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8 Stays for Southern Lights Chasers

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One glance at the abundance of flight deals to Iceland and Scandinavia is all you need to know that today’s travelers are obsessed with catching a glimpse of the Northern Lights. A hemisphere away, though, the Aurora Australis or Southern Lights are reaching their prime viewing season.

Like their northern neighbors, the green sheets of light congregate near the South Pole. Aside from Antarctica or space, the best spots to catch the aurora are Tasmania, New Zealand and Patagonia. In addition to searching for the Southern Lights, you’ll have the opportunity to gaze upon constellations only visible below the equator such as the Southern Cross, the Swordfish and the Bird of Paradise, goals for any avid stargazer.

With a little help from TripAdvisor Rentals, we’ve rounded up eight bases for aurora enthusiasts. Flip through the gallery above to see our picks (way) down south.

1. Library House Hobart, Hobart, Tasmania. 2. Hobart Waterfront, Hobart, Tasmania. 3. Highview Lake Tekapo, Lake Tekapo, New Zealand. 4. Cabana en Ushuaia, Patagonia, Argentina. 5. Hermosa y Acogedora Cabana, Patagonia, Argentina. 6. Beachview Bellerive, Greater Hobart, Tasmania. 7. Waterfront Retreat, Greater Hobart, Tasmania. 8. Villa Lane, Invercargill, New Zealand.

Photo by Ben, CC BY-ND 2.0

Sarra Sedghi is the assistant editor of Paste’s food and science sections.

1 of 8 This luxury West Hobart home is equipped with five bedrooms, sleeping up to eight guests. However, its main draw is the floor-to-glass ceiling that offers 280-degree, panoramic views of the southern aurora. Starts at $723/night Photo courtesy of TripAdvisor Rentals

2 of 8 This two-bedroom apartment sits near the Bellerive Marina and boasts views of Kangaroo Bay as well as the night sky. Guests can easily access the Hobart city center via car, bus or water taxi. Starts at $225/night Photo courtesy of TripAdvisor Rentals

3 of 8 This condo sleeps six and is isolated enough for stellar views of the aurora as well as surrounding Lake Tekapo, Mount John and the Southern Alps. However, if you crave civilization, the Tekapo village is minutes away. Starts at $280/night Photo courtesy of TripAdvisor Rentals

4 of 8 This four-bedroom Patagonia cabin offers enough space for a small group of relatives or friends. In addition to ample space for hiking, fishing and stargazing, the area is three hours away from the otherworldly Vinciguerra Glacier. Starts at $133/night Photo courtesy of TripAdvisor Rentals

5 of 8 This cozy Patagonian cabin sleeps two and affords just enough distance to travelers seeking reprieve from city hubbub. Although it's small, it priorities aurora views with large windows and undisturbed sky. Starts at $100/night Photo courtesy of TripAdvisor Rentals

6 of 8 This three-bedroom Tasmanian home offers a spacious and lively deck perfect for craning awestruck eyes upwards. Inside, you'll find extra-welcoming touches like heated bathroom floors, classic yet contemporary furnishings and a gas fireplace. Starts at $378/night Photo courtesy of TripAdvisor Rentals

7 of 8 This roomy retreat boasts enough space for 16 guests and offers panoramic views of the water on every level. Multiple wrap-around decks and floor-to-ceiling windows ensure that everyone can get a glimpse at the heavenly bodies above. Starts at $502/night Photo courtesy of TripAdvisor Rentals

8 of 8 This villa at the southern tip of New Zealand, one of the best locales for an aurora sighting, sleeps two and offers guests a private patio as a stargazing venue. The sunny, staffed property is stocked with cooking supplies and a grill, making guests feel both welcome and at home. Starts at $150/night Photo courtesy of TripAdvisor Rentals

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