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Finland's Lapland

8 days

Winter Adventures in the Arctic Circle

Our Distinctive A+R Style

  • Surrounded by wilderness, our Arctic resort is the perfect base to experience the wintertime beauty and magic of the Far North.
  • Discover Helsinki’s Senate Square and join city residents in shops and markets to sample fresh artisanal foods.
  • Spend four nights in a private log cabin with an attached glass-domed igloo where you can fall asleep under the Northern Lights.
  • Thrill to a dog-sledding adventure and set out by snowmobile and reindeer-pulled sleigh to go in search of the Aurora Borealis.
  • We even include Arctic thermal wear, wood for your fireplace, and all resort gratuities!
  • 2 nights luxury hotel + 4 nights private log cabin with glass-domed igloo + 1 night airport hotel; 12 meals; Helsinki tour; 3 Premium Arctic Excursions; all transfers; both internal flights; and all gratuities except Helsinki guide.

Show all itinerary details

On arrival, you’ll be greeted and escorted to the Hotel Lilla Roberts, a stylish and contemporary hotel set in a 1908 landmark in the heart of the capital. A+R Guests enjoy spacious Style Guestrooms that offer more than 320 square feet of space including a sitting area with sofa, armchair and plush area rug.

Day
2

Discover the White City of the North

Hotel Lilla Roberts - Helsinki City Center

Join your private guide for a walking tour of Helsinki, beginning with the handsome neoclassical landmarks that grace Senate Square. The four most important structures here were designed by Carl Ludvig Engel in the middle of the 19th century and include the Government Palace and the National Library of Finland. With its impressive green dome, the Helsinki Cathedral is visible from many areas of the capital and is perhaps the Square’s most iconic landmark. You will join Helsinki natives in the bustling shops and markets of the city. With our resident expert guiding the way, you’ll experience a genuine slice of city life and culture during your tour on which you will see many of Helsinki’s wonders . For lunch, we’ll take you to a local restaurant  – known for its authentic regional dishes, all prepared with fresh Finnish-sourced ingredients, and a unique ambience that evokes the forests, lakes and logging traditions of the country.  After lunch, the balance of the day is free to enjoy as you wish. To make it easy, we’ve included a transport pass for complimentary use of the city’s tram, bus and metro network! Meals B+L

After breakfast, you’ll be chauffeured to the airport for your included flight to Ivalo deep inside the Arctic Circle. On arrival, you’ll be met and transferred to the one-and-only Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort. Here on the edge of the unbroken wilderness of Finland’s largest national park, you’ll enjoy private accommodations in your own Kelo-Glass Igloo. This spacious log cabin has been meticulously constructed of rough-hewn Kelo pinewood with a private fireplace, cozy seating, your own Finnish sauna and an inviting bed. Attached to your cabin is a unique glass-domed igloo with additional bedding so you can fall asleep under the night sky - and maybe even under the shimmering glow of the Northern Lights. The rest of this day is yours to delight in the inviting ambience of your private cabin – You might try out the sauna, sit by a roaring fire, or take in the views from your glass igloo. Of course, you can also explore the forested grounds of our resort. This evening, you’ll join fellow guests for dinner at the restaurant.  Meals B+D

Surrounded by wilderness, our Arctic resort offers a wide variety of activities to immerse you in the life and beauty of Lapland. To begin, we have included these three adventures; others are available:
 
Husky Safari: This unforgettable adventure begins at our resort where you’ll meet a local Husky expert. At his nearby farm, you’ll meet the friendly dogs who are already waiting eagerly in front of their sleds. After expert instruction on how to drive, steer and stop your sled, you’ll set out. These are 2-person sleds so you can drive while your companion enjoys the ride and the thrilling sight of the lively Husky dogs pulling your sled. The pristine beauty of the winter forest is breathtaking and the experience is exhilarating. About halfway through the journey, you’ll stop at a traditional Lappish hut where a light lunch of steaming soup will be served. There will be time to warm yourself by the fire as your expert guide shares colorful stories of life in the Arctic. For the return journey, you can switch positions and enjoy the thrilling ride as your companion drives the sled. Back at the farm, you might have a chance to meet some frisky Husky puppies. This 4-hour excursion includes pick-up and return transportation from our resort, Arctic wear for the guided sledding adventure, and a light lunch. The total time out with the sled and your Husky team is about 2.5 hours.
 
Aurora Hunting by Snowmobile: Depart the resort and travel into the nighttime silence of the northern woods to begin this experience. After expert instruction, you’ll board a 2-person snowmobile and set out for this thrilling adventure. As conditions allow, you’ll stop for a warming cup of traditional Finnish berry juice and a chance to observe the Aurora Borealis. If the Northern Lights are visible, additional stops for photography and observation will be made. Along the way, you can also switch snowmobile drivers. Drivers must be at least 18 years of age; passengers can be of any age. This 3-hour excursion includes pick-up and return transportation from our resort, thermal Arctic wear for the guided snowmobiling adventure, and a warming mid-ride juice break. The total time out with snowmobiles will be about 1.5 hours with breaks depending upon the visibility of the Aurora Borealis.
 
Aurora Reindeer Safari: A local reindeer farmer will meet you and rest of your small group at the resort and take you to his farm for this shared adventure. After a quick briefing, climb into a comfortable sleigh and snuggle under warm blankets as a team of reindeer transports you into the silent, wintry northern woods. With clear weather and the right conditions, you can gaze up to see the shimmering lights of the Aurora Borealis. About mid-way through this adventure, you’ll stop for a warming cup of traditional berry juice. Enjoy the glow and warmth of our camp fire as our guide shares colorful stories of winter life in Lapland. This 2-hour expedition includes pick-up and return transportation from our resort, thermal Arctic wear for the sleigh ride, and refreshment. The total time out with our reindeers and sleigh is about 1 hour.
 
