If you want to do your Northern Lights vacation in utmost style and luxury, look no further. In this article, we bring together five of the most popular tours to Northern Lights from around the world.
As you may already know from your own research or our previous articles on the best places to view the Northern Lights and the best countries to visit for Northern Lights, the best aurora viewing locations are near or within the Arctic Circle. It is therefore no surprise that the top tours for Northern Lights are in Iceland, Alaska and Canada.
This article is just a small snapshot of some of the most popular Northern Lights tours in the world today. There are many smaller tour providers who also offer stunning experiences, which we highly encourage you to check out, throughout Canada, Alaska, Lapland, Iceland, Norway and more. We will cover those tours in other articles.
But for now, let’s have a look at the most luxurious offerings to whet your aurora appetite.
EUROPE Best Tours to Northern Lights
6 Days Around Iceland Adventure
Tour Provider: Arctic Adventures https://adventures.is/
The Six Days around Iceland Adventure is a popular tour of Iceland, that allows small groups to travel the Ring Road and provides them with access to some of the most spectacular destinations in Iceland.
The tour starts off in Reykjavík, allowing visitors to explore the city center. From there, you will make your way over to Reynisfjara to view the beautiful black sand beaches. Along the way, you will have the opportunity to view the majestic Mýrdalsjökull glacier. On the third day of the adventure, you can explore the areas around the eastern fjords and see the awe-inspiring coastlines.
The tour heads into the Möðrudalur wilderness before making its way to the highest inhabited place in the country. With stops each night on the tour, there are plenty of different opportunities to view the northern lights. However, during the daytime you will be able to watch whales in Dalvík, and pass through the charming Eyjafjörður region. The tour ends in Western Iceland, with a hike up the sides of the Grábrók volcano.
The Six Days around Iceland Adventure takes you along the ring road, which gives adventurers access to the Vatnajökull Glacier, Golden Circle, the South Coast, Skaftafell National Park, as well as the very popular Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon. You will have many opportunities to sit back, relax, and enjoy the awe-inspiring view of the northern lights, from just about every major vantage point in Iceland.
- 5-night adventure tour in Iceland
- Airport pick up and drop off
- Every group has its own private bathroom
- Breakfast every morning
- Tour the countryside in a private minibus with an experienced, English-speaking guide
- All safety equipment provided to hike on the Vatnajökull Glacier, as well as in Egilsstaðir
- Opportunity to view whales up close and personal in Dalvík
Why It’s Popular
This tour includes so much more than just seeing the aurora borealis, allowing you to really make the most of your vacation in Iceland.
When you choose the Six Days around Iceland Adventure, you will be able to get up close and personal with some of the world’s most pristine glaciers. Visitors have the opportunity to view volcanoes, geysers, as well as a number of different waterfalls. Not only will you have an opportunity to relax in the natural baths of Myvatn, but you will also be able to view the whales in Dalvik. Create incredible memories as you explore the frozen wonderland and view the breathtaking northern lights.
Northern Lights Escape
Tour Provider: Intrepid Travel https://www.intrepidtravel.com/
More Information: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/au/iceland/northern-lights-escape-123836
From gurgling hot springs to majestic waterfalls and volcanoes, the Northern Lights Escape is one most sought-after Icelandic adventurers available today.
You will start your northern lights escape in beautiful Reykjavik. The city is located just outside of the Arctic Circle and has been declared the northernmost capital city in the world. During the wintertime, there are only 4 hours of daylight, which provides plenty of time to catch a glimpse of the aurora borealis. While you are in the capital city, you will be able to visit the National Museum, as well as the infamous Laugardalslaug Geothermal Pool.
The second day of your adventure takes you out along the Golden Circle, for a breathtaking adventure throughout the Hvolsvollur region. Here, you will be able to see the Gullfoss Waterfall before settling down in Hvolsvollur Valley for the first real night of stargazing. From there, the tour will continue through the Thingvellir National Park, to the Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon before making your way to the Vatnajokull Glacier.
Because this tour focuses on smaller groups, you will have your own private minibus that will allow you access to some of the lesser-known destinations throughout the country. While most tours make use of the public transportation system, the minibusses will allow you to visit places that just aren’t available to other tours. Best of all, the buses have free Wi-Fi.
You’ll have the opportunity to follow the Golden Circle, and visit both geothermal springs as well as majestic waterfalls. Along the south shore, you will be able to step out onto the black sand beaches of Reynisdrangar, and even go for an adventure into the Skaftafell National Park.
- Spend 3 nights in a guesthouse, and 2 nights in a quality hotel.
