Northern Lights

Enjoy front row seats to the Aurora Borealis...

Sitting at the most northerly point on the British mainland, John O'Groats has always enjoyed a unique microclimate, with powder soft white sands, gin-coloured waters and the inky depths of the Pentland Firth stretched out before it. There is however another incredible natural phenomenon that visitors to this special region can witness; a jaw-dropping light show high up in the sky - the Aurora Borealis. 

What is the Aurora Borealis?

The Aurora Borealis (more commonly known as the Northern Lights in the UK) is a spectacular, natural light show, caused by tiny electrically charged particles released from the sun, that make their way towards the Earth and collide with gases present in our atmosphere. These collisions display themselves as clouds of vividly coloured light, with green bursts being the most common. The auroras can range in size from small patches of light, to huge rippling waves that illuminate the whole horizon.

When is the best time to see the Northern Lights?

From experience, the winter months are generally the best season to view the light displays, between 10pm and 2am - but it's best to keep an eye on the AuroraWatch UK app for the latest updates!

Top Tips 

  • Use the below apps to search for nights with high periods of solar activity
  • Remember to always keep an eye out for clear skies!
  • The less light pollution, the better (luckily John O'Groats is ideal for this)
  • Let your eyes adjust to the dark

AuroraWatch UK

Click the links below to download the AuroraWatch apps, and keep up to date with the latest information:


Available at: