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Best Places to See the Northern Lights in Canada

If the Northern Lights are on your bucket list, you should head to these cities in Canada to get the best view of this surreal light show. Looking for the best places to see the Northern Lights in Canada? Here are our top picks.

The Northern Lights (aurora borealis) is a natural phenomenon that occurs when particles interact with the earth’s magnetic field. The Northern Lights are an impressive light show that causes the sky to turn vibrant colours, particularly green. It is a natural wonder that makes its way to many bucket lists. There are many towns and places to observe the northern lights in Canada.

If you want the best views of the Northern Lights, you should make these Canadian destinations top of your list.

Northern Lights in Canada: Top Spots

  • Saskatchewan has some of the darkest skies in the country.
  • British Columbia offers scenic views against the backdrop of the Canadian Rockies.
  • Fort McMurray in Alberta is located in what is called the “auroral zone.”
  • Odds are good that Northern Lights can be seen in Yellowknife during the winter season. 
  • Battle Harbour is perfect for those who don’t want to brave bitterly cold conditions to see the lights.
Best Places to See the Northern Lights in Canada
Best Places to See the Northern Lights in Canada

Saskatchewan: The Darkest Skies

The province of Saskatchewan is home to the darkest and clearest skies in all of North America, and La Ronge is home to special tours where guides take you out to see the lights. The rich darkness makes the colours seem even brighter as they dance among the black background of the night sky. Since the land in the area is mostly flat, you can see the sky for miles around you.

If you would like to fly directly to La Ronge, you can land at Barber Field. Otherwise, you will likely land at Regina International Airport in Regina or Saskatoon’s John G. Diefenbaker International Airport.

Best Places to See the Northern Lights in Canada: Canadian Rockies
Best Places to See the Northern Lights in Canada: Canadian Rockies

British Columbia: Incredible Mountain Views

The Canadian Rockies offer a surreal and picturesque backdrop while watching the Northern Lights. In addition to the mountains, one of the top attractions in the area is Muncho Lake Park, where the reflection of the lights on the lake adds a whole extra dimension to your Northern Light viewing experience.

If you choose to fly to this location, you will land at the Muncho Lake Water Aerodrome. However, you can choose to fly to a larger airport like Vancouver International Airport before renting a car or taking a taxi to Muncho Lake Provincial Park.

Fort McMurray or Yellowknife: Watch the Eclipse

If you want a snowy backdrop while you watch the aurora borealis, visit Fort McMurray in Alberta or Yellowknife in the Northwest Territories. Both are located in prime zones for the Northern Lights in Canada. Fort McMurray is almost directly under an area of the sky where the northern lights occur the most often. Those visiting Yellowknife have a 90 percent chance of seeing the lights during the winter months.

Travellers looking to fly into either of these locations can find flights to Fort McMurray International Airport or Yellowknife Airport. In many cases, flights to Yellowknife will make stops at Edmonton International Airport or Calgary International Airport.

Best Places to See the Northern Lights in Canada
Best Places to See the Northern Lights in Canada

Newfoundland and Labrador: Scenic Views

Battle Harbour in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador is the best place to catch the Northern Lights in Canada while on summer vacation. It is only open during late spring through early fall. The temperate weather conditions make this location ideal for parents who want to bring their children along to witness the lights.

The closest major airports to Battle Harbour are St. John’s International and Gander International. You may also choose to book a flight to Goose Bay Airport, an airfield that is also used by the Canadian Air Force.

Witnessing the incredible Northern Lights in Canada is an experience you won’t forget! Fortunately, there are many spots throughout Canada where you can see this natural phenomenon. Whether you prefer clear skies or lake reflections, there’s a place for you. With many destinations to choose from, it is easy to find a spot to see the Northern Lights in Canada that fits your budget and schedule!

Check out Skyscanner’s flight search to be one step closer to crossing this wild bucket list item off your list!