ALL OF THE ACTIVITIES AND SERVICES LISTED BELOW ARE INCLUDED IN THE HOLIDAY PRICE
- Flights: return flights from London Heathrow to Luleå (via Stockholm)
- Transfers: return airport transfers from Luleå Airport
- Accommodation: 4 nights accommodation in a winter cottage at Brändön Lodge or 4 nights in a double room at Pinebay Lodge (both options are subject to availability)
- Meals: 4 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 4 dinners (2 courses)
- The following activities and equipment are included: husky safari, dinner on ice experience, Northern Lights snowshoeing, Northern Lights hunt via snowmobile-pulled sled (the order of activities is subject to change)
- Cold weather clothing for the duration of your stay
- Services of our expert local guides
Brandon Lodge and Pine Bay Lodge are ideally situated in the stunning region of Luleå, on the coast of Swedish Lapland. The lodges offer views out towards the Bothnian Bay which freezes during winter and becomes a vast white plain of thick ice and snow. Spending Christmas in a winter cottage is a highlight in itself but with incredible Aurora potential and some amazing activities included too, this is a fabulous four-night break.
Luleå has a fantastic Northern Lights record and your accommodation sits in an area of limited light pollution. We include two Northern Lights hunts to maximise your chances of spotting the Aurora under the guidance of expert and knowledgeable guides. These include a hunt via snowmobile-pulled sleigh and a snowshoe search which will take you into the winter forest.
During the day, we have included a husky safari which is undoubtedly a favourite here at The Aurora Zone. The eagerness of the huskies is infectious but once the safari begins the silence and the surrounding winter landscape create a memorable atmosphere. There is also enough leisure time so you can tailor your holiday and choose from a wide range of activities including a snowmobile forest tour or even a hovercraft trip on the frozen sea. If you are looking for something more relaxing, then you can add in the hot tub and sauna which is a short walk from the lodge. Please see our ‘personalise’ section for full details.
The main lodge itself is warm, cosy and ideally suited to a Christmas getaway and you can enjoy hearty local food and a relaxed ambience in the central restaurant. Our good friend Göran and his team will no doubt greet you with warmth and hospitality. The combination of comfort and winter activities will undoubtedly ensure a memorable Christmas break.
Arrival and Welcome
Arriving at Luleå Airport, you will be transferred to your winter cottage accommodation at either Brändön Lodge or Pinebay Lodge, which are both only thirty-five to forty-five minutes away.
After a welcome from your hosts and a warming dinner in the main restaurant building, you can settle into your accommodation, keep your eyes open for the Northern Lights and look forward to the week ahead.Included Meals: Dinner
Husky Safari and Aurora Hideaway Dinner
Following breakfast, you will kick off your festive holiday with a husky safari. There is no better way to get acquainted with the stunning landscape surrounding Luleå and it is the perfect introduction to Swedish Lapland.
You will be transferred to the nearby husky farm before meeting the dogs and learning how to prepare the sled. The enthusiasm of the dogs is infectious, they just love to run but the moment the sled is in motion they settle into a steady pace. The silence and tranquillity of the landscape is spectacular, far removed from the hustle and bustle of daily life.
Travelling two per sled, you will be out for approximately two hours. You will then have the opportunity to meet the dogs and take photographs. Lunch will be enjoyed at the lodge restaurant.
Dinner this evening is both special and unusual. It is not every day that you get to enjoy a range of Swedish delicacies in the midst of the Luleå wilderness. You will be transferred via snowmobile-pulled sled to the Aurora Hideaway; a charming cabin on skis which will be positioned in an ideal spot for any potential Aurora displays. Inside, the cabin is cosy and welcoming and you will enjoy a freshly prepared two-course meal. It will no doubt be an evening to remember, particularly if the Northern Lights appear outside.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Optional Activities and Northern Lights Snowshoeing
This morning has been left free for you to choose from a variety of additional winter activities led by our local experts. Options include a hovercraft journey across the frozen pack ice or snowmobiling through the forest. For those in search of a slightly more unusual activity then why not try the Icebreaker activity in the town of in nearby Piteå. This involves cutting through the pack ice on a boat before floating on frozen sea in survival suits. This is an invigorating experience. Please see our ‘Personalise’ tab for further details.
