The Christmas issue

Our December issue is out now, featuring Paul Carmichael's recipes for a Caribbean Christmas, silly season cocktails and more.

Subscribe to Gourmet

Subscribe to Australian Gourmet Traveller before 28th December, 2016 for your chance to win a share of $50,000!

Gourmet digital

Subscribe to Gourmet Traveller for your iPad or Android tablet.

Top 35 recipes of 2016

2016 was all about slow-roasting, fresh pasta and comfort food. These are the recipes you clicked on most this year, counting back to number one.

Christmas vegetarian recipes

The versatility of vegetarian dishes means they can be served alongside meat and seafood, or enjoyed simply as they are. With Christmas just around the corner, we’ve put together some of our favourite vegetarian recipes to appease both herbivores and carnivores alike.

Best travel destinations in 2017

We're thinking big for travelling in 2017 - and so should you. Will we see you sunrise at Java's 9th-century Borobudur Buddhist temple, across the table at Reykjavik's newest restaurants or swimming side-by-side with humpback whales off Western Australia's coast?

Decadent chocolate dessert recipes for Christmas

13 of our most decadent chocolate recipes to indulge guests with this Christmas.

Chilled recipes for summer

When the mercury is rising, step away from the oven. These recipes are either raw, chilled or frozen and will cool you down in a snap.

What the GT team is cooking on Christmas Day

We don't do things by halves in the Gourmet office. These are the recipes we'll be cooking on the big day.

Summer feta recipes

Whether in a fresh salad or seasonal seafood dish, feta's creamy tang can be used to add interest to a variety of summer dishes.

Christmas ham recipes

The centrepiece of any Christmas feast, hams can be glazed with many ingredients. Here are our favourite combinations.

Eyes to the Sky: Canada's Northern Lights

It’s often called Mother Nature’s light show; a natural phenomenon that lights up the night sky with spectacular colours.

The Northern Lights can be seen from Newfoundland to Nunavut, and from the heart of Yukon to the farthest northern reaches of Québec.

 

Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, seems magical, like something conjured up by playful fairies waving sparkling wands in the night. The scientific explanation for the unforgettable light show, however, is electrons and protons colliding with gases as far up as 500 kilometres above the Earth's surface creating flashes of colourful light that span the spectrum from green to blue to purple and yellow. Billions of flashes can occur in rapid succession, and so it seems the lights are dancing across the sky.

 

Best seen in the far northern hemisphere, Aurora-spotting is a great excuse to plan a trip to Canada since northern parts of the vast country have the highest probability of seeing the lights. Experienced tour operators in Yukon's Whitehorse and Yellowknife in the Northwest Territories even boast a 90 per cent light-peeping success rate.

 

Prime Aurora season coincides with the winter months - experts say the best time to visit is from late-September to late-March - and the cooler weather opens the door to unforgettable experiences. Rug up and enjoy the lights in the great outdoors: fly-fishing under the starry sky in far northern Québec is certainly worth writing home about. Or let the Aurora light your way on a cross-country ski adventure in Yukon. You need darkness to see the lights, and here, miles from the nearest big city, you'll find it.

 

The Northern Lights can shine so bright, they have lit the way for dog-sledders and snowmobilers in remote northern regions of Canada for generations. For many indigenous Inuit, the connection to the Aurora is spiritual and profound. They believe that if you listen carefully, the lights sing to you, a song as old as time. Listen with them in silence in Nunavut and you'll walk away with a new appreciation for the mysteries of nature.

 

If you crave creature comforts with your adventure, cosy up in a charming lodge in the Northwest Territories and light-peep through the windows, or stare up at the sky, whiskey in hand, from the warmth of an outdoor hot tub.

 

While the temptation will be great to snap a million pictures, the fast-moving and often quite subtle Northern Lights demand your full attention. But if you're serious about taking photos, professional photographers recommend an SLR camera, good-quality film and a slow shutter speed. A tripod is a good idea.

 

Mother Nature being an unpredictable dame, it's not easy to know in advance when the lights will be at their best and brightest. Give yourself at least a few days on the ground in northern Canada and keep an eye on auroraforecast.com and aurorawatch.ca for up-to-the-minute tracking of the lights' progress.

 

Accommodation options range from Yukon wilderness cabins near Whitehorse, such as Sundog Retreat, to upscale lodges such as Inn on the Lake, which has featured in Martha Stewart Living magazine. The cabins at Tagish Wilderness Lodge in Yukon are accessible only by boat, floatplane, skiplane or dog-sled, and at luxury Yellowknife eco-lodge, Blachford Lake Lodge, a true wilderness immersion experience awaits.

 

 

Presented by Destination Canada.

GT
Signature Collection

Find out more about the Gourmet Traveller Signature Collection by Robert Gordon Australia, including where to buy it in store and online.

Read More
The GT x STILY
Christmas Boutique is now open

The smallgoods, homewares, art and more from the pages of GT are now all under one roof, ready to take their place under the tree.

Read More
Gourmet TV

Check out our YouTube channel for our latest cover recipes, chef cooking demos, interviews and more.

Watch Now

You might also like...

Best of Italy

Rome, Florence, Naples, the Amalfi... the list of our favour...

Best New Hotels 2009 slideshow

We’ve got the keys to the most fabulous new hotels in the wo...

Burgundy, France: Top soil

“Water can rust iron. Imagine what it does to your insides. ...

Bali's new high

It’s no secret that recent times have been tough for Austral...

New South Wales South Coast

Unsung hero Flashier holiday spots may steal the limelight, ...

Gourmet Barcelona

From the city's best sandwich bar to its favourite charcuter...

Greece's Mani peninsula

Greece’s rugged and bloody Mani peninsula was once a no-go z...

Venice in pictures

Read our story on what to do if you only have 24 hours in Ve...

Great Brittany gallery

Take a walk on the wild side. Follow Brittany’s windswept co...

South African safari lodges gallery

Travelling from the Great Karoo to the Kruger, Emma Ventura ...

Iceland photo gallery

Erase the images of that volcano with the unpronounceable na...

Happy holidays

They’re following the sun and chasing the snow, staying clos...

Kyneton and Castlemaine

Kyneton and Castlemaine were born out of the gold-rush era, ...

Insider's guide to Manly

Breath of fresh air The classic Sydney beachside neighbourho...

The best of New Zealand

Choosing from the bounty of New Zealand's holiday destinati...

get the latest news

Sign up to receive the latest food, travel and dining news direct from Gourmet Traveller headquarters.

×