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Bear watching short break in Finland

Price:
From £999 - £1029 (4 days) including UK flights
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From £599 excluding flights. Mimimum age 16.
Vouchers: accepted
Dates:
2016: 22 Jul, 12 Aug, 9 Sep
Availability:
Check availability on all dates
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Bear watching short break in Finland


Description from the holiday company

Hello. If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. Rosy & team.

Bear watching short break in Finland: the story of this holiday company

This tour operator was the first to get access to China over 30 years ago and the first to take a truck to Everest Base Camp on the Tibetan side. They have since expanded into 91 countries. Their product is driven by their clients because they listen to feedback and have to constantly evolve to provide a greater experience and better value. The exclusive centres they use have been grown organically and are often owned by ex-leaders. The holidays remain innovative, though you will now be travelling in a Mercedes 16-seater sprinter coach rather than a rusty old Bedford overland truck.

Responsible tourism: Bear watching short break in Finland

Environment

Activity:
As we are largely wildlife watching, walking in the forests, taking photographs and maybe canoeing or fishing, we have a pretty low impact on the pristine Finnish environment. One night is spent in a bear hide located near the Russian-Finnish border and the rules are very strict here, which exemplifies our prioritisation of the safety and comfort of the wildlife in the area. We allow no mosquito repellent, perfume, smoking or loud noises- including camera sounds. As your guide will explain to you, this is all to ensure that the bears and wolves etc. are not disturbed by us.

Conservation:
We have worked with The Finnish Association for Nature Conservation (FANC), which is the largest non-governmental organization for environmental protection and nature conservation in Finland. FANC run an initiative which helps distribute information about wolves and their behaviour so that citizens and wolves can co-exist more peacefully. We contribute funds to this and also allow the association to sell our photograph prints in order to raise funds.

UK Office:
It all starts at home so we have first worked at reducing our carbon footprint in our UK Offices. Through energy conservation measures and recycling policies, we are proud to be actively reducing the waste produced and our impact on the environment. We support various projects all over the world to try and give something back to the places we visit.

Community

Accommodation and Meals:
We stay in a traditional, rural lodge- ‘Basecamp Kuikka’- which is ideally located on the shores of Lake Kuikka. The log house is run by wildlife photographer Lassi Rautianen and his family, who make it an extremely welcoming atmosphere and often host lectures in the evening on a number of wildlife topics. By using fairly small, locally run accommodation, we are providing financial benefit to the community and ensuring that investment remains in the area. This is of particular importance as the location is quite remote. Food is locally sourced as much as possible and you can look forward to hearty and traditional fare, like homemade meatballs.

Group Size:
This small group tour has a maximum of 16 participants, meaning that we have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run hotels that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.

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Bear watching short break in Finland

You can trust Responsible Travel 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
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Date
Prices (Adult,pp)
Basis
Status
 
22 Jul 2016
£1029
including UK flights
Available
Click here to enquire about or book the 22 Jul 2016 departure
12 Aug 2016
£1029
including UK flights
Available
Click here to enquire about or book the 12 Aug 2016 departure
09 Sep 2016
£999
including UK flights
Available
Click here to enquire about or book the 09 Sep 2016 departure

Small group holidays

Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modelled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, travelling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. If you’re heading off on a gap year your, perhaps – but for those with a two-week holiday, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.

The leaders are not guides – they’re not there to shepherd you around. Instead, they’ll let you know which local restaurant serves great value food – without running the risk of travellers’ tummy. They’ll allow you to avoid hour-long queues at train stations and attractions.

We like to think of small group travel as the Goldilocks option. It is independent travel without the fuss, worry and bunk beds – and organised travel without the coaches. And it’s cheaper than a tailor made tour. It’s sits somewhere in the middle – and we think it’s just about right.

Group on holiday

What are the main benefits?
Big experiences
Have big, life-enriching experiences that would be impossible to organise without lots of time and insider knowledge.

Simplicity
Make the most of your holiday time by letting someone else do the hard work and boring logistics!

Peace of mind
Small group tours take care of the security aspects – and provide a safety net should anything unexpected happen.
Who is it ideal for?
Travellers who are short of time
If you don’t have three months to spend exploring, small groups trips let you cover more ground in less time. Your days are not spent queuing for tickets or finding hotels – so you can squeeze more into your holiday.

Solo travellers who’d like company
Likeminded travel companions plus peace of mind for those travelling alone. Single supplements are usually available – providing privacy if you want it.

Less confident travellers
Stray from the tourist trail without worrying about getting lost, and meet local people without dealing with the language barrier.
Mythbuster
“I won’t get any privacy!”
Couples and friends have private rooms, and you can choose to eat alone or not. Single supplements give solo travellers their own room.

“There won’t be any free time”
Free mornings or afternoons let you explore on your own, or just relax.

“The accommodation will be basic”
Trips are as high or low end as you like. Though off the beaten track destinations won’t have luxury hotels, this is all part of the adventure.

“I won’t like the other travellers!”
Tour operators try to create groups with a similar demographic – age, families, activity levels... Chances are, you’ll even make new friends.

“Will we be following an umbrella?”
No.
Valerie Parkinson
Meet a group Leader
Name: Valerie Parkinson

Story: The first British woman to climb Manaslu, Valerie climbed Everest for her 50th birthday. She’s spent fourteen Christmas Days trekking to Everest Base Camp, and is involved insetting up Responsible Tourism initiatives in the Himalayas.
Roshan Fernando
Meet a local guide
Name: Roshan Fernando

Story: Roshan has led over 130 trips – he adores showing travellers around Sri Lanka. He won the company Leader Award in 2010, but his career highlight was working on their Tsunami Project – which earned him a responsible tourism award.
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