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Price from £1,905pp
VISITING: Finland BROCHURE CODE: 2004
All prices include: flights, transfers, accommodation, meals, guided activities and cold weather clothing; all as listed.
Our Christmas Northern Lights Quest offers up the perfect winter retreat in which to spend the festive period. You will hunt the Aurora on foot, by minibus and on snowmobiles, as well as learn about the phenomenon. A visit to a reindeer farm, a thrilling daytime snowmobile excursion, and a fantastic husky safari are all included. There will also be wonderful Finnish festivities to enjoy.

What's included?

ALL OF THE ACTIVITIES AND SERVICES LISTED BELOW ARE INCLUDED IN THE HOLIDAY PRICE

  • Flights: return flights from London Heathrow to Kittilä (via Helsinki). Flight route subject to change
  • Transfers: return airport transfers are included
  • Accommodation: 4 nights hotel room or Northern Lights Cabin accommodation
  • Meals: 4 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 4 dinners
  • The following activities and equipment are included in the price: snowmobile safari, Northern Lights workshop, Northern Lights snowshoe, 17km husky safari, Aurora hunt by minibus, visit a reindeer farm, Aurora snowmobile safari (the order of activities is subject to change; please note that you must hold a valid UK driving license in order to drive a snowmobile)
  • Cold weather clothing for the duration of your stay
  • Services of our expert local guide and representative
  • Aurora alert mobile app until approximately 1 am

This special, Christmas edition of our Northern Lights Quest at Harriniva promises to be a wonderful festive escape.

Your base is the Harriniva Wilderness Hotel, a real gem, renowned in the area for its varied and exciting activities and enthusiastic guides. You will stay in either one of the cosy hotel rooms in the main building or a Northern Lights Cabin situated a short walk away from the hotel. The hotel is ideally located in the Aurora Zone and thus offers all guests the chance to see the Northern Lights in all their glory, should the conditions be right.

As well as the Christmas celebrations at the hotel, you will enjoy an array of exciting activities during your time here that will really allow you to feel a sense of connection to the Arctic and gain an insight into the culture and traditions of the region.

The inclusive activities kick off with a thrilling husky safari, followed by a visit to a reindeer farm and the chance to try your hand at snowmobiling! These activities will allow you to gain an idea of the scale of this spectacular natural environment, an insight into some of the region's traditions and some incredible memories.

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Harriniva's location in the heart of the Aurora Zone means that you don't necessarily have to go far to seek out a possible display, but we have included some dedicated hunts to help improve your chances via snowmobile, snowshoes and by minibus. Your expert local guides will use their local knowledge and experience in order to help give you the best possible chance of seeing the Northern Lights.

We love Harriniva for its wonderful warmth, enthusiastic guides and stunning riverside scenery. Winter time in Lapland is always spectacular, but at Christmas, it really is a magical place to be!


Image credit: Antti Pietikainen
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Key facts

Duration:4 nights
Pace:Active
Suitable for: Ages 15+. See our terms for further information
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  • Upon arrival at Kittilä Airport, you will be greeted and transferred to Harriniva where you can check in and enjoy dinner in the hotel restaurant. You will also be shown how to use the Aurora alert application. 

    You'll need a good night's sleep ahead of the start of the adventure tomorrow.

  • Today you will spend Christmas Eve in a truly special and unique way. There is something about a husky safari that seems to fully encapsulate the spirit of Arctic adventure and it is an activity which is almost always a universal favourite with our guests.

    Travelling in such a traditional fashion allows you to appreciate the incredible landscape as the activity is such a peaceful one (once the dogs have got over their initial excitement!).

    The trail will cover about 17km of the snow-laden landscape and you will travel two people per sled with one person sitting in the sled and another standing on the back controlling the brake. There will be a chance to swap over so you each get a try mushing. The enthusiasm the dogs share for the trail is infectious and this is sure to be a real highlight of the trip.