Meals B+D

Today you can enjoy another one of the three adventures which we’ve included with our compliments – and described above in Day 4. The rest of this day is yours to enjoy your cabin and its attached glass-domed igloo. You can also explore the surrounding forests on your own, and join fellow guests in the comfortable lodge.
 
If you wish to book an additional excursion today, here are some of the other guided adventures offered at our Arctic resort:
 
Aurora Hunting with Huskies: This guided 2-hour excursion feaures about 60 minutes out in the nighttime forest with your 2-person sled and team of Huskies. Includes transfers to and from our resort and a warming beverage break. Thermal clothing, winter boots and gloves are provided.
 
Snowmobile Safari: This guided adventure combines the thrill of snowmobiling with a chance to revel in the pristine natural beauty of Lapland. Tour includes transfers, thermal Arctic wear and a warming beverage break. Total duration is about 2 hours with at least 45 minutes of riding. We also offer a 4-hour excursion with at least 2.5 hours of snowmobiling.
 
Meet the Reindeer by Snowmobile: An exciting 90-minute snowmobile ride takes you to the Reindeer Farm to meet and feed these amazing creatures. Transfers, thermal wear and complete instructions for your 2-person snowmobile are included. Total duration is about 4 hours.
 
Reindeer Safari: This 2-hour excursion takes you into the Arctic wilderness in a reindeer-pulled sleigh, a wonderful way to experience the pristine beauty of Lapland and to connect with Sámi villagers. Transfers, thermal wear, winter boots, gloves and about one hour of sleigh riding are included.
 
This evening, you’ll enjoy another congenial dinner here at our resort.  Meals B+D

Today you might enjoy your final included adventure – described above in Day 4. Or if you chose to do two of them on one of the preceding days, then you might join one of the full-day excursions offered by our resort:
 
Snowmobile Adventure + Ice Fishing: A full day adventure takes you out onto the white expanse of Lake Inari, the second largest lake in Finland with nearly 400 islands. After instructions and donning the thermal Arctic wear which we provide, you’ll set out in a 2-person snowmobile – traveling through forests and across the frozen lake to our fishing spot. Whether or not the fish are biting, this is a great way to appreciate the beauty and silence of Lapland. After a warming lunch, return to the lake shore and visit the Sámi Museum where you’ll learn about the culture of this indigenous people. This guided 9-hour tour includes transfers from our resort, thermal Arctic wear, 2-person snowmobile with complete instructions, light lunch, and fishing equipment.
 
Icebreaker Adventure: After breakfast, you’ll embark on a scenic morning drive from our resort to Kemi, a colorful little port on the Gulf of Bothnia. Board the Icebreaker Sampo for an exciting 4-hour afternoon cruise through the icy waters. After lunch in the ship’s restaurant, you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the scenery and the camaraderie of your fellow cruise passengers. This excursion starts from our resort at 9:00 AM and returns around 11:00 PM.
 
Of course, you can also take this day to just enjoy the extraordinary setting of our Arctic resort and your private cabin and glass-domed igloo. In addition to the three complimentary adventures which we’ve included – and the additional excursions noted above – our Arctic resort offers a wide variety of other guided activities including Nordic skiing with instruction, horseback riding, and other expeditions by snowmobile, husky sled and reindeer sleigh. You can even visit Santa’s Resort!
 
Tonight, you’ll join your fellow resort guests for dinner in the restaurant.  Meals B+D

After breakfast, we’ll take you back to the airport in Ivalo for your included return flight to Helsinki where you’ll spend the night at the conveniently-located Hilton Airport Hotel.  Meals B

Day
8

Depart Finland

Return to the terminal via the covered walkway for your departure flight.  Meals B

Helsinki to Lapland MapSearch

Occupancy


Date RangeFrom
05 January 2024 - 15 March 2024$6,599
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The Best Arctic Accommodations$6,599
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16 March 2024 - 31 March 2024$6,399
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The Best Arctic Accommodations$6,399
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15 November 2024 - 15 November 2024$6,499
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The Best Arctic Accommodations$6,499
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16 November 2024 - 18 November 2024$6,499
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The Best Arctic Accommodations$6,499
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19 November 2024 - 22 November 2024$6,499
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The Best Arctic Accommodations$6,499
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23 November 2024 - 27 November 2024$6,499
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The Best Arctic Accommodations$6,499
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28 November 2024 - 20 December 2024$6,799
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The Best Arctic Accommodations$6,799
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21 December 2024 - 31 December 2024$7,199
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The Best Arctic Accommodations$7,199
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01 January 2025 - 04 January 2025$7,199
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The Best Arctic Accommodations$7,199
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05 January 2025 - 15 March 2025$6,899
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The Best Arctic Accommodations$6,899
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16 March 2025 - 31 March 2025$6,699
AccommodationPrice
The Best Arctic Accommodations$6,699
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Family + Friends

Travel is one of  life's most rewarding experiences, perhaps even more so when it's shared with those you love! Take advantage of our Family & Friends offer and Save $100 per person anytime you book 4 or more people on the same A+R program.

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Save $600 per couple + $300 solo on all of our Small Group, Small Ship and Private Journeys when you book and pay-in-full within 7 days of booking and prior to the final payment date listed in our published terms and conditions.
Book by December 31, 2024 for travel in 2024 + 2025.

