A practical travel guideby Polly Evans
Northern Lights Travel Guide. Holiday and travel advice about where and when to see the aurora borealis, covering Sweden, Norway, Finland, Iceland, Greenland, Canada, Alaska. Also includes: accommodation options; tour operators offering packages; what to wear; how to travel; aurora photography, forecasting and science; and daytime activities.
About this book
Written by Arctic expert Polly Evans, this new, thoroughly updated fourth edition of Bradt’s Northern Lights: a Practical Travel Guide does what it says on the tin, providing practical guidance to the best places to view the natural phenomenon also known as the aurora borealis. Designed for the many people who dream of witnessing this spectacle, it remains the only guidebook to provide detailed treatment of optimum locations across North America (Canada, Alaska), Greenland and Europe (Sweden, Norway, Finland and Iceland) while also covering practicalities, with this edition providing greater detail on a wider range of accommodation options, from budget hotels to Sweden’s spectacular ICEHOTEL, built each year from river water before melting in spring.
The northern lights – arguably the greatest light show you’ll ever see – are a major, increasingly popular tourist draw of the Arctic and sub-Arctic winter. The experience is also increasingly popular: in the decade to 2016, winter tourism to northern Norway increased by 378%.
As well as advice on the best places to see auroras, this guide offers a succinct, easy-to-understand explanation of the science behind the northern lights, and provides information on tour operators offering northern lights packages, up-to-date guidance on photographing the aurora in the light of technological improvements, alongside practical tips including what to wear, how to drive in winter conditions and how to understand northern lights forecasting.
The guide is further enriched by suggestions for complementary daytime activities such as dog sledging, skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling and wildlife safaris; an examination of the reactions of the early explorers to their first sightings of this phenomenon; and insights into the myths and legends of the northern indigenous peoples. There is even advice on how and where to get married in ice chapels!
Whether the northern lights are still on your bucket list or you are an experienced aurora aficionado, Bradt’s comprehensive guide to the Northern Lights remains the essential companion to planning and getting the most out of any trip to watch one of the world’s most remarkable events.
About the Author
Polly Evans is an award-winning travel journalist and author, specialising in the Arctic and sub-Arctic. Her books comprise two Bradt guides (Yukon and Northern Lights) plus five travel narratives. She first saw the northern lights when living in a dog kennels with 108 huskies, researching her book on learning to drive sled dogs. On that trip she fell in love with the far north, returning many times to write about northern Canada, Alaska, Iceland, Greenland and Scandinavia. She has seen the northern lights many times, whether as pale-green wisps across the horizon or all-out extravaganzas of green and magenta covering the sky. It’s not just the aurora that draws Evans to the far north, though. She loves the wilderness, the diverse accommodation (from backcountry lodges where grizzly bears come knocking to glass-constructed igloo pods), and the brilliant quirkiness of people choosing these remote parts of the world as home.
Additional InformationTable of Contents
Chapter 1 What are the Northern Lights?
Magnetic versus geographic poles, The auroral ovals, The sunspot cycle, The different shapes of northern lights
Chapter 2 Where to See the Northern Lights
Sweden, Norway, Finland, Iceland, Greenland, Canada, Alaska, The southern lights
Chapter 3 Practical Information
Tour operators, What to wear, Temperatures, Winter driving, How to photograph the northern lights, Northern lights forecasting
Chapter 4 Beyond the Northern Lights
Something for the daytime, And if you have time to sleep. Extra 1,000 to 1,500 words of text to be added in accommodation for some new listings.
Chapter 5 The Northern Lights in History
Explorers and the aurora, Kristian Birkeland, Great Auroras in history
Appendices Further information: books, TV, Websites