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Arctic New Year in Lapland

Visit Saariselka, Rovaniemi, Kemi, stay overnight in a Glass Igloo at Santa's Igloos
Santa's Igloos Rovaniemi, Finland © Santa's Igloos

Experience New Year in Finnish Lapland. Visit Saariselka, Kemi and Rovaniemi Santa's Home Town. Enjoy an overnight in a Glass Igloo at Santa's Igloos, a reindeer farm visit with sled ride, Snowshoe Walk, Husky Safari, visit to the delightful Santa Claus Village and an Ice Breaker Cruise. Plus you can add some great optional activities.


Day 1 Ivalo Arrival - Saariselka 

On arrival into Ivalo Airport, transfer to your hotel in Saariselka. This area in Finnish Lapland's far north is full of National Parks, lakes, rivers and highland fells, where the Northern Lights can dance across the sky up to 200 days each winter and ancient Sami culture is still very much alive. Time at leisure and overnight at Santa's Hotel Tunturi or similar. 

Day 2 Saariselka: Snowshoe Walk + Optional Aurora Safari by Heated Sleigh

In the morning, enjoy something that literally has you following in the footsteps of the Sami. Snowshoes are one of the oldest forms of transport in the world, and wearing these you can capture the true feeling of winter in the woods. Explore the nearby white wilderness of forest and hills and Urho Kekkonen National Park, surrounding Saariselkä. Remainder of the day at leisure. 2nd overnight in Saariselka at Santa's Hotel Tunturi or similar. 

Tonight you may like to join the optional Safari by Heated Sleigh. Discover the silent and peaceful mystique of the snowy forest. Your guide tows the sleigh by snowmobile through the lunar and starry landscape, to the top of the fall, away from the light pollution. After arriving, we set up our cameras and take pictures of the northern night sky. Wait comfortably by the fire, enjoying hot drinks and listening to tales until someone hopefully sees the first Aurora. 

Day 3 Saariselka - Santa's Igloos: Reindeer Farm & Sleigh Ride and overnight in a Glass Igloo

Today, en route to Rovaniemi, enjoy a delightful visit to a traditional Sami reindeer farm. Meet the farmers who will tell you the cultural importance of the reindeer. Then relax with a short reindeer sleigh ride, moving over white landscapes, where the only sound you will hear is the music of the reindeer bells. Lunch is included at the farm. Later we continue our journey south to Santa's Igloos, located approximately 10km from downtown Rovaniemi. Follow the winding roads through the snowy forest to the unique Santa´s Igloos, 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 Borealis) and the millions of stars from the comfort of your bed. A traditional Lappish three course dinner is included. 

Day 4 Rovaniemi: Husky Safari and Santa Claus Village 

After your overnight stay at Santa's Igloos we head to the city to the hotel for check in. Three nights at Santa's Hotel Santa Claus or similar. Then your New Year adventure begins with a visit to the Husky Farm and 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 (3km). 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 is at leisure. 

Day 5 Rovaniemi: New Year's Eve Gala Dinner

Day at leisure to explore this small, picturesque town. At 18:00hrs Santa Claus will pay a visit to the hotel and deliver Christmas presents to the younger guests. (Families can arrange for Santa to deliver a special present to their children, on their behalf. there will also be 1 small gift per child from the hotel). At 19:00hrs, enjoy a special New Year's Eve gala buffet dinner at the hotel. 2nd overnight in Rovaniemi at Santa's Hotel Santa Claus or similar.

Tonight offers an optional Mystical New Year's Eve party: at 22:00hrs you will be transferred from the hotel to a Special New Year Venue just 20 minutes from town. At Lapland's magical border of the Arctic Circle, festivities are held to welcome in the New Year. Fire, ice, darkness, snow, lights, music and dance combine to create a magical event for the whole family. The mysterious Shamans (ancient fortune tellers) fuel the atmosphere and as the New Year approaches Santa Claus himself will also pay a visit. A giant snow disco, snow bars, massive fireworks display and a spectacular New Year Dance Show definitely make for a memorable experience. New Year's tin casting is an old Finnish tradition to see what the future holds and the shamans help you interpret the marks for the future, in your tin. The event will take place by snowy banks, in an idyllic winter setting. Return to the hotel at approximately 01:00hrs.

Day 6 Rovaniemi - Kemi: Sampo Icebreaker Cruise

Today we head to the town of Kemi. First we visit to the fabulous SnowCastle*. Pure white snow walls surround the gigantic SnowCastle, the biggest of its kind in the world, and built entirely out of snow and ice, with a special snow slide and amazing snow sculptures. Enjoy a lunch onshore in the Seaview Restaurant, then board the Sampo Icebreaker for a cruise on this remarkable vessel, breaking though the ice of the northern Gulf of Bothnia. This extraordinary experience includes a guided tour of the ship with its massive engine room, communications room and bridge and ice swimming. 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. 3rd overnight in Rovaniemi at Santa's Hotel Santa Claus or similar.

*Please note that the construction of the Snow Castle is dependent on the weather conditions and accordingly the Castle may not be open before the 19th of January

Day 7 Rovaniemi Departure

Transfer to Rovaniemi airport and end of arrangements.

Departure: 27 December 2024


Maximum group size: 25 persons

All optional excursions must be pre-booked. Some excursions subject to minimum age and height requirements.

Airport transfers are shared with fellow arriving/departing passengers. Minor waiting times may occur.

Luggage allowance is 1 suitcase plus 1 piece of hand luggage per person.

Services of a bi-lingual tour escort, English and Spanish or Portuguese.

Child policy: children aged under 4 years are not permitted on this tour.

Up to 1 child 4 years and over can share a room with 2 adults and will sleep on a sofa bed.

Nordic Travel is 100% Australian owned and operated