Wednesday, August 6, 2014

The Long journey Home

Make it Happen

Fancy experiencing life in the Arctic or even becoming a reindeer herder yourself? Then wrap up warm and join a Sami tour in far northern Sweden. Our guide shows you how to do it, where to go and what expect.

Getting there Pathfinder tours (PATHFINDER LAPLAND LennartPittja runs several small-group tours with his company, Pathfinder Lapland, approved by Sweden’s eco-tourism organization, Nature’s Best. His reindeer migration tour as described in this feature last five days and costs US$2,077. Days are spent tracking the reindeer on snowmobiles and nights are spent sleeping in lavvu tens/reindeer furs and sleeping bags are provided, so some level of physical hardiness is required to get the most fro mthe trip. The next migration takes place in April 2010)  begin and end in Gallivare. Fly to Stockholm from Singapore or Kuala Lumpur via Singapore Arilines, Qatar Airways or Finnair. A more romantic option is to take the overnight train from Stockholm to Gallivare. A comfy three-person berth costs from US$129 return.

For more information from reading magazine, please check Lonelyplanet’s Sweden has an extensive chapter on Lapland. For more details on Laponia World Heritage Area, go to Laponia.Nu.

3 Gateway Towns to Swedish Lapland

SLEEP : FJALLNAS CASTLE in the town of Gallivare has tasteful apartments with kitchen and living area. After dinner in the Swedish restaurant, settle in by the fireplace in the lounge (2-3 person apartment US$242 in high season). 

Pathfinder can also pick up from the famous ICE HOTEL near Kiruna. A stay in a specially carved ice room costs from US$501 at the weekend and you must book well in advance.

If you wish to stay overnight in Stockholm on your way to/from the north, lay our bobble hat in one of the individually decorated rooms at HOTEL HELLSTEN, a short walk from the city’s Old Town (from US$266).

Brrrrr…

Stop the press – the Arctic in winter is cold. While tour operators provide snowsuits and boots, you’ll need to take cold-weather gear on your trip. Take several layers of thermal clothing (more effective for keeping warm than a single thick layer), ski pants, a hat, two pairs of gloves (one of which is waterproof), and a waterproof, wind-resistant jacket. Sunglasses or goggles, to prevent snow glare, are essential.

Discover the World Specialist tour operator Discover the World runs several trips to Swedish Lapland, with sliding scales of comfort and activity. These include a three-day husky-sledding tour (from US$2,090), a three-night break at Kiruna’s Ice Hotel (from US$1,427), and Sami Experience trip that provides an introduction to Sami culture and reindeer-herding, with snowmobile excursions and the chance to spend an night in a lavvu (from US$992). Prices include flights from the U.K.

Original Travel Award-Winning Original Travel has two winter trips to Lapland: one that combines husky-sledding and the Ice Hotel with a trip to Stockholm, and the other a family adventure with husky-sledding and activities at the Ice Hotel (from US$1,610, excluding flights).

Following routes that their ancestors took millennia before them, the Sami reindeer herders make their annual migration across the frozen wilds of northern Sweden.


1 comment:

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