Northern lights

While the current solar cycle peaked in 2013 the northern lights are still occasionally visible from Scotland given the right solar and weather conditions.

Seeing the aurora was on my bucket list for a long time and I took a trip to Tromso in early 2013 to give myself a good chance of seeing it.  Fortunately it paid off and I saw the northern lights three out of the four nights I was there.  Being much farther north than Scotland this was an utterly jaw-dropping experience.  Seeing a corona ‘explode’ directly overhead and lighting up the sky from horizon to horizon was a sight I’ll never forget.

Back in Scotland I’ve been lucky enough to see the aurora many times since, using the knowledge I gained in Norway about how to look for and photograph the lights.  Since Scotland is on a lower latitude the aurora tends to be lower on the horizon and not as strong.  But this isn’t always the case: I recall Hogmanay 2015 when we saw in the New Year by watching a strong auroral display dancing in the sky from our front doorstep.

If seeing the northern lights have long been on your bucket list too I hope the articles below will give you inspiration as well as useful tips.


Tips and advice

Where are Scotland’s dark skies?

We’re entering solar minimum – What does that mean?

Top 10 Tips for seeing the northern lights

Top 10 Places to see the northern lights in Scotland

Sightings in Scotland and elsewhere

Hello aurora! March 2017

A colourful showing, March 2016

Dancing lights, October 2015

An expected light show, September 2015

Seeing the aurora in August (2015)

A colourful display, April 2015

A welcome return of the northern lights, March 2015

Seeing the northern lights in Scotland, March 2014

Chasing the northern lights – Touring around Tromso, February 2013

Chasing the northern lights – The Lyngen Alps, February 2013