Muotka - Fellside Auroras
- Duration:4 nights
- Suitable for: Ages 15+. See our terms for further information
ALL OF THE ACTIVITIES AND SERVICES LISTED BELOW ARE INCLUDED IN THE HOLIDAY PRICE
- Flights: Return flights between London and Ivalo (via Helsinki). Regional and non-UK departures available on request (flight routes are subject to change)
- Transfers: Return airport transfers
- Accommodation: 4 nights' accommodation in twin/double hotel rooms.
- Meals: 4 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 4 dinners
- The following activities and equipment are included: Aurora workshop, snowshoe hike, two Aurora hunts in a heated minibus, visit to Sámi Siida Museum, reindeer farm, Northern Lights search by snowmobile-pulled sled and husky safari (the order of activities is subject to change)
- Cold weather clothing for the duration of your stay
- Services of our expert local guides
- Aurora alert until approximately 1am
Muotka is simply delightful. This small and remote lodge is surrounded by the forests of North East Lapland. The region is a veritable feast for anyone looking to enjoy a comprehensive experience of Lapland whilst looking for a retreat from the every day and a more relaxed pace of life.
This holiday is balanced in its agenda, meaning that the pace is gentler than you may find in some of the active trips. This does not mean that you are in any way compromising on the exceptional experiences available here, just that you have some time to catch your breath in between them.
You will enjoy true 'bucket list' activities such as an unforgettable dog sled safari in the wilds of the Arctic. There will also be the chance for you to get to grips with the local culture, traditions and heritage as you visit a reindeer farm and a museum dedicated to the Sámi people of Lapland.
Your evenings are dedicated to the hunt for the Aurora Borealis and these excursions typically use engines to do all of the hard work, allowing you to focus on the task at hand. During two evenings you will hunt for the Northern Lights using the mobility of a minibus. Your expert local guides will use their incredible local knowledge and the latest weather forecasts to aid your search. Your third Aurora evening uses a snowmobile-pulled sleigh as your method of transport and again your route will be determined by the Aurora prospects for that night and your guide's experience.
We can also arrange for you to upgrade to the epitome of Aurora accommodation for either part or all of your holiday and book you into one of Muotka's wonderful Aurora Kotas. Details of all of these special upgrades can be found in the 'Accommodation' and 'Personalise' sections of the holiday page.
©Jouko Lappalainen & Markku Inkila
Day 1 Flights, transfers and welcome
Upon arrival at the airport, you will be welcomed and then transferred to Muotkan Maja Wilderness Lodge. The drive here will take you through the forested-fells, with roaming reindeer frequently spotted amongst the trees. The lodge has a beautifully remote feel and provides the ideal base for a Lappish adventure.
After a chance to settle into your room, you will enjoy dinner with the group before a welcome talk from one of the guides. They will discuss your upcoming activities in addition to providing you with your cold weather clothing and Aurora alert.
Before heading to bed we would advise you keep watch on the sky in case the Aurora makes a welcoming appearance. The remote location and almost complete lack of light pollution at Muotka mean that should the Aurora appear you will not need to wander far from the hotel to witness a display if conditions are favourable.
In some circumstances, you may be arriving on a later evening flight. Should this be the case you will have a cold supper on arrival and your welcome meeting will take place the following morning. An advantage of this is that you will be arriving at peak Aurora time, so may see a potential display on your way here.
Day 2 Aurora workshop, gentle snowshoe hike and minibus Aurora hunt
Today your guide will introduce you to the Northern Lights and some of the myths and legends that this phenomenon has inspired over the centuries. Your guides are all locals and their knowledge of the area and the Northern Lights is exceptional. Throughout your holiday, they will utilise all of their skills and the latest Aurora forecasts to help you in your search.
They also appreciate that most guests wish to capture the Northern Lights on camera (if they have the correct equipment), so they will also run through the optimal camera settings and techniques.
This afternoon you will enjoy a leisurely paced snowshoe trek through the forest. Snowshoes allow you to explore areas of deep snow and travel further between the trees and across the fells. The relaxed pace of this activity should allow you to gain a wonderful introduction to your beautiful wilderness surroundings and see some of the local wildlife.
Tonight your Northern Lights quest gets underway with your inaugural Northern Lights hunt. The guides will drive you to a potential vantage point, utilising their local knowledge, weather and solar forecasts.
