Aurora Borealis Observatory Experience: We are proud to build long lasting relationship with our guests during their stay at the Aurora Borealis Observatory.
Our location on the magical island of Senja in northern Norway is not only remote and private but also perfect to observe the northern lights. We spoke to one of our final guests of the 2019/20 aurora season about his memories of his unique northern lights holiday which was slightly extended due to the COVID-19 pandemic but most memorable because he proposed to his fiancé underneath the aurora borealis.
When did you first plan a northern lights holiday and why did you choose the aurora borealis observatory?
The northern lights have always been a bucket list item for me and something I’ve always wanted to see. I had also been with my girlfriend coming up to two years and I knew with absolute certainty that this was the woman I wanted to make my wife. So, thinking about what I could do as a proposal I started look at various things and try to plan something special. It was that which led me to think about the lights again and how I might be able to plan a trip where we could do two amazing things in one and have it been an experience neither of us could ever forget. I’d looked at various places that we could see the lights, but none really offered anything close to what the Aurora Borealis Observatory had in terms of the facility and activities available. The whole thing just looked so perfect that I decided to take the risk knowing full well that we might not see the lights and go for it.
How was the journey the observatory? How long did it take from where you were travelling?
We travelled from London and actually the journey was incredibly straightforward. We had a connection in Oslo to Bardufoss and then we got picked up in a bus outside the airport that took us to the pickup point for the observatory which was only another 10 minutes away. The bus tells you exactly where to get off, so you don’t miss it.
What were your first impressions?
Great! Everyone was so friendly, and it was a wonderful atmosphere. We got to see a talk all about the aurora which was super interesting and gave us a little more insight into the science behind seeing them and if anything, actually made them seem even more magical and incredible.
How long did you stay and how many times did you see the northern lights?
We actually got stuck a little longer than anticipated due to the COVID-19 situation and were there three more nights than we had initially intended bringing our total stay time to 6 nights. Whilst we were there, we got the incredible pleasure of seeing the lights 4 times, the first one of which I seized upon as my opportunity to pop the question (thankfully she said yes). It was absolutely amazing and without a shadow of a doubt an experience I will treasure for a lifetime.
What activities did you take part in?
We had a little bit of a challenge with some activities due to the pandemic and Norway’s strict and abrupt lockdown procedure. The guys at the ABO went above and beyond for us to help keep us entertained and next time we will definitely go out husky sledding and on the beautiful island tour. We had talks around the aurora, we went for walks in the grounds and around the area, making sure to maintain distancing and one of the days we even took part in an ice swim which I can certainly recommend as a way to wake up for anyone feeling a little sluggish. There was also reindeer feeding and a teepee where people could go to and have a relax together whilst making sure to maintain a safe distance apart. We built some long-lasting friendships in our time at the Aurora Borealis Observatory.
What was your most memorable moment?
Without a shadow of a doubt the first time that I saw the aurora and asked my girlfriend to become my wife. Matt the resident astronomer was taking photos of the aurora, so I told him what I was going to do and asked him if he would mind getting a shot of Libby and I under the lights with me on one knee. I think that’s going to be a hard one to top for the rest of my life let alone on a trip.
Would you come back to visit us?
100% absolutely yes. It was a great experience and one I will do again. Not only were the facilities top notch and the whole experience amazing, we met the most wonderful and amazing group of people whilst we were there. I simply do not think that I could have had a more wonderful and experience than the one we had at the ABO.
We would like to thank our friends Johnny and Libby for choosing the Aurora Borealis Observatory Experience as the location for one of the most memorable experiences in their lives. Their understanding during the unfortunate pandemic was greatly appreciated, we look forward to seeing them again and of course, we wish them the very best in their future together. Maybe they will come back to be married under the northern lights?
We enjoyed the Aurora Borealis Observatory Experience!