• Aurora Borealis and the Starry Sky

The green lights from heaven: Aurora Borealis

As you already know, this January has been a month of ups and downs. Of success and failures. Of doubts and assurances. Of happiness and sadness.

And yet, there was this special moment where all the problems in the world seemed to disappear. It was that special moment when I looked upon the sky and I listened to the calling of Mother Nature: This is the story of the day I saw them for the first time.

The green lights from heaven. The Aurora Borealis.

Aurora Borealis and the Starry Sky

Aurora Borealis and the Starry Sky

It all began in a small cabin in the woods…

I needed a break. I needed to escape. I needed to seclude myself in a remote area in order to find myself once again. The Seven Fells of Akaslompolo (try pronouncing THAT!) were my salvation. This small town is located in northwest Finland in the wintery region known as Lapland.

From Helsinki it took me 15 hours to get there using a combination of trains and public buses. Seeing how Finnish children travel for miles and miles in order to attend school in the cold wintery morning really brought a smile to my face since children are the only hope this world has for salvation.

Winter retreat for writers

My winter retreat in the woods of Lapland

Eventually, my friend Marysia and I reached the town of Kolari from where we were picked up by the staff of the 7 Fells Hostel. They rent cabins and shared dormitories making it a good alternative for people wanting to experience the hospitality of the people from Lapland.

It was in this little cabin in the woods that wounds began to heal and I started to enjoy the smallest things in life once more. One of the happiest moments was going to the one and only supermarket in town after walking for 20 minutes and enjoying the sights of white Christmas trees and beautiful reindeer prancing in the snow.

I was so lost in the excitement of the moment that I even forgot to take a reindeer selfie!

Life in Lapland, Seven Fells Hostel

Life in Lapland, Seven Fells Hostel

Akaslompolo is known for its ski opportunities which rival those of nearby Levi. However, the charm of the place is the small town vibe that can be felt as well as the seclusion of the cabins in the woods.

From Victor Hugo to Ernest Hemingway, all of my favorite writers have found their true inspiration in secluded places and I was no exception.

In fact, it was during my evening sauna session that I finally set in stone my plans for 2015. It was time for a change and the hot steam emerging from my body as I jumped into the snow helped me realize that.

Akaslompolo and the Seven Fells

Akaslompolo and the Seven Fells

And then nightfall came…

That night I had a dream. I dreamed that I was floating outside of our galaxy as I communed with the symphony of the cosmos. The starry skies, glimpses of galaxies located light years away from us, were reaching out to my little cabin in the woods.

“It’s time” they said. “Go out and listen to Mother Nature.” I awoke then from my sleep and stepped outside my cabin. To this day, this remains the most beautiful starry sky I’ve ever seen.

“The sky is trying to speak to us” I said.

My little cabin the woods

My little cabin the woods

It’s hard to describe what followed after. It is said that even if ten persons watch the Aurora Borealis at the same place at the same time, you will end up with ten different stories of what unfolded before their eyes.

For me, it was a spiritual journey as the white ray of light began to slowly move from one side of the horizon to the other. Then, as it got faster, it began to change colors from pale white to a vibrant shade of green. It was the voice of Mother Nature and I had a front row seat to listen to Her words.

Those green lights from heaven…the Aurora Borealis.

The green lights from heaven, Aurora Borealis

The green lights from heaven, Aurora Borealis

There are many things that happened during those three magical days at my little cabin in the woods. Some of those experiences will be shared in future articles while others will remain as special memories locked within my mind.

Life and death: Isn’t it funny? In the end…there is no end. Nothing truly ends, not really, no. And that’s what makes every journey so especial.

As I watched the sunrise in the snowy hills of Lapland I finally understood the message that Mother Nature told to me that night:

Live. Enjoy. And never look back.

