In pictures: Aurora Borealis captured over Edinburgh

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NATURE’S jaw-dropping beauty was plain for all to see as the Aurora Borealis burst into life in the skies over Edinburgh overnight.

Up and down the country, photographers and vloggers rushed to their nearest lofty vantage points in a bid to capture the rare occurrence.

In Edinburgh, the Aurora appeared at its peak intensity between the hours of 00:30 and 01:30 on Friday morning.

READ MORE: 18 amazing images of the Northern Lights over Scotland

One incredible image, shared by @baralos1973 on Twitter, shows the natural phenomenon over the three Forth bridges - a fitting way to herald the opening of the new Queensferry Crossing.

Meanwhile, popular YouTube vlogger, Shaun Alexander, managed to capture the Northern Lights on film as the green glow danced above Arthur’s Seat.

Northern Lights over the three Forth bridges. Picture: Paul Baralos @baralos1973

Northern Lights over the three Forth bridges. Picture: Paul Baralos @baralos1973

READ MORE: Could the Northern Lights vanish from Scotland’s skies

The Aurora Borealis occurs when high-energy electrically charged particles from the sun collide with neutral atoms in the earth’s atmosphere and the magnetic poles of the northern and southern hemispheres. Friday morning’s occurrence over the United Kingdom was the result of a large solar flare which erupted two days ago.

The lights are rarely visible along the Central Belt of Scotland due to geography and cloud cover, making last night’s appearance particularly special.

Aurora viewed from Marine Drive, Davidson's Mains. Picture: Copyright Alan O'Donnell

Aurora viewed from Marine Drive, Davidson's Mains. Picture: Copyright Alan O'Donnell

Picture: @theweird1ne/Twitter

Picture: @theweird1ne/Twitter

Aurora over Arthur's Seat. Picture: Shaun Alexander/YouTube

Aurora over Arthur's Seat. Picture: Shaun Alexander/YouTube

Picture: Peter Baird @peterbaird5

Picture: Peter Baird @peterbaird5

Picture: Michael Boyd

Picture: Michael Boyd

Picture: Jean-Loup Rebours-Smith

Picture: Jean-Loup Rebours-Smith

Picture: Gavin Roberts @gavinroberts84

Picture: Gavin Roberts @gavinroberts84