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Aurora. The sleeping beauty who woke up from the kiss of her one true love. It is the love story we are all familiar with, thanks to the films by Disney channel.

The original ‘Aurora’, however, is far more beautiful that the one mentioned above. Mostly because she was human, and this aurora, also known as aurora borealis, is a perfect gift from nature to us mortals, whose lifetimes are so short, we may not be able to view this wonder at all.

Aurora is also referred to as the northern lights, polar lights, or southern lights is nature’s light display. Humans love lights. It’s why we have Christmas, Diwali, Dusshera. We enjoy the lights as it keeps away the darkness. Aurora does the same, excepts she makes the Earth’s sky her playground, dancing on the high latitudes.

Scientists have found out the science behind this spectacle. Aurora is summoned when the magnetosphere of the atmosphere is affected due to the solar winds from the sun. this sun then scatters the particles in the plasma in the form of both protons and electrons. This then travels to the upper atmosphere, because the earth’s atmosphere pulls them, where these particles lose their energy, resulting in ionization. It is this ionization that causes excitation of the atmosphere and emits colours. However, all of this process depend on the amount of acceleration of the charged particles, so therefore, aurora is a rare occurrence.

The region where auroras are found is called the aural zone, and the region that currently has these spectacular light shows are called auroral oval. There are quite a few places where you can explore these lights. Some of them where the lights appear to be the strongest, are:

Svalbard, Norway: this is most popular destination to watch the lights. The light season here lasts from anywhere between November and February. However, if you wish to examine the rare phenomenon called the Polar Night, book a ticket from between November and end of January.

Kakslauttanen, Finland: here, you can book your own glass igloo and what this beauty from there. Or you can book your log cabin with sauna and enjoy the sights. This is a perfect place if you would love to have a holiday during the Christmas season.

Jukkasjarvi, Sweden: this is a small village in the Kiruna region of Sweden, which also houses the world fist ice hotel. The skies are starry and clear and it is an excellent spot to view some aurora borealis, as it is not completely in the wilderness. This part of Sweden is not easily accessible so you have to decide your own route.

Northern Canada: this is by far more expensive than any of the other destinations. However, this is a major area that falls under the aurora oval, therefore it is almost guaranteed to appear here. The lights here are beautiful and clear, and besides the lights, there are other activities available as well.

So go ahead, pack your sweaters!


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