If you’ve always dreamed of seeing the northern lights, wild camping in Scotland could give you the perfect opportunity to do so. Camping in the wild is an experience in itself, but catching a glimpse of the elusive aurora borealis could make your trip even more exciting.
If you’re planning a camping trip with the aim of seeing the spectacle, there are some things you need to consider to ensure you have the best time possible. Here, we’ll be sharing our top tips for wild camping and seeing the northern lights while you’re at it. Read on to learn everything you need to know.
Get the timing right
When you’re hoping to see the aurora borealis in Scotland, timing is everything. You’ll have the highest chance of spotting them late at night or in the early hours of the morning. And, of course, autumn and winter tend to be the best times of year for this, because that’s when the nights are at their darkest in the UK.
AuroraWatch UK is a tool that will let you know when the conditions are right for you to see the spectacle from Scotland. So, if you want to be one of the first to know when the northern lights are on the horizon, make sure you sign up for alerts before you set off on your trip.
Put plenty of thought into choosing your destination
There are lots of beautiful wild camping spots in Scotland, but some of them will give you a better view of the northern lights than others. So, you should put plenty of thought and research into choosing your destination. Popular choices include:
- Angus and the coast of Fife
- Galloway Forest Park
- The Cairngorms
- Aberdeen, Orkney, and Caithness
Any of these would make a great choice, but it’s important that you plan very carefully so you can ensure that your destination offers plenty to do, as well as a good chance of you seeing the aurora borealis.
Make sure you have all the camping essentials
If you’ve never been wild camping before, or your equipment could do with an update, you should invest in some new supplies before you begin your trip. Depending on how long you’ll be camping for, you’re going to need a 40–70 litre rucksack. A heavy-duty sleeping bag and a high-quality tent will also be essential for getting you through the Scottish winter nights. We would always recommend buying your camping supplies from a specialist store, because the sales assistants will be able to help you choose the right equipment for your trip.
You also need to consider how you’re going to transport everything to Scotland at the beginning of your trip. Bear in mind that when travelling with family or friends, you might not be able to pile everything on the back seat of your car. If this is going to be a one-off trip, stuffing everything into the boot of your vehicle might be the best idea. But, if you’re interested in taking camping trips on a regular basis, it could be worth investing in a trailer. If you decide to go down this route, ERDE offers a huge selection of trailers, which come in a range of sizes. And, they also stock all of the accessories you’ll need to get the most out of your chosen trailer.
If you’re interested in seeing the northern lights in Scotland, planning a wild camping trip could be a great idea. As long as you get the timing right, put plenty of thought into choosing your destination, and take all of the essentials, you’re bound to have an incredible time. So, what are you waiting for? Start planning your next adventure now.