Northern lights (aurora borealis) are like, as many have put it, “a celestial ballet of light dancing across the night sky.” But reserve some of your applause for their southern belle cousins, aurora australis, or the southern lights, who put on an equally dazzling performance.
I think of auroras as pole dancers rather than ballerinas, with their wispy red, green, and purplish-blue lights shimming and dipping around the Earth’s geomagnetic Poles.
Near the North Pole, tourists see this performance in Canada, Alaska, Greenland, Norway, and Russia on land stretching deep into the Arctic Circle. On the other side of the globe, the southern lights cluster around the South Pole on Antarctica, meaning aurora australis is usually seen only by penguins and scientists.
While Antarctic penguins have prime real estate to see the southern lights directly over their heads, the southern…