A raging solar storm has given way to a glorious array of lights in the skies above the lower South Island.

Images of yesterday's solar phenomenon, the Aurora Australis, showed gentle hues of pink, yellow and blue lighting up the sky in areas of the south below Christchurch.

Astronomer Ian Griffin said the solar storm was now fading, but hopeful residents could try their luck again tonight.

"If sky is clear, go out over sunset and look to the south, where the aurora originates from."

Advertisement

He said the storm had begun just after dawn New Zealand time yesterday.

"It was raging, so there were some lovely pictures in Scotland during our day."

Mr Griffin said New Zealand's turn for the aerial display came just after sunset.

He's tweeted a series of images from his expedition to catch a glimpse of it in his hometown of Dunedin.