    There will also be the chance for you to chat with the mushers and ask them any questions you may have about dog sledding and their lives up here above the Arctic Circle.

    In the afternoon, the group will participate in the Northern Lights workshop with an expert guide. A brief scientific overview of the Northern Lights will be given as well as an insight into some of the myths and legends that this natural phenomenon has inspired over the centuries. Some photographic hints and tips will be offered in order to help you capture the Aurora on film. Pancakes will also be enjoyed around the fire.

    Christmas is celebrated on the 24th December in Finland and so this evening you will be treated to a delicious meal including some traditional festive Finnish food as well as more international dishes.

    After dinner, you will strap on your snowshoes for a relaxing Christmas Eve walk through Harriniva’s ethereal landscape. Enjoy the silence and tranquillity of the forest at night, and keep your eyes peeled for the Northern Lights. You will stop for hot drinks at a prime Aurora viewpoint half-way through the activity, which will last for around two and a half hours in total.

  • This morning you will kick things off with a thrilling 30km snowmobile safari to allow you to explore the wilderness which surrounds Harriniva. Full training and instruction will be provided before you set off on the trails travelling two people per snowmobile (you must be over 18 and hold a full driving licence to drive a snowmobile). There will be the chance to swap drivers half way should you wish to. This is an ideal way to gain a sense of the scale of this spectacular landscape.

    Lunch will be served as usual and your afternoon will be free to spend as you choose. After dinner, your guide will pick you up and take you on a hunt for the Northern Lights, using a minibus to help you to escape any localised cloud cover. Your guide will consult the weather forecasts and solar activity charts in order to determine the best route for your hunt. With luck, the Northern Lights may appear in order to provide you with a special Christmas performance.

  • You will begin the last day of your itinerary with a trip to a reindeer farm. At over 100 years old, Torassieppi Reindeer Farm is one of the best places in Lapland to gain an insightful understanding of the connection between reindeer and this remote region, in particular, their connection to the indigenous Sámi population.

    Evidence of reindeer herding in this region has been found dating back to the Stone Age, and despite the modernisation of the work with snowmobiles, the knowledge and traditions that have been passed down through the generations remain of the utmost importance to this day.

    At Torassieppi you will be given a tour of the farm, have the chance to feed the reindeer and enjoy a short reindeer-pulled sleigh ride. You will also be able to ask the reindeer herders any questions you may have and visit the small but informative museum which is on site. Then, you will visit the nearby Torassieppi Winter Village, admiring its incredible snow rooms, ice sculptures and restaurant, where you will stop for a special lunch.

    After dinner, you will meet with your Aurora guide for your final venture into the darkness in search of the Northern Lights, and your second try at snowmobiling. You will receive a full safety briefing from your guide to remind you how to use the snowmobiles, before driving away from the light pollution. You will head towards an ideal Northern Lights viewpoint, chosen by your dedicated guide depending on the Aurora activity, cloud cover and weather conditions on the day. You will stop here for a hot drink while you look out for a potentially dazzling Northern Lights display – keep your fingers crossed that they will make an appearance. The activity will last for around two hours, please note that you must hold a valid UK driving licence in order to drive a snowmobile

  • You will be transferred to Kittilä Airport for your return flights today with heads full of memories of your festive adventure.

Included in price

Harriniva Wilderness Hotel

Nights: 1-4

Ideally located in the north-west corner of Finland, high above the Arctic Circle and in the very heart of the Aurora Zone, Harriniva Wilderness Hotel serves as a perfect base for your adventure holiday.

Owned and run by the Pietikäinen family, the hotel has developed a growing reputation for its warm ambience and a large range of enjoyable activities on offer.

Hotel facilities

The hotel has a range of facilities that have been designed to make your stay here as enjoyable as possible.

