Northern Lights holiday, Finnish Lapland

Countries:
Finland, Lapland
Price:
From £595 - £710 (4 days) excluding flights
Prices exclude flights to Ivalo (budget between £275 - 500pp). The price includes 3 nights half board accommodation, dog-sledding, snow-shoeing and airport transfers. We can arrange additional activities according to our weekly programme. Please get in touch with us about tailor made Northern Lights holidays.
Vouchers: accepted
Dates:
Daily departures between September and April
Reviews:
3 reviews4 star rating
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Northern Lights holiday, Finnish Lapland

Responsible travel: Northern Lights holiday, Finnish Lapland

Environment

The hotel is dedicated to sourcing its menu ingredients locally and promoting this to their clients. Fish comes directly from Lake Inari which has sustained the local Inarisami population for centuries. Mushrooms and berries also feature highly on the menu and are picked locally. The reindeer meat comes from a family which has been herding their reindeer in the nearby mountains for generations. Their farm is located 14km from Inari. The meat is processed on the farm and delivered to the hotel.

The dogs and reindeer are reared in local farms or by local herders and we ensure that they are given the appropriate care and living conditions according to the standards set by government and agencies such as the Reindeer Herders' Association of Finland. All our guests are invited to find out more about the animals and to show respect when they are around them. Reindeer herding in particular is a nature friendly way to rear animals for meat and for tourism due to the fact that they roam on the landscapes and are not such a heavy drain on natural resources as modern agriculture.

Our activity provider in Inari ensures that all activities such as snow shoeing, skiing and husky dog sledding have minimum environmental impact. The use of motorised vehicles is kept to a minimum and when necessary a low fuel consuming snow mobile is used in the winter. Here we believe that snow mobiles offer a more efficient means of transport than sports utility vehicles, and they are very much a part of the local life in Inari.

Guides are trained in order to maintain biodiversity particularly around Lake Inari which has a fragile ecosystem. We also ensure that guests respect the islands of Lake Inari not only for their environmental significance but for their historical and cultural significance too. For example “Ukko” Island is an ancient sacrificial site of the Inari Sámi which means that visitors should respect this and keep to the allotted path.

Community

This holiday is embedded in the local community in the village of Inari. You’ll not only be supporting a family-run hotel but you’ll also learn about the local Sami people through visiting the museum and participating in local activities. We always offer our guests insight into the local culture and language which helps them to get to know the place and people whilst in the destination.

These initiatives help to support and protect the Sami heritage which has created long established traditions in the area. You’ll also find out about local crafts and products and have the opportunity to support local crafts people and find out more about their skills and history. The hotel and the guides are all based in the village and so our holidays support local employment.

The story of the provider of Northern Lights holiday, Finnish Lapland

Our trips have been inspired by personal experiences in some of the most beautiful places on Earth. I myself travelled to Norway for my honeymoon 5 years ago and fell in love with the country. On my return, I was introduced to one of the founders who also had a keen interest in Scandinavia and the Nordic countries. Preferring the outdoor life, he spent a gap year with a Norwegian school that encourages its students to have a close connection with nature in the belief it enriches their lives. We decided that this ethos should form the base of our travel company and should be the inspiration for our tours. Our Nordic-inspired adventures draw upon the Norwegian philosophy of ‘Friluftsliv’, or ‘Free-air life’ – the importance of being in remote places and enjoying simple things together. We opened our doors in 2010 so others can also enjoy active days and comfortable nights in among the seas, mountains, fjords, and forests of Northern Europe and Scandinavia.

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Northern Lights holiday, Finnish Lapland

You can trust responsibletravel.com reviews because, unlike many other schemes, reviews can ONLY be written by people who we have verified have been on the holidays. In addition, we don't run these holidays ourselves - our only interest is giving you the best independent advice.


5 stars
I am reborn! Simply the best holiday I have ever been on
4 stars
Some great stories to tell the grandchildren. Would recommend to a friend
3 stars
Very enjoyable
2 stars
It was OK
1 star
A bit disappointing really

Reviewed 11 Jan 2014 by Hannah Smith4 star rating

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


A really hard question - so many to choose from! The exhilaration of being pulled along at speed by an excitable team of huskies, the strange tempo and amazing array of dusky colours of days when the sun doesn't rise, the crunching and flumping of deep snow in on a forest snowshoe trip, celebrating New Year in the middle of a frozen lake... it was 4 days of extraordinary memories.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Layers! Take plenty of options. It was warmer than we'd anticipated - but we also found huge differences between how to dress for 'active' activities eg cross country skiing and more 'static' ones like snowmobiling and the trip out on the sleigh. Particular wins were merino glove liners (especially if you plan to take photos) and a balaclava or snood that can be pulled up over your nose and mouth. Would also recommend taking slippers/Crocs for around the hotel.

All the activities were outstanding, but it's also worth knowing you can hire cross country skis, snowshoes etc locally. Really good value and excellent fun.

Finally, don't underestimate the strangeness of days when the sun doesn't rise - it took us a bit by surprise how much it affected our body clocks. Be prepared to alter the pattern of your days with afternoon sleeps to feed night-time aurora hunting forays...

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes. The hotel was locally owned, as were the small operations that arrange the activities. Great locally sourced food too - lots of fish, berries...and reindeer! Loved discovering the Sami culture at the incredible museum and through conversations with local people - it's a fascinating way of life that's all about leaving seasonally and sustainably.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Really fantastic. Extremely memorable and has really whetted my appetite to explore more of this fascinating region - both at this time of year, and in summertime too.

Reviewed 09 Apr 2013 by Inge David4 star rating

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


First of all, seeing all that glorious pristine white and beautiful snow. We have not seen snow in many a year.
The most exciting activity was driving a snowmobile across the lake.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Beginning April is a glorious time; the days are already longer, the sun is strong and warm, but at the same time the ice is frozen solid and there is plenty of snow in which to play.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


I would certainly hope so; one is careful not to litter, not to waste and to enjoy going back to basics.


4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


In one word: FANTASTIC
We were able to engage in such delightful winter activities which we had never done before. Weather was perfect, everyone at the hotel just as pleasant and accommodating as could be, food VERY good and special meals were prepared for me as I am a vegetarian. I would like nothing better than to go back for another visit.

Reviewed 26 Feb 2011 by Daniele Bourdais4 star rating

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Being propulsed to a different world for the space of 3 days!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


To cope with the cold, the advice we got there from local people: dress with
wool - forget synthetic material !

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


Yes, we went to a family-owned traditional hotel and bought local crafts - with
minimal impact on the environment

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


A great great experience - but 3 days was little too short, 2 more days would
have been great (you need a day to acclimatise to the cold!)
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