About Your Journey… Finland’s Lapland

Located in Northern Europe, Finland is a vast country encompassing a stretch of land from the Baltic Sea well in to the Arctic Circle. Landscape and weather conditions differ greatly between northern and southern Finland. It can be said that Finland has four distinctive regions.  As you look out from the plane, the first impression you may have is that there are a lot of trees… an endless carpet of unspoiled forest, with thousands of islands and lakes and small towns in between.

Helsinki is the capital of Finland. To many visitors, it is a bit of a surprise when you land in Helsinki to find a modern metropolis with award-winning architectural sites, beautiful parks, designer boutiques and artisanal food stores. The city is situated by the Baltic Sea with over 60 miles of shoreline with approximately 300 islands. This vibrant city is both highly cultural and relaxing, and easy to get around. The “White City”, as it is often referred to, encourages individual explorations and offers many possibilities for outdoor activities on land and sea – on foot, by bike or island hopping by boat.

Beside the Lakeland, the central region of Finland with hundreds of lakes, the most attractive and unique is the immense area of Lapland to the north that stretches all the way into the Arctic Circle. Lapland’s nature and its four seasons create an ideal backdrop for a wide range of travel experiences. Spring is the awakening of nature as Lapland is illuminated with summer light.

Summer brings about an almost surreal feeling when the Midnight Sun embraces the sky 24 hours a day. This is an ideal period for biking, hiking, horseback riding, gold panning and canoeing – not only by day but also at ‘night’ under the Midnight Sun, which makes the experience even more unique.

Then the Summer bows to the colorful array of autumn and everything changes when the ruska – the autumn leaves period sets in. For about three weeks in the beginning of September, nature is ablaze with the most incredible colors, making it an optimal time for hiking and canoeing. From August to October forests are filled with mushrooms and berries, ready for picking. And, to top it off, Mother Nature starts showing off with her playful lights in the sky that only intensify when the Autumn days give way to starry winter nights.

In the heart of winter, trees sag under the weight of the snow and sparkle in the blue light of the Polar Nights. The Northern Lights like magic lighten up the sky and the land becomes a scene from a fairy tale as you listen to the clipping sound of reindeer pulling your sleigh or exciting bark of your team of huskies eager to get on the snow trail. 

Regardless if you come to Lapland in summer, autumn or winter, you will meet the friendly and welcoming Sami people, the only indigenous people who have inhabited this region at “the edge of the world” for generations. They will be glad to tell you the story of a fox running across the snowy Arctic fells creating the revontulet (fox’s fires) - Northern Lights. 

And let's not forget – the Finnish Lapland is also the year-round home of Santa Claus and his reindeer! We know your journey will be an unforgettable experience – no matter the season!

Hyvää matkaa!

Travel Checklist

  • Complete your Guest Information Forms available at www.alexanderroberts.com/before-you-go.aspx.   
  • Check your Passport for required validity and blank pages.
  • Double-check all mandatory visas are secured and are accurate.
  • Check that first and last names on your airline tickets match your passport.
  • Report international flight information to Alexander+Roberts and all times verified.
  • Communicate special diets, allergies, mobility limitations and special needs to Alexander+Roberts prior to travel.
  • Check your cell phone plan has international coverage and be sure to provide your phone number to Alexander + Roberts

Your Health

Finland does not require any specific vaccinations or inoculations. However, recommended inoculations for travel may change and you should consult your practitioner for current recommendations before your upcoming journey. It is your responsibility to ensure that you meet all health entry requirements, obtain the recommended inoculations, take all recommended medication, and follow all medical advice in relation to your trip. Inoculation requirements can be found on the Center for Disease Control (CDC) website at https://www.cdc.gov/Also check the World Health Organization (WHO) website http://www.who.int/ith/en/ before you travel internationally.

Medical supplies including CPAP machines for sleep apnea can be brought as an additional carry-on with most airlines.  If you are traveling with a CPAP machine, please let Alexander+Roberts know in advance and consider bringing a backup battery in case of inconsistent electricity supply. Distilled water is available in most destinations. Make sure you have all appropriate adaptors, although newer machines have universal power supplies that can adapt to various voltages. Bring extra supplies (especially cushions) and replacement parts as repairing the machine while travelling may not be possible.

Physical Activity

In order to maintain the natural and historical integrity that attracts visitors to Finland in the first place, many of the sites have been intentionally left in their natural state. In Lapland, you will encounter uneven terrain, irregular steps, hiking trails of varying degrees, barriers, ramps and cautionary warning signs. Therefore, it is extremely important for you to take great care and caution when exploring the area. Pay attention to all instructions and do not wander away from your guide or local host, especially off designated paths into unmarked terrain. When exploring on your own, heed all regulations, be extra mindful of your surroundings and note any conditions that could increase the risks (rushing water streams, wet slippery surfaces, frozen lakes, ice, poor visibility in snowy conditions, etc).

For travelers with mobility issues or physical challenges, be prepared for less accessibility in the Lappish Arctic Circle than we enjoy in the United States. Small airports are not always equipped with modern jet-ways, and ramps for wheelchairs are often absent. We will make reasonable attempts to accommodate special needs but cannot provide individual assistance. Nor can we ensure wheelchair-equipped local vehicles. For these reasons, a qualified companion must accompany guests who need such assistance.

Our program to Finland’s Lapland is an active adventure vacation. It is about a 10–15-minute walk between the Kakslauttanen Resort accommodations and their restaurant & activities departure point. Therefore, disabilities and medical issues requiring special attention must be advised when making reservations with Alexander+Roberts.

