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Price from £1,925pp
All prices include: flights, transfers, accommodation, meals, guided activities and cold weather clothing; all as listed.
This festive version of our bestselling ‘Northern Lights over Lake Inari’ holiday lets you celebrate the Christmas period in Finnish style, with classic winter activities, fantastic hospitality and a selection of dedicated hunts for the Aurora Borealis.

What's included?


  • Flights: direct return flights from London to Ivalo (flight routes subject to change)
  • Transfers: return airport transfers
  • Accommodation: 4 nights accommodation in twin/double hotel rooms. Apartment/cabin upgrades available (supplements apply)
  • Meals: 4 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 4 dinners
  • The following activities and equipment are included: snowshoeing, two Aurora Camp evenings, husky safari, Aurora snowmobile safari, snowmobile safari to reindeer farm, Christmas festivities (the order of activities is subject to change)
  • Cold weather clothing for the duration of your stay
  • Aurora alert until approximately 1 am
  • Services of our expert guides and representative

‘Northern Lights over Lake Inari’ is one of our most popular Aurora Zone holidays, offering all the classic snow-based activities and multiple opportunities for spotting the Northern Lights. This four-night Christmas version of our bestselling trip adds a seasonal sparkle to what is already a thrilling winter getaway.

During the day, you will power away on snowmobiles over the landscape and also explore the magnificent surrounding region on a 17km husky safari, where an energetic pack of dogs will carry your sled along. You will also spend time at a reindeer farm, getting an inside look at this traditional local way of life and learning how to throw a lasso like a real herder.

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Two evenings will be spent at Nellim’s special Aurora Camps. The hotel has several of these dotted around the area, set in ideal wilderness locations for observing the Northern Lights. Sip a hot drink by a crackling fire and gaze at the skies above. Another evening will be spent chasing the Aurora Borealis on snowmobiles. You can also upgrade to spend a night in one of Nellim’s amazing Aurora Bubbles, allowing you to watch for the Northern Lights from the comfort of your bed.

Traditionally, Finland holds its celebrations on Christmas Eve rather than Christmas Day. Following that practice, you will be treated to a wonderful Christmas dinner with delicious local specialities. Where better for such a festive meal than a land of reindeer and snow-covered fells?

Sat on the shores of Inari – the largest lake in Northern Finland – Nellim Wilderness Hotel is the perfect spot for a Christmas getaway, with superb hospitality, excellent Northern Lights-viewing potential, and a magical natural environment.

© Markku Inkila, Joanne Richardson & Kevin Owen
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Key facts

Duration:4 nights
Suitable for: Ages 18+ with a reasonable level of physical fitness. See our terms for further information.
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  • Having landed at the airport, you will be collected and transferred to Nellim Wilderness Hotel, which sits next to beautiful Lake Inari, at just nine kilometres from the border with Russia. You will be given your cold-weather clothing and Aurora Alert, before enjoying your first dinner of the trip.

    Finns hold their main celebrations on Christmas Eve rather than Christmas Day, so tonight’s meal will be an appropriately festive dinner with national delicacies. If you can, save some time to head outside and look for the Northern Lights over Inari before heading to bed. You might also like to take part in a heated Aurora sleigh ride – see the ‘Personalise’ section for more details.

    During your stay, you may wish to spend one of your nights in Nellim’s splendid Aurora Bubbles. Please see the ‘Personalise’ section for more information and speak to our Travel Experts to arrange this.

  • Today will be a Christmas to remember, as you enjoy your enchanting surroundings during some fantastic activities.

    Following breakfast, you will be taught how to fasten snowshoes before journeying with a guide into the white landscape for a walk. On this four-hour activity, you will make a stop along the way for a freshly prepared campfire lunch, depending on the weather. Snowshoeing immerses you in the natural world at a comfortable pace, allowing you multiple opportunities to spot local wildlife. The walk includes some small hills, so it can be relatively strenuous in certain parts.

    After dinner, you will have your first of two sessions at a Nellim Aurora Camp. Enjoy a hot drink by an outdoor fire as you wait for the Northern Lights to make an appearance.

  • No visit to Lapland can be considered complete without a husky safari, which is easily a favourite activity for both our office team and the travellers on our winter holidays. Today, you will be shown how to control a dogsled before setting off two people per sled over a distance of around 17 kilometres. The course will take you over lakes of ice and under snowy trees, and the experience will stay with you forever.

    Breakfast, lunch and dinner will be had in the hotel restaurant. In the evening, you will stick to the theme of speed and take to snowmobiles for an evening Northern Lights hunt. These vehicles will allow you to get past any areas of cloud cover to increase your chances of seeing Aurora displays. While you will travel two per snowmobile, it will be possible to swap the roles of driver and passenger along the way. Please note that anyone who wishes to drive a snowmobile must be in possession of a full driving licence.

  • The culture of Finland’s indigenous Sámi people can be seen throughout the country. After breakfast, you will get a glimpse of how central reindeer herding is to their way of life.

    Getting back on the snowmobiles, you will travel to a local reindeer farm and meet one of the herders and their animals. After learning how the animals are taken care of, you will be taught how to throw a lasso and will get to practice on some reindeer antlers. It might be made to look easy, but it is trickier than you think! Lunch will be had back at Nellim.

    After dinner, you will have your second Aurora Camp session – fingers crossed you will be treated with a bright display.

  • After breakfast, you will be transferred to the airport for your homeward journey.

Included in price

Nellim Wilderness Hotel

Nights: 1-4

Nellim Wilderness Hotel is a traditional and intimate family-run hotel, offering comfortable accommodation and wholesome home-cooked food.

All guests can expect a warm welcome from owners Jouko and Mari and their family, as well as being well taken care of by our dedicated Aurora Zone representative.

Hotel facilities

  • Formerly the village school, the building has been restored with a typically Scandinavian-style and décor offering a relaxed environment for guests to enjoy during their trip
  • The recently renovated restaurant is the focal point of the main building which serves hearty buffet-style food in a beautiful dining area
  • Tea and coffee facilities are also available in the restaurant for guests to access throughout their stay, although none are available in the room
  • There is one sauna for guest use, which you can book per room for private use
  • Wi-Fi is available for guests to use in the main hotel reception area

Room types

Hotel rooms

The 34 double or twin rooms are decorated in keeping with local surroundings and culture. All have an en-suite shower room and hairdryer. Some of these rooms are located in the main building and others are situated in separate annexe buildings, a short walk from the main building. There are also two hotel rooms with private sauna which can be booked, subject to a supplement and availability.

Other options

Nellim Apartments

Many guests like to upgrade to one of the six apartments at Nellim, all of which are situated in one of the annexe buildings across from the reception and restaurant. The apartments offer guests additional room and their own space in which to relax after a day or night of activities.

Each apartment varies in size and facilities. Apartments are allocated on a first come, first served basis according to the accommodation which best suits your party.

Please note that some of the apartments require a supplement. Please contact our Travel Experts for a quotation.

Please note these images display a range of the different types of apartment. Upgrade supplements may apply.

Apartment facilities

  • The one, two and three bedroom apartments are all equipped with living area, bathroom (with shower and hairdryer), kitchenette and/or electric kettle and TV
  • Some of the apartments offer a fireplace or a sauna but these facilities cannot be guaranteed, only requested
  • We recommend taking supplies of your favourite tea and coffee so you can enjoy warm drinks in your apartment


Please note that an upgrade supplement may apply. Please speak to our Travel Experts for a full quotation

Image credits: Markku Inkila

Nellim Cabins

Supplements from: £239pp

Nellim offers a variety of cabins which offer varying facilities and which are mainly within easy walking distance of the hotel. Cabins are allocated on a first come, first served basis, according to the accommodation which most suits your party and availability. Specific facilities cannot be guaranteed. Please contact our Travel Experts for a quotation.

Price is based on two adults sharing a log cabin. Please contact our Travel Experts for a quotation.

Cabin facilities

  • The standard cosy cabins are studio in style and offer a double bed, pull-out sofa bed, a small kitchenette, a shower room and en-suite toilet, a fireplace and a private sauna
  • The honeymoon cabin will be updated for the Winter 2017/18 season. The current plan is to change the arrangement of this cabin so that it is no longer split over three separate cabins and instead each of these cabins will become an individual unit with bedroom and en-suite bathroom. Once details have been confirmed, we will provide a complete description of this unique log cabin accommodation
  • A large lakeside cabin can be requested for larger groups but this is a few kilometres from the hotel and so transfers are provided for meals and activities
  • Two larger log cabins situated close to the hotel are available on request, however, these require a minimum of 4 people and sleep up to 8

Please note these images display a range of the different types of cabins.

Nellim Log Suites

Supplements from: £194pp

Located between 30-70 metres from the main building these log suites are designed to be the highest standard of accommodation Nellim offer. The suites are approximately 33m² and there are four suites in each of the separate log buildings.

Please contact our Travel Experts for a quotation.

Suite facilities

  • All suites have their own private sauna, electric kettle and mini-fridge to make your stay as comfortable as possible

  • The suites have a double bed downstairs as part of the open plan layout and a mezzanine level above which sleeps up to three more people

  • All meals will be served in the hotel restaurant which is just a short walk from the suites

  • These suites are perfect for those wishing to have more space to relax in during their downtime from activities

Personalise this tour

Our pick

Heated Aurora Sleigh

From £185pp

The wonderful Jouko and Mari at Nellim have once again come up with an innovation in Aurora hunting, ensuring that guests are in total comfort throughout. They have created a heated Aurora sleigh: a private, intimate and toasty warm experience that has been thrilling visitors to Nellim during the winter.

Read more

This is the way to travel in the Arctic! Climb into your private Aurora-viewing cocoon which will be pulled behind a snowmobile driven by a local guide. The sleigh has large transparent windows to the front, back and, most importantly upwards, hence providing a fantastic view of the night sky. As they are heated, it could be -30C outside and you will be reclined in comfort hopefully gazing at the fabulous Northern Lights.

This safari lasts about two and a half hours (departing around 8 pm) and takes you onto the frozen expanses of mystical Lake Inari some 250km north of the Arctic Circle in prime Aurora hunting territory. Your English-speaking guide will take you to some of the best vantage points where you can choose to get out (or not!), take photos and walk on the ice. You will also be served warm drinks.

We cannot guarantee that the Aurora Borealis will come out to play but regardless, the Aurora Sleigh is a fantastic way to experience the Arctic in the dead of night.

Unsurprisingly the sleigh rides have seen many marriage proposals over the past months and for anyone thinking about popping the question, this is a very stylish way in which to do it – sadly we cannot guarantee the answer, but this setting should give you an excellent chance!

Private Aurora sleigh ride including dinner: please speak to our Travel Experts for a quote

Other options

Special Nights

Aurora Bubble

From: £173pp

What a concept this is! These bubbles represent the absolute pinnacle in the increasingly sophisticated search for the Northern Lights.

Essentially, the Aurora Bubble brings the Arctic wilderness and the night sky into the comfort of your own bedroom. Each bubble has a heated bedroom with a large north-facing dome window, allowing you to gaze at the firmament from the comfort of your own bed!! This is Aurora hunting in style.

Read more about this activity

The bubbles are located in an area of minimal light pollution but within walking distance of the hotel should you wish to return to your room during the night. We can't imagine that you will as there is a toilet which means there is no need whatsoever to leave your comfortable bubble during the night.

Of course, we can neither guarantee that the Northern Lights will appear nor can we ensure cloud-free skies because Aurora hunting will always carry an element of luck. What we do know is that the Aurora Bubbles represent a genuinely unique and memorable experience.

Please note: Prices are based on you spending the first or last night of your holiday in this unique accommodation and not keeping your original accommodation. If you would like to do this on any other night during your holiday you will need to keep your accommodation and supplements will apply.

A night in an Aurora Kota

From: £187pp

The team at Nellim are world-experts when it comes to Northern Lights viewing, and frequently devise creative new ways to appreciate this natural phenomenon. The Aurora Kotas at Nellim and Muotka are well in keeping with such a tradition: combining a cabin structure with glass tepee elements, they provide a large glass roof above the sleeping area, allowing visitors to lose themselves in the magic of night-time Northern Lights displays.

Read more about this activity

Each Kota contains a double bed and being a bit larger than an Aurora Bubble, it has room for a third person on a sofa bed. The 18m² space has simple and inviting décor, as well as pleasant lighting which illuminates the area without disrupting aurora-watching experiences. Linking to their natural setting, the majority of the Kotas do not have a shower- even so, each includes a toilet and small sink. Two of the Kotas do have a shower and are slightly larger at 29m².

Please note: prices are based on you spending the first or last night of your holiday in this unique accommodation and not keeping your original accommodation. If you would like to do this on any other night during your holiday you will need to keep your accommodation and supplements will apply. Prices are based on the Kotas without showers; if you would like to stay in a Kota with a shower, please speak to our Travel Experts for a full quote, as they attract a higher cost.

Trip Extensions

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.

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

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.

Sun 23 Dec 2018
to Thu 27 Dec 2018
Adults£ 1,925 Single Adult£ 2,060

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.

For our full booking terms and conditions please click here

Holiday group size (approximate)

Minimum 2 people, maximum 24 people (approximately)

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.

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