Travel Blog Travel tips

Northern Lights in Lofoten: See Aurora Borealis

Everyone has dreams of places they want to see, explore and chuck down from there bucket list in their lifetime. For many and if I am not wrong, at the top of that bucket list is the Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis. One of the best destinations to chase and explore northern lights is Norway and more northwards you drift to, the better the chances and luckier you get.

Hunting the northern lights is a sport that just every winter traveller can get behind. Watching this magnificent nature phenomenon Northern lights dancing and flickering in the sky is on the bucket lists of thousands. People travel from all over the world in the hope of getting a glimpse of the sky illuminated by spectacular displays of green, purple or pink and this was certainly on my list too, and I got my chance on a cold, clear night in Lofoten Islands.

What is Aurora Borealis?

Have you ever thought about what causes the appearance of Northern Lights and why it illuminates the sky in different colours? It occurs when electrically charged gas particles from the sun enter the earth’s atmosphere and are seen above the magnetic poles of the northern and southern hemispheres. The lights appear to be dancing across the sky and it comes in every shape and size. The most common colour seen is green but if you are lucky, you can see the sky light up like a rainbow in pink, blue, yellow and purple. The color of Northern Lights mainly depends and comes from the type of particles that collide with each other.

Where can you see it?

Northern Lights are most commonly seen in Norway, Greenland and Iceland in Europe, or in the Northwest Territories of North America, Alaska and Canada. Norway is the most accessible option. If sky condition is good and clear then you can see the Northern Lights all across Nordic areas.

Seeing the Northern Lights: My Lifetime Experience

It was our 3rd and final day in Lofoten Islands and we hadn’t seen the Northern Lights. On our first two nights, the excursions in search of the green light in the sky had been cancelled due to cloud cover and heavy rains and snow. But, on our last day, we got lucky to see sunshine with the fact that we surely be seeing the Northern Lights because of clear sky.

In preparation for the evening outing, we layered about every piece of woollen clothing we had from backpack and get ready for the thrilling adventure. We joined the group with our guide at 2100hrs and headed for Northern Light spot. After a short ride for about 15mins our Tour Guide addressed the group “That Northern Lights have been spotted.” A ripple of excitement rushed through us. Out the window, we could see a glowing thin green light covering entire snow clad mountains.

Beyond the road we arrived on, toward a mountain, we could see two distinct streams of lime green and Pink light in the sky. This was it. This is what we were waiting for. This is what we were chasing. We were seeing the Northern Lights in Norway with our very own eyes.

We scrambled to find a place to set up our cameras, as we needed complete stillness if we were to have any chance of getting a clear photo. Without a tripod, we would have to improvise. The ground was completely covered with snow and ice. But sooner we spotted a picnic table, cleared off the snow, laid our camera at angled towards the dancing Northern Lights.

The strip of green and pink lights expanded and brightened then dulled and brightened again. The light danced across the sky, silhouetting the mountain. It was like landing and watching into a fairy tale land. A million stars twinkled above us. Constellations were so intense that it brightened the entire sky and it was almost impossible to believe that we finally made our dream come true to chase and see northern lights in real. We watched until we were completely frozen and numb…which was about a total of 30-35minutes.

Want my advice for seeing the Northern Lights in Norway/Iceland/Lapland etc.? If you haven’t practiced your photography and unprepared for frigidly cold weather, forget the camera and simply enjoy the Lights in the sky. If you want the memory in a photograph, ask your tour guide to click one for you!

General Travel Blog

Scoot Wandermust Winner – Preferred Traveler from India!

Recently I was selected by Singapore based low-cost Airlines called by the name of ‘Scoot’, which opened up a contest in the month of June 2018 which was mainly published on their Facebook  pages all around Asia/world targeting specifically those countries or destinations where the airlines usually fly to. It was really proud moment for me to be selected on a global platform and to be the only Indian selected from my country beating thousands of application in their system!

About Contest

In order to participate in the contest, people have to post well thought entries in the form of a brief story telling or showing the airlines why they think “they have travel in the blood“.  The stories have options to be in the form of text followed by photographs or videos.

Since it was a global competition, the key was not only on how you pitch or present your story but how genuine it is for selection Jury to decide if it synchronizes with the idea of the need of travel addiction!.

Is Travel is in Your blood?

The idea of travel is in your blood initiated by Scoot, originally arises from the research of DRD4-2/7R gene and its relationship to human travel. The research is organised by famous professor “Richard Ebstein” from National Institute of Singapore. He has been studying this gene-travel relationship from past 20 years and connects it direct roots to exploration and travel addiction.

Click on the image to watch the video.

All the winners who will be selected in the contest are mainly invited to singapore to undergo this DNA test to actually discover whether this Exploration gene exist in them or not. Evenhow, if the results turn out to be positive/negative, the overall search was still purely based on stories and profile of every user or applicant who were applying for this contest.

Prizes for Winners

The prizes were distributed into 3 sections – 1 Grand Prize winner, 4 Wandermust Prize winners and 12 Participation prize winners.
Participation Winner: The participation winners were mainly given 100SGD worth voucher which they could redeem with Scoot flights.
Wandermust winners – These 4 winners consist of the main core section and were given the following prizes:

  • Roundtrip (basic) fare ticket from home country to Singapore.
  • 1 night and 2 days stay in Singapore with good rated hotel.
  • One roundtrip (Basic) fare ticket from Home country to any Scoot flying destination inclusive of taxes.
  • Complementary DNA analysis for the D4DR-2/7R gene variant.

Grand prize winner: There were 1 exchange to the grand prize winner along with wandermust prize was offering which mainly included 100,00 KrisFlyer miles in place of roundtrip ticket to any Scoot destination, which if I think is the best buy for grand winner!

My Selection and Prize

I was selected among the 4 wandermust winners in which I was sponsored a free trip to Singapore, along with a top rated hotel stay and DNA test. And I still hold one free round-trip to travel anywhere in Asia!! (Any recommendations?)

Topmost on the right is me! 🙂

Among the all the travelers who got selected in this contest, only 34.62% were found out positive with DRD4-2/7R exploration gene and mine though came out to be negative.

But does it really matter whether you have a travel gene or not, whether its in your blood that implants the idea of this travel addiction!? For me travel is more of an experience, the way to explore and see the life outside the small buble we live in and explore the life as it is everywhere!

My story by Scoot

This is what scoot published about me”

” Meet Anubhav. An Indian native who travels the world on a budget and a whole lot of travel points. 

Having travelled to more than 30 countries (on extremely tight budgets), Anubhav’s no stranger to travel-hacking. He never fails to score the best deal on every flight he takes. 
At his free time, he works as a free travel advisor and is very passionate about helping others chase their travel dreams.
If you’re thinking of pursuing a full-time budget globetrotting lifestyle, look no further:

click on the image to read more about it!

Travel is the best thing which I have found in life! There is so much to see and experience and I just feel I only might have touch the tip of the iceberg. Winning this contest gave me a good confidence and recognition as well to see the potential of how much far we all have the possibility to achieve and find our ways to travel and experience the world out there! 🙂

Do you have that travel addiction or non-ending need to live the life of travels? Feel free to share your comments!