Your International Flights

If you have not already made your international flight arrangements, you should consider taking advantage of our excellent relationships with outstanding international carriers including Lufthansa, British Airways, United Airlines and Emirates. We can book your air in Economy, Premium Economy or Business Class with advice on seat availability - and even advance seat assignments on many carriers and routes. Booking your international air with A+R will allow us to directly assist you with any flight disruptions, delays or cancellations while on-tour.

A Word about Hotels and Lodges

As in other parts of the world, check-in time for most hotels is around 3:00PM and check-out time is typically 11AM. Check-in time for Kakslauttanen Arctic resort is after 2PM and check-out time from the log cabins, igloos or kelo-glass igloos is no later than by 10AM. If your flight arrives early, and your room is not ready, you can usually store your luggage with the hotel. Then step out to explore a bit at your own pace or relax with a cup of tea or coffee in the lobby. 

Similarly, if you have a late departure flight, hotels will store your luggage after you’ve checked-out, leaving you unencumbered to explore and relax until it’s time to go to the airport. Depending on how busy they are, some hotels may allow you to occupy your room for another hour or two without charge; check with the Front Desk to determine if this is possible for your day of departure.

If early check-in or late check-out is required, advance arrangements can usually be confirmed for the cost of an additional night. Please notify us or your travel agent if you wish to confirm either.

Climate…What You Can Expect

The main factor influencing Finland’s climate is the country’s geographical position between the 60th and 70th northern parallels in the Eurasian continent’s coastal zone, which shows characteristics of both a maritime and a continental climate, depending on the direction of air flow. The climate ranges from subarctic in the North to temperate maritime in the South. 

Helsinki region enjoys a comparatively mild climate because of moderating influences of the North Atlantic Currents and Baltic Sea. Summer is warm and bright with almost 20 hours of daylight in Helsinki. The temperature in Helsinki in July is upper 60s to low 70s F. North of the Arctic Circle the midnight sun stays continuously above the horizon from early June to early July, but even in Helsinki summer nights are very short and light, since the sun sets only just below the horizon.

Autumn and spring are transitional seasons. Occasional rain is possible. There is something very special in the gradually increasing sunshine and warmth of early spring that brings with it melting snow and budding leaves, not to mention the arrival of migratory birds. Similarly, although autumn brings with it darkening days and cooling weather, it is a season of spectacular colors when the leaves in the trees turn bright yellow, orange, and red.  

Winter in Finland

In winter, northern Finland is covered by snow from November to April. In the south, the snow usually arrives in December, but the amount of snowfall is small. Even if there’s little snow in Helsinki, there’s often up to 3 feet or more on the slopes in Lapland.  North of the Arctic Circle, the winter includes a period known as the polar night (kaamos), when the sun does not rise above the horizon at all. In the furthest area of the Arctic the polar night lasts for 51 days. In the southern Finland, the shortest day is about 6 hours long.

The wintertime temperatures vary greatly according to location. February temperature in Helsinki can be 21F. Obviously, the winter temperatures in Finnish Lapland can be lower.  In low-lying areas of Lapland such as Ivalo, the temperature can be -4°F, but at the same time 20 miles away on the Saariselkä fells (mountain range or moor-covered hills) the temperature can be 20°F. When traversing the fells, you should also take into consideration the wind which adds to the chill factor.

During winter in Lapland, it is time for winter sports – skiing, snowmobiling, snowboarding and sleigh rides. Go on a dogsled or hunt for Northern lights with reindeer or by snowmobile. The more adventurous can indulge in ice-fishing and even ice-swimming.  

No matter the season, Finns have thought of plenty of activities to fill your time.

Money Matters

Finland uses the Euro, the European Union’s common currency. Please note that most shops will not accept 500 Euro notes, so when exchanging currency, you should ask for 100 notes and smaller. 

Nothing beats cash for convenience and even though there are certain risks involved in carrying cash it’s still a good idea to bring some of your money in cash. US dollars can be exchanged into local currency on arrival. If you prefer, you may exchange US dollars into local currency prior to departure from the US.

ATMs on both the Cirrus and Plus networks are widely available throughout the country. We recommend that before you travel you inform both your bank and your credit card company which countries you will be visiting. It is also a good idea to inquire about fees for transactions abroad. Please note that many ATMs in Europe – including Finland - will not accept PIN numbers of more than four digits.

All mayor credit cards are widely accepted in Finland. However, some local shops, pubs and restaurants may only accept cash. If you are planning on making a large purchase, you are better off using your credit card, as you will probably get a better rate of exchange than you will in a bank withdrawing cash.

Traveler’s checks are not as convenient and must be changed into local currency first, and there is usually a per-check service fee, a flat transaction fee or a percentage fee of the total amount, associated with cashing traveler’s checks. Ask before you exchange! You may be asked to show your passport when cashing traveler’s checks or exchanging currency.

Tipping/Gratuities

For your on-tour convenience, we have included all gratuities except for your guide in Helsinki. This includes drivers, baggage porters and restaurant staff for all included meals; certainly, if any of these services are exceptional and go above-and-beyond, then feel free to tip additionally.

For your guides, many of our guests find it helpful to have some guidelines; in that spirit, we recommend tipping them $10 to $15 per person, per day.

When you’re out enjoying meals and activities that are not part of your A+R itinerary, here are tipping guidelines in accordance with local practices:

  • Upscale restaurants: A service charge of 12% to 15% is typically already included on the bill. If you have any questions, just ask the restaurant staff.
  • Spa Services: Add 10% to 15 %.
  • Taxis: Tips are not expected by taxi drivers.

For any gratuities, we suggest you tip in the local currency. But if you only have US Dollars, they will be graciously accepted.

