Northern nights and northern lights.

It seems really weird that 2 weeks ago I was so far away in Australia. I didn’t really plan jetting off again so soon, but I got excited googling the northern lights and felt that November wouldn’t be too cold to visit. I thought  I’d try my luck in a northern Swedish sleepy village called Abisko. Only 100 people or so live here, there’s no grocery store, just a small pub (which is about to close down), and a couple of Bed and Breakfasts. There’s a national park,surrounded by mountains and a huge lake which has not yet frozen over (how I don’t know, it’s -10 sometimes here). There’s also a sky station-a place to view the aurora. Accessed by a chair lift in the dark, it’s a good half an hour across, often you’re just hanging there for a few minutes in the freezing cold. I know I was extremely high up, and the empty chairs that passed by on the opposite side were very eerie indeed as the only noise you could hear was the creaking of the chairs. Once you get to the other side there’s a pub and a huge hill where you basically wait for some sky action. I came well prepared for the cold weather with lots of layers, thick gloves and thermals. Even though it was a bit cloudy you could still see the lights. It wasn’t the spectacular dazzling light show that some people see, but there were visible green lights embarrassingly only caught on an iPhone. 

Crap photos aside-even so, I felt such joy. I’d seen the northern lights. I felt like I’d achieved what I came here to do but the funny thing is Sweden and Abisko have been so much more than just the lights. Everything is covered in a thick blanket of snow. And it’s a cliche but it really does look like a Christmas card here. The sunrises are the most beautiful I’ve ever seen, I’ve enjoyed them equally as much as the northern lights. There’s something about an orange sky against the crisp white ground it’s simply dazzling and magical. For miles and miles the long road between Abisko and Kiruna is uninhabited, just mountains and pine forests. I could be in Narnia if it were a real place.

I do love it here. It’s extremely cold out but in contrast, everywhere inside is extremely warm-too hot for me I end up stripping off! It’s also so dark all the time but the Swedes tend to prefer low lighting and candles inside so there’s a lack of natural sunlight. This  inevitably makes me feel pretty tired and sleepy and yesterday I spent 12 hours asleep. I think my body is begging me to take it easy and rest as I’m always on the go lately but I do think it’s the light factor too. I’m also not sure what the lack of sunlight is doing to my mood. I feel a little affected. I know if I was here for a long time I would become depressed-I’m a person who needs sun, but that’s not an issue in short amount of time. The sheer beauty was more than worth it.  If I did have a bucket list God forbid, this would definitely be on it.

They say Abisko is the best place in the world to see the northern lights. But don’t just take my word for it do your research. I promise you you won’t regret it…