Dreaming of witnessing the enchanting Northern Lights with your little ones? We’ve rounded up five family-friendly destinations across Europe where you can marvel at the celestial spectacle without sacrificing comfort. Get ready for a magical adventure with the whole family as we’re listing our top 5 European places to see the Northern Lights with kids.
Cairngorms National Park, UK
For families closer to home, Cairngorms National Park in the UK is an accessible yet magical destination. Just over 40 minutes southeast of Inverness, it boasts vast dark skies with virtually no sodium glare. The mountainous terrain provides ideal conditions for spotting the Northern Lights. Known as the UK’s largest national park, Cairngorms offers a serene and awe-inspiring backdrop for families seeking a winter adventure.
Abisko National Park, Sweden
For an unparalleled Northern Lights experience, head to Abisko National Park in Sweden. This vast, freezing wilderness is renowned for its spectacular light shows. The Aurora Sky Station, is designed for comfort, provides cosy, weather-proof overalls for outside viewing. The open-air terrace offers stunning views of Abisko National Park, ensuring an unforgettable family experience. Despite the extreme cold, the station is well-equipped to handle the elements, making it one of the best places on earth to witness the Northern Lights.
Tromsø, located in the Arctic Circle, is not just sub-zero temperatures and polar nights; it’s a winter wonderland for families. The city’s skies come alive with the Northern Lights almost every night from November to March. While waiting for nightfall (which is just a bit darker than midday here), you can enjoy whale cruises, Nordic skiing, reindeer races, and dog sled rides. Several local companies also organize tours to the renowned Aurora Sky Station, providing an unforgettable experience for both parents and children.
Reykjavik, the capital of Iceland, offers a unique blend of urban charm and natural wonders. The Northern Lights have been spotted here as early as August, becoming a regular spectacle from September onwards. For those seeking a bit more adventure, city companies specialize in Northern Lights tours along the stunning south coast. While in Reykjavik, take a break from sky watching to float in the famous thermal waters of the Blue Lagoon or explore rugged outdoor activities like glacier walking, hiking, and climbing. The city may look like a scaled-up fishing village, but it certainly doesn’t act like one.
If you plan to go around this city, you can also download your free family travel guide to Reykjavik.
Rovaniemi, known for Santa Claus Village, is not only a haven for Christmas enthusiasts but also a prime Northern Lights hotspot. The sky around the city is adorned with colours for over 200 nights a year, providing ample opportunities for families to witness the mesmerizing display. Experience the lights on husky sleds, snowmobiles, reindeer sleigh rides, or snowshoe treks. Beyond the Northern Lights, Rovaniemi offers a range of winter activities, from ice-safaris to visits to the Arctic Animal Wildlife Park. Santa Claus Village itself is a winter wonderland, complete with real snow, charming houses, and Santa’s own post office.
If you plan to go around the home of Santa Claus, you can also download your free family travel guide to Rovaniemi.
Is there a destination that you like best and will definitely visit to see the Northern Lights with kids? These European destinations not only promise the enchanting spectacle of the Northern Lights but also offer a winter wonderland for families to create cherished memories. So, wrap up warm, bring along your sense of wonder, and embark on a magical journey with your loved ones under the captivating dance of the Aurora Borealis.