The seven-night Aurora Hunter holiday is the perfect break on which to become familiar with and appreciate the culture of Lapland and its people. Having departed from your local airport in the UK, you will fly to Kiruna in Sweden and begin the two-hour journey through the spectacular Arctic landscapes to Karesuando, the village on the Finnish/Swedish border (some flights arrive into Tromso, Norway, from which there is a longer transfer). After checking-in at your chosen hotel or log cabins, you will be kitted out with your thermal suits and boots (yours for the week) and given an itinerary of the activities which are included in your holiday. Since some activities are subject to local conditions (such as snowmobiling), we don’t issue a full itinerary beforehand, but you will receive it on arrival. A list of the activities and excursions included in your holiday can be found below.
Situated some 270km from the most northern point of the Northern Lights Route, Karesuando is a small village of just a hundred people straddling the border between Finland and Sweden. A river (completely frozen during the winter months) runs through the centre of the village, effectively forming the border between the two countries. From here, you can get a full sense of being in the Arctic wilderness, as the plains of snow stretch out for as far as the eye can see. This is an ideal place to come to see the Northern Lights, since there is no light pollution from any nearby city to impair the intensity of the Aurora. Of course, we can never guarantee that the Lights will make an appearance, but the activities included in this holiday will ensure you have a great, memorable time anyway: snowmobiling, mushing husky sleds, reindeer sleigh rides…and more!
Click on the hotels below to see more about the accommodation which is available on this tour. We have selected small and cosy hotels to offer – appropriate for the winter location. All accommodation is on a full-board basis, including breakfast, lunch and a hearty dinner.
The Arctic Star Hotel is based on the Swedish side of Karesuando and is a modern friendly hotel of 25 rooms. A 20-minute walk from the Finnish border, the location feels genuinely remote and offers superb views over both a lake and Muonio River. A good location from which to explore Karesuando by foot, Sweden's most northerly church and the local museum are just a short walk away. The hotel boasts a good range of facilities, including a bar and restaurant which offers hearty local dishes. Our holidays are on a full-board basis and meals are buffet style. Rooms are relatively simple and cosy and there are three standards to choose from:
The standard rooms are basic but comfortable and provide everything you need for a stay in the Arctic and a good night’s sleep. Rooms are doubles or twins and can sleep 2-3.
These twin and double rooms enjoy a view from the front of the hotel towards Kaarevaara Hill and the nearby lake. The en-suite rooms have recently been refurbished.
The premium rooms have recently been refurbished in the summer of 2012. These double rooms feature underfloor heating, glass panels between the rain shower room and the bedroom, and feature mirrors.
The Davvi Arctic Lodge is situated on the Finnish side of Karesuando, and is set onto the hillside overlooking the rest of the village. From the restaurant, you can enjoy the panoramic views of the Arctic. The Davvi (meaning ‘north’ in the Sami language) is small and cosy, with a circular Sami lounge in which to relax after an action-packed day in the snow. There are twenty-five rooms in the hotel, each simply furnished. In the grounds of the hotel there are a number of tradition log cabins, each featuring their own sauna. The hotel runs on a full-board basis, and meals are buffet style.
The hotel rooms are simply furnished but include everything you need for a good night’s sleep. There are double and twin rooms sleeping two and three as well as larger family rooms.
The log cabins are built in the traditional Finnish style and are more spacious than the hotel rooms. Most cabins are semi-detached and are just a matter metres away from the main building where meals are taken. They also include a private sauna.
The Fell House
The Fell House is located approximately 150m from the main hotel building and is ideal for families or friends wanting to share. Two-bedroom family rooms sleep 3-4 people, and the three-bedroom rooms accommodate 5-6.
Drive your snowmobile down a wide open frozen river, over the peaks of the Arctic tundra, and through woodland, bowing under the weight of the snow. This two-hour evening safari may be made even more special should the Aurora make an appearance overhead. Two adults share a snowmobile.
Feel the adrenaline pulse as you are pulled by your very own team of eager huskies through the deep Lapland snow. Take in the amazing snow scenes as you mush your team of dogs through the postcard-picture landscapes. Two adults share a sled. Includes hot drink.
Try your hand at lassoing and herding reindeer during this excursion to a nearby reindeer camp. Reindeer remain integral to the local economy and this tour includes a talk from a local Sami who will introduce you to their cluture and way of life. Includes reindeer sleigh ride.
Catching the Northern Lights is a highlight of most people’s visit to Lapland. This easy trek through the woodland of Karesuando will take you to a vantage point overlooking the spectacular panorama of the Arctic, high above the snow-capped forest below. Includes hot drink.
This guided snowshoe activity is a fun way to view the spectacular scenery. Often described by visitors as ‘like walking with tennis racquets on your feet’, snowshoeing is an age-old means of traversing the Arctic terrain. After the introduction, snowshoe hire is available.
The small Sami museum at Hetta provides a fascinating insight into the culture and traditions of the indigenous Sami people, who have lived on these lands for centuries. The snow castle, reconstructed every year, features a number of rooms with ornate carvings.
Situated on the Swedish side of the village, the trip includes a brief tour of this traditional knife factory and an opportunity to explore the importance of knives in everyday Sami life.
Return flights; transfers; 7 nights' full-board accommodation in Lapland; loan of thermal suit and boots; snowmobile safari; husky safari; forest trek; reindeer camp; snowshoe introduction; Sami museum and snow castle visit; knife factory visit.
Call 01865 567 243 to check availability.
Single supplements apply. Bookings are subject to terms and conditions. Flight on 11 January returns from Tromso (TOS); flight on 18 January arrives into Tromso (TOS)