Day 3 Sámi Siida Museum, visit to reindeer farm and Aurora hunting via snowmobile-pulled sled
As you will have no doubt learnt by now, the remote region that Muotka resides in is steeped in Sámi culture and the traditions and culture of the Sámi people are still of the utmost importance. You will have the opportunity to gain further insights today when you visit the wonderful Sámi Siida Museum in the village of Inari.
The museum has a range of interactive exhibits and displays which document the history and culture of the Sámi people as well as providing details on the wildlife of the Arctic. The museum is also home to a lovely gift shop selling an array of handcrafted gifts.
Today's cultural experiences continue as you visit a local reindeer herder. The herder will talk to you about his reindeer and their importance to the culture of the region. The practice of herding dates back centuries, and, in this part of the world, where the number of reindeer greatly outnumber the number of people, they are vital to the local economy. There will be an opportunity for you to ask any questions you may have and to get up close to these rather delightful animals.
Upon your return to the wilderness lodge, dinner will be served before you head out on another hunt for the Northern Lights. You will travel via sled pulled by your guide's snowmobile and they will lead you to a location with excellent views of the vast night sky. If the solar conditions are favourable, and there is no cloud cover, then you will hopefully see the Northern Lights dancing overhead.
Day 4 Husky safari and minibus Aurora hunt
On your last day in this remarkable location, you will be trying out one of the most memorable activities in Lapland, as you participate in an exciting husky safari.
Guiding a team of huskies is almost always one of our guests' favourite activities and is a truly unique experience. Travelling in this traditional fashion gives people a wonderful connection with the Arctic environment. Once the dogs have calmed their initial excitement, it is a remarkably peaceful activity as the dogs pull you through this winter wonderland.
Before setting off you will be given full instruction and will travel two people per sled with the opportunity to swap drivers during the activity so you can both experience the thrill of being the musher, and the joy of taking in the scenery as a passenger.
This afternoon will be free to relax before dinner. You may wish to take advantage of one of the hotel's saunas. There may also be additional activities which can be arranged locally and snowshoes can be hired should you wish to explore independently.
Your guide will take you out via minibus once more for your final Aurora hunt tonight. They will be armed with solar activity data and detailed weather forecasts to pinpoint the best directions and locations to view any potential Northern Lights display.
Day 5 Depart or extend your stay
Today is departure day and you will be transferred back to the airport to catch your return flights.
If you can't quite bear to leave Finland just yet then we can arrange for you to enjoy a city break in Helsinki on the way home. See the 'Personalise' section for details of the extensions available.
Included in price
Muotka Wilderness Lodge
Muotkan Maja Wilderness Lodge resides around 40km from the main town of Ivalo, tucked away in the corner of North-East Finland. Recently renovated and restored it is owned and run by the same couple as the popular Nellim Wilderness Hotel, Mari and Jouko Lappalainen. They run the lodge with the same hard working ethos and it exudes the same warmth and charm for its much-welcomed guests.
The lodge boasts some wonderful scenery, tucked away in the forested-fells with roaming reindeer frequently seen amongst the trees. It consists of two main accommodation buildings, one with the majority of the bedrooms and another with hosts additional bedrooms, the main restaurant and the reception area.
- The focal point of the main building is the restaurant which is where you will have the majority of your meals. Food will be served buffet style with a variety of continental and cooked food for breakfast and the choice of two or three options for each course at dinner. The menu has been designed with a focus on both traditional and international cuisine using fresh, locally-sourced ingredients
- There is a bar which is usually open until 11pm and serves a variety of spirits, wines and beers and a lounge area with comfortable armchairs to relax in during your free time
- There is a sauna in the main building which is heated daily for guest use
- Free Wi-Fi is available throughout but works best in the main restaurant and lounge. The rooms do not have tea and coffee making facilities but tea and coffee are available free of charge and available in the restaurant area
There are 10 rooms in the main building and 11 in the additional building just across the courtyard. All rooms are en-suite with shower room and can be made up as either a double or twin. They have also been recently renovated and offer lovely Scandinavian décor and charm.
Image credits: Jouko Lappalainen, Markku Inkila
Aurora KotasSupplements From: £105pp
Muotka's owners have always led the way in Aurora hunting innovation. With the Aurora Kotas though, we feel they have really excelled themselves.
The spectacular Kotas have been welcoming guests since November 2015 and offer a unique opportunity to upgrade to true Aurora accommodation for their whole holiday.
These part-cabin and part-glass tepee buildings, are self-contained and situated a short distance from the hotel, next to the annexe. They combine the space and atmosphere of a cosy cabin with a glass roof above the bed. Each Kota faces north so ideal for guests to gaze upon the night sky every night of their holiday, from the comfort of their duvet.
The Kotas are all 25m² with their own private sauna, double bed and en-suite bathroom, making them an excellent base for a longer period of time, although you can also upgrade for just part of your stay should you wish to do so.
If you want the ultimate in Aurora accommodation during your holiday then look no further.
Muotka Log CabinsSupplements From: £212pp
Situated not far from the main hotel, the log cabins at Muotka are a wonderful upgrade option for those looking for a little more space during their stay or if you are travelling as a small group or family.
Each log cabin is approximately 50m² and is fully equipped to make your stay cosy and comfortable.
Log cabin facilities
- All cabins will contain their own log burner and private sauna - ideal for warming up after a day in the snow!
- Each has a double bed and space for 1-2 extra beds
- The log cabins are equipped with large north facing windows so you can easily keep watch for a potential Aurora display
- All meals will be served in the hotel restaurant which is just a short walk away
Personalise this tour
A night in an Aurora KotaFrom £105pp
As ever, Muotka leads the way in Aurora viewing innovation and we are therefore proud to offer our guests the chance to spend the night in one of the magnificent Aurora Kotas. These stunning, part-cabin, part-glass tepee buildings, offer guests an exceptional overnight Aurora hunting experience.
Guests get the space and feel of a cabin during the day and the Aurora viewing benefits of a glass igloo at night, as you sleep under a glass tepee. This means that you are provided with the most wonderful views of the night sky from the comfort of your bed.Read more
These part-cabin and part-glass tepee buildings, are self-contained and situated a short distance from the hotel, next to the annexe. They combine the space and atmosphere of a cosy cabin with a glass roof above the bed. Each Kota faces north so ideal for guests to gaze upon the night sky every night of their holiday, from the comfort of their duvet. The Kotas are all 25m² with their own private sauna, double bed and en-suite bathroom, making them an excellent base.
Please note an additional supplement will apply on our Christmas and New Year departures and that all prices are based on guests spending their final night in a Kota and checking out of their hotel room the day before departure.
Credit: Anthony Oberlin
Helsinki city break
With our destinations being so remote, the majority of flights to Finnish Lapland are operated by Finnair and therefore involve connecting through Helsinki Airport. Many of our guests choose to extend this stop and spend some time in the Finnish capital, either at the start or end of their holiday.
We can arrange a wide variety of city centre hotel accommodation for guests to choose from and some options closer to the airport should you prefer. We know that everyone tends to be looking for something different so please contact our travel experts for their opinion on the hotels which may best suit you and your party.Read more about this activity
Located on the peninsula of the Baltic Sea, Helsinki enjoys a charming coastal location and has much to offer its guests. This thriving city has a rich culture and arts scene with many museums and galleries to enjoy alongside the exciting gastronomy.
Despite its cool urbanism and a reputation for cutting-edge design, Helsinki also retains its charm and visitors will enjoy this city's very friendly atmosphere.
In the city itself, Senate Square is the main feature, showcasing neoclassical architecture and offering easy access to the surrounding shops. With Helsinki once part of the duchy of Russia, it offers similar striking architecture, with wide streets and bold facades. For those looking for more of an insight into the city's past, we would suggest visiting the Ateneum Art Museum which houses over 20,000 pieces of art, or the Helsinki Design Museum which showcases the history of design in the country from traditional folklore to postmodernism.
A 15-minute ferry ride from the main city is the UNESCO-listed Suomenlinna Sea Fortress which was constructed in 1748. As well as being a unique monument, it is also a lovely day trip, as the island has numerous shops and parks to explore.
Helsinki's food scene has seen a recent evolution, with a growth in street food which showcases the city's multicultural population. Helsinki is famed also for its specialist dishes of seafood and Russian cuisine so there is much to sample!
Finland is famed for its coffee consumption so you can be sure of a thriving café culture here. Be sure to include an obligatory stop for a coffee and a cinnamon roll during your explorations!
