We’ve probably lost count of the times nature takes over our senses and sweeps us off our feet with its spectacular beauty. One such instance is that of the bewildering Northern and Southern Lights. Skies splattered with vibrant hues and studded with infinite stars, as the chilly winds work their charm and leave you baffled like never before.
Here’s everything you need to know about the stellar streaks of the Aurora.
1. What is the Aurora?
Aurora is an enchanting display of natural lights spread across the sky, due to the collision between electrically charged particles emitted from the sun, and Earth’s magnetic field. The solar winds cause these particles to gravitate towards the polar regions of our planet, meeting oxygen and nitrogen atoms, resulting in the outcome of an artistic splash of colours in breath-taking shades of green, pink, red and blue.
2. How is the Aurora further categorised?
The mesmeric Aurora is a phenomenon that takes place in high-latitudinal regions. The one that occurs in the northern hemisphere is known as the Aurora borealis, popular as the Northern Lights.
Conversely, a similar spectacle in the southern hemisphere is known as the Aurora australis, or Southern Lights.
3. Where can I see the Northern and Southern Lights?
Well, if either of the two celestial miracles are not on your bucket list yet, its time to add them! The Arctic skies become a canvas, especially those of north-western Canada and Alaska, northern coasts of Norway, southern part of Iceland and Greenland, coastal regions of Siberia and different parts of Sweden, Finland, Scotland.
As for the Southern Lights, the occurrence is frequent near Antarctica and certain rims of the Indian Ocean. The riveting disco lights in the southern skies also make appearances in New Zealand, Australia, Chile and Argentina.
4. What is the best time to view the Aurora?
Several factors constitute the making of this electric marvel. Strong solar activities accompanied by a pitch black night uplifts the radiance of the natural lights. The magic of science through its spellbinding visual occur unpredictably throughout the year.
Since the summers bring in brighter skies, the lights are best enjoyed during the winter equinox. The Northern Lights are at their peak from September to April.
The Southern Lights are erratic visitors and put up very sporadic shows. Since the winter period down south is reversed, the ideal time to immerse in the magnificence of the Aurora australis is between March and September.