Electricity

Finland’s electric current is 220- 230 V, 50Hz and outlets support two round-pin plugs. An adapter plug (see photo) will be necessary to charge your electronic devices.

                                                      

Check the label on your device(s) which should indicate whether a converter or transformer is also necessary. These days, most e-readers, laptops, smart phones, tablets, cameras and battery chargers are multi-voltage and you’ll see something like 110-240V in the manual or on the device or charger. In this case you will not need a converter. For more information on plugs and sockets, review the information at:  www.iec.ch/world-plugs

Internet and Phone calls

We strongly encourage all travelers to bring your cell phone when you travel and ensure with your carrier that your plan covers international calls and/or mobile data from the countries you will visit. Carriers and plans vary widely on coverage so please make sure the details of your plan are understood before you travel. Alternatively, local prepaid SIM cards for your phone are usually available at the airport where you arrive and can be used to tap into local service providers. Wi-fi is available at all hotels either complimentary or for a fee; you can find Wi-Fi information on your itinerary and hotel list, or check with the front desk upon check in regarding access details.

If making an international call from your hotel room, please check the rates first.  Hotels often contract with outside companies to provide direct-dial telephone services for guests calling overseas from their rooms, and the rates can be unexpectedly high.  Popular wi-fi calling and messaging apps are also available to download to your mobile phone, we recommend WhatsApp or Skype for communicating while abroad, but not all phone numbers are possible to reach via these services.  Some apps and websites may not be available in all countries.

WhatsApp and Skype allow users to add contact phone numbers and send text and voice messages, make voice and video calls, and share images, documents, over Wi-Fi or mobile data coverage. Both caller and recipient need to have downloaded these apps to communicate, however.   If our local office has a WhatsApp or Skype account, that information will be included in your final documents.

Each country has a dialing exit code (the US is 011), when calling abroad, you will need to prefix the international call with the dialing exit code. If using a modern smartphone, you can hold the zero which will add a “+” and it will automatically include the country exit code from wherever you are calling. The dialing code for Finland is +358. You’ll have to prefix the local number with this dialing code when calling from outside of Finland.

Is the Water Safe to Drink?

Tap water is safe to drink in Finland. And in Lapland the water is so pure that you can drink from the stream. Reasonably priced bottled water can be purchased everywhere.

Meal Time

Finnish cuisine is based on fresh and natural ingredients that vary according to the season. In addition to vegetables, mushrooms, berries, and fish, Finnish food is typified by simplicity and purity of taste. Helsinki’s own cuisine also features influences from both the East and the West.  In former times, the country's harsh climate meant that fresh fruit and vegetables were largely unavailable for nine months of the year, leading to a heavy reliance on staple tubers (initially turnip, later potato), dark rye bread and fermented dairy products, occasionally enlivened with preserved fish and meat. Traditionally, very few spices other than salt were available, and fresh herbs like dill were limited to the summer months. Many Finnish traditional dishes are prepared by stewing them for a long time in an oven, which produces hearty but bland fare. Forests and lakes were a major source of food and today produce from forests counts for the distinctive traits in Finnish cuisine.

The simplicity of traditional Finnish food has been turned into an advantage by placing an emphasis on freshness, and modern Finnish restaurateurs now blend high-quality Finnish produce with continental cooking techniques.

Sámi food is always fresh and local, such as fish, berries, game, and reindeer meat. Try creamy salmon soup, willow grouse sausage, smoked or dried reindeer meat or sautéed with Lappish potatoes, fried arctic char or salmon; try Lappish cheese with cloudberry jam. And lingonberries are to Finns what blackberries are to Americans. They make great jam, jelly, juice, sauce, wine, and liqueur!

The Sami

The Sami possess a rich cultural heritage and are known for their close connection to the land they live on.  The Sámi area of Northern Lapland offers year-round unlimited outdoor and indoor activities and close contact with the unique culture of the Sámi – the only indigenous people of the European Union. The Sámi live in the Northern parts of Finland, Norway, and Sweden as well as in parts of North-Eastern Russia. In Finland, the Sámi population is approximately 9,000 strong, and the preservation of their endangered language and culture is governed by an autonomous parliament of Inari.

Let your Sámi hosts lead you to their reindeers and learn lasso-swinging, let them teach you their handicraft or take a lesson in Sámi cooking.  The Sámi witch drum is today a popular tourist item, originally used by medicine men as a tool, along with the Sámi chant called the joik, to fall into a trance in order to reach a level of communication with the Spirits.  A visit to the village of Inari, the heart of the Sámi homeland, and to Siida, the museum of the Finnish Sámi, is an absolute must. The outstanding, internationally acclaimed indoor and outdoor museum covers all aspects of the Sámi culture, past and present, as well as Lapland’s extraordinary environment. Siida’s enticing gift shop and the village’s many other craft shops offer plenty of interesting design products made of natural materials as well as local food and delicacies.

About the Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort

Set on the edge of the unbroken wilderness of Finland’s largest national park, our extraordinary resort is the perfect base to experience Lappish life and the magical beauty of the Arctic Circle. Guests on our winter adventure will stay in their own private Kelo-Glass Igloo. These unique accommodations feature a spacious cabin crafted of Lapland’s indigenous Kelo pinewood. Inside your cabin, you’ll find a cozy log bed, a kitchenette, a stone fireplace (wood provided!), en suite bath and even your own personal sauna. Attached to your cabin is a glass-domed igloo with additional bedding – so you can fall asleep under the Arctic winter sky… maybe even to the shimmering glow of the Aurora Borealis!  Each igloo has free included wi-fi and an aurora alarm which will alert you when the northern lights are visible (until 11:30 PM).   There are no televisions inside the igloos.

