It is an honor and a privilege to spot Aurora Borealis. That colorful lights dancing on the dark sky could never be forgotten. To see these lights you have to be lucky; it needs to be cloudless outside, a night with high solar activity and most important the right person in the right place. A very important “tool” for hunting Northern Lights is the car. Without a car, you cannot chase the Green Lady. We rented a car for a week and I can tell you it was the week of our lives! We saw so many beautiful things that we forgot how much the car costs or how expensive was the fuel!
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Iceland is big and it is very hard to predict the best places to see Northern Lights in Iceland. Still, some places had gained over time the fame as being the best spots to see Aurora Borealis. Based on people reviews, I made a top with the most popular places for Northern Lights.
1. Vik – the best place to see northern lights in Iceland
The southernmost village in Iceland, Vik is a good place to spot this unique phenomenon. The village is located on the Ring Road, so it is very accessible by car. Close to Vik, a few kilometers away from the Ring Road is the Reynisfjara beach. It is the ideal place to take incredible photos with the Green Lady! Black sand beaches and the ocean waves make your photos more beautiful! The sound of the ocean amplifies the magic of events and you will spend unique moments there watching the Aurora playing on the sky! Your skin goes goose pump!
If I think better, at a farmhouse near Vik we spotted the most beautiful Aurora ever! After a few hours hunting the Northen Lights, a cozy bed and a warm blanket are all you want! There are some beautiful hotels and guesthouses in and around Vik, all offering clean rooms and good breakfast!
2. Kirkjufell – one of the best places to see Northern Lights in Iceland
Situated on the north coast of the Snaefellsness Peninsula, Kirkjufell is 2 hours’ drive from Reykjavik. During winter nights, these 2 hours might seem a lot more, but once you get there you will be amazed by the landscape. Worth spending a few days in the area just to relax and enjoy the view! There are some options regarding the overnight stay but not that many!High mountains around you with breathtaking waterfalls, covered in white snow is how Kirkjufell look in winter. This fairy tale land is the ideal spot for Aurora Borealis. The colors of the Aurora looks amplified due to the white color of the snow.
Everything looks frozen, just the green lights are dancing in the sky.
3. Grotta – Best location for northern lights in Iceland
Are you looking for a good location to spot Northern Light, but to be close to Reykjavik? Grotta Lighthouse is the perfect spot! From here Aurora has something unique! I don’t know what! It might be brighter! It might be greener! Sure it is more beautiful! The landscape and the geographical orientation make from this place one of the best places to see Northern Lights in Iceland! All Northern lights hunters know about this place! It is very accessible from Reykjavik! It is only 5 minutes’ drive from Iceland capital.
Do you know which is the best part? You can book a few nights in Reykjavik to visit Iceland capital during daytime and during the night let’s hunt the Green Lady! Reykjavik offers many nice hotels and cozy guesthouses. See them all and decide which one is best for you!
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4. Thingvellir National Park – Perfect spot for northern lights in Iceland
Thingvellir National Park is one of the most beautiful places from Iceland and of the best places to see Northen lights in Iceland. Inside this National Park, you can find Silfra drift (the place where Eurasian and North American tectonic plates meet). From the info centerbest places to see Northern Lights in Iceland, you have to drive approx 10 more minutes and you will find a place from where you have a clear you over the Park. When the sky is clear and the solar activity is intense, the Green Lady appears on the dark sky, lighting the entire area. The show is speechless!
I don’t think I have to tell you that you cannot see the Aurora over Silfra drift from your room window! But you can see the Aurora overlooking the National Park is you spend the night in a location close to the park. There are not many options but the ones there are have clean rooms and good breakfast!
5. Jokulsarlon – Best place for photography northern lights in Iceland
Jokulsarlon is one of the most famous glacier lagoons from Iceland. It is located in the southeast, right near Vatnajokull National Park. This is the wildest part of Iceland! Tumbling waterfalls, geothermal vents, volcanoes cover with are part of the local picture! This incredible landscape is the ideal place to spot Northern Lights! The green lights dancing in the sky above the glacier lagoon is something you would not forget soon!
Don’t be in such a hurry to leave the area because is one of the most beautiful parts of Iceland! We have spent 2 nights at Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon and trust me, every penny was worth it! Some of you might be lucky and spot the Northern lights easily, but others have to drive for hours and to lose many nights searching for the best places to see Northern Lights in Iceland. We feeling when seeing Northen Lights is unique! I hope you will have the chance to admire this unique spectacle when you travel to Iceland! We wrote some more detailed articles on this subject here: Best time to see Northern Lights in Iceland, should you wish to read more about it: