Residents of Russia’s northwestern Leningrad region were fortunate to have a rare glimpse at the aurora borealis, the natural phenomenon also known as the northern lights.
The aurora could be seen in the parts of Lake Ladoga both on Monday and Tuesday night and was visible enough to be captured by local Instagrammers.
Resulting from a disturbance in the magnetosphere caused by solar wind, the northern lights are normally seen in the world’s high-latitude regions, including the Russian Arctic.
The natural wonder appears amid a particular set of natural conditions — clear dark skies in the new moon — but even if all the conditions are right, witnessing this mesmerizing sight of bright lights is left to mere chance.
This is the second time this year that residents of the Leningrad region and Russia’s northern capital St. Petersburg have witnessed the rare phenomenon.
Earlier this year, the northern lights were accompanied by another phenomenon called light pillars, with vertical beams of light that seem to pierce the sky.