Please note that the Kakslauttanen requires a staff member to light your fireplace—the nightly fee is included in your package cost.

The resort has two restaurants offering a tempting array of regional dishes.  An included three course set menu dinner is served nightly.  A la carte menu items can be ordered at an additional cost.

Please note there is a grocery store approx. 15 minutes away in town of Saariselkä if you wish to purchase snacks or food.  Please contact reception for assistance booking a taxi.

Please note that the resort does not offer an on-site laundry service.
 

Included Daily Excursions from Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort

PLEASE NOTE: All excursions are shared with other Resort guests and subject to change due to weather conditions.

Surrounded by wilderness, our Arctic resort offers a wide variety of activities to immerse you in the life and beauty of Lapland. To get you started, we have included these three adventures which you can enjoy with our compliments during the three full days you’ll enjoy here:
 
Husky Safari: This unforgettable adventure begins at our resort where you’ll meet a local Husky expert. At his nearby farm, you’ll meet the friendly dogs who are already waiting eagerly in front of their sleds. After instruction on how to drive, steer and stop your sled, you’ll set out. These are 2-person sleds so you can drive while your companion enjoys the ride and the thrilling sight of the lively Husky dogs pulling your sled. The pristine beauty of the winter forest is breathtaking and the experience is exhilarating. About halfway through the journey, you’ll stop at a traditional Lappish hut where a light lunch of steaming soup will be served. There will be time to warm yourself by the fire as your expert guide shares colorful stories of life in the Arctic. For the return journey, you can switch positions and enjoy the thrilling ride as your companion drives the sled. Back at the farm, you might have a chance to meet some frisky Husky puppies. This 4-hour excursion includes pick-up and return transportation from our resort, Arctic wear for the guided sledding adventure, and a light lunch. The total time out with the sled and your Husky team is about 2.5 hours.

Aurora Hunting by Snowmobile: Depart the resort and travel into the nighttime silence of the northern woods. After expert instruction, you’ll board a 2-person snowmobile and set out for this thrilling adventure. As conditions allow, you’ll stop for a warming cup of traditional Finnish berry juice and a chance to observe the Aurora Borealis. If the Northern Lights are visible, additional stops for photography and observation will be made. Along the way, you can also switch snowmobile drivers. Drivers must be at least 18 years of age; passengers can be of any age. This 3-hour excursion includes pick-up and return transportation from our resort, thermal Arctic wear for the guided snowmobiling adventure, and a warming mid-ride juice break. The total time out with snowmobiles will be about 1.5 hours with breaks depending upon the visibility of the Aurora Borealis.

 Aurora Reindeer Safari: A local reindeer farmer will meet you at the resort and take you to his farm. After a quick briefing, climb into a comfortable sleigh and snuggle under warm blankets as a team of reindeer transports you into the silent, wintry northern woods. With clear weather and the right conditions, you can gaze up to see the shimmering lights of the Aurora Borealis. About mid-way through this adventure, you’ll stop for a warming cup of traditional berry juice. Enjoy the glow and warmth of our camp fire as our guide shares colorful stories of winter life in Lapland. This 2-hour expedition includes pick-up and return transportation from our resort, thermal Arctic wear for the sleigh ride, and refreshment. The total time out with our reindeers and sleigh is about 1 hour.

Additional Excursions Available from Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort

If you wish to book an additional excursion at our resort, here are some of the other guided adventures offered at our Arctic resort., for an additional charge.  We do recommend prebooking the below excursions due to availability and popularity—please call us for pricing!

PLEASE NOTE: All excursions are shared with other Resort guests and subject to change due to weather conditions.

 
Aurora Hunting with Huskies: This guided 2-hour excursion features about 60 minutes out in the nighttime forest with your 2-person sled and a team of Huskies. Includes transfers to and from our resort and a warming beverage break.

 Snowmobile Safari: This guided adventure combines the thrill of snowmobiling with a chance to revel in the pristine natural beauty of Lapland. Tour includes transfers, thermal Arctic wear and a warming beverage break. Total duration is about 2 hours with at least 45 minutes of riding. We also offer a 4-hour excursion with at least 2.5 hours of snowmobiling.

Meet the Reindeer by Snowmobile: An exciting 90-minute snowmobile ride takes you to the Reindeer Farm to meet and feed these amazing creatures. Transfers, thermal-wear and complete instructions for your 2-person snowmobile are included. Total duration is about 3 hours.

 Reindeer Safari: This 2-hour excursion takes you into the Arctic wilderness in a reindeer-pulled sleigh, a wonderful way to experience the pristine beauty of Lapland. Transfers, thermal wear and about one hour of sleigh riding are included. Our 4-hour tour includes a 2-hour sleigh ride and a stop for a warming light lunch.
  
Snow Tank Safaris: Enjoy the view from your enclosed cabin as a snow tank pulls you through the snowy landscapes. Choose from our 3-hour Aurora Hunting nighttime adventure or a 4-hour daylight excursion. Both guided adventures include thermal Arctic wear and a hot beverage.

New for the 2022-2023 season!  Scandinavia’s Largest Private Planetarium!  Adult Entrance: 36€ / Child: 19€

The Planetarium is one of its kind and features an exclusive architectural design and art specially made to be presented with the Planetarium building. Enclosed are the UFO Bar & Restaurant under the Glass Dome with an upcoming Brewery.   The Planetarium offers 156 comfortable seats where you can lean back and be transported into another world while a 30-minute show explains the scientific background of how Northern Lights are visible and the myths surrounding this phenomenon by indigenous cultures in the arctic circle and worldwide.  All exclusive footage was shot in Kakslauttanen and surrounding area specially for this Planetarium show. You might be able to recognize some landmarks while enjoying the colorful display of Aurora Borealis.   Please enter through the Art Gallery exhibiting Lappish artists with the Design Shop and Igloo Tower providing a 360° view over the resort and Finnish Lapland. From there you can reach the Planetarium comfortably through an artistic decorated underground tunnel

Conversing With Locals

Finnish is the official language of Finland.  Some people in remote locations speak with a dialect but you will also find that almost anyone you encounter will speak English quite well.

