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NORTHERN LIGHTS Tours in iceland

Witness the wonder of the aurora borealis in all its multi-coloured, enchanting beauty, and discover why it’s an unforgettable experience on a northern lights tour in Iceland.

About Your Northern Lights Package

Chase the magical, flickering lights of the aurora borealis on our tour packages. Crafted by our local travel experts, our itineraries give you the best chance* of seeing this phenomenon as well as local knowledge of all the attractions you want to see. All you need to do is choose the package you like best, and you can expect:

All you need to do is choose the package and travel style you like best, and you can expect:

• An authentic travel experience operated by a trusted local company
• A dedicated travel consultant who will arrange your tour
• A comfortable journey in your chosen vehicle or on your mini-bus tour
Handpicked accommodation for a comfortable and peaceful stay
24/7 phone support during your adventure for peace of mind

Nordic Visitor has made it as easy as possible to plan your northern lights tour. Start your journey by following these simple steps:

1. Use our tour filters to find your ideal package
2. Confirm your package
3. Check your confirmation email
4. Book your flights
5. Get ready for your trip

*Please note, the northern lights are a natural occurrence and sightings cannot be guaranteed.

Why choose Nordic Visitor

Trusted local travel experts

Established in 2002, Nordic Visitor is a leading travel agency based in Iceland. Our local experts live and breathe Iceland and have in-depth knowledge of the must-see attractions and routes, providing you with an exceptional vacation.

Great reviews

Nordic Visitor is dedicated to the best service quality, and this is reflected year after year when TripAdvisor awards us with their Certificate of Excellence. We also take great pride in our customer feedback: 97% of our travellers say they would recommend us to friends and family.

Personalised tours

We’ll make your travel dreams a reality. We create itineraries using our in-depth knowledge and passion for Iceland, providing you with the best possible sightseeing experience that can be spiced up with additional nights, upgrades and activities.

Hassle-free experience

We arrange your vacation before you arrive, including a comprehensive itinerary, private airport transfer and a dedicated travel consultant. We work with our network of trusted local businesses to make your trip seamless, saving you time and effort so all you need to do is look forward to your adventure.

You are in good hands

When you travel with us, you’re never alone. Our local consultants can be reached on our 24/7 emergency helpline, and should any unforeseen weather issues or events arise, we will rearrange your itinerary and bookings to ensure that your journey is memorable for all the right reasons.

Secure payments

Established and award-winning, Nordic Visitor has a tried-and-trusted online payment system for ease of use. All you need is a deposit and you can rest assured your package and dates are secured.

Our Iceland Aurora Tour Reviews

Learn what makes our Iceland tours special from the amazing customers who travel with us.

A

Alexandra and TravisCanada

Map provided (with all stops/routes highlighted) was awesome! Also a great souvenir. Had an amazing adventure. Can't... read more

Map provided (with all stops/routes highlighted) was awesome! Also a great souvenir. Had an amazing adventure. Can't wait to go back to Iceland and do the whole circle drive.
W

WendyUnited States

Thanks so much! We got to have exactly the vacation we wanted, and it was just wonderful!

900+ reviews on TripAdvisor
Certificate of Excellence
See the reviews

Your Northern Lights Tour Highlights

Imagine the fresh winter air in your lungs, a clear night sky above, with your camera in your hands ready to capture the natural magic of the northern lights. Soon you could …

Frequently Asked Questions
About Northern Lights Tours

You may have a few questions about your northern lights tour so we’ve gathered the important ones for your convenience. You can also find more information about Iceland in our travel guide, or if you want information about payment details and processes, check out our FAQ page.

Yes, of course. All our self-drive, guided small group and private packages are crafted to give you an amazing Iceland experience, but if you want to do something extra or want additional nights to enjoy the country then just talk to your travel consultant. They will be able to offer destination suggestions and modify your package according to your needs and preferences.

We recommend that you hold off on booking your flights until after you have heard from your dedicated travel consultant. This is typically no more than two working days after you have received your email confirmation of payment. By waiting until you have been introduced to your travel consultant you can book your flights in line with your personal itinerary.

If you have any questions, contact your consultant and remember when choosing dates, the prime northern lights viewing season is between October and March.

The northern lights, also called aurora borealis, are a magical sight to behold and have been capturing the imagination of humans for thousands of years -- in fact, the Vikings believed that the lights were a glowing reflection from the shields and armour of the gods above.

There is a scientific explanation for them, however -- giant flares from the sun send blasts of charged particles to our planet and when they collide with atoms in our upper atmosphere, glowing emissions form. The movement, shapes, brightness and colours depend on the type of atoms involved as well as the intensity of the solar flares and the pull of Earth’s magnetic forces.

