Video captures whales swimming beneath spectacular Northern Lights display

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Seeing humpback whales up close in their natural habitat is always breathtaking, but as a video taken in Norway this week shows, seeing them under the brilliant glow of the northern lights takes things to a whole new level.

Photographer Harald Albrigtsen, who is known for his photos of the northern lights, was taking pictures off the coast of Whale Island on Monday when he saw the humpbacks surfacing. He took some videos of the event, and when he returned the next evening, so did the whales. The resulting footage looks like something out of a dream. The green sky hangs, otherworldly, over the group of whales, who can be heard exhaling powerfully as they breach the surface of the water. To see such a scene in person would be a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

“It was a very good feeling to see that I had managed to catch whales under the northern lights two days in a row,” Albrigsten told NRK. “I did not even know if everything was in focus.”

Fortunately, Albrigsten’s new Sony A7 Camera, which is designed to work well even in very low-lit conditions, was up to the task. The whales are clearly visible at the water’s surface, and the lights are incredibly bright.

The dream-like scene stacks one natural wonder upon another, and it’s the promise of such beauty that drives Norway’s tourism industry. As other of Albrigsten’s photos show, such beautiful lights aren’t rare in the northern country, and seeing such a display in person might just be worth a trip.