Whether you add your city break onto the start or the end of your holiday, spending a night or two in Helsinki is not something that you will regret.
Please contact our Travel Experts for a full quotation. All city breaks are subject to flight availability.
Image credit: VisitFinland
Extend your stay in Saariselka
Following on from your holiday, we can arrange for you to extend your stay in Lapland and spend two nights in the ski village of Saariselka. This extension is ideal for those who want to combine their initial Arctic adventures with some downhill skiing or those who want some time to explore independently.
There are lots of things to see and do from your comfortable and well-equipped hotel in the village centre. We can arrange for you to add in additional activities, hire downhill or cross-country skiing equipment or you can simply explore at your own pace and enjoy the shops and restaurants. The choice of how you spend your time here is yours, however, our Travel Experts will help you plan the perfect extension and provide a full quotation.
Dates & Prices
We include more, no hidden costs
Sun 12 Feb 2017Book
Thu 16 Feb 2017
|Adults£ 1,715||Single Adult£ 1,859|
Sun 19 Feb 2017Book
Thu 23 Feb 2017
|Adults£ 1,715||Single Adult£ 1,859|
Sun 12 Mar 2017Book
Thu 16 Mar 2017
|Adults£ 1,615||Single Adult£ 1,759|
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 in order to secure the best possible fares and flight times.
Next year'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 below simply by paying a deposit. This means that you will protect yourself from any package price increases. The departure dates and itineraries remain provisional and subject to change, we will contact you when the final dates and itineraries are confirmed and 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. Flight supplements may apply and any none package rates listed on the website are subject to price increases. Our travel experts will happily provide you with full terms and a complete quotation.
Sun 10 Dec 2017Enquire
Thu 14 Dec 2017
|Adults£ 1,974||Single Adult£ 2,160|
Wed 17 Jan 2018Enquire
Sun 21 Jan 2018
|Adults£ 1,884||Single Adult£ 2,070|
Sun 11 Feb 2018Enquire
Thu 15 Feb 2018
|Adults£ 2,166||Single Adult£ 2,352|
Sun 18 Feb 2018Enquire
Thu 22 Feb 2018
|Adults£ 2,166||Single Adult£ 2,352|
Sun 11 Mar 2018Enquire
Thu 15 Mar 2018
|Adults£ 2,034||Single Adult£ 2,220|
For our full booking terms and conditions please click here
Holiday group size (approximate)
Minimum 8 people, maximum 20.
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.
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.
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 1am 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.
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.
The guides were all wonderful 21 February 2016 by Gail & Angharad Pitty
The guides were all wonderful, but I wanted to especially mention Vesa who took us to the Sámi Museum in Inari. He entertained us on the journey with some great stories about the area and his life, and was a very informative guide around the museum itself. We really loved the dog sledding, and are looking at a husky safari for next year because it was so enjoyable. We also enjoyed the snowshoeing.
Every day was filled with the most amazing experiences ticking many of our bucket list items!! 31 January 2016 by John White
Your sales team/admin team were fantastic and extremely helpful especially Amy and Dawn. Thanks for sorting out twin beds in the Kota. Am so pleased we chose the Kota rather than the hotel - well worth the extra - thanks Amy for that advice and "nudge"!! The husky trip was the best - the reindeers would have topped this had the ride been longer. That was my wife's view! I loved the snowmobile trip with Juoko, with the huskies a very close second! All were brilliant and amazing!! All of it was exceptional and enjoyed them all! We have travelled to many places but for such a short trip every day was filled with the most amazing experiences ticking many of our bucket list items!! It completely surpassed all of our expectations. We really had no idea what to expect and strangely the Northern Lights became secondary! However, we loved seeing them even though they weren't that spectacular because of the cloud cover but because of the other trips we weren't as disappointed as we thought we might have been when we first arrived.
What a magical experience 18 March 2015 by Brian Bentley
What a magic experience. Even though the Aurora Lights did not appear the package was an excellent offering. I would have stayed an additional day, time allowing, to experience the snowmobile ride. The husky dog sled ride was top notch. To be in charge of a team of six huskies was an experience not forgotten easily.
Really found the staff at the hotel delightful 11 March 2015 by Halina Szutowicz
Really found the staff at the hotel delightful. They were enthusiastic, knowledgeable, hard working and seemed to be able to turn their hands to anything that needed done in the lodge. I'd go back like a shot for a longer time. Loved all activities, best was probably husky sledding which was much more fun than expected and none of us fell off!
