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The Best Places for the Northern Lights in Sweden

The northern lights in Sweden are able to be seen when the nights get darker in the autumn and wintertime. Thus, making the sky a pristine place to see the twinkling stars or, if you’re in the right area, the northern lights. When this happens, it overtakes the sky in spirals of colors. It almost looks as if they had been painted up in the sky. But they sometimes move to their own melody. Experiencing a view like this can be magical and take you on a journey.

What are the Northern Lights?

Some may wonder, what are the northern lights? They go by several names, such as polar lights, aurora borealis, and of course, northern lights. Technically, these rays of light occur from a disturbance in the magnetosphere that’s from the solar wind. When this happens, the colors overtake the sky from ionization of the particles in the night sky. There have been several myths from all over the world that have been created in regards to the northern lights. You can learn more about them here. If you’re interested to learn more about the science behind the Northern lights, then check out the AuroralZone.

Northern lights in Sweden
Northern Lights in Sweden

As that name suggests, the auroral zone is the best area to see the northern lights. So, if you want to see the northern lights, make sure you’re in a good place regarding the auroral zone. If you’re still interested in learning more about this amazing phenomenon, check out a research article that’s dedicated to the Auroral zone over the last 3,000 years.

Best Times to Visit the Northern Lights Sweden

When it becomes dark and dreary, it’s usually the best time to see the northern lights in Sweden. This can be in September to March. This is also when the nights are longer and with it, it becomes easier to see the beautiful sky jump to life at night. Regarding time, it usually depends on where you are, but between 9:00pm to 2:00am is normally good to do some star gazing. Since there’s not so much for light pollution and Sweden is filled with nature, it’s one of the best places to see the northern lights.

“Consider this: It’s not a guarantee that you’ll see the Northern lights even if you take a trip to far north of Sweden.”

Kiruna

This is the northernmost city, which makes it a great place to see the northern lights in Sweden. Since you’re in northern Sweden, you’ll notice a lot of reindeer roaming around. That’s because the native Sami people own many of them and let them be free to do as they please. With only about 23,000 people as the population of this area, it means there’s a lot of nature and untouched land. Air pollution is almost nonexistent here and the winter nights are the longest in northern Sweden.

You can go on a tour with Get Your Guide and a dinner comes along with the venture to see the northern lights. On this tour, you get to dine in a traditional Sami tent while you devour a delicious BBQ dinner. If you want to learn more about it, click here. There’s even a tour where you get to explore the wilderness on snowmobiles. Learn more about it here!

Here on Get Your Guide is a list of tours that are offered in Kiruna and many of them involve the northern lights. Check them out here.

Things to See

Snow pelts down to the ground adding to the already covered ground. It tends to snow more and gets thicker, which makes sense as to why they built the structures the way they did in the area. The Kiruna Church is built in a gothic style with some parts of the roof hitting the ground. This helps avoid having so much weight on the roof from the snow. Plus, seeing a building such as this is interesting. This is one of Sweden’s largest wooden buildings and now is being called, “The Shrine of the Nomadic people” since it’s going to be moved in 2025 due to the expansion of the mine in Kiruna.  

How to Get There

If you drive from Stockholm to Kiruna, it will take about 14-15 hours. But there’s also trains that go there, which take about the same amount of time. Or if you want, there’s even plane rides that you can get, but I don’t suggest that since it’s pricey and it’s better for the environment if you take a different way there. Check out Google Maps and you’ll see what it looks like if you drive there.

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Abisko National Park

In the distance, the picturesque mountains stand tall overlooking the Abiskodalen valley. Within this valley is Scandinavian’s largest alpine lake, which cascades in a luscious turquoise color. Meadows are covered in a variety of colors from nature, giving it a serene look as you breathe in the fresh air. It’s such a lovely place, even in the winter there’s an unmistakable beauty lying there. This time of the year is usually best to have good snowshoes and winter gear.

Aurora Sky Station in Abisko National Park

When thinking about the northern lights in Sweden, Aurora Sky Station is known for its extravagant views of them. It’s one of the most renowned places within Sweden and you can check it out at Aurora Sky Station. They offer tours and wonderful views while dining. Even during the other seasons, they offer some great tours and views of the midnight sun. Check out Get Your Guide to get more details on the tours they offer.

northern lights in Sweden

Or you can check out Get Your Guide to see all of the tours offered in Abisko area. There, you’ll see many of the tours are to venture out and see the Northern lights.

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Things to See

While venturing this scenic place, it’s good to know that the tourist station is open year-round. If you want to know more about the wonderful Abisko National Park, especially more about the northern lights or things to do, check out the tourist station. Once the Torneträsk lake has turned into a thick translucent glass sometime in December, it becomes a dazzling place for ice skating filled with its own adventure.

How to Get There

The Abisko National Park is easy to get to from Kiruna or Narvik by bus, train or car. This is because the European route 10 and the railway run through the national park. Once you make it to this national park by train, you’ll see that the station is called Abisko Turist, which has the tourist station and Naturum visiter center next to it. In regards to this, buses also make their way to this place that takes about 1 ½ hour. Or you can see how to it to drive there on google maps.

To get to Aurora Sky Station, there’s several ways to get there and if you plan on driving a car, there’s parking near the area. You can learn more about how to get to the Aurora Sky Station at their website.

