1 Start Lappis Lodge, Lappeasuando.
Start Lappis Lodge, Lappeasuando. Stay: Comfortable Hotel.
2 Morning at leisure; afternoon snowshoe excursion.
After a hearty Swedish breakfast we have a little time to get familiar with our winter surroundings. In the afternoon we head out into the wilderness using snowshoes. This is the perfect way to get closer to nature as we break new trails through the snow, reaching those areas where the snowmobiles and skis could not (distance is around 8km although the route may change depending on conditions. Please note that in the December departures, due to shorter daylight hours, some of this snowshoe will be done in the dark). Out here, where there are no other sources of light, we have an excellent chance to see the incredible Northern Lights. Stay: Comfortable Hotel.
3 Morning guided ice fishing; afternoon free for optional snowmobiling.
Today we begin the day with a spot of fishing. However, this is not fishing as we know it; this is traditional ice fishing. Through drilled holes in the ice you will be shown how to use the small ice fishing rods to, with any luck, catch what lurks beneath the ice. In the afternoon there is the opportunity to try the optional activity of snowmobiling. If you take this option then you will have a fantastic ride starting along the frozen Kaitum and Kalix Rivers. The route then takes a wide loop over lakes and through forests before arriving back at our base. Alternatively if snowmobiling is not for you then there are further activities available from the Lappis lodge (please see the 'optional excursion' section of the trip notes for more details). Stay: Comfortable Hotel.
4 Dogsled training and expedition to wilderness camp.
Spend the morning learning the basics of dogsledding, and after an early lunch, you and your riding partner (you ride 2 to a sled) head out with your own team of 5 to 6 dogs. The dogs are well trained and extremely friendly, and most of all they love to pull sleds. Anyone worried about driving their sled can opt to sit back and enjoy the ride in the cosy passenger seat of their own sled while their riding partner does all the hard work. In deep snow you may need to help push the sled; if the trail is more compacted, the dogs can travel up to 15 or 20 km/h. Falls are not uncommon in the first hour or so. If you do fall, the only rule is 'don't let go of your sled', as the dogs don't stop to wait for you! The guide is also never far away and is on a snowmobile. Our night is spent in the wilderness in a simple lodge, nestled between the Kaitum and Kalix rivers. Stay: Basic Hotel.
5 Return to base on dogsleds via frozen lakes and pine forests.
Those who want to can rise early to help feed and water the dogs and get them ready and harnessed for the days sledding. We take a different route back to our homebase, with plenty of time to enjoy the scenery and the excitement of mushing your own team. Lunch is usually taken by a campfire by the side of the trail, in a simple cabin or sometimes back at base, depending on conditions. While on the forest trails keep your eyes peeled for Elk (Moose), Snow Grouse (Ptarmigan) or even Capercaille. Stay: Comfortable Hotel.
6 Traditional Sami lunch with reindeer encounter; afternoon transfer to Icehotel.
Today we transfer to the Nutti Sami reindeer camp outside Jukkasjarvi. After a traditional Sami lunch cooked over the fire we will meet, greet and feed the reindeer. This is a wonderful insight to the life and work as a reindeer herder and the indigenous Sami lifestyle. In the afternoon we will then transfer to the fabulous Icehotel with time for a guided tour of the individually designed rooms, chapel and Absolut ice bar. Our rooms are available from 6pm and dinner (not included in trip cost) is reserved in a nearby traditional homestead or the IceHotel restaurant depending on availability. Stay: Comfortable Hotel.
7 End Icehotel, Jukkasjarvi.
End trip after a hearty breakfast at the Icehotel's comfortable and warm restaurant.