Nearly everyone wants to experience the beautiful northern lights. People often mention that to see Aurora Borealis, you have to go to Canada, Iceland, or Finland, which will cost you quite a lot. But have you heard about aurora hunting in Russia?
Well actually, you can still travel on a budget to witness this once in a lifetime phenomenon. A city of Murmansk in Russia offers you the experience of the northern lights without having to hurt your wallet. Read on to see the essential information and 10 days 9 nights itinerary in Murmansk.
A Guide to Murmansk: 10 Days 9 Nights Itinerary
Basic Info About Murmansk
Remember that in order to see the northern light, you have to be there in winter and during a clear dark. You can go to Murmansk from November to February. Don’t forget to pack warm clothes, as the temperature will be freezing cold.
Murmansk is close to the arctic circle, the world’s top location to see the aurora borealis or northern lights, the most breathtakingly beautiful natural phenomenon in winter. Spend a few days in Murmansk in case you don’t capture the lights on the first day of hunting.
Where to Stay in Murmansk
There are lots of accommodation in Murmansk. However, since your trip is about hunting for the northern lights, we’d suggest you stay at Aurora Village, a perfect lodging to see the aurora from a transparent dome.
Book Aurora Village at tiket.com to make your aurora hunting going right!
Things to Prepare Before Witnessing the Northern Lights
- Camera: Make sure you bring a tripod and a camera that can capture the moment when the northern lights appear.
- Transportation: Besides booking a hotel, you also need to have your flight ticket on hand in advance so you can make a budget plan clearly about transportation when you’re in Russia.
- Warm clothes: Winter in Russia is not a joke. Moreover, you’re going to be outside witnessing the northern lights. Prepare more layers!
- Russian Visa: If you’re not from the countries who hold a privileged passport, you need to apply for a Russian Visa. Check the documents that you need to prepare and apply a few months before you depart.
Example of 10 Days 9 Nights Itinerary
Flight to your origin-destination to Moscow. If it’s a long haul flight, you’ll be usually arriving a day after your departure date.
Arrive in Moscow. Spend this day to try the metro and getting around the city before going back to the hotel and rest.
Time to explore Moscow! A city tour should begin by visiting Red Square, St. Basil Cathedral, The Moscow Kremlin, and Christ The Savior Church. Have lunch at GUM, a mall which looks like a palace, then continue your one day tour to the Lenin Mausoleum. Around the evening, you can go to Gorky Park and enjoy dinner on Arbat Street. Then, heading back to your hotel.
Your flight to Murmansk is today. You’ll be going on a domestic flight directly to Murmansk and as soon as you arrive, you can go to see the city first. Visit Nuclear Icebreaker “Lenin”, which is a Soviet nuclear-powered-icebreaker launched in 1957. Then, you can rest while waiting for the aurora to appear in the sky (this phenomenon is predictable but cannot be ascertained since it depends on the local weather).
After having breakfast, you should go to Sami Village, a place where Sami people live in the Arctic. After that, don’t forget to visit the Husky Kennel which is a Husky breed dog farm and a training ground where you can interact and see these dogs in their original habitat. In the afternoon, you can go back to the hotel and see the northern lights once more at night!
After you see the beautiful northern lights, today is gonna be your flight to St. Petersburg. As soon as you arrive in the city, you can go directly to the hotel and rest. Book a hotel around Nevsky Prospekt since it’s located in the city center so you’ll be able to go anywhere easily.
On the 7th day, you can explore St. Petersburg by visiting St. Isaac Cathedral, Peterhof Palace, and Kuznechny Food Market to try authentic Russian meals. At night, visit Nevsky Prospekt and ride a river cruise for a more unforgettable experience.
After breakfast, quickly head to Hermitage Museum, St. Nicholas Church, Trinity Cathedral, and Peter The Great Monument. Spend a full day to discover the city of St. Petersburg and don’t forget to take many pictures since the city is filled with countless Instagrammable spots.
This is gonna be your last day in St. Petersburg. Whether your flight back home is from here or Moscow, you can choose to spend your time of going anywhere you want.
You’ll be arriving in your country after such a tiring yet fun journey in Russia!
Explore Russia, Beyond the Northern Lights
While you’re in Russia, why don’t you take a chance to visit the incredible palaces and castles? There are a few magnificent castles in St. Petersburg and Moscow which can be a perfect destination during wintertime.
Because what could be better than experience the northern lights in Murmansk then discover the best tourist spots in one of the most beautiful countries to visit in winter?