If you don’t know the best time to visit Iceland you might miss the Northern Lights. It would be a sham if you go all the way to Iceland and miss the spectacle of heavenly lights dancing across the sky in vibrant hues of green, crimson, and pink.
If you’ve ever fantasized about Northern lights, you’re not alone. Each year, thousands of visitors go to the Land of Fire and Ice in the hope of witnessing the northern lights in Iceland.
With a little luck, patience, and good planning you may watch this amazing light show too. The article discusses the best time to visit Iceland for northern lights, the finest viewing locations, and some professional travel tips.
When is the best time to visit Iceland to see the northern lights?
The best time of the year to visit Iceland to see the aurora borealis is determined by two variables: the season and the time of day. October to March is the best time to visit Iceland. The optimum time of day would be around 12 a.m.
The reason why this is the best time to visit Iceland will be explained in this section.
Season of the Northern lights in Iceland
(Definitely the best time to visit Iceland)
Between October and March (best season to go to Iceland), you have a better chance of viewing the aurora borealis. That is not to imply that you will not or cannot view the northern lights at other times of the year. Your chances are simply better during this time period, which is why most tours take place during this time period.
Autumn is the best time to visit Iceland for northern lights(read about the best time to visit Disney Land), owing to the season’s longer evenings. On the shortest day of the year, some places experience up to 19 hours of darkness, providing enough possibilities to observe the aurora borealis.
Iceland’s winter (October to April)
Iceland is not as cold as other countries at the same latitude, yet winter temperatures are still dangerously low for the ordinary human. The temperature during the day can range between -1 and 3°C, while it can drop significantly lower during the evenings and nights.
Winter weather will serve as a constant reminder of where you are – Iceland! Daylight is scarce and glows surrealistically blue, with fog, rain, and snow all making appearances. Maintain a healthy body temperature, and everything becomes bearable.
If you’re wondering why you’d visit Iceland in such conditions, one reason immediately comes to mind – the northern lights. The Aurora Borealis, a display of colourful solar flares dancing across the sky, is one of nature’s wonders and a sight to remember for a lifetime. And it is almost certainly visible throughout the long winter evenings, from rural areas free of light pollution, providing ideal viewing circumstances! You may explore various attractions in Reykjavk, such as hot springs and glacial treks, and celebrate the festive season at the Winter Lights Festival, Food & Fun Festival, Beer Day, or the Reykjavc Folk Festival.
Why Autumn is the best time of the year to visit Iceland to see the Aurora Borealis?
Because the northern lights are most visible during the darkest period of the night, the majority of sightings occur between 11 PM and 2 AM.
You can spend the evening stargazing in search of this unearthly spectacle. Additionally, some hotels offer a special “wake up service” (see the list here) that will notify you if the northern lights show during the night.
Where in Iceland is the finest site to watch the northern lights?
The aurora borealis may be seen from anywhere in Iceland, including the capital city of Reykjavk. However, for the best results, you should avoid sources of light pollution (streetlighting).
Artificial light obscures the northern lights’ colours in the sky above you. That is why it is a good idea to travel out of the city to more isolated locations with less light pollution.