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  • FIRST POST
    • kitty1941
    • By kitty1941 9th May 18, 10:25 PM
    • 98Posts
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    kitty1941
    0 WOW
    Northern Lights in Scotland
    • #1
    • 9th May 18, 10:25 PM
    0 WOW
    Northern Lights in Scotland 9th May 18 at 10:25 PM
    Where are the best places to see the Northern Lights in Scotland? Looking at booking a cottage for 4 people so any suggestions of where to stay would be great also. Thank you.
Page 1
    • pogofish
    • By pogofish 9th May 18, 11:03 PM
    • 8,779 Posts
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    pogofish
    • #2
    • 9th May 18, 11:03 PM
    • #2
    • 9th May 18, 11:03 PM
    The further north and as far away from urban light pollution as possible - I have seen spectacular clear skies north of Cromarty, in the Cairngorms and in many places on the west coast.

    If you go to the Orkneys or Shetland Islands, your chances are increased further.

    What time of year are you planning on going? IIRC, the best time for seeing aurora has passed for this year and it won't be until well into autumn before it comes round again.
    • kitty1941
    • By kitty1941 9th May 18, 11:22 PM
    • 98 Posts
    • 37 Thanks
    kitty1941
    • #3
    • 9th May 18, 11:22 PM
    • #3
    • 9th May 18, 11:22 PM
    Looking at going in October 2019 during half term - about 19th October (one of the party is a school teacher - so we are looking well in advance)
    • alanrowell
    • By alanrowell 10th May 18, 6:50 PM
    • 5,282 Posts
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    alanrowell
    • #4
    • 10th May 18, 6:50 PM
    • #4
    • 10th May 18, 6:50 PM
    It's pot luck whether you'll see them - they aren't predictable and you need clear skies. It's also heading to solar minimum which reduces the chances of them occurring.

    Best times BTW are allegedly around the equinoxes
    • daveyjp
    • By daveyjp 10th May 18, 10:28 PM
    • 7,621 Posts
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    daveyjp
    • #5
    • 10th May 18, 10:28 PM
    • #5
    • 10th May 18, 10:28 PM
    I'd choose an area as far north as possible, but somewhere you would like to go, rather than concentrate on Northern lights, which you will be very lucky to see with just one week in the area.

    Uniquecottages is a good website for Scottish holiday cottages.
    • glennevis
    • By glennevis 10th May 18, 11:00 PM
    • 182 Posts
    • 138 Thanks
    glennevis
    • #6
    • 10th May 18, 11:00 PM
    • #6
    • 10th May 18, 11:00 PM
    Have a look at the aurora watch website
    https://aurorawatch.lancs.ac.uk/alerts/
    Sign up for alerts, or install the smartphone app, it might give you an idea of how (in)frequent sightings are.
    • kitty1941
    • By kitty1941 11th May 18, 3:30 PM
    • 98 Posts
    • 37 Thanks
    kitty1941
    • #7
    • 11th May 18, 3:30 PM
    • #7
    • 11th May 18, 3:30 PM
    I'd choose an area as far north as possible, but somewhere you would like to go, rather than concentrate on Northern lights, which you will be very lucky to see with just one week in the area.

    Uniquecottages is a good website for Scottish holiday cottages.
    Originally posted by daveyjp
    That is what we are aiming to do, but would like to hopefully see the Northern Lights if we are in the right area.
    • andrewf75
    • By andrewf75 11th May 18, 5:12 PM
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    andrewf75
    • #8
    • 11th May 18, 5:12 PM
    • #8
    • 11th May 18, 5:12 PM
    I'd choose an area as far north as possible, but somewhere you would like to go, rather than concentrate on Northern lights, which you will be very lucky to see with just one week in the area.
    Originally posted by daveyjp
    This.

    I don't think people should go even to Iceland/Norway etc specifically to see the northern lights, I've know a few people who have ended up disappointed. For Scotland, where its obviously much more rare to see them it's even more important not to make that the main purpose of your trip.
    Last edited by andrewf75; 11-05-2018 at 5:15 PM.
    • kitty1941
    • By kitty1941 11th May 18, 9:14 PM
    • 98 Posts
    • 37 Thanks
    kitty1941
    • #9
    • 11th May 18, 9:14 PM
    • #9
    • 11th May 18, 9:14 PM
    We did look at Iceland but decided against, so decided on Scotland instead knowing that if we see the Northern Lights it will be a bonus, but we will still have a good holiday.
    • sheramber
    • By sheramber 11th May 18, 9:34 PM
    • 4,968 Posts
    • 3,719 Thanks
    sheramber
    Caithness and Sutherland are your best bet
    http://www.spanglefish.com/caithnessastronomygroup/index.asp?pageid=424219
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