Seeking the Northern Lights

Visit Rovaniemi, Saariselka and Inari in Finnish Lapland. Continue to Norway, Hurtigruten ferry from Kirkenes to Bergen, Norway in a Nutshell, Oslo + the fjords
Northern Lights over MS Trollfjord, Norway © Magnus Sabel/Hurtigruten

This tour offers great chances to seek the Northern Lights as well as wonderful scenery. Start in Finnish Lapland where you'll stay at Rovaniemi, Saariselka and Inari. Then into Norway to Kirkenes, where you'll board the Hurtigruten ferry to Bergen. Continue from here on the "Norway in Nutshell" tour which takes you from Bergen to Oslo via Flåm, a charming village in the fjords.

Itinerary

Day 1 Rovaniemi Arrival

Morning arrival into Rovaniemi, the official home of Santa Claus. Make your own way to your hotel then time to explore the town, browse the shops or perhaps visit the fabulous Arktikum Museum. You might also take one of the great optional winter excursions, which include dog sledding, snowshoeing, a visit to Ranua Wildlife Park, snowmobiling, ice fishing, a visit to Santa's village, Aurora hunting by car, and more. Two nights in Rovaniemi.

Day 2 Rovaniemi: Day at Leisure

Today continue exploring or enjoy one of the optional excursions available. 2nd overnight in Rovaniemi.

Day 3 Rovaniemi to Muotka, Saariselka

Today board the local coach which will take you from Rovaniemi to the Muotka Wilderness Hotel, a paradise tucked away in the taiga forest in a magical and tranquil landscape. Simply enjoy your breath-taking surroundings, or add some of the great optional winter activities offered, which include snowshoeing, ice fishing, dog sledding and more. This is also a great place to search for the fabled Northern Lights at night, and you can do this with a visit to the resort's Aurora Camp. Two nights at the hotel in a Wilderness Room.

Day 4 Muotka: Day at Leisure

Another day to enjoy the peace and quiet in this remarkable place. 2nd overnight here.

Day 5 Saariselkä to Inari

Today you will travel even further north, taking the local coach from Muotka to Inari. This is a very special place and the centre of Sami tradition. Make time to visit Siida, the interesting Sami museum and nature centre, and explore the village. Overnight at the Inari Wilderness Hotel.

Day 6 Inari to Kirkenes

Continue by local coach from Finland into Norway, enjoying the change of scenery as you head north to Kirkenes, which shares a border with Russia. Overnight in Kirkenes.

Day 7 Kirkenes to Berlevåg

Breakfast at the hotel, then its time to board the Hurtigruten for a journey along the Norwegian coast. Make your own way to the ferry pier. The ferries play a vital role in delivering supplies and post to the many small villages along the rugged Norwegian coastline. You will pass many of these small villages as you cruise past spectacular scenery from Kirkenes to Bergen. And at night, all you have to do to search for the Northern Lights is to go on deck and look up! Five nights accommodation on board in an outside cabin including full board. As you sail, you can enjoy views of the Arctic wilderness from on deck or the panorama lounge. Throughout the journey there are various onboard presentations and optional off-ship activities. Continue today along Varanger peninsula to Båtsfjord, before reaching Berlevåg in the evening.

Day 8 The Extreme North: Mehamn to Tromsø

During the night we dock at Mehamn. We then continue to Øksfjord across open water, with a brief stop at Skjervøy, an old trading post. Onwards through Lyngenfjord where we are surrounded by the Lyngen Alps', which over many months are snowy peaks. Here, a local fisherman may bring some local, freshly caught prawns, to taste. Arrive in Tromsø, the Gateway to the Arctic, a charming city in a beautiful location. Perhaps visit the Arctic Cathedral, or walk around the town and try a local brew in one of the city's pubs.

Day 9 The Lofoten Islands: Tromsø to Stamsund

Morning arrival in Harstad. Here, the Risøyrenna channel at just 7m deep, was specifically made for Hurtigruten in the 1920s to provide an inside route between Harstad and Sortland. Sand banks are visible through clear, green water, while Risøyhamn is a small village with only 200 inhabitants. A short stop here before we sail on via Sortland to Stokmarknes, where Hurtigruten was founded more than 120 years ago. The captain then steers us through narrow Raftsund, before reaching the spectacular Trollfjord. At just 2km long, 100m wide and surrounded by majestic mountains, it is a truly remarkable place. If weather and time permit, a detour may be made here. Then on to Svolvær, before heading to Stamsund, where the huge peaks of the Lofoten wall can be seen. From here we head in the evening back toward the mainland.

