Tekapo.SouthernLights300

When is the best time to see the Southern Lights?

When to catch the aurora australis in all its magnificence.

If you want to increase your chances of catching the Southern Lights, we’ve got everything you need to know.

The best time to see the Southern Lights

May to September.

Why?

While the aurora can be active at any time of the year, one of the major difficulties in capturing it is visibility. Clear, dark skies provide the best visibility to the naked eye, so travelling during winter will increase your chances of seeing the lights.


Overview

The Southern Lights are a natural phenomenon caused by collisions of electrically-charged particles from the sun. The Lights are concentrated around the southern polar cap and can be seen from some of the southernmost locations on Earth including Antarctica, New Zealand, the tip of Argentina, the Falkland Islands and Tasmania.

The Southern Lights are a popular attraction for visitors worldwide and the best time to see them is during winter in isolated locations where there is little light pollution. As there are many locations where you can spot them, nowhere gets too crowded, though for cheaper prices, steer clear of snow resort cities such as Queenstown in New Zealand.


Weather and prices

The best time to see the Southern Lights, weatherwise: May to September.

The cheapest time to see the Southern Lights: Look for flight and hotel deals outside of the Christmas school holiday break (end of December to end of January). Being the closest and with frequent flight sales from Tigerair and Jetstar, southern Tasmania should be the cheapest destination to get to for a chance to see the Southern Lights.

Search for a flight to see the Southern Lights:

We'd recommend looking for flights to places like New Zealand's South Island and Tasmania.


Latest deals to destinations where you can see the Southern Lights:

CruiseAway CruiseAway

Free double upgrade with Cunard

Valid for cruises from February - December 2019. Destinations include Sydney, Tasmania, Adelaide, Dunedin, Auckland and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Get deal

Deal ends

Europcar Europcar

Up to 20% off base rate

Valid for rentals until 16 December 2018 at participating locations across Australia and New Zealand. Must book 21 days in advance and for a minimum of 2 days to redeem offer. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Get deal

Deal ends

Scoopon Scoopon

Up to 70% off travel deals

Discounted hotel packages, tours and cruises to destinations in Australia and to Thailand, Fiji, Cook Islands, Bali, Vietnam, Myanmar, France, Italy, Spain, the UK, Germany, New Zealand and more.

Last verified

Get deal

Deal ends

DriveNow DriveNow

Campervan hire from $5/day

Offers and validity dates updated daily. Available on select routes in Australia and New Zealand.

Last verified

Enterprise Rent a Car Enterprise Rent a Car

Up to 10% off New Zealand car hire

Valid until 31 December 2018, including over Christmas. Minimum of 3 days rental. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Get deal

Deal ends

Topdeck Topdeck

Up to 10% off Australia and New Zealand tours

Valid for 2019 and 2020 tours. Destinations include Auckland, Wellington, Sydney, Christchurch, Victoria and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Get deal

Deal ends

CruiseAway CruiseAway

Luxury cruises from $129 with Celebrity Cruises

Valid from January - March 2019 on select Australia and New Zealand destinations. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Get deal

Deal ends

STA Travel STA Travel

New Zealand flights from $225 each way

Valid for travel until 30 June 2019, including over Christmas. Sample fare is Sydney-Christchurch.

Last verified

Get deal

Deal ends

Tick Travel Insurance Tick Travel Insurance
Exclusive

Get 5% off all Tick travel insurance policies

Want to save more on your Tick travel insurance policy? Just enter this code to receive a 5% discount on your cover to destinations like Bali, New Zealand, USA, Europe, Thailand, Fiji, Vietnam and more.

Last verified

Air New Zealand - Pacific Islands Air New Zealand - Pacific Islands

Norfolk Island flights from $278

Valid for travel until 3 December 2018. Sample fare is Brisbane-Norfolk Island. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Get deal

Deal ends

TourRadar TourRadar

Up to 61% off Australia and New Zealand tours

Valid for travel from November 2018 - March 2019 depending on the destination. Destinations include Christchurch, Auckland, Wellington, Sydney, Cairns, Brisbane, Melbourne and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Get deal

Deal ends

G Adventures G Adventures

Up to $1,170 off Australia and New Zealand tours

Valid for travel from 4 December 2018 - 24 February 2019. Destinations include Auckland, Wellington, Adelaide, Melbourne, Byron Bay and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Get deal

Deal ends

P&O Cruises P&O Cruises

Up to $100 OBC + drinks package 7-night Tasmania cruise

Valid for cruise from 1-8 December 2018, departing Melbourne. Destinations include Burnie, Port Arthur, Hobart and Kangaroo Island.

Last verified

Get deal

Deal ends

Travel Insurance Saver Travel Insurance Saver

Get up to 30% discount on travel insurance

Save on policies to Bali, New Zealand, USA, Europe, Thailand, Fiji, Vietnam and more when you purchase cover online. Terms and conditions apply.

Last verified

Oaks Hotels & Resorts Oaks Hotels & Resorts

10% off stays in Australia and New Zealand

Valid for My Oaks members. Membership is free and also entitles guests to late checkout and complimentary internet use. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Europcar Europcar

15% off the 5+ day hires

Valid on select dates until 16 December 2018 in Australia or New Zealand. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Get deal

Deal ends

Europcar Europcar

10% off New Zealand car hire

Valid until 16 December 2018. Minimum of 3 days rental. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Get deal

Deal ends

Europcar Europcar

25% off premium hire insurance

Get up to 25% off on your car rental when you purchase GoZen Cover. Valid at participating locations across Australia and New Zealand. T&C's apply.

Last verified

Choice Hotels Choice Hotels

Up to 10% off stays

Valid on select dates when booked between 2-30 days in advance and prepaid at time of booking. Available at locations across Australia and New Zealand.

Last verified

Airport Parking Airport Parking

Compare airport parking rates at 13 airports across Australia and New Zealand

Find the lowest price at various airport parking providers in Australia and New Zealand with Airport Parking.

Last verified

Popular Travel coupon codes

Last checked Code description Code
16 Nov 2018 Extra 10% off travel deals ESC****
16 Nov 2018 Extra 15% off experiences 15S****
16 Nov 2018 Up to 15% off all orders AWA****
30 Oct 2018 Extra 10% off site-wide FIN****
29 Oct 2018 Extra 5% off hotels worldwide FIN****
15 Nov 2018 Sydney New Year's Eve cruises from just $400 ********

Find out the best time to go to...

Was this content helpful to you? No  Yes

Related Posts

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Privacy & Cookies Policy and Terms of Use, Disclaimer & Privacy Policy.
Ask a question
Go to site