First and foremost, it’s important to remember that the Northern Lights are never guaranteed as there are a number of factors that can affect their appearance. This is why we chose Iceland Guided Tours to lead our Northern Lights, because they have a great policy for no-shows.
Working with the university, tour operators receive extremely accurate data surrounding weather conditions and magnetic charge so they are able to notify you by 5pm if the conditions are favorable, if they are not you can continue to re-book night after night until the tour can take place. If you do not get to go out on a tour throughout the duration of your trip, you will receive a full refund.
Even better, if a tour goes ahead but the northern lights are unable to be seen – you can re-book again for additional tours at no extra cost, however you will no longer be entitled to a full refund as the tour has gone ahead.
We booked our tour for our day of arrival so we had opportunities to postpone, and postpone we did until the tour went ahead on our third day in Reykjavik.
Pick-up from your hotel or desired location begins at 8.30pm prompt by minibus, so be sure to be waiting *outside* your hotel from 8.30am onwards. It’s likely they’ll have a number of pick-ups near you, so you might be first, or you might be last, but you must be ready and waiting!
Lucky for us, the weather was favourable and the magnetic scale was set at a 4. On a scale of 1 – 9, with 9 being the highest, 4 – 6 are optimal charge factors. The minibus was warm and comfortable, and with a tour guide named Thor, we just knew it was a good sign.
According to sources, the lights were expected in the South so we travelled no longer than 40 minutes outside of Reykjavik to a well-known spot called ‘Whale Beach’. In vast blackness, with city lights in the distance, we were rewarded with a spectacular show with the lights growing in strength with every minute.
If you do just one during your visit to Reykjavik, make it this.