Breakfast and Lunch will be enjoyed at the hotel restaurant.
Following a Christmas Eve buffet of local Swedish delicacies, your search for the Aurora continues as you strap on snowshoes and head out into the winter forest. Your guide will lead the way, giving you an insight into life in Swedish Lapland whilst looking for the best viewing points. There is little light pollution in this area so keep your eyes to the sky for any signs of the Northern Lights starting to dance. The tour is approximately 2 hours in duration and hot drinks are included.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Optional Activities and Northern Lights Hunt via Snowmobile-Pulled Sled
Today is Christmas Day and you will enjoy a leisurely breakfast before having the morning and afternoon at leisure (lunch will be served as normal in the lodge restaurant). You can simply relax and enjoy your spectacular surroundings or choose some additional activities. A hot tub and sauna is a fantastic way to unwind or for those that want something more active, there is the option of a forest snowmobile safari. Please see our ‘Personalise’ section for details.
Following dinner, you will hunt for the Aurora via snowmobile-pulled sled. During the two-hour tour, you will travel in a comfortable sled filled with reindeer pelts and warm blankets. You will journey across the frozen sea from island to island and your skilled guide will use their expert knowledge to take you to the best possible viewpoints. Keep your eyes peeled for any colour in the northern sky. Hopefully, you will be in luck and the Aurora Borealis will make an appearance!Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Departure or Extend Your Stay
Following breakfast, you will bid farewell to this incredible location as you are transferred to the airport for your flights home. Alternatively, you can extend your stay in Lapland. Please speak to one of our Travel Experts for further information.Included Meals: Breakfast
Included in price
Personalise this tour
The Treehotel is unique and surreal. We can arrange for you to spend the night amidst the treetops of Swedish Lapland in one of the most inventive bedrooms on the planet. It is an experience, unlike any other and one that we don't feel that you should miss. Each of the seven architect-designed rooms is cutting edge.
The bedroom options include The UFO, Mirror Cube, Bird's Nest, Blue Cone and The Cabin. Each room is spectacular in its own right and totally unique and no matter which option you choose you will experience an unforgettable night. It is possible to upgrade to a night in The Dragonfly or the 7th Room - please ask if you would like a quote for this option.
Your stay includes lunch, dinner and breakfast at Britta's Guesthouse which is approximately a 10-minute walk from the tree rooms. This is a characterful and quirky place to dine, in contrast with the ultra modern Treehotel, with old world charm and hearty home cooking.Read more
This is exclusive accommodation as there are only six rooms, so we recommend booking as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.
In the morning after your breakfast, your transfers will be arranged to take you back to the airport for your return flights home.
Please contact us for a full quotation based on your transfer and rooming requirements.
Image Credits: Graeme Richardson
This region is the only place we feature where guests can explore the wilds in a hovercraft. These machines perfectly suit the ever-changing seasons here and are exceptionally good fun.
You will each be given an intercom headset in order for the pilot to be able to communicate with you and impart his local knowledge.
During this two and a half hour tour, you will set off across the ice and islands and head out to the island of Brändöskär which is typically close to the edge of the frozen sea. You will disembark and take a walk on the ice where depending on the weather conditions, you may witness some of the vast natural sculptures which form as the pack ice gradually shifts and cracks.
A light lunch is included and you will be served warm drinks before returning to the lodge.
Image credit: Graeme Richardson
Snowmobile Forest Tour
Snowmobiling through the snowy forests of Swedish Lapland is an enchanting and fast-paced experience. Having been shown how to drive the vehicles, you will follow your guide along a trail, travelling two people per snowmobile on this two-hour safari. It is also possible to upgrade to drive your own snowmobile.Read more about this activity
Anyone wishing to drive must be at least 18 years old and in possession of a full driving licence.
