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Into the Arctic

Explore Lapland from Saariselkä to Rovaniemi, via Kirkenes, Tromsø, Kilpisjärvi, Haparanda and Levi
Northern Lights Village Levi, Finland © Visit Levi

Begin this amazing Lapland adventure in Saariselkä, then up to Kirkenes to visit the famous Snowhotel and board the Hurtigruten. Cruise to Tromsø, experience Reindeer and Sami Culture at Camp Tamok, then continue to Kilpisjärvi. Enjoy a Glass Igloo overnight at Northern Lights Village Levi, followed by a Husky Safari. Stay at the historical Haparanda Stadshotell in Sweden and finish in Rovaniemi - Santa's Home Town. With some luck, you may witness the stunning dance of the Northern Lights along the way.


Day 1 Ivalo Arrival - Saariselkä

Shared group shuttle transfer from Ivalo Airport to Santa’s Hotel Tunturi in Saariselkä during the day. In the evening, meet your guide and fellow travellers for a welcome meeting at your hotel. If the weather allows and there is auroral activity, your guide will take you out to hunt for the Northern Lights this evening. Overnight in Saariselkä at Santa’s Hotel Tunturi (superior room) or similar.

Day 2 Saariselkä - Kirkenes: Snowhotel Experience, Optional King Crab Safari

Depart this morning and cross the border between Finland and Norway to reach Kirkenes, a small town facing the Barents Sea. Lunch at SnowHotel Kirkenes Restaurant, followed by a SnowHotel 365 visit. Marvel at the ice and snow art and see the ice suites, visit Santa`s workshop and the icebar, and explore the park with huskies and reindeers. Optional King Crab Safari at 17:00hrs. For those interested in history instead, the Varanger Museum in Kirkenes has exhibits about the town’s ordeal during WWII. For more insights, you may like to visit the Andersgrotta WWII Bomb Shelter which can house up to 2,500 people underground. Dinner and overnight in Kirkenes at Thon Hotel Kirkenes (standard room) or similar.

Day 3 Kirkenes: Hurtigruten Departure and Overnight On Board

Morning transfer to Kirkenes Hurtigruten pier for an overnight journey on the famous Hurtigruten. Lunch on board. In the port of Vardø, you’ll find the star-shaped Vardøhus Fortress, built in 1737. The northernmost fortification of any kind, it remains a part of the military to this day. Cruise Norway’s coastline to arrive in the small port of Båtsfjord in the evening and then on to Berlevåg. You might be able to make out Mount Tanahorn to the west or see Kjølnes Lighthouse blinking a top a cliff overlooking the Barents Sea. Dinner and overnight on board in a Polar Outside cabin. 

Day 4 Tromsø: Hurtigruten Arrival

Breakfast on board. The ship stops at Mehamn and Kjøllefjord during the night before early morning visits to Honningsvåg and Havøysund. Lunch on board. In the early afternoon, you’ll spend time in Hammerfest, once the northernmost town in the world until Longyearbyen in Svalbard claimed the title. Check out the UNESCO-listed Meridian Column, shop for souvenirs at the Polar Bear Society, or take the path behind the town to the viewpoint on Mount Salen. Continue cruising Norway’s coastline south to Øksfjord and Skjervøy, surrounded by mountain peaks. Dinner on board and late evening arrival in Tromsø. The hotel is situated a few steps away from the pier. Two overnights in Tromsø at Clarion The Edge Hotel (standard room) or similar.

Day 5 Tromsø: City Walk and Brewery Tour

Morning panoramic walking tour of Tromsø. A charming blend of old and new, where modest wooden houses sit alongside the modern architecture of this university city. Cross the Tromsø Bridge which connects Tromsø Island to the mainland, and see the Arctic Cathedral on the way over. For those who want to walk a little more, it’s possible to reach the cable car and travel to the top of Mount Storsteinen, 421m above sea level, and enjoy a bird’s-eye-view of the city and its impressive surroundings. This afternoon, visit a local brewery. This evening, if conditions are good, perhaps join an optional Northern Lights tour from Tromsø. Second night in Tromsø at Clarion The Edge Hotel (standard room) or similar.