- Breakfasts included
- Private mini-bus, with free WIFI
- English-speaking tour guide will take you from guesthouse to guesthouse as you travel the Golden Circle
- Opportunities to view the Strokkur Geysir, Glacier Lagoon, Thingvellir National Park, Skogafoss Waterfall, Gullfoss Waterfall, as well as the Dyrholaey & Reynisfjara Rocks along the south coast
Why It’s Popular
You will find that the tour guides are very knowledgeable about the northern lights, Iceland, as well as the Icelandic culture. You will hear amazing stories about the mythology and history of the people who have inhabited Iceland for generations.
You will even have the opportunity to see parts of the country that just aren’t available on other tours, which makes it a perfect option for a family who wants to view the aurora borealis together.
Land of Northern Lights
Tour Provider: GJ Travel https://www.gjtravel.is/
More Information: https://www.gjtravel.is/tour/land-of-northern-lights/
The Land of Northern Lights adventure provides visitors with access to popular destinations around Iceland including the Blue Lagoon, Black Lava Beach, and numerous waterfalls.
The tour starts the moment that you arrive at the Keflavik airport, with a fly bus shuttle that takes you to your first destination, the Hótel Klettur. On the second day, you will have the opportunity to explore Reykjavík before making your way to the Blue Lagoon. With the help of a guide, you will get the most out of your trip to Iceland. From there, you will spend the next 2 nights staying at the popular Stracta Hotel which is located in Hella.
Every night, you will have the opportunity to view the northern lights. The hotel has a beautiful garden area, where many star gazers congregate waiting for the awe-inspiring beauty of the aurora borealis. During the trip, you will also have the opportunity to hike up to a glacier, or even a volcano.
From the Seljalandsfoss and Skógarfoss waterfalls to the black lava beaches of Reynisfjara, there is a little bit of something for everyone.
The Land of Northern Lights Tour is known for offering one of the best values for your budget. Not only will you see the Golden Circle, South Coast, as well as the Blue Lagoon, but you will also have an opportunity to check out the Skógar folk museum.
The trip provides you with 2 nights in southern Iceland, which is an excellent location for viewing the northern lights. Not only are there guided searches for the northern light, but you will also have access to presentations, lectures, and films about the aurora borealis.
There is even an optional Northern lights cruise and glacier hike.
- Spend 4 nights in comfort as you tour the countryside
- Shuttle service from the airport provided
- Complimentary breakfast available every morning
- Spend your days traveling through Iceland in a private minibus
- English-speaking tour guide
- Visit some of the finest destinations in the country, including the Blue Lagoon, Black Lava Beach, and the Geysir geothermal fields.
Why It’s Popular
Featuring some of the most knowledgeable, English-speaking tour guides, The Land of Northern Lights Tour will take you on an adventure through the Icelandic countryside. You will have the opportunity to learn more about the aurora borealis than you ever thought imaginable as you make your way from one cabin to the next along the Golden Circle. As you travel through Iceland, you’ll receive a wake-up call and be notified whenever the northern lights are visible.
NORTH AMERICA Best Tours to Northern Lights
Where: Alaska (Anchorage, Fairbanks)
Tour Provider: Alaska Tours https://alaskatours.com/
More Information: https://alaskatours.com/alaska-vacations/alaska-dreams/
The Alaskan Dreams Adventure provides travelers with an amazing tour of Alaska that starts in Anchorage and goes all the way to the popular Borealis Basecamp.
The adventure begins in Anchorage, and travelers will spend their first night exploring the largest city in Alaska. From there, the adventure heads out to the Matanuska Glacier via the majestic Matanuska-Susitna Valley. On day 3, you’ll be able to board the famous and prestigious Alaskan railroad, for a ride up to Fairbanks. If the weather is perfect, you may even be able to see Denali in the distance.
The third night will be spent in Fairbanks, before making the final trek to the Borealis Basecamp. From dinner to a sunset tour, you will be able to spend the last few days of the tour relaxing at the Borealis Basecamp while you wait for the perfect glimpse of the aurora borealis.
You will be able to start your Alaska Dreams Adventure with a hike across a glacier, before beginning your journey up to Fairbanks. The most popular part of the adventure is the ride on the Alaska Railroad, which ferries you from Anchorage up to Fairbanks. The train provides visitors with some of the most majestic views of the Alaskan wilderness. Once in Fairbanks, you will be able to spend several days at the infamous Borealis Basecamp, where you can sit back, and relax while you view the aurora borealis from a private dome.
