Wilderness Hotel Nellim – Aurora in the Wild

  • Details


Spend a week at Nellim Wilderness Hotel in Finland and enjoy a wealth of activities. At night, you’ll go on four dedicated Aurora activities with our expert local guides. During the day, you will encounter reindeer, take a snowmobile trip into the wilds, snowshoe and go dog-sledding.

As you would expect from the name, our Aurora in the Wild trip is an exciting adventure in the wilderness of North-East Finland. It provides a busy mix of activities by day in combination with Aurora hunting at night.

Wilderness Hotel Nellim is a small family-run hotel close to the shores of Lake Inari. This remote location, in combination with the almost total lack of light pollution, makes it the ideal spot for a potential Aurora viewing.

The hotel has always been ahead of the game when it comes to innovation and certainly makes the most of this when it comes to Aurora activities. Firstly, they have created several Aurora Camps in spectacular spots from which to view the Northern Lights, offering unobstructed views of the night sky. They are wonderful locations in which to sit around a campfire and wait for the sky to light up.

Just a short walk from the main hotel building you will also find a fantastic selection of Aurora Bubbles and Aurora Kotas which you can upgrade to for a night during your stay. Inside you can lie back on the bed and gaze directly through the glass roof into the Arctic sky above you. We can also offer guests the chance to enjoy a Northern Lights snowmobile safari. These are in addition to the evening activities which are scheduled during this wonderful week. Details can be found in the Personalise and Accommodation sections of the holiday page. 

There are many highlights in the array of activities offered on this trip. A wilderness snowmobile safari and the chance to try dog sledding are amongst the favourites with our guests. You will also spend time with a reindeer herder and gain an insight into the traditional techniques that are still utilised today.

We love Nellim for many reasons - its huge Northern Lights potential, its welcoming staff, and its exciting variety of activities. One of the most wonderful things about it, however, is that it is the perfect antidote to a busy life and work schedule. Here you will re-discover what it is to experience true silence and you will be able to understand that there are some parts of our world which are truly unspoilt.

Please note that the activities outlined will all be included in your holiday, however, the order of activities listed here is for guidance only, and your final timetable will be confirmed on arrival.

If you are staying over Christmas or New Year, you will enjoy a festive dinner and celebrations on the 24th and the 31st of December (traditionally in Finland, Christmas is celebrated on Christmas Eve).

Important Information

The order of activities listed in this agenda is provided for guidance only. Your final and detailed itinerary will be provided either with your final travel documents (which will be emailed to you around a week prior to departure), or upon arrival.


Upon arrival at the airport, you will be welcomed and transferred* to Wilderness Hotel Nellim, your accommodation for the next 7 nights. You will then enjoy dinner in the hotel restaurant.

After your meal we strongly recommend taking a walk down to the lake shore (a few minutes away) where the views of the night sky are exceptional; an ideal place for an Aurora stake-out.

On one of your nights you may choose to upgrade your accommodation to a spectacular Aurora Bubble or Aurora Kota at Nellim – see the Accommodation section for full details. 

Please note that the order of activities within your itinerary is subject to change and the agenda below should be used as a guide only. The exact order of your agenda will be confirmed upon arrival at the hotel.

*Transfers are based on a scheduled group shuttle that sometimes stops at a few nearby hotels. If you would prefer to upgrade to private taxi transfers please ask our Travel Experts for a quotation

Included Meals:  Dinner
[IVL] Ivalo Airport, Finland To Wilderness Hotel Nellim
Airport Transfer
Wilderness Hotel Nellim - Check In
Address : Nellim, Inari, Finland

Following breakfast this morning you will strap on some cross-country skis and set out to explore the hotel’s surroundings. Cross-country skiing is one of Scandinavia’s most beloved activities and something that we find our guests keen to try out. We assume no prior experience so you will be given full instruction before heading out for an easy paced lesson. The guided activity will last around two hours in total.

Before your first foray into the Arctic darkness tonight, you will be given an Aurora presentation by an expert local guide. They will discuss with you the science and legends behind the phenomenon and what to look for when you are gazing into the sky on your snowshoe walk. They will also detail the camera settings you will need when trying to photograph the Northern Lights. The workshop will last around one hour in total

On tonight’s Aurora snowshoe, the guide will lead you to a local vantage point from which you can keep an eye on the sky for a potential Aurora sighting while enjoying a hot drink. This is a lovely way to see the landscape in a completely different light. You will be out for around two and a half hours tonight.

Included Meals:  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Wilderness Hotel Nellim - Stay
Address : Nellim, Inari, Finland

By now you are sure to have realised that you are in an exceptionally beautiful corner of the world with wonderful landscapes to explore. One of the most exciting ways to do this is via snowmobile as, in addition to allowing you to cover great distances quickly; they are also exceptionally good fun. Snowmobiles have been utilised in this region since the 60s and have proved to be hugely important in helping to maintain links between remote communities.

Today you will travel two people to a snowmobile, traversing frozen lakes and forested fells. Providing you both carry a full driving licence and are over 18, you will have the chance to swap seats and each take a turn at driving the vehicle. You will also enjoy a campfire lunch prepared by your guide. Your snowmobiling tour will last for approximately four hours in total.

To give you some time to relax after your snowmobile safari there is no planned activity for tonight as you may just wish to relax by the fire and reminisce with your fellow guests about your day. However, you do have the option this evening of spending the night in an Aurora Bubble or Aurora Kota. See the Accommodation section for further details

Included Meals:  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Wilderness Hotel Nellim - Stay
Address : Nellim, Inari, Finland

Today is your opportunity to try out a very traditional way of transport again, as you put on snowshoes and head out into the forest to explore areas of deep snow around the hotel.

Compared to snowmobiling and husky sledding, snowshoeing may not seem like the most exciting of activities, but rest assured, it is a remarkably fun and memorable way to explore the wilderness. Your guide will lead you through the forest, helping you get to know the area and search for signs of wildlife. You will be out for around four hours in total and will enjoy a campfire lunch and hot drinks during your trek (weather permitting).

Tonight a visit to one of the Aurora Camps is included. Nellim has several at its disposal and they are excellent spots either on the edge of Lake Inari or in a forest clearing. All offer a warming campfire, hot drinks and spectacular views of the night sky. The Aurora Camp activity will last for around two and a half hours tonight.

Included Meals:  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Wilderness Hotel Nellim - Stay
Address : Nellim, Inari, Finland

Today we have given you a free day to relax and take in all that you have seen so far.

For those who wish to keep the activities going the hotel will have a range of options available. Alternatively, you may wish to hire some snowshoes or cross country skis and utilise your new-found skills on one of the trails close to the hotel – you must seek maps and trail conditions from the hotel prior to planning your route. 

This evening, after your meal, why not head out the frozen lake, adjacent to the hotel? It is an excellent Northern Lights viewpoint, should conditions be favourable. It is also possible to add a Northern Lights snowmobile safari tonight if you’d like to head out into the wilderness once again. Please see the Personalise section for more information.

Included Meals:  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Wilderness Hotel Nellim - Stay
Address : Nellim, Inari, Finland

Today after breakfast, you will have the chance to get up close to some reindeer. Reindeer have been herded in this corner of the world since the Stone Age and they remain of the utmost cultural, economic and social importance to the region.

After a short transfer, your local guide will discuss the role of a reindeer herder and answer any questions you may have about the reindeer and their daily life. There will be the chance to feed the reindeer and take lots of pictures before you head back to the hotel for lunch. You will be out for approximately 2 hours in total

You will have free time in which to relax or enjoy additional activities this afternoon.

Following dinner this evening, you will return to one of the excellent Aurora Camps for another evening with your guide in prime Aurora territory. You will be out for around 2.5 hours tonight and with a little luck and favourable conditions, the Northern Lights may appear above you.

Included Meals:  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Wilderness Hotel Nellim - Stay
Address : Nellim, Inari, Finland

For your final day in Nellim, you will be participating in an activity which is almost universally loved by guests – dog sledding. In contrast to snowmobiling, husky sledding is an almost silent activity (once the dogs have got over their initial excitement!), with the only sound being the swishing of the sled’s runners and the padding of the dogs’ paws.

You will receive full instruction and tuition before enjoying a safari that will last for around 1.5 to 2 hours (depending on the track and weather conditions). You will travel two people per sled with the chance to swap over so you can each take a turn at driving the sled. In total you will be out for around 2.5 to 3 hours.

Tonight you will head out by car or minibus on your final hunt for the Northern Lights. The advantage of the car or minibus is that it offers additional mobility to potentially outrun any cloud cover that may be blocking an Aurora. This, in addition to the guide’s excellent local knowledge, should hopefully allow your final night to be filled with Northern Lights. You will be out for approximately 2.5 to 3 hours tonight and enjoy a hot drink along the way.

Included Meals:  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Wilderness Hotel Nellim - Stay
Address : Nellim, Inari, Finland

Today you will bid farewell to Nellim as you are transferred to the airport for your return flight home.

Included Meals:  Breakfast

Wilderness Hotel Nellim To [IVL] Ivalo Airport, Finland
Airport Transfer
Wilderness Hotel Nellim - Check Out
Address : Nellim, Inari, Finland

What's included?

  • Return flights from London to Ivalo (via Helsinki). Flight routes subject to change.
  • Return airport transfers
  • 7 nights’ accommodation in twin/double hotel rooms (the hotel can usually accommodate your bed set-up preference, but this can’t be guaranteed. Upgrades available on request)
  • 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 7 dinners
  • Cross-country skiing
  • Aurora workshop
  • Northern Lights snowshoe
  • Wilderness snowmobile safari
  • Snowshoe trek
  • Reindeer visit
  • Two Aurora camp visits
  • Husky safari
  • Minibus or car hunt for the Northern Lights
  • Fully qualified guides and instructors during activities
  • Cold weather clothing for the duration of your stay
  • 24/7 assistance from our UK based operations team and in destination support from our local partners


Wilderness Hotel Nellim
moonstride   moonstride   moonstride   moonstride

Wilderness Hotel Nellim is owned by our good friends Jouko and Mari Lappalainen. Nellim was their first hotel (they now also own the delights of Nangu, Muotka, Juutua and Wilderness Hotel Inari) and is now renowned as an Aurora destination. It will always hold a special place in our hearts for being the first place many of us saw the Northern Lights. The hotel has been upgraded over the years and now has a wide range of accommodation options including rooms, suites, log cabins and unforgettable Aurora Cabins which are all within a short walk of the main reception and restaurant building.

A tiny village, Nellim is a remote spot close to the shores of Lake Inari and surrounded by incredible wilderness, providing perfectly dark skies, ideal for Aurora viewing.

Hotel facilities

  • The restaurant/reception building is the focal point at Nellim. With locally-made furnishings, the atmosphere is charming. Hearty buffets of local and international favourites are served three times a day. There is usually a soup and salad selection, two choices of main meal and a pudding for evening meals
  • Guests can relax next to the roaring fire and enjoy a drink from the bar in the restaurant
  • A sauna is available for guests to use and can be reserved at reception in hourly slots
  • There is a fully stocked gift shop which offers a range of local produce and souvenirs for you to take home
  • Tea and coffee making facilities are available in the main building for guests outside meal times
  • Cross-country skis and snowshoes are available to hire from the onsite activity centre
  • The small lake behind the hotel is a great spot for some independent Aurora stakeouts
Arctic Lake Villa
No of Days: 1
Accommodation Upgrade to Arctic Suite
No of Days: 1
Upgrade to log cabin
No of Days: 1
Accommodation Upgrade - Log Suite
No of Days: 1
Aurora Kota (Not Keeping Original Accommodation)
No of Days: 1
Aurora Bubble (Not Keeping Room)
No of Days: 1

Personalise This Tour

Tour Map

Additional Info

Price is based on 2 persons travelling

Tour terms, click here  

Booking conditions click here

Payment and Cancellation Terms:

Please note that the following cancellation terms supersede in part those mentioned in Section 7 of our general booking terms and conditions.

If you are travelling between, and including, the dates of 15.12-06.01, the following cancellation terms apply:

– Prior to 25.09 – Loss of deposit (including the full cost of the flights or other services where paid at the time of booking)

– 26.09 up until departure date – 100%

For all other travel dates, the following cancellation terms apply: 

– Up to balance due date (this is normally 16 weeks prior to departure however some holidays differ. If this applies to your holiday you will be advised at the time of booking) – Loss of deposit (including the full cost of flights or other services where paid at the time of booking)

– Between balance due date and 43 days prior to departure – 60%

– 42 to 16 days prior to departure – 85%

– 15 or less days – 100% 

Key Facts

Duration 7 or more nights
Pace Active
Holiday Type Package Holiday
Max Group Size NA
Cities / Destinations Finland, Nellim
Brochure Code 2904
Price from
£2,765 pp
8 days

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Wilderness Hotel Nellim – Aurora in the Wild


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