  • There is free Wi-Fi throughout the main building for guest use, in our experience, we have found it works best in the main reception and dining area
  • The hotel restaurant has a lively, buzzing atmosphere as people excitedly discuss the adventures they have taken part in that day. The meals are served in a buffet style with two or three choices for each course. The food here is hearty and wholesome
  • The hotel also has a pub serving a range of beers, wines and spirits - this is the perfect place to unwind and relax with your fellow guests in the evening
  • Tea and coffee are available throughout the day at reception, but it is not free of charge, so we would recommend taking a travel kettle if this is of particular importance to you
  • In the main reception area of the hotel, you will find a small gift shop selling a range of postcards, soft toys and handcrafted products. There is also a selection of snacks that can be purchased
  • A sauna is available for guest use with separate facilities for men and women. This is free of charge and is heated every evening for around three hours
  • The hotel also has an Aurora Wellness Centre (situated a short walk away on the riverbank), where you can enjoy a range of therapies such as facials or massages. A real treat after a day of soaking up the pristine wilderness! During peak periods, we would strongly recommend booking therapies in advance through reception (all payable locally and we recommend booking in advance if possible)
  • Snowshoes and cross country skis are available to hire for a small charge and there are marked trails surrounding the hotel for those with some experience. For those interested in downhill skiing, reception will be able to arrange a taxi to the nearby ski resort of Olos (payable locally)

Room types

Double/twin rooms

Harriniva has 64 guest bedrooms which consist of twin or double rooms. Triple rooms are also available on request. Decorated in traditional Scandinavian style, all rooms have an en-suite shower room and a hairdryer.

Northern Lights cabins

The hotel has a small number of cabins available on the riverbank, which offer a more secluded accommodation option. The cabins have double or twin beds, a private sauna, an en-suite shower room with a hairdryer, a small kitchen and a lounge area.

Safari House

For those travelling on our longer husky or snowmobile experiences, your nights at the hotel will be spent in shared accommodation in one of Harriniva's Safari Houses. Each has sleeping facilities, a shower room, toilet and a sauna. Some safari houses are on site, whereas others are located 3km from the hotel. If you are staying off-site, you will be transferred to and from the hotel for meals.


 Image credits Emmi Kähkönen - Harriniva Hotels & Safaris

Personalise this tour


Our pick

Snowmobile panorama safari

From £95pp

This safari lets you get familiar with the surrounding region, taking you through the fells around Harriniva and over the river border into Sweden. Travelling two people per vehicle, you will have the opportunity to swap the roles of driver and passenger during a break on the way.

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Anyone wishing to drive must have a full driving licence and be over the age of 18. The total distance covered will be around 30 kilometres.

Activity level: Low

Minimum: 2 people

Available: Tuesday & Thursday at 2 pm


Other options

Activities

Traditional Finnish ice fishing

From: £30pp

A national obsession in Finland, ice fishing is a must-try activity in this part of the world. You will be taking to a local fishing spot on a frozen lake. Here, you will be shown how to drill through the ice and arrange a line. As you wait for the fish to bite, you can take in the scenery with a hot drink in hand.

Read more about this activity

You will be out for between one and two hours.

Activity level: Low

Minimum: 2 people

Available: Thursday & Saturday at 10 am

Husky safari (25km)

From: £317pp

Reaching the Arctic Sled Dog Centre, you will receive full instructions on how to drive a husky sled before heading off on a 25km husky safari, going one person per sled. This adventure will give you a real sense of the trail, as you will be out for around four to five hours.

Picnic lunch included.

