Icelandair to Offer Onboard Aurora Borealis

The airline’s newest 757 promises to let you see the Northern Lights from an aisle seat.

Long plane rides are terrible. This is a fact, not conjecture. However, Icelandair has the chutzpah to believe they needn’t be, and has even come up with a highly creative, highly Icelandic solution. Recently the Nordic airliner commissioned the world’s first Aurora Borealis-themed plane, enlisting local artists to paint the exterior with luminescent color, and outfitting the interior with mood lighting to mimic the Northern Lights. Named Hekla Aurora (a reference to one of Iceland’s most popular names, also the name of an active volcano in the country), the vibrant-hued Boeing 757 airplane is the newest addition to Iceland’s ongoing #MyStopover campaign. An inventive tourism initiative to encourage travel to Iceland, the airline is promoting seven-day layovers, free of charge, to those flying between Europe and North America.

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The in-flight Aurora Borealis is provided by way of a pre-programmed LED light system, set to flicker and dim in realistic patterns. A Wi-Fi connection on board also allows passengers to upload pictures of their time in “Iceland” on social media. The real Aurora Borealis, one of Iceland’s most famous natural wonders, is unfortunately only visible mid- September to mid-April.

Below, check out the making of Hekla: