Top 11 great hotels offering northern lights experiences

By Alina GoncharovaFeb 18, 2024 16:40 PMThe best
Share:
Top 11 great hotels offering northern lights experiences
The unearthly beauty of the northern lights. Source: Image WikiImages/Pixabay

Most travelers from all over the world put "seeing the northern lights" on their bucket list. It's not just a great opportunity to take some incredible photos when the sky is sparkling with different colors - from indigo and green to fuchsia; it's a phenomenon that can surprise you and make you think about the power and uniqueness of Mother Nature.

However, spotting the northern lights is not that easy. To get the best chance of doing so, you need to travel as close to the Arctic Circle as possible in winter, and even then, the weather has to be favorable. Luckily, there are many northern lights hotels in Iceland, Scandinavia, Alaska, and Canada designed specifically for guests to watch (and wait for) the unique phenomenon in the comfort of a soft bed or even a jacuzzi. Such places provide many amenities and often offer guided tours with guides, scientists, and photographers to fully cover all aspects of this incredible spectacle.

Whether you're planning to embark on an adventure in Alaska or want to try a glamping experience in Sweden, the following selection contains the best northern lights hotels in the world.

Artik Bass, Sweden

Top 11 great hotels offering northern lights experiences
Traditional cold baths. Source: https://arcticbath.se/

An unusual floating hotel located in an unspoiled part of Swedish Lapland is sure to appeal to connoisseurs of wellness and design. The Arctic Bath looks like an artistic architectural installation, a cross between a giant bird's nest and a set from the popular Game of Thrones series, made of pine logs and set in a circle on the Lule River.

As the name implies, the main highlight of the hotel is the opportunity for guests to dip into an icy pond, according to a Scandinavian tradition, which helps soothe muscle pain and restores blood circulation (at least, the people of Sweden believe this). If this leisure option is not for you, Arctic Bath offers a full-service spa and three on-site saunas. Other activities are also available for guests, including

  • northern lights safaris;
  • Husky sledding tours;
  • various excursions.

The hotel has a total of 12 suites and rooms, which are decorated with environmentally friendly materials. The apartments include spacious bathrooms and large panoramic windows. Breakfast and access to the spa are included in the price, and upon check-in guests receive a set consisting of a bathing suit/swim trunks, bathrobe and Gerd bath products.

Sorrisniva Arctic Wilderness Lodge, Norway

Although Sorrisniva in Norway is best known for its seasonal igloo hotel, you can also find an option for lovers of luxury vacation spots and epic views. The latter is the case with Arctic Wilderness Lodge. This beautiful northern lights hotel is located on the banks of the Alta River, offering 24 rooms. Each of the rooms has huge floor-to-ceiling windows; during the day, you can see the soothing water, and at night, if you're lucky, a natural show in the endless sky. In addition, rooms and suites are equipped with a balcony, and Vakinme toiletries await you in the bathroom.

Various outdoor activities are available for guests, including:

  • reindeer riding;
  • snowmobile adventures;
  • guided northern lights excursions.

Sorrisniva's Arctic Wilderness Lodge is also known for its gastronomic scene, as it has two restaurants - Lavvu and Maku - that use fish from the surrounding river and vegetables from local farms for their dishes. In addition, both restaurants offer even more views, as well as a panoramic bar and lounge.

Arctic TreeHouse, Finland

One of the best hotels to see the northern lights is the Arctic TreeHouse Hotel. It is located in a magical place in Finland, in Rovaniemi. This hotel offers luxurious suites, each equipped with a panoramic window to observe the Arctic landscapes from the comfort of your bed. Extraordinary coziness in the rooms is created thanks to plush blankets, heaps of pillows, chairs covered with faux fur, and other interior details. If you want more space, you can book an executive suite with a private terrace with a fireplace and a living room, or you can prefer the Arctic GlassHouse with two bedrooms and a private sauna.

The hotel has an excellent restaurant, Rakas Restaurant & Bar, serving regional cuisine. A buffet breakfast and à la carte dinners are served daily except Sundays, and include traditional Lappish products such as wild mushrooms, reindeer meat, lingonberries, and more.

Aurora Safari Camp, Sweden

If you are looking for an unusual place to spend your vacation, we recommend paying attention to the Aurora Safari Camp. The adventure begins at the stage when you need to get to the unique hotel. After arriving at Luleå Airport, guests will be transferred to the reception, and then they will have to ride a snowmobile across a frozen river to get to their tent, where they can warm up with a warm drink.

There are only a few "rooms" on the territory of this unique northern lights hotel. Each of the Sami style tents is placed in the best possible way to watch the amazing spectacle in the sky. The rooms are arranged in accordance with Sámi traditions, with a wood-burning stove in the center. There is also a communal tent with a bar and lounge area, a campfire around which you can chat with other guests and drink a few warm drinks.

In addition to accommodation, the price includes a number of outdoor activities, including Nordic skiing or snowshoeing, a sauna trip combined with a dip in an icy river.

Borealis Bayshore, Alaska

Located just 25 miles from Fairbanks, one of the best hotels for the northern lights looks like a remote cozy corner with its 100 acres of pristine boreal forest. Borealis Basecamp offers accommodation in modern bubble igloos or in cube cabins with floor-to-ceiling windows so you can enjoy the natural show from the comfort of a warm, cozy room. Regardless of the choice, guests will find a large enough bed, a minibar where they can prepare hot drinks, and a private bathroom. The rooms do not have kitchen facilities, but this is a good reason to visit the hotel restaurant Latitude 65. The restaurant offers separate lunch and dinner menus, a continental breakfast is also served, and the dishes are based on organic products from local farmers and Alaskan seafood.

Upon request, guests can book a variety of excursions, such as snowmobiling or helicopter rides, for an additional fee (in addition to the free dog sledding tour).

Hotel Ranga, Iceland

This popular Icelandic hotel stands out from the crowd with its themed suites and its own stargazing observatory. Rangá offers many of the amenities you'd expect when traveling for the northern lights, including

  • snow suits at the reception desk;
  • open-air benches with warm blankets;
  • a wake-up service so guests don't miss a single moment of the incredible natural spectacle;
  • a guest astronomer at the observatory.

In addition, the hotel is located 65 miles southeast of the capital, which ensures no light pollution, so guests get the best views of the starry sky while taking geothermal hot baths with a glass of champagne in hand (optional).

Rangá Hotel offers rooms in various configurations - from standard to themed suites, decorated, for example, in the style of "Africa" with zebra print rugs and masks on the walls, or "Asia" with intricate screens and tatami.

We recommend visiting the hotel restaurant, which specializes in Scandinavian cuisine. Here you can taste dishes such as reindeer carpaccio or salmon jerky, etc. In addition, the Rangá Bar boasts an impressive collection of whiskeys to keep you warm on cold nights while waiting for the fancy lights to come on. Leisure options include snowboarding on glaciers, cave tours, and much more.

Sheldon Chalet, Alaska

Top 11 great hotels offering northern lights experiences
The sky over Alaska. Source: https://sheldonchalet.com/

The Sheldon Chalet is one of the most expensive options for a five-star northern lights experience, with accommodation prices starting at $75,000 for three nights (for four guests). However, the high price is justified by a range of upscale amenities, a good location, luxurious design, and most importantly, unrivaled views of Denali. Guests can only get to the property by helicopter, where they are greeted with champagne and oysters. The all-inclusive program offered by this chic hotel for contemplating the northern lights includes:

  • private sauna;
  • use of hiking equipment;
  • meals prepared by a world-class chef;
  • several viewing platforms;
  • shows at the Don Sheldon Amphitheater and much more.

Guests stay in luxurious hexagonal chalets with five bedrooms and up to ten guests. The minimum stay at Sheldon Chalet is three nights, although the hotel recommends four to maximize the experience and impressions.

The Retreat at Blue Lagoon Iceland, Iceland

The history of this hotel dates back to 2018. During this time, The Retreat at Blue Lagoon Iceland has been able to firmly establish its position as one of the best locations for accommodation in Iceland. Among the key benefits offered by the hotel are the following

  • exclusive access to the country's most famous geothermal spring, Blue Lagoon
  • a world-class spa center
  • swimming pool
  • a rooftop terrace from which it is best to watch the northern lights.

You can choose one of 62 suites decorated in a minimalist style with modern comfortable furniture, huge floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking picturesque hills, moss-covered mountains, and lava flows.

There are several dining options on site. One of the restaurants, Moss, which was included in the Michelin Guide in 2022, specializes in Icelandic cuisine. Special attention should be paid to the full-service spa with various areas for privacy, such as an underground therapy room and a hot stone sauna.