Read more about this activity

Activity level: High

Minimum: 2 people

Available: Friday at 10.30am


Image credit: Antti Pietikainen

We include more, no hidden costs

On each of our holidays, you will see a clear outline of exactly what's included in the price of your holiday. We never use 'headline' or 'lead-in' prices like so many tour operators, as we prefer to include as much as we can, rather than see our clients incur considerable additional costs in our destinations.
Price guarantee
Dates
Sun 23 Dec 2018
to Thu 27 Dec 2018
Book
Adults£ 1,905 Single Adult£ 2,165

Next season's provisional dates and prices

To secure places for next season, you can make a provisional booking and fix the cost of your holiday at the provisional package price displayed online. Simply by paying a deposit, you will protect yourself from any package price increases. The departure dates and itineraries remain subject to change and we will contact you when the final dates and itineraries are confirmed. You will have 14 days to decide if you would like to go ahead. If you decide not to travel we will refund your deposit. We reserve the right to charge supplements where there are significant changes to an itinerary or increases in flight costs. Any non-package rates remain subject to change.

Dates
Sun 22 Dec 2019
to Thu 26 Dec 2019
Enquire
Adults£ 2,040 Single Adult£ 2,320

For our full booking terms and conditions please click here

Holiday group size (approximate)

Minimum 2 persons, maximum 24

Group sizes and minimum numbers

Most of our holidays require a minimum number of participants to operate. Minimum numbers are detailed on each holiday page and are always approximate. Group sizes for tailor made holidays will vary for each of the activities. For private departures you may also be joined by other guests during the activities unless you have discussed specific private activities with us.

If your selected date has not yet reached minimum numbers you will be informed at the time of booking. In the unlikely event that your chosen date has not reached the required minimum numbers nine weeks before your scheduled departure date we will contact you and discuss the various options available to you. We will always do all we can to operate a holiday and in some cases we may be able to operate the holiday by combining your itinerary with that of other guests for some activities (this may mean that the maximum group size is increased but this will be discussed in full with you).

If we are unable to operate the holiday then you will be offered the chance to transfer to an alternative holiday or date (subject to availability). If the alternative is more expensive you will be asked to pay the difference, if it is cheaper then you will be reimbursed. You will also be offered the option to cancel and receive a full refund of all monies paid.

See our booking conditions for further information.

Order of activities

The order of activities is always subject to change and you will be provided with your final itinerary upon arrival at your destination

Medical History and advice

If you or any member of your party is pregnant or has any medical condition or disability which may affect your holiday or has any special requirements as a result of any medical condition or disability (including any which affect the booking process), please tell us before you confirm your booking so that we can assist you in considering the suitability of the arrangements and/or making the booking. In any event, you must give us full details in writing at the time of booking and whenever any change in the condition or disability occurs. You must also promptly advise us if you become pregnant or any medical condition or disability which may affect your holiday develops after your booking has been confirmed.

See our booking conditions for further information.

Experience and fitness

We offer a vast choice of holidays which range from 'relaxed' to 'active' so there really is something for everyone and our holidays can be filtered by how active they are. Regardless of the chosen holiday, all activities will include tuition from a beginner's lever and no prior experience is assumed.
If you are unsure about the physical demands of a particular holiday please contact us and our expert team will be happy to help.
See our booking conditions for further information.

Guides and safety

It is absolutely essential when partaking in any activity that you listen very closely to, and abide by, the instructions provided.

If there is anything that you are unsure of during a safety briefing or that you would like to clarify with the guides please make this clear to them immediately before starting the activity.

Our guides' word on activities is always final and your safety is their principal concern at all times, please respect their decisions. By following their instructions, your safety and enjoyment during each activity will be greatly enhanced.

See our booking conditions for further information.

Booking activities locally

In almost all of our destinations you can book and pay for additional activities locally. Please note that we cannot be held responsible for any injury or loss that occurs through any activities that are booked in your destination (see our terms and conditions for further details).

Please always ensure that your safety is your primary concern when arranging any such activity.

Car Hire

If your trip includes car hire the named driver must have a credit card registered in their name which they can present when they collect their car along with their driving licence, as a deposit will be held on the credit card.  Please see your trip dossier for full details.

