Fairbanks

Northern LightsGreen light. Go.

Welcome to one of the best places on earth for experiencing the beautiful and mysterious northern lights. Bright, energetic curtains of yellow, green, red or even purple light brighten our night skies regularly. Fairbanks is situated within a ring-shaped region around the North Pole called the auroral oval. This location provides a terrific balance of occurrence, frequency and activity. Plus, our continental climate offers many more clear nights than you would find in a coastal area. While intensity varies, the most common yellow-green glow occurs heavily between late August and April. Prime viewing time is late evening through the wee hours of the morning.

Experience the aurora from a heated "aurorium" cabin, on an overnight sled dog trip, by snow cat tour to a panoramic vista, in a horse drawn sleigh, on a flight above the Arctic Circle, or simply walk outside and look up to see the captivating northern lights weave their way across the night sky. If the aurora appears in the middle of the night, many hotels offer wake-up calls so you won't miss a moment. The longer you stay, the better your chances of viewing a once in a lifetime display!

Also see: Geophysical Institute Aurora Forecast

did you know

  • Displays take place as low as 40 miles above the Earth's surface, but usually begin about 68 miles above and extend hundreds of miles into space.
  • Clear skies and darkness are essential to see the northern lights. If you stay 3 nights in Fairbanks, you have an 80% chance of seeing them.
  • Almost all planets in the solar system have an aurora of some sort.
  • An aurora borealis monument marks the exit of Fairbanks International Airport.