Day 10 Crossing the Arctic Circle: Bodø to Rørvik

Crossing the Arctic Circle at 66°33'N is an important event today and it is celebrated on deck, with a taste of Arctic traditions. Another highlight is sailing past the Seven Sisters mountains, which are all between 900m and 1,100m high. It is easy to understand why they have inspired ancient myths. After a short stop in Nesna, an idyllic old trading post, we sail on to Sandnessjøen. The UNESCO Listed, Vega Islands are nearby.

Day 11 In the footsteps of the Vikings: Trondheim to Ålesund

Explore the city of Trondheim with its 1,000 year history, before your vessel heads out of majestic Trondheimsfjord, 170km long and up to 25km wide. Like all Norwegian fjords it is deep, reaching 577m at the deepest. Sailing along the coast, you will come to realise the importance of fish to Norway's coastal communities. Kristiansund's location has formed the basis for a wealth of opportunities in the fishing, shipbuilding and oil industries, and the town reigns as Norway's ‘cured cod capital', due to its history of exporting salted dry fish. As we cross the open sea to Molde, you will notice the steep, grey, pointed peaks of the Romsdal Alps.

Day 12 A Hanseatic City – Bergen Arrival

During the night, the ship will call at Ålesund, Torvik and Måløy before the picturesque Nordfjord which sits under vast Jostedal glacier. Florø represents Sogn og Fjordane region's oldest and Norway's most westerly town. A few nautical miles south, we navigate the estuary of mighty Sognefjord and you will get the best views of the archipelago, before your arrival in Bergen, where your voyage concludes. After disembarkation make your own way to the hotel. Bergen, a picturesque city with an abundance of charm. Enjoy the rest of your day exploring - this old Hanseatic trading city is full of history and tradition, an international city that has retained its small-town charm and atmosphere, and offers an exciting blend of nature and culture. Visit the Fish and Flower markets, take the funicular up Mount Floyen for amazing views, and explore the shops, cafes and centuries old wooden houses of the old wharf area. Overnight in Bergen.

Day 13 Flåm: "Norway in a Nutshell"

Make your own way to the train station, to start your "Norway in a Nutshell" tour.The first leg is by train from Bergen to Voss; from here travel by bus to Gudvangen, where you will board a ferry for a spectacular cruise on the Sognefjord, Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord to Flåm. Upon arrival in Flåm, walk the short distance to your hotel for overnight.

Day 14 Flåm - Oslo

Continue by train - on the famous Flåmsbanen Railway - from Flåm to Myrdal, a spectacular journey of 20km through wild and beautiful scenery, via tunnels that spiral in and out of the mountain, showcasing the most daring and skilful engineering in Norwegian railway history. At Myrdal board the scenic Bergensbanen train to Oslo, travelling through the countryside of mountains, valleys, rivers and farms. On arrival in Oslo, make your own way to your hotel for overnight.

Day 15 Oslo Departure

Your tour arrangements end after breakfast and check out.


2020-2021 departures: Daily 01 December to 31 March

Tour Overview

  • Summary

    Visit Rovaniemi, Saariselka and Inari in Finnish Lapland. Continue to Norway, Hurtigruten ferry from Kirkenes to Bergen, Norway in a Nutshell, Oslo + the fjords
  • Tour Category

    Cruises, Independent, Glass or Snow Igloos, Northern Lights
  • Duration

    15 days

    Departures

    Dec - Mar

Tour Prices

    • Double pp from:

      $ AUD
    • Prices may vary according to dates of travel

      INCLUDES: 2 nights accommodation in 3 star hotel in Rovaniemi including breakfast; local bus from Rovaniemi to Saariselka (Day 3 ); 2 nights accommodation at Muotka Wilderness Hotel in a Wilderness Room including dinner and breakfast daily; local bus from Saariselka to Inari (Day 5); 1 nights accommodation at Inari Wilderness Hotel in an Aurora Cabin including dinner and breakfast; local bus from Inari to Kirkenes (Day 6); 1 nights hotel accommodation 3 star hotel in Kirkenes including breakfast; 5 nights on board the Hurtigruten from Kirkenes to Bergen in an unspecified outside cabin including full board; 2 nights hotel accommodation in Bergen at 3 star hotel including breakfast daily; train Bergen-Voss 2nd class (Day13); bus Voss-Gudvangen (Day 13); ferry Gudvangen to Flåm (Day 13); 1 nights accommodation in 3 star hotel in Flåm including dinner and breakfast; Flåmsbana train - Flåm-Myrdal open seating (Day 14); train Myrdal-Oslo 2nd class (Day 14); 1 nights accommodation in 4 star hotel in Oslo including breakfast.

      EXCLUDES: optional excursions, drinks on board, transfers, luggage handling.

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