This two-hour safari includes a stop for hot drinks and the chance to swap drivers.
Duration: 2 hours
Drive your own snowmobile upgrade: add £90
Image credits: Graeme Richardson
The frozen sea is a sight to behold. A vast, thick sheet of shimmering white, stretching out far into the distance, it is hard to believe that the ocean lies below. The ship then cuts through the ice with apparent ease and suddenly the water is revealed. Shards of Ice surround the boat and you would be forgiven for wondering whether you are on an expedition to Antarctica. The title of the ship ‘Arctic explorer’ conjures up images of historic voyages and when you get out onto the open ocean it is difficult not to feel a sense of adventure.Read more about this activity
You will take a 35-minute transfer to Luleå from your accommodation at Brändön Lodge or Pinebay Lodge, before picking up a second transfer from Luleå to Piteå, which takes approximately 50 minutes. Following an introduction and safety briefing by the ship’s captain, the journey will begin in Pitsundskanalen, which is where the mouth of the river Piteälven meets the open sea. A mere 100 yards ahead of this point, the ocean opens out and there is a seemingly endless display of ice, which is easily broken by the ‘Arctic Explorer’. The ship leaves a trail of ocean behind and this makes it possible to bathe in the freezing water.
You will be given survival suits which will provide protection from the cold and also prevents you from getting wet. Following this, you will have the opportunity to float on the water. It is an invigorating experience, and when you are lowered into the ocean you may have feelings of trepidation, but this soon replaced by delight. You can also experience walking upon the thick Ice of the frozen sea, which is a surreal experience, particularly if you imagine the contrast of a summer’s day, where the water is flowing freely.
A hot drink and survival suits are included.
Duration: 2 hours
Image credit: Graeme Richardson
Hot tub and sauna
During your stay at Brändön Lodge, you will have the option to relax in the hot tub and sauna. Both of these are just a short walk from the lodge and they sit on the edge of the frozen sea. The hot tub and sauna are rented for private use together, so you can use each of them as you like. If you would like to include this, please contact one of our Travel Experts who will be able to provide you with a full quote for your needs.
Dates & Prices
Price Comparison Guarantee
Single adult price: based on sharing activities and transfers but staying in your own cabin (please note: the minimum number required for the trip to run is 2 people).
Price was £1755 per person, now £1545 per person!
Next season’s pre-sale dates and prices
To secure your holiday for next season, you can make a pre-sale booking and fix the price of your trip at the pre-sale price displayed below. Simply by paying a deposit of £400pp, you will protect yourself from any package price increases. The departure dates and itineraries remain preliminary and we will contact you when the final dates and itineraries are confirmed, you will then have 14 days to decide if you would like to go ahead. If you decide not to travel, we will refund your full deposit payment. 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.
Sun 22 Dec 2019Enquire
Thu 26 Dec 2019
Please note: our holiday prices are based on the lowest available airline fares. These fares can sell out quickly and, as a result, prices may increase and supplements may be applicable. We recommend booking at the earliest opportunity to secure the best possible fares and flight times.
For our full booking terms and conditions please click here
Holiday group size (approximate)
Minimum 2 people; maximum 24 (approximately)
We always try to provide an approximation of the group size you can expect to be with for the duration of each of our holidays. It may be that you are joined by others for parts of your holiday (such as transfers and particular activities) but the above number reflects those you can normally expect to be with from beginning to end. If group size is something which is particularly important to you, please speak to our Travel Experts and they can suggest the best holidays for you.
Tailor-made holiday group sizes will vary for all activities as will the group size for any additional activities you book.
