The iconic northern lights, otherwise known as the aurora borealis, are best viewable in countries such as Iceland, Canada, and Norway. But, to see the northern lights in Japan? That’s history.
During the first few days of this month, the Hokkaido region in Japan, which is located in the northern portion of the archipelago, bore witness to the stunning northern lights. However, instead of the green hues, those who witnessed it in the East Asian country saw red auroras.
The aurora borealis are beautiful dancing light waves that have captivated people for millennia, especially those in the planet’s northern regions. These auroras display dynamic patterns of brilliant rays that either appear as curtains, rays, spirals, or dynamic flickers masking the sky.
According to a report on Japan Times, staff members at an observatory in Hokkaido saw the red version of these lights with their own eyes last December 1st.
“I didn’t think I could see the red lights so clearly with the naked eye,” stated Takuya Murata, an observatory staff member told Japan Times. “It’s very moving.”
The aurora borealis is more frequently spotted in some Arctic and Antarctic regions. But, it is not unusual to also see them in places like Hokkaido, which is a low-latitude area.
However, this is the first sighting of these auroras in Japan in around two decades. Studies from the Rikubetsu Observatory said that the aurora sighting this year is the first in Japan since 2003.