LAPLAND ADVENTURE & THE ICEHOTEL - Multi activity Trip
1 week: Kaupinnen to Kaupinnen(optional flights from London) (EX-AVZ)
SynopsisSnowmobiling, dogsledding, igloo-building, cross-country skiing and a night in the famous Icehotel
ProfileNo previous experience of activities necessary, but you should be prepared for some quite basic accommodation.
Trip tagsCross-country Skiing - Dogsledding - Snowshoeing - Winter Wilderness - Northern Lights Holidays - Overnight In An Igloo - Snowmobiling/skidooing - Multi-activity - Photography
DescriptionDeep inside the Arctic Circle in Swedish Lapland lies the magical Icehotel. From the neighbouring village of Kaupinnen and in the vast wilderness areas all around, we enjoy this very special location with a week packed full of activities. This area is characterised by deep forests, frozen lakes and the extraordinary Northern Lights. We spend two days learning to drive our own dogsleds and one day on snowmobiles. We also build an igloo, and try the Nordic art of cross-country skiing. The simple accommodation is a real highlight - cosy wilderness lodges with saunas, your own igloo (optional) and the stunning Icehotel.
Group sizeMin. 4, max. 12, plus leader.
Start Mushers Lodge, Kaupinnen.Day 2
We re-pack our overnight gear into smaller bags for a night at our Vakarra Wilderness Lodge. The transfer, usually by minibus and then on foot, takes about 20 minutes.
We spend the day close to our base learning to build igloos (or more accurately Quniseys) still used by the Swedish army for shelter in emergencies. Using shovels and spades we create a mound of snow, which is later hollowed out to make sleeping quarters (2-3 persons per igloo). You have the option of sleeping in your construction, but the lodge is just a short walk away if you prefer the warmth of the wooden cabin. Depending on the season, we usually have time to try ice-fishing today, and hopefully catch something to supplement our dinner. Out here, where there are no other sources of light, we have an excellent chance to see the incredible Northern Lights. Wilderness Lodge / Igloo.
For our return to civilization we will use traditional wooden skis. These army-issue tools are wider than a modern cross-country ski, so novices can usually stay upright after the initial beginners falls, and we can also use them with our insulated winter boots. The route back to the homebase in Kaupinnen is 13 kilometres, and our guide will follow on a snowmobile to prepare lunch, and to pick-up anyone struggling.
In the late afternoon we spend an hour or two learning about the traditions of the Saami the indigenous reindeer herding people of Lapland. We will have a small taste of reindeer meat in Kota (a Saami dwelling, like a Teepee), followed by short reindeer sleigh rides. (Note: this can be done on a different afternoon if it fits better with the itinerary). Mushers Lodge.
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 in Kaupinnen, 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, or in a simple cabin. While on the forest trails keep your eyes peeled for Elk (Moose), Snow Grouse (Ptarmigan) or even Capercaille. The trip ends back at the Mushers lodge and the dog kennels.
The day ends at the fabulous Icehotel. We try to get to the hotel for mid-afternoon, with time for a tour of the individually designed rooms, chapel and Absolut ice bar. Our rooms are available from 6pm. Icehot.
After a wake-up call with a hot drink, we have a leisurely breakfast, before making our way back to the Mushers Lodge where the snowmobiles are kept. After a safety briefing we start our snowmobile safari on two-person machines, taking the driving in turns. Starting along the frozen Tornealven River, we then take a wide loop over lakes and through forests to arrive back at our Kaupinnen base. Mushers Lodge.Day 7