MINIMUM NUMBERS REQUIRED FOR A HOLIDAY TO OPERATE
Some of our holidays require a minimum number of participants to operate (as listed in the ‘Group Size’ section). If your holiday departure has not yet reached the minimum number, you will be told at the time of booking. In the unlikely event that your chosen date is not guaranteed by nine weeks before your scheduled departure date, we will contact you to discuss the available options as per our booking conditions.
The order of activities is always subject to change and guests will be provided with their final itinerary upon arrival.
Please note that some of our holidays may incur a single supplement. Please speak to one of our Travel Experts who will provide you with a quotation.
Medical History and advice
We want our holidays to be accessible as they can be and will do our best to accommodate any special requests and requirements where possible. We have a wide range of holidays and destinations and so our travel experts will help find the best holiday for you.
In order to give us the best possible chance to do this, we ask that if you or any member of your party has any medical condition or disability which may affect your holiday or has any special requirements, that you tell us at the time of enquiry or booking. You must also promptly advise us if any medical condition or disability which may affect your holiday develops after your booking has been confirmed. You may need to provide a doctor’s note and proof of insurance in some cases as the health and safety of our clients is absolutely paramount.
In providing this information you are allowing us to work with our expert local partners to ensure that your whole party can enjoy the holiday. By letting us know in advance we can discreetly work with you to adapt any part of the holiday which may potentially be challenging. Being able to prepare for this in advance makes an incredible difference to what we can offer and minimises any impact on your party and the rest of the group.
Unfortunately, if you choose not to share this information with us in advance then it may limit some or all of the itinerary you have booked, and we cannot be held accountable for any additional costs or missed activities resulting from this.
Insurance is not included in your holiday, but it is a pre-requisite to travelling with us. You will need to ensure that you have cover for all the activities that you will be participating in during your holiday.
It is extremely important that you take out a suitable travel insurance policy at the time of booking. Plans do sometimes change, and you will need this policy should you need to cancel your holiday.
If you are struggling to find a suitable policy then details of our preferred provider, who will cover you for all the activities we offer, can be found on our website by clicking here. Please note that this policy is available to EU residents under the age of 75 only.
If you have a reduced level of mobility, then please contact our travel experts to discuss the suitability of this holiday in relation to your requirements.
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 level 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
Additional activities can be booked locally in almost all our destinations. However, as per our booking conditions, we cannot be held responsible for any injury or loss incurred through participation in activities which are booked at your destination outside of our holiday itinerary (see our ‘Terms and Conditions’ for further details).
When arranging any such activity please always ensure that safety is your primary concern. In some of our destinations, you can borrow or hire equipment for use in your free time.
You do so entirely at your own risk. You must ensure that you are properly prepared, have the necessary equipment and knowledge (maps, etc) and ensure that where applicable, you follow marked routes. We recommend discussing your plans with the local teams who will be able to advise on the most suitable options for you.
Always let the reception/guide know where you are planning to go and take a torch and mobile phone (with the hotel/guide’s phone number stored). It is also a good idea to leave your contact number and the time you expect to return to the hotel should the hotel need to contact you.
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.
Our clients’ safety is at the centre of everything we do, and our operations team continually assesses and monitors the destinations we feature. We carry out thorough risk assessments and work closely with all of our suppliers to continually follow best practice. For up to date travel advice the UK government offers its Travel Aware website as well as the advice detailed below.
FLIGHT SCHEDULE CHANGES AND CONNECTING TRANSPORTATION
On your documentation, we will confirm your flight schedule. Sometimes the flight number, routing and timings might change prior to your departure. If the change is classed as a significant change then we will contact you to discuss this. Please see our booking conditions for details.
Flight schedule changes can impact on your pre and post-holiday travel arrangements if these have been booked separately to your holiday. We strongly recommend that you do not book transport (such as trains or transfers), car parking or non-connecting flights to the departure point for your holiday until you have received your final confirmed travel times when your final travel documents are issued. We are not responsible for the effect of any schedule change on your pre or post travel arrangements. We strongly recommend that you do not purchase non-flexible or non-refundable tickets to avoid cancellation and penalty charges.