Fantastic holiday 20 February 2015 by Kylie Dow
Couldn't have asked for a better trip - well-organised, lovely staff, comfortable accommodation, great activities and three sightings of the Aurora. Perfect balance of activities and time to relax.
Muotka was superb 06 November 2014 by Brian Goodall
The welcome at Muotka was superb and I can't think of anything else they could have done. We really had a fantastic time and on the last night we saw the Lights which we thought were totally wonderful - much more so than I had expected, indeed I find it hard to put into words how very special I thought they were. We really loved Finland and enjoyed the activities which were very extensive although we particularly enjoyed the Husky sledge driving. Red squirrels appeared outside the window most mornings whilst I was eating my breakfast and they were absolutely enchanting and quite different to our red squirrels. We were very impressed by our guide Santo - his knowledge of the area was encyclopedic and he worked tirelessly, indeed I'm not sure when he slept. All of the staff could not do enough to help - we were really impressed - the additional outer clothing provided was great and absolutely essential. All in all it was just fabulous and I really hope to go again!
We saw the Aurora twice 08 April 2014 by Peter Drummond
Overall an excellent holiday. We saw the Aurora twice, the second time a fantastic display.
First rate trip 31 March 2014 by Richard Butler
We just wanted to let you know how very impressed we all were with all the arrangements and clothing for our recent four days at the Muotka Wilderness Lodge. Everything went very smoothly and was well and safely organised—though heaven knows what an energetic tour must be like! We arrived around 11.30pm to find a delicious soup available and things were just as good and better than we dared hope for all four days and we even saw the Aurora on our last night – at minus 27C. Our guide Mantuu was superb and always interesting and knowledgeable whilst all the background info you provided was first rate. Many thanks
We had a really great time on our recent holiday 17 February 2014 by Irene Blake
What can I say, but we had a really great time on our recent holiday organised by your team. Our party of eight were hosted by some really enthusiastic people when we stayed in Finland. ALL the activities were enormously enjoyed by us and we learnt such a lot from our guides. On each of the three nights that we went out Aurora hunting, the guides did their very best to find a clear part of sky somewhere in Finland! We travelled even to the Russian boarder for a view. On our last night the skies cleared and Noora, our fantastic guide, took us up to an area in the North which provided us with the most stunning views. I think the Aurora spirits were on our side, as it was my birthday, and what a display we saw. Noora took many photos to include us in and made these available to us afterwards and these will be treasured by us all. Please pass on our many thanks to your team and to all those involved at the Wilderness Lodge, Finland, especially Noora.
Amazing time at Muotkan Maja in Lapland 27 March 2013 by Helen Purser
We are just back from an amazing time at Muotkan Maja in Lapland. All of the activities were brilliantly organised, our guides were enthusiastic and knowledgable. We did a lot in the time we were there, but at no point did the trip feel rushed or hurried, the pace was just right! Two of our four nights were very cloudy, limiting our chances of Aurora spotting, but on our last night the clouds parted and the Northern Lights danced across the sky for us, both at the lodge and up on the fell at Kiilopaa - we stayed out on our last night until 2.30am in termperatures of -17c and it was well worth it! The accommodation was modern and comfortable, the food was tasty, plentiful and warming - just what we needed to keep us going!
This was an excellent and memorable holiday! 24 March 2013 by Brian Knight
This was an excellent and memorable holiday! It's hard to think of anything that could have improved our experience. Our days and evenings were completely filled with new and exciting activities, the hotel was cosy, the food was delicious, and we saw the Aurora on two nights out of four. Sanna and Santtu looked after us very well, and were very flexible in arranging activities and mealtimes to suit everyone. We were lucky to share the trip with a great group of like-minded guests, and it was a pleasure to chat to them around a blazing fire over a cup of hot berry juice. Particularly special was snowmobiling through the starlit forest at midnight, as it was unlike anything we'd done before! Being propelled through a sunlit forest by enthusiatic huskies was equally thrilling!
The husky rides were just fantastic 22 March 2013 by Natalie Fearns
The husky rides were just fantastic. Even better when we got to hold the husky puppys. There wasn't anything that I didn't enjoy, or (would) change.