Day 6 Tromsø - Camp Tamok: Reindeer and Sami Culture - Kilpisjärvi

Morning Reindeer Safari in a magical location; explore the ancient part of Sami culture and try the oldest form of transport in the north. Transfer by minibus to the Sami Camp. This fascinating cultural adventure includes reindeer sledding, an introduction to lasso throwing, storytelling about the Sami culture and feeding the reindeer. After this memorable encounter with the indigenous Sami people, return to Camp Tamok where a hot meal will be served around an open fire in a reindeer herder’s tent. After lunch, depart for Kilpisjärvi. This is where the three nations of Norway, Finland, and Sweden meet. Driving time is approximately 2.5 hours. Kilpisjärvi hosts some of the best conditions for viewing the Northern Lights, so make sure to head out at night for a peek. Dinner and overnight in Kilpisjärvi at Santa's Hotel Rakka (superior room) or similar.

Day 7 Kilpisjärvi: Optional Snowmobile Safari - Northern Lights Village Levi 

Morning optional Snowmobile Safari to the border of Finland, Sweden and Norway. With a trail that runs on the frozen lake and through beautiful snowy birch forest to Koltavuoma, where the yellow border cairn of three Nordic countries is located. It is known as the most peaceful border in the world. Onwards towards Levi to explore different part of Finnish Lapland. Driving time is approximately 3.5 hours. Tonight you have the very special experience of sleeping under the Arctic Sky in a Glass Igloo at Northern Lights Village! Dinner and overnight at Northern Lights Village Levi (standard Aurora Cabin).

Day 8 Levi: Husky Safari - Haparanda

Morning Husky Safari. Drive a team of huskies over the untouched snow of the forests of Levi as the sled glides effortlessly over the snowdrifts. Afternoon departure for Haparanda to experience Swedish Lapland. Dinner and two overnights at the historical Haparanda Stadshotell (standard room).

Day 9 Optional Polar Explorer Icebreaker Experience

Morning optional 3 hour cruise on board the Polar Explorer Icebreaker on the frozen water of Bothnian sea in Lapland. Witness the massive ice breaking power of the vessel, have a guided tour from the engine rooms to Captain’s bridge. Relax in the cosy saloon, enjoying warm juice or walk on the frozen sea ice during the stop. The icebreaker makes a pool free of ice and every visitor can take a swim in a flotation survival suit. The captain will present a Cruise & Swim Certificate. Afternoon at leisure to explore Haparanda Tornio - perhaps cross the border between Sweden and Finland as you walk from your hotel to the local shopping mall, or to join an optional activity from the hotel. Dinner in the hotel cellar and 2nd overnight at Haparanda Stadshotell (standard room).

Day 10 Haparanda - Rovaniemi: Santa Claus Village Visit

Departure to Rovaniemi, Finland, which is The Official Home of Santa Claus. Stop at Santa Claus Village for a visit. Afternoon at leisure in Rovaniemi. Farewell dinner in a typical Lappish kota, eating local specialties by the warmth of the fireplace. Hopefully the Northern Lights will make an appearance. Overnight at Santa's Hotel Santa Claus Rovaniemi (standard room).

Day 11 Rovaniemi Departure

Shared shuttle transfer to Rovaniemi Airport. End of arrangements.

2025 departures:
09, 20 January
09, 20 February
08, 19 March


Maximum Group Size: 24 persons

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

Pre and post nights can be added - please enquire.

Airport transfers are shared with fellow arriving/departing passengers. 2 shared group transfers are guaranteed during the daytime on Day 1 and on Day 11. Waiting times may occur. Exact transfer times will be scheduled 30 days prior to start date. 

Private Airport transfers can be added - please enquire.

Child policy: children aged under 7 years are not permitted on this tour.

Up to 1 child 7 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