Since I have been living in Helsinki in August 2018, I have seen the northern lights, also known as aurora borealis, 3 times from the capital region. However, none of them were as strong and impressive as the ones that lit up Helsinki last night!
Mere minutes before going to bed, I saw someone post a photo on twitter. Beautiful auroras were filling the sky at a latitude similar to Helsinki’s. I looked out of my apartment window, and initially saw nothing. However, after some time, I started seeing a greenish glow. It was the very first time I spotted auroras from out apartment in Helsinki!
My partner Anna and I directly went outside, and at that point the northern sky was filled with quite impressive displays of light. Considering the amount of light pollution and the fact that the moon was half full, the northern lights were truly bright.
We went to a field where we use to go when we try to see auroras close to our home. Auroras were coming and going for about half an hour. After that, the northern lights gradually became fainter and we decided to call it a night. Check the video compilation of last night’s auroras and some more photo’s below!
The auroras were not only seen in Finland and Scandinavia. Due to the high solar activity, the auroras could be seen as far down as Scotland, England and even the southern parts of The Netherlands, see e.g. this article on Weer.nl (in Dutch). In The Netherlands, northern lights are rare. Generally, the northern lights can only be captured by camera and even then the lights are generally limited to the very north of The Netherlands. This time, it could even be seen by bare eye in the south of the country!