Arctic Hotel, Greenland

Among the hotels where you can see the northern lights is the four-star Arctic Hotel, located right on the shore of the Ilulissat Fjord. The establishment has 90 rooms in different configurations - from single rooms to suites. The apartments offer comfortable beds, stylishly decorated bathrooms, and magnificent views. For more privacy and amenities, we recommend booking one of the Umiaq Outdoor rooms with a private terrace and direct access to the mountains. Breakfast is included in the booking price.

The hotel boasts two restaurants - Arctic Fine Dining & Wine Bar and Brasserie Ulo. Overlooking Disco Bay, the restaurants use local products for their dishes. Another feature is the six unique draft beers produced in collaboration with the hotel and the Mikkeller mini-brewery in Copenhagen.

Guests can book a variety of excursions, including kayaking along the icebergs, a helicopter tour over the fjord, and, of course, the northern lights chase.

Northern Lights Resort & Spa in Canada

The northern lights season in the Yukon, Canada, lasts longer than average (usually from August to mid-April). So if you plan to travel here during this period, we recommend staying at Northern Lights Resort & Spa. This family-friendly hotel is 20 minutes from Whitehorse. The resort has three chalets with glass facades, so you can watch the endless sky from the comfort of your bed. Guests also have the opportunity to book one of the packages that include:

  • night observation of the northern lights;
  • equipment rental;
  • photography lessons;
  • additional excursions.

In addition, Northern Lights Resort & Spa offers such amenities as an open-air hot tub, a spa, a lounge area, a bar, and an on-site dining room.

Aurora Village, Finland

If you're planning a trip to Finland but want to avoid the hype of Lapland, we recommend paying attention to the picturesque village of Ivalo, which has a much smaller flow of tourists but is no less beautiful. It is here, three hours north of Rovaniemi, that Aurora Village is located. Guests can stay in atmospheric igloos with glass roofs, which are designed specifically to watch the incredible sky while curled up under warm blankets.

If you're unlucky and the northern lights don't appear before bedtime, Aurora Village offers a variety of tours to improve your chances. In particular, various packages include snowmobiling, snowshoeing, or sledding, so you can choose what you like. There are also other leisure options available to resort guests, such as a husky safari, an outdoor Jacuzzi session, or even ice swimming. After your activities, head to the on-site restaurant to enjoy a hearty mushroom soup or reindeer steak.

Top Articles
Top 7 Florida resorts according to travelers: from beach oases with pools and spas to historic boutique hotels with golf courses

Top 7 Florida resorts according to travelers: from beach oases with pools and spas to historic boutique hotels with golf courses

Jun 28, 2024 09:20 AM
Top 9 hotels in the South of France: from beach boutiques and historic mansions to fantastic resorts on the French Riviera

Top 9 hotels in the South of France: from beach boutiques and historic mansions to fantastic resorts on the French Riviera

Jun 26, 2024 09:51 AM

The Wilde Resort and Spa is a beautiful resort in Sedona with an impressive spa and an intense experience

Jun 18, 2024 09:15 AM

Top 10 great hotels in Glasgow: from serviced apartments to stylish boutique properties and grand townhouses

Jun 12, 2024 09:15 AM
More News
Top 9 luxury hotels in Lisbon: from opulent palaces and historic residences to chic modern boutiques

Top 9 luxury hotels in Lisbon: from opulent palaces and historic residences to chic modern boutiques

May 18, 2024 09:12 AM
Top 10 Boston hotels: from chic urban resorts and sophisticated boutiques to modern skyscrapers and historic hideaways

Top 10 Boston hotels: from chic urban resorts and sophisticated boutiques to modern skyscrapers and historic hideaways

May 16, 2024 11:10 AM

Overwater bungalows at Jamaica's Sandals South Coast: a dream resort for romantic getaways and special moments

May 10, 2024 10:10 AM

Top 8 awesome Airbnbs in Milan: from a minimalist studio with a sunny terrace to a glamorous apartment in a trendy neighborhood

May 9, 2024 09:06 AM
South Carolina Luxury Resorts

Sun, sea, relax: South Carolina's top 10 resorts

May 6, 2024 20:05 PM
Top 5 best all-inclusive Maine vacation options, from a schooner cruise on the lake to secluded cottages in the woods alone with wildlife

Top 5 best all-inclusive Maine vacation options, from a schooner cruise on the lake to secluded cottages in the woods alone with wildlife

Apr 29, 2024 09:02 AM
Venice Luxury Hideaways

Canals, history and comfort: Top 14 hotels in Venice

Apr 26, 2024 20:12 PM
Top 13 hotels in the USA with amazing water parks, from steep water slides and underwater music pools to open-air whirlpools and lazy rivers with waterfalls.

Top 13 hotels in the USA with amazing water parks, from steep water slides and underwater music pools to open-air whirlpools and lazy rivers with waterfalls.

Apr 25, 2024 20:15 PM
Top 6 all-inclusive resorts in Brazil: from stunning beaches and golf courses to geothermal pools and island water trips

Top 6 all-inclusive resorts in Brazil: from stunning beaches and golf courses to geothermal pools and island water trips

Apr 24, 2024 09:20 AM

Stunning Green O Resort in Montana: from tree houses and stargazing from bed to river rafting and spas among the piney woods

Apr 23, 2024 19:15 PM

Picturesque vacations: your guide to Montana hotels for outdoor adventures

Apr 22, 2024 20:03 PM
Лучшие места для горнолыжного отдыха в Европе

Снежные вершины: откройте для себя первоклассные горнолыжные курорты Европы

Apr 21, 2024 20:45 PM
Top NYC hotels with gorgeous rooftop pools: 8 perfect places to relax in the heat by the water with drinks and stunning views

Top NYC hotels with gorgeous rooftop pools: 8 perfect places to relax in the heat by the water with drinks and stunning views

Apr 17, 2024 08:05 AM
Top 15 best resorts for snowboarding: from stratovolcano slopes and the biggest halfpipe to fantastic terrain parks

Top 15 best resorts for snowboarding: from stratovolcano slopes and the biggest halfpipe to fantastic terrain parks

Apr 16, 2024 14:03 PM
Where to stay in Glacier National Park: Top 10 great hotels

Where to stay in Glacier National Park: Top 10 great hotels

Apr 14, 2024 14:55 PM

Amazing resort on the nine bays of Huatulco, Mexico: with colorful coastal towns, beautiful beaches and stunning nature

Apr 14, 2024 09:03 AM

Top 9 Boutique Hotels in Malacca: Leave your worries behind and immerse yourself in a dream world in radiant Malaysia

Apr 13, 2024 16:50 PM
TOP-9 resorts in Italy: rated places in one of the most beautiful countries

TOP-9 resorts in Italy: rated places in one of the most beautiful countries

Apr 12, 2024 14:03 PM
Best Resorts in the Caribbean, Bermuda and Bahamas

Unique Vacation: Top 15 Resorts in the Caribbean, Bermuda and the Bahamas

Apr 11, 2024 14:50 PM
Barbados' top 5 all-inclusive resorts: with dream beaches, luxurious amenities and lavish deals for a laid-back getaway

Barbados' top 5 all-inclusive resorts: with dream beaches, luxurious amenities and lavish deals for a laid-back getaway

Apr 11, 2024 10:02 AM
7 luxury hotels in the Bahamas: from secluded oceanfront villas and historic boutiques to grand resorts

7 luxury hotels in the Bahamas: from secluded oceanfront villas and historic boutiques to grand resorts

Apr 10, 2024 09:02 AM
Rio de Janeiro's best neighborhoods for tourists and the hotels to stay in for beach activities, nightlife and extended stays

Rio de Janeiro's best neighborhoods for tourists and the hotels to stay in for beach activities, nightlife and extended stays

Apr 8, 2024 14:42 PM

California luxury hotels guide: Class A vacations

Apr 8, 2024 09:13 AM

Top 9 golf resorts in Florida: the perfect combination of sport and relaxation

Apr 7, 2024 21:05 PM
The top 16 best hotels in the UK for an extraordinary Christmas vacation

The top 16 best hotels in the UK for an extraordinary Christmas vacation

Apr 7, 2024 19:55 PM
Florida's Cool Airbnbs: 12 locations for drive and fun in the sunshine state of the USA!

Florida's Cool Airbnbs: 12 locations for drive and fun in the sunshine state of the USA!

Apr 7, 2024 18:42 PM