Sunrise in Lapland

Sunrise in Lapland

January 24th, 2015|Categories: Europe Travel|Tags: |
Raphael Alexander is a Nomadic Digital Marketer and Travel Influencer who overcame the chains of the local economy and found a way to achieve his dream of having a professional life while traveling the world non-stop. His goal in life is to inspire the people of the world to unleash their full inner potential. A perfect day for him includes exotic animals, ancient pyramids, breath-taking waterfalls and tasty tacos. Lots of tacos.


  1. Aileen January 24, 2015 at 4:48 pm - Reply

    OMG that is amazing, Raphael!! I have not seen the aurora borealis myself and we have yet to go up north to see this; nevertheless, your photos are already making me excited for this!

    And oh that was a very interesting dream that you had. Must be the effect of such an epic adventure and experience in here.

    • Raphael Alexander Zoren January 30, 2015 at 12:38 am - Reply

      Yes, if you’re in Europe at the moment I definitely recommend you to visit north Finland in order to see them, they’re truly spectacular!!!

  2. Lauren January 24, 2015 at 10:07 pm - Reply

    Amazing. I’m fortunate enough to have witnessed the beauty of the Northern Lights, and that was over 10 years ago…I’m still obsessed with perhaps seeing them again someday. They’re brilliant!

    • Raphael Alexander Zoren January 30, 2015 at 12:39 am - Reply

      They’re truly awesome, I think they’re quite common in some parts of North Canada as well!

  3. Mary January 25, 2015 at 1:07 am - Reply

    I am blown away by the quality of those shots! What a wonderful experience that came at just the right time. Doesn’t that always happen?! I have yet to see these myself but it is very high on my list of things to see in the next couple years!

  4. Sky January 25, 2015 at 8:45 am - Reply

    What an incredible experience. Did you planning on seeing the lights while you were there? This sounds like it was exactly what you needed in the moment and I’m happy you were able to be there. The photos you took are incredible.

  5. Alli January 25, 2015 at 9:29 am - Reply

    This sounds and looks incredible, Raphael! That dream you had was intense! But with good reason . . . you had this awaiting you. Your winter cabin looks so remote and quiet – the perfect spot to view such an incredible sight!

  6. Yvonne January 25, 2015 at 3:56 pm - Reply

    You are such a talented photographer, I hope I can learn to be as good as you one day!

  7. Brianna January 25, 2015 at 6:03 pm - Reply

    The lights looks beautiful in pictures but I’m sure they’re just amazing in person.

  8. Meg Jerrard January 25, 2015 at 7:34 pm - Reply

    Beautiful photos! I would love to see the Aurora Borealis! Northern lights are incredibly high on my list!

  9. Sammi Wanderlustin' January 26, 2015 at 5:03 pm - Reply

    I’m so lucky to have seen the Lights as many times as I have. In Karesuando they were out all the time- the earliest we saw them was 3pm! We had maybe 5 days in the middle where it snowed and we didn’t see them at all, but most days it was pretty spectacular. I don’t think I’ll ever not be fascinated by them!

  10. Chris Wotton January 26, 2015 at 8:43 pm - Reply

    Wow – such incredible photos! I want to go right now.

  11. Fabiana January 27, 2015 at 6:48 pm - Reply

    That place looks awesome! I could spend weeks over there.

  12. Janine January 29, 2015 at 5:56 am - Reply

    Great pictures! I attempted to see the Aurora Borealis twice in Iceland, but didn’t witness nearly anything as beautiful as that photo. Someday I will make it back for a proper viewing.

  13. Cyn Hughes February 2, 2015 at 1:26 pm - Reply

    Bliss! That’s it, seeing the Northern Lights just go moved into position #1 on my bucket list. Just magical.

  14. Fine Art Aurora Borealis Prints March 31, 2015 at 4:49 pm - Reply

    Great job with the pics! I went to Iceland last Feb 2014 and witnessed the spectacular display of the northern lights. It was really a worthwhile experience and I want to share with you all. Here is the link of all the pics I have taken during the trip: http://www.darkeclipse.com/nightscape/northern-lights/the-shield-and-the-sword/

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