Three Ways to Experience the Northern Lights in the Yukon

Three Ways to Experience the Northern Lights in the Yukon

Chasing the Aurora Borealis Like a Boss

Surf, sand and warm tropical breezes, the allure of warm weather is calling. You may be inclined to fly south to touch up your tan and take a break from shovelling snow but there is another light in the sky that will warm your soul. I’m talking about the greatest light show on Earth, the Aurora Borealis aka the Northern Lights.

Around this time last year I flew up north to spend a week in the Yukon’s capital city, Whitehorse. By day I was dogsledding, snowmobiling, ice fishing and of course eating. By night I was mesmerized looking at the night sky and the light show put on by Mother Nature.

View of the Northern Lights at the Northern Lights Resort & Spa. Photo courtesy of Northern Lights Resort & Spa.

If you’ve never seen the Northern Lights in person it is a BUCKET LIST item and one you need to experience now.

I’ve put together a list of three ways you can experience the Northern Lights in the Yukon. One from the comfort of bed, another flying through the sky and one all bundled up in the middle of nowhere.

#1 Northern Lights from your bed

A few minutes drive from downtown Whitehorse is the Northern Lights Resort & Spa, a family run boutique resort whose motto is “Relax – Enjoy – Feel Good”. Set on 160 acres you are away from the glare of city lights and have three options available to you for Northern Lights viewing. There is a large patio off the main lodge, a heated Teepee and they also have specially designed Aurora Glass Chalets which you can book which allow you to see the Northern Lights from the comfort of your own room.

View of the Aurora from inside the Aurora Glass Chalets at the Northern Lights Resort & Spa. Photo courtesy of Northern Lights Resort & Spa.

They offer plenty of activities and adventures during the day for you to choose from along with meals served family style if you opt for those. Best of all you don’t need to be an expert photographer to capture the Northern Lights. During the Aurora season they have an “expert” on hand to help you set up and get the perfect photo to capture the magic.

There is a fourth viewing option they don’t mention and that’s from the outdoor hot tub. Just make sure you bring warm slippers for when you get out…. brrrrrrrr

#2 Northern Lights from 36,000 feet

If seeing the lights from the ground is so 2019 then you will want to book the Aurora 360. From January 23- 27 you will have the opportunity to board a private charter flight that will take you up to 36,000 feet for a truly once in a lifetime experience.

1st Aurora viewing flight in North America. 91 passengers from 17 countries took part in the program, which consisted of a pre-flight event at the Kwanlin Dun Convention Centre, astronomy information sessions for the public at the Yukon Beringia Interpretative Centre, and tours, admissions and activities at Whitehorse area tourism attractions for the passengers. Photo credit: Neil Zeller.

Your package includes: accommodations, various pre and post flight activities, Yukon inspired meals, a full evening of Yukon First Nations stories, dance and culture, along with an evening in the company of very special science guest-speakers welcomed from organizations such as the NOAA, and the RASC. You will also be joined on your flight with an award-winning Canadian Photographer who will offer and provide on-board photographic assistance.

This is a once in a lifetime experience.

#3 Northern Lights far from the city

My third option gives you choices. Arctic Range Adventure has an Aurora package for almost everyone. They include accommodation choices, daytime activities, free time for your own exploration and of course a night time viewing of the Northern Lights.

Viewing the Northern Lights with Arctic Range Adventures. Photo © Arctic Range Adventure.

They will pick you up from your hotel and bus you outside of Whitehorse to their private Aurora Centre. Far from the city lights there will be no light pollution ruining your experience.

You are onsite for a couple of hours with photography experts onsite to help you get that perfect shot. There are also warming yurts set up for you to warm up in complete with warm drinks and snacks. They do provide a few pre set tripods for guests to use but if you are serious about snapping the perfect photo you are welcome to bring your own.

You may have noticed that all these options offer more than just viewing the Northern Lights. Take your time, check out all they offer and pick the right one for you and your budget. I guarantee they are all amazing experiences and worth every penny.

I’ve personally experienced the Aurora Glass Chalets at the Northern Lights Resort & Spa and the Arctic Range Adventure and wasn’t disappointed. I fact I want to go back to see them again and again.

You can read all about my Yukon adventures which include summer and winter activities here.

Featured photo: Northern Lights and me photo © Arctic Range Adventure.

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Marc Smith BIO Marc Smith is a lifestyle and travel writer sharing his journey on his blog A former community builder and event planner, Marc was inspired to make a life shift in the spring of 2012 and launched a 30 Day Adventure becoming a tourist in his own city of Vancouver. The adventures continued well past the initial 30 days and Marc’s love of travel and adventures has seen him explore England, Portugal, Thailand, Cuba, the United States and almost all of Canada. After 46 years in BC Marc relocated to Toronto to make exploring Eastern Canada easier. You can take Marc out of BC but his heart will always be here. An enthusiast consumer of all things local Marc loves to sample what the region he is in produces. From craft beer to fine wines, Michelin starred restaurants to the local dinner, and any adventure that gets him outside. Follow Marc on Twitter and Instagram at @TheMarcSmith and on his personal blog .


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