Aurora borealis is somewhat uncommon in mainland #Denmark, but it does happen a few days every year. If you travel to one of the Danish territories in the Northern Sea, such as the Faroe Islands or Greenland, the chances become much higher. Here’s a full guide to northern lights in Denmark and its territories.
How often does aurora borealis happen in Denmark?
While northern lights are more uncommon in Denmark than in the other Scandinavian countries, it does happen occasionally. Aurora borealis usually happens for just a few days of the year, depending on the weather. When a geomagnetic storm happens, you get the chance to see the northern lights. It is most typical in the winter months.
So the best time to see Northern Lights in Denmark will be in January, February and early March. During those few lucky days of the year, the northern lights appear low in the northern horizon – and the best conditions are when the sky is cloud-free and when you get a clear, unblocked view of the sky.
Preferably from a dark place where there aren’t a lot of artificial city lights taking away the attention. Unfortunately, it can be a bit hard to predict in advance. Unlike in Norway and Sweden, Denmark does not have a season where it is common to see the northern lights regularly – it depends more on the particular weather which is not always known a long time in advance. On the contrary, you only know about it a few days before it occurs.
When a geomagnetic storm causes northern lights over the skies, it will usually be visible in most parts of Denmark, but the best place to see it is obviously in the northern part of the country. Ideally, you will also get out of the city and watch it in a place that is as dark as possible.
While there are never any guarantees, the best places to visit in Denmark to see northern lights would be the northern cities of Aalborg or Skagen. Aalborg has quite a few nice hotels, so that would be a nice winter base while you’re waiting for the natural phenomenon to occur.
Northern lights in Faroe Islands
Mainland Denmark only gives you a few proper chances per year to watch northern lights, and since it is hard to predict in advance, Denmark is arguably not the best place to visit if your dream is to watch aurora borealis.
But the Danish territories in the north offer tremendous opportunities. In the Faroe Islands, which is officially part of the Danish Kingdom, northern lights are very common during the winter. Between November and February, you typically get dozens of opportunities. Naturally, the Faroe Islands is in a great position for seeing aurora borealis, but at times the weather can be much too cloudy.
So we need the phenomenon along with a clear sky – which happens often, but you need to check up on the weather forecast to find the right day to get out and see it.
Aside from offering frequent chances to see the northern lights, the Faroe Islands are rich in all kinds of beautiful nature. You can experience beautiful forests, green pastures, dramatic cliffs and huge waterfalls. It’s a paradise for any nature lover. You will find frequent flights between mainland Denmark and the Faroe Islands, so it is easy to prepare a trip that covers both destinations.
Isolated from the world and surrounded by the North Atlantic, the Faroe Islands are wild nature throwing themselves into the ocean. 18 volcanic islands live in the capital, Tórshavn, where the only three traffic lights on the islands are located. A curious fact is that there are more sheep – about 70,000 – than inhabitants. Not in vain in Føroyar means islands of lambs.
Located halfway between Scotland, Norway and Iceland, Faroe Islands are easily accessible by plane or ferry. There are direct flights from Denmark, England, Iceland and Norway. Between 4 or 7 days would be ideal to be able to explore much of what the Faroe offers.
Here are a few places in Faroe Islands to see the Northern Lights:
1. Gásadalur and the Mulafossur waterfall
About 20 minutes from the airport, located on the Vágar island, you can visit the Gássdalur town, one of the most beautiful. Next to the village, the Mulafossur waterfall is born in one of the walls of the cliffs and will leave you mesmerized.
2. Traelanipa, Lake Sørvágsvatn and the Bosdalafossur waterfall
Also located on the Vágar island, come to visit Lake Sørvágsvatn, the largest in the archipelago. There one of the most characteristic images of the Faroe will surprise you. A lake that ends in the cliffs just above sea level and that, on the other side, overflows into the waterfall of Bosdalafossur directly to the sea.
3. Saksun, a fairytale town, with ogres included
Located in a natural amphitheater of an extraordinary beauty, at the top of a tidal lagoon, Saksun, is one of the most beautiful villages in the country. In the fjord, at the foot of the village, there is a lagoon. During low tide, it is possible to walk along the sandy shore of the lagoon around the promontory.
4. Stand on the Tjørnuvík beach
Coming from Saksun you can go to the beautiful Tjørnuvík village and its wonderful black sand beach with the two rock pillars Risin and Kellingin (the Giant and the Witch) in the background. It is a place that attracts many surfers.
5. Fossá, a cataract of vertigo
Quite popular among locals, the Fossá falls are on their way between Saksun and Tjørnuvík. They are the highest of the islands and one of the obligatory stops along the way. Depending on the time of year, they can be much larger than they appear in the photo.
6. Bøur Village
Very close to Gásadalur you will find the Bøur village, one of the oldest Faroese settlements dating back to the Viking era, with beautiful views of the Tindholmur islet.
7. Gjógv, an open throat
With less than 50 inhabitants, Gjógv is the northernmost town on the Eysturoy island. In this small town you can find another of the most typical images. A gorge about 200 meters long that runs from the town itself to the ocean.
8. Views from Fossingshamar in Funningur
Another beautiful location is the spectacular Fossinshamar mountain range that offers views of the Funningsfjørdur fjord and the idyllic Funningur village.
9. Route with sailboat
In the Norðlysið village you can board a sailboat sailing through Nólsoy and its cliffs, where you can enjoy maritime views and fresh sea air. Take the soundtrack of Jurassic Park, because it is the first thing that will come to mind when contemplating these views. If you like fun at sea, you can combine it with the back on the speedboat of RIB62 and enter the caves located at the foot of the cliff.
Wear a coat and raincoat, even if you are in the middle of summer.
10. Kallur Lighthouse
Located to the north, on the Borðoy island you can find the second city of the islands, Klaksvík, from where you can board a ferry that will take you to the nearby Kalsoy island to approach the Trøllanes town from where a small route starts. on foot that will take you to the lighthouse of Kallur. Get ready if you have vertigo, there is a small narrow to get to the point that is not suitable for cardiac, yes, what a view!
Denmark itself offers only a few glimpses of northern lights per year – so you have to be lucky to see it.
The chances become much higher when you focus on the kingdom’s territories in the north. A trip to the Faroe Islands is perfect for any enthusiast of nature, and Greenland is even more ideal – as long as you can stand the cold! We wish you a great trip to whichever destination you choose. The other Scandinavian countries, Norway and Sweden, should definitely be considered as well since they also offer good chances at seeing the beautiful northern lights.