Northern Lights: This is Your Year

If you haven’t heard, 2024 is promising to bring the most spectacular northern lights shows the world has seen in two decades. If you don’t already have plans to see them, you may want to start thinking about it.

According to National Geographic, the sun has an 11-year cycle, and solar activity will peak this year and increase the visibility of the northern lights. The last time the sun hit its maximum in the cycle was 2014, which had the weakest solar activity in a century. That means if this year’s northern lights meet expectations, they’ll be the best of the past two decades and will be unmatched for another decade.

There are some terrific destinations to consider for seeking a glimpse of the northern lights: Iceland, Alaska, Norway, Scotland, and Finland. 

In March I will be traveling to Finland for my own adventure. The best months to see Aurora in Finland are September to October, February to March. Kemi, Rovaniemi, Muonio, Ivalo, Kakslauttanen, Levi and Saariselkä are among favorite destinations for seeing the Northern Lights in Finland.

I will be headed to Ivalo. 

Ivalo is a village in the municipality of Inari, Lapland, Finland, a small town of 3000 people. Ivalo is fast becoming a favorite place to see the Northern Lights in Lapland. The Inari area offers unforgettable experiences in nature combined with a firsthand introduction to Sámi culture and traditions. Sámi are the indigenous people of the northernmost parts of Finland.

I will be staying in accommodations with a glass dome roof for viewing the night sky, richly rustic decor with wood-burning stoves and private saunas. My adventures will include aurora expeditions, husky safari, and snowshoeing. It will be colder than I can possibly imagine (as it is 70 degrees as I write this in Florida) but the resort provides the use of cold weather gear. 

Finland is steering towards being an inclusive and competent industry and a holistically sustainable travel destination, which is carbon neutral by 2035.

There is also the opportunity to chase the northern lights on a cruise. 

Hurtigruten offers “Follow The Lights.” When you book the southbound tour November 11 – 15, 2024 with me, you will enjoy 600 Norwegian Kroner credit onboard per person.

The tour begins from Helsinki on a fully escorted southbound search for the Aurora Borealis. During the tour you will cross Finland and Norway, visit charming hamlets, and sail through picturesque fjords, all the while making the most of plentiful opportunities to see the magnificent Northern Lights. Along the way, enjoy unique accommodation in both an Aurora Cabin and a Gamme cabin and meet the huskies and reindeer of the region.

Sustainability is integrated into Hurtigruten’s heritage. They introduced the world’s first-ever hybrid vessels, the MS Roald Amundsen and the MS Fridtjof Nansen. In 2018, they removed all single-use plastics from the entire fleet. On voyages guests are educated on the culture, history, wildlife, and ecosystems of each destination visited. Onboard food is sourced from certified, local suppliers who grow their products in a sustainable production platform. 

All this to say that these efforts contribute to travelers like you having the most authentic experience during your travels and isn’t that why we travel after all? 

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