7 Days / 6 Nights
Begin Your Adventures In Kirkenes And Prepare For The Amazing Experience Of The King Crab Safari. The Adventure Continues On Towards Lapland, The Homeland Of The Indigenous Sami People. Sleep Under The Northern Lights In A Glass Igloo, Go On A Reindeer Sleigh Ride And Take A Swim In The Frozen Sea If You Dare. Santa Claus Village Will Restore Your Childhood Faith In The Magic Of The Holidays.
Day 1 - Monday - Arrival - Kirkenes
Arrival to Kirkenes Airport and regular transfer to the hotel for check-in. This north eastern town lies a mere 15 km from the Russian border. The area offers a world of experiences for the adventurous traveler wanting to experience mountains, fjords, forests, lakes and the beautiful dancing northern lights. Approximately 10% of the population are Russians and you will find street signs in both Russian and Norwegian. Please consult the Via Hansa & Borealis welcome letter, which you will receive upon check-in to your hotel, and kindly note where and when to meet your Tour Director. The rest of the day is at leisure. Overnight at Thon Hotel Kirkenes.
Day 2 - Tuesday - Kirkenes - Saariselka (260 Km) (BL)
Breakfast at the hotel. Check out at 08.30 and meet at the lobby at 08.45 for departure at 09.00 for the amazing experience of the “KING CRAB SAFARI”. Directly after the King Crab Safari you continue by coach towards Saariselka. Depart Kirkenes travelling south through the northern Lapland landscape to the centre of Sami world at Inari, the capital of Lapland. Here we visit the Sajos Sami Cultural Centre and parliament set in the heart of Sapmi in a unique natural landscape on the shore of Lake Inari, serving as a centre for Sami self-governance, culture, education and know-how. Modern conference premises, facilities and technology go hand in hand with authentic, living Sami culture. After the visit we continue onto the tiny village of Saariselka, the centre of Finland’s winter sports. Check-in to the hotel and the evening is at leisure. Overnight at Santa´s Tunturi Hotel.
King Crab Safari: One of the highlights of Northern Norway with the chance to taste one of the local delicacies known worldwide. Heading out on the Kirkenes Fjord you will come face to face with this giant of the sea on the King Crab safari. The red king crab found in the Barents Sea can reach up to two meters from claw to claw and weigh up to 15 kilos. Depending on the weather and ice the trip might be by boat or snowmobile drawn sleigh. Once your king crab has been caught, you are transferred to a remote cabin where the crab will be prepared for a delicious lunch. All equipment and clothing will be provided.
Day 3 -Wednesday - Saariselka - Sinetta (280 Km) (BLD)
In the morning after breakfast, the adventure continues as you make your way to Sinetta, located in the outskirts of Rovaniemi. Along the way, you will experience one of the highlights of the tour. Overnight at Arctic Snow Hotel & Glass Igloo.
Sami Reindeer Farm Visit & Sleigh Ride: Meet the traditional Sami farmers who will tell you about the reindeer, the Sami and teach you how to throw Suopunki (Sami lasso). Sitting in a two-person sleigh, pulled by your reindeer, you will experience a short ride in this traditional and peaceful way of moving through the white landscape where the only sound you will hear is the melody of reindeer bells. A typical three course lunch is included at the farm.
Overnight In A Glass Igloo
The journey continues south to Sinetta following the winding roads through the snowy forest and arriving at the unique Arctic Snow Hotel, where you will check-in to your private Glass Igloo. Enjoy the warmth of your Glass Igloo and weather permitting you will have the opportunity to marvel at the amazing Northern Lights (Aurora Boreal) and the millions of stars from the comforts of your bed. In the evening, you are invited for a traditional Lappish three course dinner in a magnificent wooden “Kota” where fresh salmon is slowly grilled over the fire on a huge fire pit in the center.
Day 4 - Thursday - Sinetta - Santa Claus Village - Rovaniemi (BOP)
Breakfast at the hotel and depart late in the morning for the next step on the winter adventure. Heading towards Rovaniemi, you stop on the banks of the Kemi-joki river to enjoy one of the most idyllic Husky Safaris of the region. Overnight at Santa’s Hotel Santa Claus.
Husky Farm & Safari: The barking of enthusiastic dogs will welcome you to the most genuine Husky farm in Rovaniemi. The head musher will talk about the life and training of these Arctic animals and you will also have the chance to take some great photos. After brief instructions you embark, riding in pairs, on a run through the forest behind your pack of huskies (3 km). After the ride there is time to visit the farm and enjoy a traditional outdoor lunch of Lappish sausage grilled on the campfire followed by Lappish pancakes & coffee. The day continues with a visit to the world-famous Santa Claus Village, built right on the Arctic Circle and home to Santa Claus. Stop by his busy post office where you can ask Santa to send a letter to your loved ones just before Christmas. Take a step into the magical world of Santa´s home and meet Santa himself. No words can describe the emotions of this fairy-tale-like moment. It is something you will always remember. An absolute must for any visit to Lapland. The rest of the afternoon and evening at leisure.
Day 5 - Friday - Rovaniemi - Kemi (Ice-Breaker Cruise) Rovaniemi (119 Km) (BL)
Breakfast at the hotel and meet up at 08:45 in the hotel. Time for a swim as you head to the town of Kemi for a full day of activities. First a visit to the Snow Castle* with its special snow slide. Enjoy the snow sculptures and complex. Later you will experience one of the highlights of your winter adventure as we board the Sampo Icebreaker and spend 4 hours on this unforgettable vessel breaking though the ice of the northern Gulf of Bothnia. Overnight at Santa’s Hotel Santa Claus.
Sampo Ice Breaker & Ice Swimming: This extraordinary experience includes a guided tour of the ship with its massive engine room, communications room and bridge, ice swimming and a three-course meal at the on-board restaurant. In the middle of the largest ice field in Europe, you have the opportunity to jump in the sea and float! You will of course be fitted with a warm survival suit and those of you who dare will receive a certificate by the ship authorities to attest your courage. An unforgettable experience. Return to Rovaniemi with early evening arrival at your hotel.
December 16th departure will include a visit to the Ranua Wildlife Park instead of Sampo Icebreaker cruise.
January 20th and 27th departures will go on a 3 hour cruise from 14:00-17:00. Lunch will be included onshore in the Seaview Restaurant immediately prior to the cruise.
Day 6 - Saturday - Rovaniemi - Departure (B)
Breakfast and the rest of your day at leisure until your regular transfer to Rovaniemi airport in good time for your departure flight.