The northern lights are visible mainly between October and March each year in the Nordic region -- this is because the winter nights are dark enough for us to see the lights. The aurora borealis can happen at any time of the year, but with the extra-long summer daylight hours due to another phenomenon called the “midnight sun”, it’s too bright at night to see the northern lights in summertime.

Check out our guide to sunrise and sunset times in our travel guide.

You can see the northern lights all across Iceland during the darker winter months because the country sits within a zone called the “Northern Lights Belt”. It reportedly has stronger auroral frequency and you can even search online for the best “auroral forecast” in the belt.

There are conditions you can control to have a better chance of viewing them though. Firstly, wherever you are on your journey, you will have a higher chance of seeing the lights if you’re far away from town and city lights (due to light pollution). As well as this, be patient as the lights don’t conform to a schedule -- they may appear after a few hours or they may not.

Icelandic weather is famous for being ever-changing and there’s even a popular term called “Gluggaveður”, or window-weather, because what may look like a warm day from inside could be very cold when outside. With this in mind, we suggest that you prepare for your trip by bringing plenty of thermal layers. Chasing the northern lights is a chilly business, so be sure to wrap up warm, wear a hat and bring these essentials on your trip:

  • Fleece jacket/lightweight wool sweater
  • Rainproof/windproof jacket
  • Rain pants
  • Sturdy walking shoes with a good tread/grip
  • Gloves
  • Scarves
  • Hat (toque/beanie)
  • Thermal underwear
  • Waterproof hiking boots
  • Warm socks
  • A flask for a warm drink like hot chocolate

The northern lights are a natural phenomenon and can occur throughout the year in Iceland. However, whether you’ll be able to view them or not is a different matter. A range of reasons can hinder the clarity of the lights such as light pollution from nearby towns, the night not being dark enough or heavy cloud cover.

Even if you have the right conditions for a viewing, it’s a natural marvel and may not appear when you want it to. To raise your chances, visit between October through March when the nights are long in Iceland (during the winter solstice in late December, darkness can extend for approximately 19 hours).

The best way to see the lights really depends on the travel style that suits you and the type of vacation you want. If you would like to see Iceland at your own pace and with flexibility, then a self-drive tour is best. With a rented car you’ll have more opportunities to stop for photos at the viewpoints that aren’t always noted on the map, giving you more opportunities to see the lights. You also have more freedom to go further afield for excursions and viewings.

If you’d rather an expert tour guide show you the best spots and times to see the northern lights, then a guided small group tour could be ideal. On a small group tour you’ll be in the company of like-minded travellers, which is popular for our many solo guests and for our those who don’t feel comfortable driving in the Icelandic winter conditions. They also get the bonus of a local Icelandic guide to share their knowledge and experience of Iceland.

If you want to be accompanied by an expert driver/guide but want to customise your trip and set the pace to suit your needs, then a privately guided tour would be ideal for you. This option blends both the flexibility of self-drive and the expert guidance of a small group tour. You get to enjoy a personal one-to-one travel experience but also keep the autonomy of self-drive tours. And it’s great if you’re travelling with family or friends as you will have a personal guide to answer all your questions about Iceland.

In Iceland, these are the summer months and the chances of seeing the northern lights are low as the nights are not dark or long enough to see them. We would suggest travelling to Iceland in the colder winter months (October - March) so you have an improved chance of viewing them.

If you’re in luck and have seen the beginnings of an aurora light show then you will want to capture the memory by photographing or recording it. Here are our top tips on preserving the lights:

Get familiar with your camera's settings: An SLR camera with manual focus works best. It also helps to have a tripod and a remote trigger to avoid shaky, blurred images.
 
Shutter release: For even steadier shots, get a remote shutter release so you don’t have to touch (and shake) the camera at all.
 
Spare batteries: Freezing temperatures tend to deplete battery levels faster. It doesn’t hurt to bring extra energy for yourself in the form of snacks.
 
Headlamp / flashlight: You’ll be shooting in the dark and in very cold temperatures, so it’s good to see what you’re doing.
 
Image stabilisation: If your lens has this, turn it off.
 
ISO: Increase the ISO to at least 400 or 800, preferably higher. This depends on the specific lens you're using, but is a fair range to work within.
 
Aperture (f-stop): Turn your aperture as low as possible. This will result in more light coming through the lens. On most cameras, this number can go down to about 3.5.
 
Shutter speed: Do a long exposure of 15 to 30 seconds. The longer the exposure, the more light will be captured.

 

Contact us

We’re here to help so whether you want to know more about your visit to Iceland or the aurora borealis, or want to add extra days or activities, get in contact with us!

 

Phone

Our main phone number is
+354 578 20 80

 

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