- Spend 4 nights in comfort as you travel through the Alaskan wilderness
- 8-hour hiking adventure on the Matanuska Glacier, including lunch
- Enjoy a ride on the infamous Alaska Railroad
- 2-night stay at the Borealis Basecamp, complete with a breakfast buffet
- 2-hour sunset tour
- Number of other optional activities, including ATVs and dog sledding.
Why It’s Popular
You will find the city of Anchorage comfortably nestled between the Cook Inlet and the Chugach Mountains. The city offers a number of excellent cultural attractions, as well as some of the finest restaurants in Alaska. Not only will you have the opportunity to hike on the Matanuska Glacier, but you will also be able to view some of the most stunning ice caves imaginable.
View the Alaskan wilderness like never before as you sit back and enjoy the ride aboard the Alaska Railroad. You’ll have many nights to relax at the Borealis Basecamp, where you will be able to view the northern lights as you lie in bed under the 16-foot-wide transparent dome.
Aurora Borealis at Northern Lights Resort & Spa
Where: Canada (Whitehorse, Yukon)
Tour Provider: Northern Tales https://www.northerntales.ca/
The Northern Lights Resort and Spa is one of the most popular destinations in Yukon for those seeking to view the aurora borealis.
From the moment you arrive in Whitehorse, you will be pampered in luxury. From the airport, the shuttle will take you straight to the hotel located in the center of Whitehorse. Because of its locale, it is within walking distance of just about any of the more famous attractions in the city. You will have all day to spend checking out the shops in Whitehorse, before the nightly shuttle that takes you out to view the aurora borealis.
From 10 PM until 230 every night, you will be able to enjoy the free shuttle service which will take you to one of the best locations in the world to view the northern lights. During the daytime, you can relax in style at the spa, where you will enjoy a massage or even a dip in the whirlpool.
When you stay at the Northern Lights Resort and Spa you will be able to take advantage of the nightly trips that take you outside the city limits to the viewing cabins. There are also day trips to the city center, European-style breakfasts, as well as a wide variety of optional tours.
Don’t forget, that it is a spa where you can enjoy an afternoon in the sauna or even receive a world-class massage. For those looking for a little bit more of an adventure, there are also optional dog sledding tours into the Yukon wilderness.
- Stay in the Yukon, in your own private room or cabin.
- Spend your first and last night in a popular 3.5-star hotel in Whitehorse
- Nightly shuttle services to the Aurora Borealis viewing locations
- Airport transfers included
- 2 nights at the popular Northern Tales Viewing Site, including snacks and hot drinks
- Opportunity to view the aurora borealis at the private lodge.
- Breakfast, lunch and dinner will be available, while at the lodge
- Luxury spa and sauna
- Optional tour through the local wildlife preserve, as well as checking out the many popular sites in Whitehorse.
Why It’s Popular
The great Northern wilderness of Canada’s Yukon provides untold legends and stories that have been handed down for generations. The experienced and knowledgeable tour guides will provide you with a large assortment of information about Whitehorse, Yukon, as well as Alaska.
Not only will you be able to enjoy the natural beauty of the Yukon countryside, but you will also be able to take in the culture and heritage of the region. The area around Whitehorse is one of the most popular destinations in the Yukon for viewing the aurora borealis.
Final Thoughts on Best Tours to Northern Lights
That wraps up our snapshot of the best tours to the northern lights, from around the world. They might not be the cheapest tours around, but they are specially crafted to create lifelong memories and give you the best opportunities to see the lights. If travelling in luxury and being pampered are your thing, then these are some of the very best options out there.
However, don’t think these are your only options, and please don’t think that other tours are somehow inferior. As long as you are in the ideal place for viewing the aurora borealis and at the right time, then you have exactly the same chance of viewing the lights as anyone else in that region. Afterall, no tour provider has a magic wand to somehow amplify the aurora over their territory or whisk away cloud cover. If the aurora is putting on a show, a guy camping in a tent in Whitehorse will likely have the same viewing opportunity as someone staying in a luxury lodge. However, camping in the snow for 4 days isn’t very fun!
Likewise, just because you pay lots of money for a fancy tour, it doesn’t guarantee that the aurora will show. I’m not trying to deter you from booking a luxury Northern Lights tour. Rather, I am just pointing out that mostly what you are paying for with these tours are those additional touches to make your stay more fun and enjoyable, such as spas, meals, activities, comfy beds or a view out of your window. But, you cannot pay for the aurora borealis to appear!
However you choose to see the Northern Lights, whether on a luxury tour or on a budget, just make sure to choose the right times and places to travel, because ultimately that is what matters the most.
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