On many people’s lists of things they’d like to see is the Aurora Borealis, also known as the Northern Lights. This amazing display of coloured lights in the sky has an incredibly magical quality, and has been the inspiration for many works of art and literature. It is caused by ionised particles moving and reflecting light in electromagnetic fields high above the Earth, and just about every imaginable colour can be seen at times.
Photo licensed under the Creative Commons, created by ToNG!?
The Northern Lights can sometimes be seen from all different parts of the northern world, with Scandinavia and Canada being popular places for people to go to try and spot them. Iceland, however, is about as perfect a spot as you can get to see the phenomenon. In the Atlantic, mid way between North America and Northern Europe, it is easily accessible from either continent and due to recent economic problems, it is currently much less expensive to visit than it has been in the past. Because so much of the country is white and unspoilt, and the Northern Lights are common there, if you visit at the right time (during the winter months) you have a very high chance of getting to see the Aurora, and also, when you do, you will have an incredible view unspoilt by man made light and buildings.
Some tour operators offer special tours in Iceland to go and see the Northern Lights, some as a package with other things like whale watching, so if your main incentive to visit Iceland is to try and see them then check out some of these – you will be taken to somewhere with an optimum view for the Aurora and won’t need to worry about transport to the wilderness from where you are staying.