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Northern Lights

Norway & The Northern Lights

Which Northern Lights Cruise?

When?

The question I'm most often asked is when is the best time to see the Northern Lights? Well you may be able to see them anytime between September and April, but unless it's very dark, they won't be very visible. That's why the best months are January, February and early to mid-March. On any given day it really depends on the amount of solar activity present, the amount of cloud cover, and of course you need it to be dark.

If you book the 11 night Hurtigruten round trip cruise, there is a Northern Lights guarantee offered, as it is more than likely that you'll see them at least once.

Which Cruise Lines?

Until recently, Hurtigruten ran almost all the winter cruises along the Norwegian Coast, although recently Havila Voyages have started offering them too. The main thing to realise is that both are very different experiences from a traditional cruise you might have taken with one of the big cruise lines.

The ships are smaller and also serve as ferries for locals to travel from port to port, and that means some short stops as well as some longer ones. There are a range of excursions to choose from, and the meal plan is full board. So there are some similarities, but you also get to see local life a bit more.

Both cruise lines operate the same itinerary and visit the same ports, taking the same amount of time. We can offer both, although most requests are for Hurtigruten as they have been running these cruises for much longer, and for the rest of this section I'll be assuming a Hurtigruten cruise.

Which Cruise?

The cruise itself is fairly straightforward - it is a 6 night (7 days) voyage Northbound from Bergen to Kirkenes and a 5 night (6 days) voyage Southbound back to Bergen. You can do just Northbound, just Southbound, or the round trip which is 11 nights (12 days).

Stops

On the round trip, most of your longer stops will be different when coming back South to where you stopped going North, so you won't be just repeating the experience. In all there are about 32 stops, some being just enough time to get off and quickly back on again, and others for a few hours giving you time to get off and explore.

For excursions that may take longer than the length of time of the stop, at the end they'll take you back to where the ship will be, possibly a stop or two further on from where you got off.

Northern Lights Guarantee

The round trip of 11 nights has the Northern Lights guarantee - the promise is that if you don't see the Northern Lights on your 11 night trip, you'll get another try with a free (shorter) cruise. There are various terms and conditions and flights won't be included, so please check with us for details.

Variations

There's quite a few different ways you can organise your itinerary, for example:

  • 6 night Northbound cruise from Bergen to Kirkenes
  • 11 night Round Trip cruise from Bergen to Kirkenes and back to Bergen
  • Extra nights in Bergen before or after your cruise
  • Time in Oslo, then taking the spectacular Flam Railway, and continuing towards Bergen
  • Add a night in the Snowhotel in Kirkenes

... and many more

The full package includes flights, transfers, any accommodation, cruise, and full board meal plan.

There are a few special departures each winter with charter flights combined with the 11 night round trip cruise - these come with good savings over the regular package but get booked up very early.

 

Bergen, Norway
Bergen, Norway

Excursions

Finally, even though most people are most excited about seeing the Northern Lights, please remember that as with anywhere you go, the weather might have different ideas! 

This cruise offers lots of excursions, day and night! Many can be booked  on board, but for some you should pre-book such as dog-sledding and snowmobile safaris.

Guide Prices

As an example, there are currently still a few cabins left on the Stansted charter on 25 January 2025. Prices start from £1849 per person for an inside cabin, up to from £2249 per person for an outside cabin, or £2849 per person for a bigger cabin on the higher deck.

Please note prices correct at the time of writing but can change at any time and we also need to get them double checked, so please use these as a rough guide only.

What's Included?
  • Flights from Stansted
  • Transfers
  • 11 night round trip cruise
  • Full Board meal plan

More information

Call  01462 677111

Live local to Letchworth Garden City?

On selected holidays, we now offer face to face appointments so that we can have an initial discussion about your requirements. These can be in your own home, a local cafe, or another place that's convenient to you, and would typically last around 30 minutes.
Available in Letchworth Garden City and surrounding towns and villages - just click on the link below or give us a call on 01462 677 111 to arrange a suitable time.