The Finns are considered to be bit cool - quiet and reserved. But they are actually warm, friendly, hospitable and especially honest people once you get to know them and we encourage you to do just that.

Time Zone and Business Hours

The local time in Finland is GMT+2 hours: 7 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time (New York), 8 hours ahead of Central Standard Time (Chicago), 9 hours ahead of Mountain Standard Time (Denver) and 10 hours ahead of Pacific Standard Time (Los Angeles).

Note that Finland also utilizes Daylight Saving Time – referred to as “Summertime.” During this period (March 27 to October 30) Finland time is GMT+3 hours.

Banks are generally open from 9:00AM to 4:00PM Monday through Friday. Shops are generally open from 9:00AM to 6:00PM on weekdays. Open air markets in Helsinki are closed on Sundays. Larger shopping malls as well as some souvenir shops and bookstores in the city have shorter opening hours on the weekends.

A Note about Traveling with Minors

Many countries currently require documentary evidence of a relationship between minors traveling with an adult. Although Finland is not among them, we recommend that parents traveling alone with a minor carry a notarized letter from the absent parent authorizing the trip, regardless of whether the parent is married or divorced. Never-married parents, parents whose spouse has died, and parents who have been granted sole legal custody of children are encouraged to carry notarized proof of their status, including death certificate where appropriate. Grandparents traveling with grandchildren and adults traveling with children who are not their own should carry letters of authorization from both parents of the children. It is wise to also carry the child’s birth certificate with the original seal. Please visit the state department’s website travel.state.gov if you plan to travel with a minor.

Packing Advice to Get You Started

Dress appropriately for the season and included activities. Generally, the attire is casual with the emphasis on comfort and convenience. Easy-to-care-for clothing, mix-and-match separates and clothing you can layer are ideal as to prevent the need to bring a lot of clothes. To accommodate the seasonal variable weather, you should pack accordingly. However, you may wish to dress up a bit if you plan to attend a theater or an evening cultural event in Helsinki.

Winter in Lapland

Yes, it gets cold in Finland in the winter. When looking at temperature weather forecast or seasonal averages, keep in mind to factor in wind chill. Even if the thermometer drops below zero here, it does not feel as cold as you might think due to the fresh air and dry continental climate. But cold is no reason to stay indoors – just gear up right (it is all about dressing in layers) and enjoy the outdoors and winter sport activities in the crisp white snow.

Clothing should be comfortable, durable, loose, and layers are key to keep the cold out: warm winter coat, hat, scarf, ski mask, gloves, socks, thermal underwear, waterproof footwear (at least one size larger than your usual size as loose-fitting shoes keep your feet warmer!)

Four steps to fun in cold weather

  1. Start with thermal underwear and warm socks
  2. If it is -20C (about -4F) or below, wear an additional fleece layer on top of your thermals. Another pair of socks, preferably wooly or thermal, will keep your feet warm.
  3. Wear pants with thermal lining. Add a neck warmer or a scarf.

Slip into your winter boots.

  1. Slip into your winter jacket, put on a warm hat and thermal gloves and zip up. You are good to go!

Important note

Many excursions in Lapland require special equipment to keep you safe and warm. The Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort will provide you with the necessary equipment for all winter adventure activities including:  

  • For snowmobiling – thermal clothing, driving gear & helmet
  • Equipment for ice fishing
  • Blanket for sleigh rides
  • Helmet and required equipment for horseback riding (in all seasons)
  • Required equipment for bike activities, gold-panning and fishing (summer & fall)
  • Towels and woolen socks if you venture for the Smoke Sauna experience with ice pool (winter)
  • Nordic skiing with ski instructor includes skiing gear and winter equipment

For hiking, canoeing, river rafting, horseback riding, snowmobiling and other active adventure activities you assume responsibility for your personal safety. Some specific adventure activities such as snowmobiling and ATV activities may require a signed liability waiver. Snowmobile drivers should be at least 18 years old with driving license.

Always consult international weather listings for actual temperatures and weather you may encounter during your journey. Dress right and be prepared to make the most of the outdoor activities no matter the season.

Consider an easy-to-carry traveling bag

It’s good to have a small bag to carry your daytime needs with you while traveling; a backpack is used by many travelers for this purpose. A water bottle is always handy to have in your traveling pack.

The Essentials

Hotels and lodges are well-equipped with tissues and toilet paper; however small packets of facial tissues and a small bottle of hand-sanitizer will be handy. Please bring your own lotions, contact lens solutions, cosmetics and feminine hygiene products. Bring extra prescriptions (packed partially in your hand luggage) as well as cold medicine, aspirin and cures for intestinal troubles. You should also bring a lip balm, skin moisturizing lotion, and a good sunblock lotion with you since temperatures especially in the summer can intensify the impact of the sun. We recommend 30+ SPF.

Seeing + Capturing your Experiences

Make a complete check of your camera equipment before you leave and make sure you have replacement or rechargeable batteries and additional memory cards.

