The world’s most illuminating experiences

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Northern Norway has been selected one of the world’s ten top regions in Lonely Planet’s new publication  “Best in Travel 2015”. 

2015 is the UN Year of Light – so make a beeline for these brilliantly bright, bedazzling places.
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Aurora, Abisko, Sweden
The northern lights shimmer right across the polar regions – if solar activity is particularly exuberant you might even glimpse the lights as far south as Scotland. But, really, to maximise your chances of seeing aurora action, head for Abisko’s Aurora Skystation, nearly 200km north of the Arctic Circle and a long way from pretty much anything else. The surrounding mountains keep the skies almost always clear – light pollution is zero – and long winter nights provide the perfect black canvas for the heavenly glow.

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Abisko’s Aurora Sky Station (auroraskystation.com) is 100km west of Kiruna. The best time to visit is September to March.

Midnight sun, Svalbard, Norway
Wish there were more hours in the day? No problem, plan a summer trip to Svalbard. Nudging the North Pole, this Arctic archipelago has long, dark, gloomy winters but makes up for it come spring: in the capital Longyearbyen the midnight sun lasts from 15 April to 26 August. That’s more than four months of relentless rays, the sun never dipping below the horizon. Make the most of all this light – once the seas are accessible (usually from June), board an expedition cruise and spend the wee hours on deck watching calving glaciers, grunting walruses and polar bears patrolling the pack ice. Wild nights indeed.

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There is no ferry service between Svalbard and
 Norway; Longyearbyen is served by flights from Oslo.

One of the best places to get a ‘yes’ is Trolltunga (See video). Why not together with illuminating experiences?

This is what Lonely Planet journalist Kerry Christian says after her visit to the region: : ‘ I was blown away by the region’s wildlife, kind-hearted people and out of this world beauty. There’s no place like it for adventure, either. Where else can you meet Sami reindeer herders, dart past the world’s strongest tidal current on a RIB, cross the Arctic Circle, and watch the Northern Lights come out to play all in the space of a day? Cities like Bodø and Harstad reveal surprises, too, with rich culture, terrific restaurants and party-loving people. I lost my heart to Northern Norway, so much so that I’ve never found it harder to catch a plane home.’