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Contact:

Aurora Sky Station
STF Abisko Turiststation
SE-981 07 SWEDEN
Phone: +46 980-402 00

Email: bokningen@stfturist.se

Jokkmokk

This small town comes to life when they have their winter market that’s 400 years old. Thousands come from all around just to see the handicrafts of the indigenous Sami people. When this happens, a sound erupts from the area and music begins as they start up the event. This northern town in Lapland is a great place to see the vibrant northern lights in Sweden. There’s no specific place here since the whole place is known to be fully surrounded by nature. So, there’s no worry on light pollution.

Things to See

While you venture to Jokkmokk for the northern lights in Sweden, don’t forget to see the wonderful winter market. It’s likely that you would come to this area around the same time as they celebrate this event. Along with that, it’s quite common to see some of the reindeer strolling down roads or wandering out in the open. The Sami people own the reindeer and let them roam free. This can be good and bad, since the reindeer don’t care about humans or cars. So, be careful if you’re driving!

The peak of Kebnekaise is capped with snow and looks out of reach. But if you’re interested in tackling the highest mountain in Sweden, then check out my article about my trip up it. There are two different trails, one that takes longer, but is safer, or the shorter one, which involves glacier climbing. I did the longer one. My wobbly legs aren’t trustworthy for the other one! Learn more about the mountain Kebnekaise.

How to Get There

There’s a variety of ways to get to Jokkmokk from Stockholm. If you drive, it will take you about 12 hours. If you want to learn more about renting a car to travel there, check it out here. Or check out google maps for driving there.

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Jukkasjärvi

A calmness washes over me as I’m surrounded by a stillness while I sit by the pristine lake. Originally, this town of 548 people was a Sami marketplace. Thus, its name being from Sami origin. It means lake of assembly since there’s a lake near this peaceful place. As you wait for the northern lights to appear, stop by the ice hotel and take in its extravagant beauty with all its intricate carvings in the ice.

Check out Get Your Guide to learn more about the tours that they offer.

Things to See

Once you see the ice hotel, you’ll feel that you’ve been transported to another time as it towers above you and is only made of ice! They recreate it every year, giving it a different theme or look. If you want, you can stay the night there or in a cabin that’s near. Seeing the northern lights near this beautiful creation is magical all in its own. Check out more about the ice hotel.

How to Get There

Driving here will take about 14 hours from Stockholm, but the views along the way can be well worth it. You can take a mix of a train and buses to get there as well. Although, that will take around 19 hours. The last option is to fly there. You can learn more about how to get there by clicking this link. Check out google maps if you’re thinking about driving.

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Luleå

A vibrant feel wafts in the air in the university town Luleå. This area has an abundance of things to see and do while you wait for your chance to see the Northern lights in Sweden. Take in the lovely wooden houses or the stone Nederluleå Church from the 1400s. While you wander around this area, you’ll learn more about its history just by exploring.

Things to See

The northern lights in Sweden would be great to be seen while you venture near the water. There are over 1,000 islands near Luleå, making it an archipelago with bickering seals and beaches. Another great thing to venture to is the Treehotel, which is actually in Harads, Sweden. This unique building suspended in trees feels enchanting, and this is something that has caught the eye of the media and travelers.

Tree hotel

How to Get There

Stockholm to Luleå takes around 10 ½ hours if you drive a car. But there are other ways to wander to this enchanting town. You can take a train, which gets you there in about 12 hours. Or there’s flying, which I don’t recommend. If you drive or take the train, you get to see the amazing wonders of nature as you get further north in Sweden. That alone is worth a trip to the north. The views are unmatched and it’s an adventure on its own. Check out google maps to see the path if you were to drive.

Places to Stay

Right now, there’s a deal going on for places to stay on Booking. Check it out before the discount ends! You can find all kinds of different places you can stay. There’s many different kinds on Booking and Hostelworld.

Northern Lights in Sweden and Outdoor Adventures

Take on the wonders of the night sky and with it enjoy some adventures. There are tons of activities that are offered throughout Sweden during the peak of the northern lights. You can go snowmobiling on a chilly night or do some night hiking under the vibrant colors in the sky.

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Adventures in Sweden

If you’re interested in learning more about some explorations that you can do in wonderful Sweden, then check out Adventures in Sweden. There, you’ll find plenty of outdoor adventures that you can have with the whole family. And if you’re an outdoor lover like me, then you’ll definitely love the activities mentioned on that page.

Berry Picking
Berry Picking in Sweden

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Misfit Wanders

About Me

Misfit Wanders

Misfit Wanders

I´m a kooky girl that likes to travel. I grew up in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, USA. Then moved to Northern California for about 5 years. But now, it's going on 5 years living in Sweden with my hubby and our furbabies, plus our little boy and my mom has joined our crew! Over the pandemic time, it has been hard to travel. Thus, my travel blog had been at a stand still. I started going to a University and I had a baby. Now I'm on a different kind of adventure. But my family and I plan on traveling when we can still. Traveling is something I cherish. New adventures is what keeps me moving, that and a stubbornness. I have a weird sense of humor if you haven´t figured that out from my posts. My writing can be perplexing, but I like to tell stories, and the best way is from my own experiences. So sit back and relax, as you take a spin through my hikes or enjoy following my footsteps as I wander in different countries! Most of my writings will be focused on hikes and the outdoors in Sweden.

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