If you are planning to come to Iceland in the coming months, you are in luck. The northern lights season has officially started and even though they come and go as they please, there is a good chance you will see them during your trip. To enhance your chances of seeing them while you’re in Iceland, we will tell you about some of the best places to see the northern lights in Iceland.
Of course it depends on the cloud coverage what the best place is for each night, that’s why you’ll have to learn to read the forecast.
Garður – the old lighthouse
A great option for viewing northern lights an hour away from Reykjavík is at the old lighthouse in Garður. There you have a wide view in all directions. As it is at the very tip of the Reykjanes peninsula, it provides magnificent sea views and two picturesque lighthouses.
Þingvellir – National park
Þingvellir is a popular destination for those wanting to hunt the northern lights. An hour drive from Reykjavík into the darkness and wilderness. The national park offers everything for photographers who want to capture the northern lights with a waterfall, lake or mountains in the foreground.
Northern Lights Inn
There are a couple of hotels in the Icelandic countryside that offer viewing rooms for northern lights. Northern Lights Inn on Reykjanes peninsula is one of them. It’s located close to the Blue Lagoon and only 20 minutes from Keflavík International Airport. Their Galaxy Tower is a premium northern lights viewing location. It’s a tower with big, glass windows all around, dedicated to northern lights viewing.
Hotel Frost and Fire
Hotel Frost and Fire in Hveragerði is another good option. Hveragerði is a town about 40 minutes driving from Reykjavík. Their dining area, Restaurant Varmá, is completely made of glass. After hours, when the lights are out, you don’t even have to leave the hotel to have a perfect view of the night sky.
Have you ever slept under a sky of stars in a comfortable bed inside a heated, transparent plastic bubble? No? Well, in Iceland, it’s possible to book exactly this, and it’s called the five-million-star hotel. As long as it’s not snowing, it’s perfect for viewing northern lights. Just lie in bed and enjoy the clear view above you.
Of course, these are just a few options of many, many more. Stop by the What’s On tourist information office at Laugavegur 5 for more tips on hotels suitable for northern lights hunting.
It may come as no surprise, but winters in Iceland can get pretty cold. It’s not as bad as you would think, but temperatures will generally drop to around freezing. Waiting in the middle of nowhere, in the dark and cold, for the northern lights to show up can be challenging. So, why not wait in a geothermal outdoor swimming pool? You can go for a relaxing swim or just soak in one of the hot tubs, which are generally around 40℃. In Reykjavík, it’s not uncommon for pools to turn their lights off for a while when the northern lights forecast looks promising.