Magical christmas without Santa in Lapland

“A week of winter activities over the Christmas holiday for grown ups who still want all the magic of Lapland, in a landcape that looks just like a Christmas card. All wrapped up in Sami culture.”

Highlights

Menesjärvi village| Sami culture | Snowshoeing| Kick Sledding | Cross country skiing | Night time wilderness safaris | Sami reindeer farm | Winter fishing by snowmobile | Aurora kota dinner on Christmas Day | Husky safari | Sami Siida Museum | Northern Lights

Description of Magical christmas without Santa in Lapland

This magical Christmas holiday is in Finnish Lapland with all the seasonal excitement, but without the Santa element as we know this isn’t for everyone. Note, however, this is still a trip very much aimed at families, the age recommendation being eight plus, due to the nature of the wilderness activities. If you are keen to seek out Lapland’s other natural highlights, however, this one is for you, with the village of Menesjärvi’s an ideal location to see the Northern Lights. Remote and with little light pollution it is a definite Aurora Zone place to stay, and with several after dark activities included in the itinerary, we will try our utmost to help you spot them.

Some of the daytime adventures on this holiday include snowshoeing, kick sledding, cross country skilling and also sleighing. Not pulled by Rudolph, but by a snowmobile as you dash through the snow of a winter, wilderness wonderland. You will meet reindeer at the local Sami farm, however, just one of several activities where you can learn about the extraordinary cultural heritage of the indigenous Sami people who live here.

Menesjärvi is a traditional reindeer herding community and the hotel where you stay is in the former village school which is family run and offering a fine welcome. There is all the equipment you will need such as snowshoes, cross country skis, kick sleds and so on. There are books and board games, and the food is traditional, hearty fare which is perfect after a day out in the white wilderness all around. There are also saunas, which are free of charge. With only 27 rooms, all varying in style and size, they are all ensuite.

The price of this holiday includes: Return flights from London Gatwick to Ivalo, transfers, 7 nights’ accommodation, equipment, winter weather clothing, guides and instructors. Activities: Snowshoe hike, kick sledding, cross country skiing, Aurora workshop and Aurora snowshoe, morning with a reindeer herder, wilderness skills, Finnish sauna, winter fishing by snowmobile, husky safari, Christmas festivities

Photography: Ville Heimonen, Timo Halonen

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

01273 823 700

Check dates

2017: 21 Dec
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Magical christmas without Santa in Lapland

Tourism in Finnish Lapland has become the main source of employment and income, replacing traditional industries such as forestry. Working within this growth industry in rural and remote areas means that we must take a great deal of responsibility; socially, environmentally and economically. We fully appreciate the impact of tourist visits on local communities and their residents and strive to ensure that we are having a positive effect.

The wilderness hotel in Menesjarvi is owned and run by a local family, whose Sámi routes have been in this area for centuries. They have a strong sense of tradition and we encourage all of our clients to respect and embrace the lives and culture of all Menesjarvi’s local inhabitants by learning a few important words: hello, goodbye, please, thank you etc. We have also included activities with a cultural base. In addition, we always encourage our clients to get involved in local events and activities which help to sustain traditional values and customs.

In all of our destinations we ensure that we use local accommodation, transport and activity providers, enabling locally owned businesses and the economies in which they work to benefit directly. The hotel in Menesjarvi also serves as much local produce as possible and stocks locally made souvenirs. Through the tourism multiplier effect, this all helps to generate incomes and employment where the drift might otherwise be towards larger employment areas such as towns and cities. In a small and remote village such as Menesjarvi the effects of such a drift could be devastating.

The use of small family run hotels and businesses means that the tourism income, generated by our presence stays where it should, in the local economy. We firmly believe in paying a fair price for all the services provided by our suppliers regardless of where they are in the world.

Our holidays rely on visiting beautiful and un-spoilt areas, and they don’t come more un-spoilt than Menesjarvi. Naturally we wish to maintain the natural settings in which we work, not just for the future of our company, but also for future generations. We will always insist that our local providers are equally conscious of this need.

We do appreciate that some may feel that snowmobiles should not be included in such itineraries however in areas such as Menesjarvi they are a way of life. They are the only means of keeping in contact with remote reindeer herders and communities as the road infrastructure is not extensive. All trails are well managed. The alternatives to snowmobiles would in most cases be large, gas-guzzling off road vehicles. All snowmobiles are regularly serviced and kept as fuel efficient as possible. The snowmobile service industry is also another vital source of employment in these remote areas.

We always ensure that all litter is removed from any of our activity sites, we strongly encourage group transfers to reduce traffic volumes and we make our clients aware of their obligation to the environment. We always offset our air travel emissions and would encourage you to do the same.

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