Arctic Experience & Northern Lights | Travel Brochure

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Discover a tantalising collection of autumn and winter breaks including finding out the best places to view the northern lights in Sweden, Finland, Norway, Iceland and Canada.

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Arctic Experience & Northern Lights | Travel Brochure

  1. 1. DISCOVER THE WORLD Winter 2012-13 3 Arctic Experience& The Northern Lights I C E L A N D l S W E D E N l N O R W AY l F I N L A N D l G R E E N L A N D l C A N A D A
  2. 2. Contents WelcomeThe celestial phenomenon of the northern lights has been much talked about in the media over the past couple of years. So why all this focus now? Interest has been largely sparked by a period of exceptional auroral activity, anticipated to run through 2012-13. This period marks the peak of the 11 year cycle in sun spot activity, which generates the northern lights. Expectations are high that displays will be particularly prevalent over this time. So how do you go about arranging a trip to see the northern lights? When and where is best to go? Having chased the aurora myself for many years, my top tip is to focus on your holiday experience as a whole. Mother Nature is unpredictable and therefore sightings of the northern lights cannot be guaranteed, even in a peak period such as this. All of the carefully researched itineraries in this brochure offer the best locations to potentially see the aurora; whether you choose to cosy-up in a Finnish log cabin, chill out at a ‘cool’ Icehotel in Sweden, discover Norway’s spectacular fjords, explore the volcanic wonders of Iceland or tour the Canadian wilderness. By day undertake winter adventures and thrilling activities, and come nightfall, should the northern lights appear then they will be the ‘icing on the cake’ - or as they say in Iceland, the ‘raisin at the end of the sausage’! Since we created our first inspiring holidays to Iceland and across northern Europe in 1984, we’ve helped thousands of travellers fulfil their dream of witnessing this incredible phenomenon. You’ve come to the northern lights specialists; and I hope that you’ll find this brochure inspiring and invaluable in planning your very own Arctic Experience. Clive Stacey Managing Director and co-Founder Introduction Welcome 2 Our Unique Pledge 3-4 5 Things About the Northern Lights 5 Choosing the Right Destination 6-9 Please note: for trip references below 3 nights = 3n Iceland Northern Lights & Blue Lagoon (3n, independent) 10-11 Aurora Nights (3n, self-drive) 12-13 Northern Lights Special (3n, escorted) 14-15 Northern Lights & Volcanoes (4n, escorted) 16-17 Killer Whales & Northern Lights (4n, escorted) 18-19 Aurora Superjeep Challenge (5n, guided self-drive) 20-21 Sweden The Icehotel 22-25 Icehotel Break (3/4n, independent) 26-27 Abisko & the Icehotel (3/4n, independent) 28-29 Wilderness Husky Adventure (3/4n, escorted) 30-31 Exclusive Wilderness Escape (3n, private tour) 32-33 Iceland & the Icehotel (7n, independent) 34-35 Abisko & Autumn Colours (3/4n, escorted) 36-37 Norway In Pursuit of the Aurora (7n, independent) 38-39 Hurtigruten Coastal Voyages (5-11n, voyage) 40-41 Lofoten & Northern Lights (6n, self-drive) 42-43 Tromsø & Svalbard (6n, independent) 44-45 Norway & Sweden Tromsø, Abisko & the Icehotel (7n, independent) 46-47 The Great Nordic Odyssey (12n, independent, incl voyage) 48-49 Finland Log Cabins & Igloos (3n, independent) 50-51 Log Cabin Hideaway (3n, independent) 52-53 Greenland Greenland Northern Lights (13n, voyage) 54-55 Canada Polar Bear Kingdom (5n, escorted) 56-57 Yukon Winter Dream (4n, escorted) 58 Northern Lights & Winter Rockies (9n, independent) 59 © Paul James Bannerman 2 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website
