C-Suite Travel

Best Places To See Northern Lights in Russia

Northern Lights Aurora

Want to be a dreamland with open eyes? You should be in Russia to enjoy the spectacular play of lights in the sky called Aurora Borealis. The dazzling play of light, popular as Northern Lights, will take you away from the real world for a while and the only thing that comes in mind is wow what an experience.

Several factors come into play to create this wonderful play of lights between 65-70 degrees north and south of the equator. Depending on the solar wind, local weather condition, atmospheric elements, and geographical location the intensity and color play of northern lights varies. If you want to have the best view of northern lights you have to be very close to the aurora oval and Russia is the country where you have several destinations to offer you the perfect view of northern lights. Depending on your will to travel and spend, you can choose the destination of your choice to enjoy the natural wonder. Here are some of the best-rated destinations in Russia to have a glimpse of northern lights:

Best Places in Russia to Enjoy Northern Lights  

  1. Murmansk
    The world’s largest city beyond Arctic Circle, Murmansk is one of the most favorite destinations in Russia to watch Northern Lights. High latitude added with proximity to Moscow and St. Petersburg and relatively mild winter with average December-January temperature of about -10 to -15 *C make Murmansk the best region to enjoy the mesmerizing Aurora Borealis. It takes just two hours for a flight from Moscow or St. Petersburg to reach Murmansk where you could get the finest view incredible Northern Lights and enjoy skiing, snowboarding. For even better aurora experience you can travel 120 km to reach small village Teriberka.

    Northern Lights Aurora in Murmansk

  2. Kirovsk
    This popular ski destination near the Khibiny Mountains on the Kola Peninsula is another great place to get the perfect view of Northern Lights. There are several well-maintained resorts to make your stay comfortable. Located south of Murmansk, you can get the perfect view of the aurora from the high Khibiny Mountains. You should be ready to face the harsh climate. There are regular flights from Moscow and St. Petersburg to the Khibiny airport, near Kirovsk.

    Northern Lights Aurora in Kirovsk

  3. Arkhangelsk
    Perfectly within the Arctic Circle, this large northern city is one of the best-rated destinations to enjoy the Northern Lights in Russia. This 16th-century city situated on banks of the Northern Dvina River, where it meets the White Sea, is popular for winter tourism. You can get a glimpse of Aurora Borealis in Arkhangelsk town, but travelers recommend going to the northern part of the region for the incredible experience. The spring and autumn equinox is the best time to see aurora here. You can reach Arkhangelsk from St. Petersburg or Moscow by flight which takes only 2 hours.

    Northern Lights Aurora in Arkhangelsk

  4. Petrozavodsk
    This beautiful town, just 400 km from St. Petersburg, is another great place to enjoy the Northern Lights. Not far from the Finnish border, the capital of Karelia is one of the most accessible places to have a glimpse of aurora in winters. However, for better experience go north to reach Nilmoguba, Kem, Belomorsk towns or the White Sea coast. This city has a well developed tourist infrastructure to make your stay comfortable. You have a regular flight from Moscow and the Lastochka express train from St. Petersburg.

    Northern Lights Aurora in Petrozavodsk

  5. Naryan-Mar
    Located beyond the Arctic Circle, Naryan-Mar is known for reindeer farms, oil, and fishing. The capital of the Nenets Autonomous Region in northern Siberia, Naryan-Mar offers your finest view of Northern Lights. You should be here in early fall to enjoy the fantastic natural play of light here. You can reach this isolated region in Siberia by flight from Moscow is 3 hours.

    Northern Lights Aurora in Naryan-Mar

There are several other destinations like Vorkuta, Yakutsk, and Taimyr Peninsula where you could get the chance to observe the Northern Lights. If you are planning your Russia trip for aurora view, you should pay special attention to seasonality. Winter month with prolonged darkness is ideal for aurora’s view. It is better to be there between September and March during the equinox, when aurora activity remains at the peak.


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Ryan Miller
Ryan Miller is CEOWORLD magazine's executive editor of news, writing analysis, and long-form reporting. In his role, he coordinates and tracks the publication of special packages, magazine stories, and the publication’s signature lists. He's a somewhat long-suffering supporter of Manchester United F.C. and a genuinely long-suffering fan of the Los Angeles Clippers.