24 JANUARY: ROVANIEMI
After arriving at Rovaniemi Airport you will be transferred to begin your magical escape. During the transfer you will make a quick detour to pick up the winter clothing you will be able to use for the duration of your stay in Rovaniemi. Then you will arrive at the Arctic Circle Lodge, home to Panorama Design Huts one of which you will be staying in tonight. The Arctic Circle Lodge is ideally situated just 20 minutes from the city centre and short 12 minute drive from Santa Clause Village. It is also close to the Raudanjoki River and surrounded by lush forests and fresh air ensuring you immediately get a taste of the natural beauty Finnish Lapland is known for. Tonight over dinner you will get a chance to meet up with the rest of the group and get to know everyone who you will be travelling with over the next few days.
Overnight: Rovaniemi (D)
25 JANUARY: ROVANIEMI
Rovaniemi is known far and wide as the home of Santa Clause as you will find out today. During the course of the morning you will be transferred to Santa Clause Village, the home of Santa and a place with an all-year Christmas shop and numerous other attractions. You will have 3 hours at leisure here during which you could grab lunch (not included). Thereafter you will be returned back to the Arctic Circle Lodge and have some more time at leisure. After dinner you need to make sure to dress up nice and warm because you will be heading out into wintery nature on electric snowmobiles. This is a relatively new way of experiencing Lappish nature which has the benefit that there are no loud engine sounds to disturb the serenity and distract, and of course it is green and sustainable. The excursion should last approximately 3 hours and if you are lucky might present an early opportunity to see the Northern Lights.
Overnight: Rovaniemi (BD)
26 JANUARY: ROVANIEMI – JUKKASJARVI
It is time to say goodbye to Rovaniemi today and in fact the country of Finland itself. You will board a coach that will take you North to Sweden, to the ICEHOTEL in Jukkasjärvi. The journey will last approximately 5 hours and some stops will be made along the way during one of which you could grab lunch (not included). You should arrive at the ICEHOTEL sometime during the afternoon. If staying at place called ICEHOTEL sounds daunting then there is no need to worry as the included accommodation is actually in one of the Kaamos rooms, a warm room in a normal building, but that does not mean you will not have the opportunity to admire this impressive ice structure that is uniquely rebuilt each year. And if you are instead feeling adventurous your stay could be upgraded to a night in one of the ice rooms for an additional supplement.
Overnight: Jukkasjärvi (BD)
27 JANUARY: JUKKASJARVI – NARVIK – TROMSØ
Today you will again switch countries, this time by train however and from Sweden to Norway. You will be transferred to the train station to board the local train which will take you to Narvik. The train journey will take approximately 3.5 hours but this is not just a simple way of getting from A to B, this is a special stretch of track nicknamed the “Arctic Route” because you will get to witness some dramatic and breath-takingly beautiful scenery during the trip. At Narvik you will have a little time at leisure to purchase yourself some food and drink before boarding a coach that will take you the final stretch of the way to Tromso where you should arrive mid-evening.
Overnight: Tromsø (BD)
28 JANUARY: TROMSØ
Daytime will be at your leisure to explore Tromsø. Your tour leader will point out some of the city’s top highlights and must-sees if you are unsure how to spend the day and there are also additional excursions one could pre-book. Tromso has undergone a huge change in the last 10 years and become a major tourist magnet, especially during winter times. The city is also known as the “Gateway to the Arctic” because it was once the last real bastion of civilisation for excursions into the Arctic north. The chief reason why Tromso has become such a tourist magnet in winter is because it is considered one of the best places to see the Aurora Borealis, the phenomenon known as the Northern Lights. Dinner tonight however will not be your typical hotel restaurant dinner; it will be something a bit more special. You will first travel out into the wilderness where you can walk among, and possibly feed, some reindeer and hear a little about Sami culture. Then you will move to a candlelit Gamme (a local cabin) to enjoy a relaxed three-course meal after which there will be signing and some more Sami history and stories. On a clear night this should prove to be an excellent opportunity to see the Northern Lights.
Overnight: Tromso (BD)
29 JANUARY: TROMSO
Daytime will again belong to you. If you think you might have run out of sites to explore then perhaps today would be the day to add in a husky safari or other excursion. Do not despair if you have not yet seen the Northern Lights because tonight will be all about finding an opportunity to see this majestic phenomenon. This will be a private 6 hour excursion that may prove to the highlight of your trip, especially with the extra twist of a Norwegian charm included.
Overnight: Tromso (BD)
30 JANUARY: TROMSO
After breakfast your hopefully magical tour of Lapland will have come to an end. You will be handed a ticket for the bus to the airport and your tour leader will bid you farewell and you make your own way to the airport. (B)