Come to Iceland to see the Northern lights – Adventure Car Rental has the right car for you.
Imagine driving in Iceland in winter, explore thecountry on your own and spend the evenings hunting for the Northern Lights. One of our great 4x4 Suzuki Jimny can take you that tour. It is very well equipped; nail-tires so you will be able to drive on the icy roads, extra off-road lighting to make it easier for you to navigate, and a roof rack if you have some extra gear.
So what are the Northern Lights?
The Northern Lights are positive charged particles that are carried by a Sun-wind, coming from the sun. The particles are hunted by our magnetic field and enter the atmosphere. Then the come in contact with three different materials, Oxygen, Nitrogen or Hydrogen, and these materials control the color of the Northern Lights.
What do you need to see the Northern Lights?
A great, 4x4 very well equipped, Suzuki Jimny of course. You can see the Northern Lights all around Iceland as long as the Auroral Oval is over the country, you have a clear sky and it has to be dark outside. Like when you are watching the stars you need a clear dark sky and you have to get out of the city lights. The same goes for the Northern Lights, to see them in all of their glory you have to go out of the city lights. It is even better if there is a shelter from the wind because Icelandic winter nights can be cold. And what is better than a Suzuki Jimny 4x4 for that!
When can you see the Northern Lights?
The Northern Lights are visible all year round, BUT since Iceland has so bright summers they are only visible in the winter.
What time of the day is best to see the Northern Lights?
The best time is between 21:00-02:00 although they can often be seen early evening or during the night.
Where is best to go to see them?
There are several good places around the city/Hafnarfjörður. Near the city are Kaldársel, a popular place by star watchers, as well as Kleifarvatn and Krýsuvík. And while the heath from the city has no street lights it is often a good spot, stopping on a slope outside the main road. The same goes for Þinghvellir, although the well up lighted cottages gives a little bit of a light pollution. The same applies to the Hengill area, if you are away from the power station and the drill holes.
No one place is better than other; the main thing is that the Auroral Oval is over the country, it is dark evening and a clear sky.
Old sayings about the Northern Lights
The funny thing is that there aren’t many old sayings linked to the Northern Lights. The main reason is probably that they didn’t affect once life; they didn’t have anything to do with whether you had enough food or shelter. They were just really beautiful in the sky and still are. The only saying is that if the Northern Lights are red a really bad weather is coming up.
There is a saying in Japan about the Northern Lights; the child that was made under the Northern Lights would be really bright and would live a rich, happy life. You have to decide for yourself what you believe.
How do I know if the Northern Lights are visible tonight?
You can keep track of the aurora borealis in many websites on the Internet. The one we recommend is SpaceWeather.com. There you can access most of the Northern Light forecasts , and there you will find map of the Auroral Oval. The chart on that page shows how the Auroral Oval is at the moment (now that you're reading this) in the northern hemisphere and when it is over Iceland you can see the Northern Lights in Iceland. The size and scope of the Auroral Oval is variable and depends largely on the effectiveness of the sun and thus the sun-wind. If solar activity is low the Auroral Oval is usually small and when the solar activity is high the Auroral Oval is usually large and wide.