NEW! FROM OFF THE MAP TRAVEL
Finland-based Program Includes Dog Sledding, Reindeer Farm, Snowmobiling and More
photos Inari Wilderness Hotel
(Rovaniemi, FINLAND, September 2022) Launching in November, a new seven-day, six-night Ultimate Christmas Invitation itinerary transports visitors to the Arctic Circle to meet Santa Claus in his home, deep in the Lapland forest. The program includes accommodations, activities and some meals as detailed below.
The festive journey starts in Helsinki before heading to Lapland with a personalized, handwritten letter and photobook from Santa Claus, highlighting all the ways guests have been “nice” this year and requesting the traveler’s presence at a one-on-one meeting at Santa’s home in Lapland.
Designed to enthrall all ages, the Ultimate Christmas Invitation from specialist travel company Off the Map Travel, creates a personalized experience for each member of the traveling party. Perfect for pre-Christmas shopping and celebrating throughout the festive season, the program is offered from November to January and begins with an overnight in Helsinki in the art deco boutique hotel Lilla Roberts where guests receive a “golden ticket” for the “Polar Express” overnight night train from Finland’s capital city to Rovaniemi, above the Arctic Circle.
Photos for the itinerary can be found here. Captions indicate photo credits.
“The itinerary builds suspense and anticipation up to the moment of meeting Santa in person. With no queues and a location in the most festive place on earth, the trip is a dream for those who love Christmas and Santa Claus,” noted Jonny Cooper, Arctic travel expert and founder of Off the Map Travel.
Guests can also stargaze and search for the Northern Lights through huge skylight windows in exclusive Aurora loft rooms at Rovaniemi’s contemporary Arctic Light Hotel. The magical city, just above the Arctic Circle is perfect for an immersion into Christmas and for numerous shopping opportunities.
To complete the experience, the tour continues to Inari, a center of winter activities, the birthplace of Finnish Sami, and the home of Santa. There, with winter clothing provided, guests can choose from outdoor programs including dogsledding, a reindeer farm meet-up and sleigh ride, and snowmobiling through the brilliant Lappish landscape.
In Inari, at Santa’s workshop, participants will have a personal meeting with Kris Kringle himself with plenty of time to chat about Santa’s feelings about this year’s holiday, his elves and, of course, you. As no Christmas holiday is complete without a gift, visitors will receive something very special before embarking on a sleigh ride to the Wilderness Hotel Inari, an unusual “round” log cabin resort with comfortable beds, a personal sauna in each cabin, and views over Lake Inari or River Nukkumajoki In the evening, the cabin’s open fire is invites you to cozy up and search for the Northern Lights in the clear skies.
The seven-day, six-night Ultimate Christmas Invitation itinerary is priced from $3806 USD per person, (at the time of this writing) including all activities, transfers, one night’s accommodations in Helsinki , one night’s accommodations in Rovaniemi, three nights’ full board accommodation in Inari, and the overnight train to Rovaniemi from Helsinki. Flights are additional. As with any itinerary from Off the Map Travel, this program can be tailor-made to fit the wishes and requirements of the guest.
Arrive in Helsinki and take your private transfer to your hotel and check into your connecting rooms at Lilla Roberts. On arrival to your room, you will be greeted with a personal invitation to head north to the beautiful wilderness of Finnish Lapland for a magical Christmas adventure! Tonight, explore the Christmas markets and the festive spirit to get you in the mood.
Enjoy Helsinki today before you head to the train station to board your overnight train to Rovaniemi. Watch the amazing scenery as you head north and perhaps get a glimpse of the Northern Lights as the skies darken.
Arrive at Rovaniemi late morning and take your private transfer to the city center and to your hotel; the Arctic Light Hotel where you will check in to your Aurora Loft room. Evening at leisure to explore the city and enjoy dinner in the city.
After breakfast, take you private transfer to Inari. On arrival at the Wilderness Hotel Inari, you will check in, receive your program for the next few days, and pick up winter clothing especially for the planned outdoor activities. Afterwards it’s time for a delicious dinner in the restaurant.
Later, head out to try to spot the Northern Lights outdoors in the snowy wilderness or simply cozy up in your Aurora cabin looking towards the night skies.
After breakfast it’s time for an n exciting dog sledding adventure. You will be taught how to handle the sled before you set out on the husky safari, where the huskies will pull your sled through the beautiful winter scenery.
The dogs’ enthusiasm is infectious and as the animals fall silent on the trail, you will realize that this is one of the best ways to experience the wintry beauty of Lapland.
This afternoon you’ll travel by car to a reindeer farm to meet one of this area’s most famous residents. You will meet the reindeer herders and learn about the importance of reindeer in Lapland. You will also learn how to lasso a reindeer and have a short ride in a sleigh pulled by reindeer.
Today the winter adventure continues with a snowmobile tour, no previous experience required. First you will get familiar with the snowmobile, have full safety instructions and a driving lesson. After everyone feels comfortable, you will journey into the nearby surroundings through the beautiful Lappish scenery.
This afternoon is the highlight of the trip you’ve all been waiting for — meeting Santa himself! Meet Santa, enjoy a chat with him and receive a special gift.
Tonight, you will end your stay in Finnish Lapland with a beautiful trip to the Aurora Camp. This activity takes in the amazing surroundings of Inari. You will be comfortably seated in a sledge that is pulled by the guide’s snowmobile. At the hut there is a hut with an open fire to warm you, and your guide will also serve warm drinks to keep you cozy.
Check out this morning and take your transfer to Ivalo Airport ready for your departure flight.
OFF THE MAP TRAVEL
The team at Off the Map Travel works with experiences and destinations that allow people to explore hidden wonders of our planet. Specializing in Soft Adventure OTMT creates tailor-made holiday itineraries offering authentic experiences not offered by many larger travel companies.