Minimum age

The minimum age for participation in our itinerary is 15 years old, however, for some activities and shared transfers, our guests may be joined by others and these may include those of a younger age. Any younger participants will be fully supervised by an adult and the guides will ensure that they are only able to participate if there will be no effect on the activity experience. None of the hotels we feature have a minimum age and so there may be families staying at them with younger children, especially during the holiday periods.

To drive a snowmobile you must have a full driving licence and be over 18 years old.

 

Aurora alerts

During your stay, you will be supplied with an Aurora alert. This is typically a mobile phone system to which the staff will send a text should the Northern Lights be sighted. The alerts generally operate until 1 am but it is best to confirm with your guide as times may vary.

The alerts are designed as an aid to Aurora hunting and, although every effort will be made to issue an alert should the conditions seem conducive to a display, things can change very quickly so you should not rely solely on them and should also keep an eye on the sky yourself.

Traveller Reviews

A great one into an amazing one. 29 December 2017 by Alexander Luiten and Lesleigh Brown

Our tour Guide Scotty was amazing, an amazing amount of knowledge backed up by a great attitude - He definitely turned the trip from a great one into an amazing one.We really enjoyed the husky sled tour and husky visit - and seeing the Northern Lights was a great bonus

The activities were so enjoyable 28 December 2017 by Robyn Wood and friends

The activities were so enjoyable - they so different to what we get at home

Northern Lights displays for 3 of the 4 nights 22 December 2016 by Kirsty & Andrew Wingate

The snowmobiling to see the Northern Lights (was) fun and a perfect escape from any light pollution. We enjoyed our holiday very much, but we were blessed with clear skies and Northern Light displays for 3 of the 4 nights we were there.

We were very lucky with glorious displays of the Northern Lights 02 January 2015 by Geoffrey Denman

The food was actually better than I expected. There was plenty of it and the quality was very good. If the choice was a little limited, it really didn't matter. Most enjoyable (activity): Like most people, the husky ride. Apart from anything else, the dogs were obviously loving it and just wanted to run. Least enjoyable (activity): I don't think there was one! I can't think of any improvements.
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This was a truly memorable holiday. It was cold, of course, -30C at the hotel and colder on the lakes, so we had to put a lot of clothes on just to go from the cabin to the hotel for meals. But it was worth it, and we were very lucky with glorious displays of the Northern Lights.
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Frankly a fab Christmas 07 January 2013 by Vanessa Sammut

Have just completed the questionaire but wanted to say that we had, frankly a fab Christmas, thanks to Harriniva, the staff there, your rep Cary (best rep I have every had on a holiday) and the guides. The weather was unkind - v. v. v. cold, minus 35 - but the Northern Lights were v. v. kind and we saw them on Christmas Day. Magical. Staff at Harriniva could not do enough to make us comfortable
Read more
that night, really, really great. If I had a criticism it would be that the hoiday was advertised as no kids - but the hotel was full of a french party with their kids, and they were rather disruptive. Hotel and Cary did their best to make the problem less intrusive, and succeeded to a point - we as a group made a joke of it in the end - but something for you to think about in the future. We had kids running around corridors early and late and food times were sometimes a little chaotic as a consequence. This very small issue aside, in my top 5 holidays ever…. mostly down to customer service - something I value and would like to mention to you.
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Magical winter wonderland 31 December 2012 by Linda Dodge

Just returned home after spending a wonderful six nights at Harriniva from 23 Dec to 29 Dec. Everything from start to finish was superb. Hotel, food and staff couldn't have been better. This was truly an amazing experience for us both. Activites included were 2 x snowmobiling, husky ride, snowshoe walking, ice fishing, reindeer sledge ride, cross-country skiing (very tiring). We had a free day to
Read more
do what we wanted - we chose to go off on a trip with five others to a snow village to visit an ICEHOTEL; it was amazing. We have been on a number of holidays but this beats them all!!!!. We would not hesitate in recommending this company and this amazing experience. We have brought home some truly amazing memories and some fab pictures. Thank you Aurora Zone Team.
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