BOOKING YOUR OWN FLIGHTS - CANCELLATION DISCLAIMER
If you have chosen to book your own flights, then you will need to wait until we confirm to you that the holiday departure has met the minimum numbers required to run (if applicable to your chosen holiday). Once the holiday is guaranteed to run, you will be informed and you can then make your arrangements.
If transfers are included in your holiday, please ensure that any potential flights will be met by our standard transfers (speak to one of our Travel Experts for advice) otherwise private transfer supplements may be applicable. Once your flights are booked, please send us a copy of your detailed flight itinerary.
Please be aware that most tickets are non-refundable in the case of cancellation. For this reason, we strongly advise you check the rules of the ticket and check the limitations of your cancellation insurance before booking. We cannot be held liable, in the unlikely eventuality that we should be forced to cancel or amend your trip, for losses incurred relating to any flight booking you have made.
THE FOREIGN AND COMMONWEALTH OFFICE ADVICE
We receive all updates from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) with regards to travel advice and we always ensure that we follow this advice in our operations. The FCO issues travel advisories for countries based on a very wide range of factors. They may provide notification about things as simple as a football match and crowds, or they may go so far as to advise against all travel to a region. We ask all our clients to refer to the relevant Travel Advice by Country for the destinations they are visiting in order to make an informed decision on the safety of the destination based on the details provided. It also provides vital information regarding entry requirements, embassy information, local laws and customs as well as specific safety and health. Guests should take responsibility for keeping themselves up to date with this advice. Please also ensure that, if you are transiting through another country, you have read the advice and meet the entry requirements for that destination too.
The FCO travel advice is applicable to British Passport Holders. Most governments will issue their own travel advice for a region and, if you are not a UK resident then you can find some helpful links below:
Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade http://www.smartraveller.gov.au/
New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade http://www.safetravel.govt.nz/
Canadian Consular Affairs Bureau http://voyage.gc.ca/
The U.S. Bureau of Consular Affairs http://travel.state.gov/content/travel/english.html
If the FCO deems that there is an unacceptable level of risk for UK citizens then, together with the government, they may issue an advisory against all travel to a region or country. If such an advisory is published, then we will act accordingly, and this may require the cancellation, curtailment or amendment of a holiday itinerary. These decisions are made on the basis of ensuring our clients’ safety and will affect all clients on the holiday, regardless of their nationality.
If one of our local experts suggests an amendment due to a situation which develops locally then we may also take the decision to amend an itinerary appropriately.
If we have to cancel your holiday prior to departure you will be offered the option of an alternative trip (where any price difference will either be refunded to or covered by you) or a full refund of the monies paid.
If we have to curtail a holiday, then you will be refunded for any costs for the elements we have been unable to deliver, where we have been able to secure a refund from our suppliers. If we must reroute a holiday, then any basis for refund is determined on a case by case basis and dependent on whether the central holiday experience was provided or not.
The minimum age for participation in our itinerary is 12 years old, however, for some activities and transfers, you may be joined by other guests and this may include some of a younger age than stated. Any younger participants will be fully supervised and the guides will ensure that their participation takes place only if the activities will be unaffected.
Very few hotels have a minimum age and there may be families staying at them with younger children, especially during the holiday periods. We do have some itineraries and destinations which are guaranteed to be adult-only, so if this is important to you please speak to one of our Travel Experts.
To drive a snowmobile, you must have a full driving licence and be over 18 years old.
The activities were excellent and the staff amazing.
Thank you so much for finding this alternative trip for us which allowed my ageing mother to go for what will probably be her last overseas trip. A shame we didn’t see the Aurora’s but we both had a wonderful time.
It was all so wonderful but I think the peace and quiet of Pine Lodge were the most memorable. The holiday was so well organised and I would like to thank Goran and Ann.