, visiting the Aurora Sky Station at Abisko and exploring the winter wilderness at Kangos – or indeed watching orca in Iceland – things are starting to warm up in February and March.
As well as increasingly mild average temperatures, the ‘Kaamos’ (polar night) is over and the regions have longer hours of daylight. More light means more time to take part in the many activities offered in these northern regions.
What can I do during the daytime?
While you’re waiting for night to fall, and the chance to hunt the aurora, there are a host of things you can try.
In Scandinavia, we can arrange for you to try ice-driving, snow-shoeing and ice-sculpting. You could also learn to mush your own team of huskies on a wilderness adventure, go snowmobiling, join a horseback safari to search for native reindeer and moose – there are plenty of options to fill the daylight hours!
Or perhaps you’d like to explore craggy volcanic landscapes, hike on glaciers, visit frozen waterfalls, watch pods of orca cavort in sheltered fjords, or relax in natural thermal hotsprings? In that case, head to Iceland to combine your search for the aurora with a plethora of natural wonders.
Check out Will Gray’s tips for photographing the northern lights
Watch Aurora Sky Station’s live camera