Camera drones are not allowed for use on our tours as they can detract from the experiences of your fellow travelers. If, however you plan to bring a drone for use in your free time, please pay close attention to the local aviation laws.  Most historic sites and national parks explicitly prohibit the use of personal drones, so it is your own responsibility to acquire any necessary permission and adhere to local laws should you plan on traveling with a drone. 

On-Tour Hunger Pangs

High-protein snacks are good for both the air trip as well as for your activities while traveling: nuts, raisins, granola bars and peanut butter are popular with many of our travelers.

A Few Final Tips

Some handy items we recommend include: an extra pair of glasses, zip-lock plastic bags, and a bottle opener.

Reminders about Your Baggage

Baggage restrictions vary by airline, and we ask you to review the airlines on your itinerary and review baggage restrictions on their website to determine the maximum number of bags and weights that are allowed.  In Economy, passengers are limited to one bag.  Keep in mind that the flights that are included on your tour are in Economy and are limited to one checked bag with weight limits.  So when packing for your trip, consider the bag and weight restrictions on all of your flights, not just your international arrangements.

Most airlines charge travelers for additional bags and excess weight so we advise you to pack as lightly as possible. Most of our hotels offer laundry services.

TSA Packing Tips

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) publishes a comprehensive list of items that are Permitted and Prohibited in carry-on and checked baggage. You can find the complete list online at https://www.tsa.gov/travel.

For vacation travelers, the important thing to remember is that only one small bag of liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes can be in your carry-on bag when you pass through security. Each item is limited to 3.4 ounces (100ml) - and all containers must fit inside a clear, 1-quart sized, zip-top bag. If you have containers that are larger than 3.4 ounces, they must go inside your checked baggage.

Medications, baby formula/food and breast milk are allowed in reasonable quantities exceeding the 3.4-ounce limit, and they do not have to be in a zip-lock bag. You should declare these items at the checkpoint, and keep in mind that TSA Officers may need to inspect them.

Other Recommendations:

  • Jewelry, cash, tablet devices and laptops should be in your carry-on baggage. Tape your business card to the bottom of your laptop for easy identification if it gets separated for inspection.
  • Avoid accessories and jewelry that contain metal as they may set off the metal detector at the check point. This will save having to take them off and put them back on as you pass through security.
  • Wear slip-on shoes that can be easily removed and placed on the conveyor built to be x-rayed at the security check-point.
  • If you wish to place a lock on your checked luggage, it must be of a make and model approved by the TSA.
  • Do not pack wrapped gifts and do not bring wrap gifts to the security check point.

Out and About: Helsinki

While visiting Helsinki, you may want to explore a bit of the local culture including museums and restaurants.  See below a short list of popular museums that can easily be accessed using your transportation card.

National Museum of Finland (Closed Mondays)

http://www.kansallismuseo.fi/en/nationalmuseum

Ateneum (Closed Mondays)

http://www.ateneum.fi/?lang=en

Design Museum (Closed Mondays)

http://www.designmuseum.fi/en/

Amos Rex (Closed Tuesdays)

https://amosrex.fi/en/

Also, some great restaurants:

Olo Restaurant

This Scandinavian-syle restaurant has a Michelin star and purchases their  ingredients mainly from small and familiar domestic and Nordic producers.

Tue-Fri 18:00-24:00

Sat 18:00-2400

http://olo-ravintola.fi/en/  

Meripaviljonki

Meripaviljonki is a unique restaurant located in Hakaniemi, Helsinki. Floating on the waves of Säästöpankinranta, the restaurant offers panoramic sea views and the best seasonal delicacies. Meripaviljonki specializes in seafood: fish, shellfish and lobster from our very own tank, but the menu does also feature meat and vegetable dishes. On Sundays they offer Meribrunssi, or a Sea Brunch.

Mon-Tue 11:00-22:00

Wed-Fri 11:00-24:00

Sat 14:00-24:00

Sun 11:00-17:00

http://www.ravintolameripaviljonki.fi/?lang=en

A Few Words about Safety + Security

Finland is a very safe country and violent crime involving travelers is quite rare. But petty crime is a reality no matter where in the world you travel. Traveling abroad is no different than visiting a new city in the United States, use common sense precautions to safeguard your person and your possessions at all times. Remember to wash your hands frequently and use hand-sanitizer.

  • Do not go out and about with your passport unless specifically instructed to do so by your local guides.
  • Keep your extra cash and passport in the in-room safe of your hotel. In the few instances where they are not available, then store these items in the safety box at the front desk.
  • Always make a copy of your passport, credit cards and tickets and keep them separate from the originals so that they can be more readily replaced if lost or stolen. Leave extra copies with someone at home who you can reach while traveling. Or consider scanning these documents and emailing them to an address that you can access while abroad.
  • If you don’t already own one, consider investing in a money belt that can be concealed under your clothing. This is a good place to keep the cash and credit cards that you need for personal expenses while sightseeing, shopping or on activities.
  • Do not display large amounts of cash in public.  Carry your purse with the strap across your chest, not dangling from your shoulder or arm.

These measures will save you countless time and trouble should your credit cards, airline tickets or passport be lost or stolen. 

Some Helpful Web Links

U.S. Department of State

travel.state.gov

Travel documents and tips; State Department Travel announcements; Consular Information for countries you will visit

Center for Disease Control and Prevention

wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel

General health information for travelers and health information on specific destinations

Transportation Security Administration

www.tsa.gov (select Traveler Information)

Tips for travelers going through security at the airport

U.S. Customs and Border Protection

www.cbp.gov (select Travel)

Helpful information for returning U.S. citizens travelling abroad

Calling the U.S. from Abroad

www.howtocallabroad.com

Helpful tool to understand how to call internationally

Currency Converter

www.oanda.com/currency/converter