Nature & Environment Oct 31, 2019

See the Northern Lights at the New Aurora Basecamp This Winter!

Make your reservation to chase the aurora borealis at the Hafnarfjörður observatory, opened October 2019.

The stunning new Aurora Basecamp opened its doors this October to give visitors the chance to cross seeing the northern lights off their bucket lists. Located in Hafnarfjörður – just 20 minutes from Iceland’s capital city of Reykjavík – the Aurora Basecamp provides unique indoor and outdoor experiences to view the natural phenomenon. To stargaze at this new basecamp, be sure to book tickets online in advance.

Within the basecamp’s low-lit, 492-square foot geodesic dome, visitors can escape the cold and watch a real-time simulation of the northern lights. To capture the essence of the lights, the Aurora Basecamp has replicated the conditions of the northern lights, including gasses, air pressure and electrical energy, inside six large glass tubes in the observatory. These lights accurately and beautifully mirror the colors streaking across the skies. Spending time inside this dark observatory helps adjust viewers’ eyes to colors of the real northern lights and the darkness of the night.

If the conditions are right for viewing, visitors are encouraged to venture outside the observatory into the rugged lava fields surrounding the camp, relax on a bench by the open fire and experience the aurora borealis in action. No matter where visitors are at the camp, they’re never far from access to hot chocolate, tea and information from knowledgeable tour guides.

The best viewing conditions in Iceland are moonless nights with little cloud cover, minimal artificial lights and high solar activity. The highest chances of seeing the lights fall between late August to late April, ideally between 9 p.m. and 2 a.m. 

Because the basecamp can host a limited number of guests, making a reservation is recommended. This experience is free for children 12 and under, $15.20 for ages 13-18 and $31.40 for adults. The fee includes parking, admission, a guided tour and a warm beverage.

Would you love to chase the northern lights at the Aurora Basecamp? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter!