This short break is a fantastic way to experience the Northern Lights whilst celebrating the New Year in the company of the delightful Sami people who inhabit this part of Northern Sweden.
What better way to celebrate the new year than by enjoying some of the best experiences available - including snow mobiles, Husky sledding, a visit to the Original ICEHOTEL and a visit to Abisko - the Northern Lights capital of the World!
Limited to around 30 people in total we split the group up so that snowmobiling and sled dog driving are done in smaller groups. Everyone comes together for New Year and the trip to Abisko.
** Note - the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis) is a naturally occurring phenomenon. Unfortunately we cannot guarantee its appearance but the vast majority of our guests (about 80%) during the 2015/16 season did experience at least one evening where the lights were visible.
Below is a sample itinerary for your Sami Northern Lights New Year experience - all activities will be included but we may change the order of them for logistical reasons:
Fly from London Heathrow to Kiruna via Stockholm.
On arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel, Hotel Arctic Eden or the exclusive 7 room Mattarahkka Northern Lights Lodge (see accommodation options on tab above) where you will have a briefing on your New Year Northern Lights holiday and be kitted out with your arctic clothing.
Settle in and relax prior to dinner. Dinner will be made using traditional local ingredients.
Meals included: Dinner
After breakfast Mikko, your snowmobile guide, will meet and transfer you to Máttárahkká Northern Lights Lodge for your adventure along one of his private snowmobile trails.
Explore forests and frozen lakes where the chances of seeing reindeer and moose in their natural habitat are good. Continue your excursion up to Mount Eatnamvárri a real vantage point from where you have spectacular views in front of you. Miles and miles of untouched wilderness stretch out before you on one side of the mountain and on the other side, Kiruna nestles between the Loussavaara and Kirunavaara mountains.
On arrival back at Máttárahkká Northern Lights Lodge enjoy a cooked lunch prior to a bit of downtime.
This evening gather for a BBQ on the aurora deck outside Mattarahkka Lodge, looking towards Abisko. The position of the lodge provides great views to the northern horizon making it a good place to look for the Northern Lights.
The guides will be tracking local aurora activity using the latest forecast and web cam information and will have a minivan on hand to take you out in pursuit of the best sightings. This will often be in the direction of Abisko National Park.
Our mission is to get you to see the aurora if they are present and we may manage your itinerary locally to ensure we give you the best chances.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
After breakfast, your guide will take you to the original world famous ICEHOTEL where you can spend a couple of hours touring the hotel seeing the incredible Art Suites, The Ice Church or having a drink in the Ice bar. There is also an excellent shop if you wish to do a bit of souvenir hunting.
This evening, celebrate the New Year Sami Style at Máttaráhkká Sami Lodge, where on arrival you will be served warm beverages before gathering around the open fire for storytelling and a few winter games.
Afterwards settle in the lounge and enjoy a pre dinner drink before your 3-course traditional Sami dinner.
At around 11pm travel to the vantage point near the ski slope where locals from Kiruna gather to toast in the New Year and watch the firework displays over the town. If you are lucky the northern lights will be blazing above! At midnight have a champagne toast prior to returning to Máttárahkká lodge.
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Enjoy a full hot and cold buffet breakfast in the hotel / lodge prior to collection for your day time husky safari.
Ylva Sievertsson is one of a select group of accomplished 'lady' husky guides, who runs a lovely kennel in one of our favourite valleys near Kiruna. She has a very unique relationship with her dogs and it is always a priviledge to spend time with her.
Your journey from the lodge to the kennel follows a scenic road that leads to Kebnekaise, Sweden’s highest mountain. During the car ride there are great opportunities to see moose, as this is their wintering ground. Once you arrive at the kennels get acquainted with the dogs and receive detailed instructions about how to drive a team. Harness the dogs and feel their excitement as you attach the sled. Head out into the frozen river valley where you will have opportunities to take turns in driving the team whilst making stops to take photos. The location is outside the major tourist areas and we can almost promise that you will enjoy pristine arctic nature alone.
You will be about for around 2 hours before heading back to base for a warming lunch in the traditional ‘Kota’ adjacent to the family home.
To make it more exclusive we only take a maximum of 8 guests at the time.
This evening enjoy a leisurely dinner or alternatively chose the Hot tub and Sauna evening at the lodge. This special addition includes an hour private use of the rooftop aurora hot tub and the use of the sauna.
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
After the New Year celebrations enjoy a leisurely start to the day and breakfast before a late morning transfer to the airport for your flight home at the end of your traditional Sami New Year celebration in Swedish Lapland.
Highlights of this Northern Lights New Year short break:
- 4 nights Accommodation with breakfast
- Traditional Sami New Year Celebration
- Unique BBQ and Aurora Chase
- Snowmobile Day Adventure in pristine wilderness with great views
- Drive Your Own Sled Dog Team in secluded Moose valley
- Visit Original Ice Hotel and new IceHotel 365.
- All Meals
- Arctic Clothing Loan
Price - per person:
- Arctic Eden £1695 per person
- Máttaráhkká Lodge £1795 per person
Price based on 2 people sharing a twin or double room, travelling together.
This package is only available with flight departures from London Heathrow. Flights depart on 29th December 2017 and return to the UK on 2nd January 2018.
HOTEL: Arctic Eden
Room Type and Board: Standard Twin / Double room bed and breakfast
Number of Nights: 4
The inspiration of local Sami Janne Gronberg who saw the opportunity to create Kiruna town’s most luxurious hotel while at the same time revealing throughout the heritage of the SAMI people.
Rooms are light and airy, typically Nordic in style with wooden floors and minimalist décor but housing all the latest electronic details from flat screen TV to Sony sound systems.
All 32 rooms are well appointed and the 5 suites are excellent, where those who like a great bathroom will not be disappointed with Whirlpool baths, massage showers with inbuilt music systems and personal saunas make these some of the best we have seen anywhere in Lapland.
Above everything however is a will to make sure that guests enjoy and make the most of their stay in Kiruna. Other facilities include Heated Pool, Sauna and 2 restaurants, one serving local cuisine and the other Thai.
As the lodge is away from town the skies are dark and being situated on a slight elevation the views out across the Arctic tundra to the Abisko alps are expansive
This small intimate lodge used to be a Sami handicraft centre until the owners had the idea to turn it into an exclusive retreat. With only 7 bedrooms, open plan lounge and dining room the emphasis is on relaxing in a cosy environment. The rooms have a loft bedroom whilst downstairs is a living room and ensuite bathroom.
The lodge has a fabulous sauna and a very unusual northern lights hot tub on the roof where you can star gaze or hunt for the Aurora. (Please note that the hot tub experience carries an additional charge).
Other benefits of a stay here mean that if you are doing husky and snowmobile adventures they are both on your doorstep!
Evenings are focused on good food, relaxation and the Northern Lights so if you are looking for a 'home away from home' experience then look no further.
Upgrade cost: £100 per person, based on 2 sharing. Sold out for 2016/17