  3. 3. 3discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 3 100% Guaranteed: Our Unique Pledge Complete Financial Protection Once you have booked you will enjoy total financial security thanks to our travel industry bonds and license. All your travel arrangements are protected by our ATOL, ABTA and IATA* licenses and bonds – this means your money is safe, no matter what. Consumer Protection All holidays booked by us are covered by very rigorous UK consumer law which protects your rights, wherever in the world you might find yourself! Your consumer rights are protected by the EU Package Travel Regulations which govern the sale and operation of our holidays. In addition we are members of ABTA and AITO*- both require us to abide to a strict code of conduct. Travel Disruption Charter Our Travel Disruption Charter offers a simple and transparent guarantee - we will do everything possible to rearrange your holiday if your arrangements are impacted by a range of natural events. So should your trip be cancelled or if your outward flights(s) cannot operate within 24 hours of the scheduled departure time, we will make alternative arrangements. If it is not possible to re-arrange your trip, you will receive a refund of the trip cost you have paid to us. When you are on holiday, if it becomes necessary to alter or reroute your itinerary, we will make these arrangements at no additional cost to you. We will even provide you with accommodation and meals if your flight home is cancelled or severely delayed. Such events and circumstances are rarely covered by travel insurance policies. No Surcharge Guarantee Once your booking has been confirmed by us we guarantee that there will be no further increases in the cost of your holiday, regardless of what happens with fuel prices, airline taxes or currency fluctuations. No ‘ifs’ or ‘buts’ – that’s our guarantee. Remember, if you choose to book direct you will not be protected by the various bonds and licenses offered by a tour operator. Should the unexpected occur, you will be left out of pocket. At worst you may end up stranded in your holiday destination. What’s more, contrary to popular belief it is not more expensive to book through a tour operator. By booking your travel arrangements as a complete ‘package’ you will benefit from the good rates we secure with our suppliers as well as the safeguarded allocations they give us. Visit discover-the-world.co.uk/ unique-pledge for further details, terms and conditions. *ATOL Air Travel Organisers License (caa.com) / IATA International Air Transport Association (iata.co.uk) / AITO Association of Independent Tour Operators (aito.co.uk) / ABTA The Travel Association (abta.com) When you book your holiday with Discover the World your travel arrangements are completely protected by our ‘100% GUARANTEED’ unique pledge. What does this mean? Read on… © Nordic Photos/awl-images.com
  4. 4. 4 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website Flexible Pricing Due to constantly changing currencies, fuel prices and airfares, we’ve adopted a flexible approach to pricing to ensure we give you the best possible price at the time of booking. Our brochure prices are to be used as guidelines only - the actual price will be confirmed when you book your holiday and it may end up being lower or higher, than shown in the brochure. Up-to-date pricing is available on our website or can be obtained by calling our team of travel specialists. This policy allows us to give you the best possible price at the time of booking, including any special offers. Remember, once we have booked and confirmed your holiday your price is fully guaranteed. Price Promise In the unlikely event that you should find the same holiday arrangements elsewhere at a lower price, our Price Promise means that we will do our best to improve on it. Do bear in mind that arrangements which appear the same can be very different – we are very particular about the partners we work with and only do so with the best and most reliable. Full Tailor- Made Service Our expertise lies in tailor-made travel which means, not only will we adapt any of the itineraries presented in this brochure or on our website to suit your personal requirements - we can even create your holiday ‘from scratch’. We can arrange flights, accommodation, car hire, excursions and activities, as well as a number of ‘extras’ such as insurance and airport parking. Specialist Advice With such a profusion of destinations, holidays and experiences on offer, it is not always easy to know where to start planning your holiday - which is where we can help. Our team know our destinations inside out having travelled extensively within them and some have even lived there. Our Travel Specialists are on hand to create a holiday to suit your interests, timescale and budget, as well as give practical advice and insider tips. Voted Top 10 Tour Operator by Wanderlust readers After nearly 30 years we’re not resting on our laurels and continue to work hard to maintain our reputation as the UK’s Scandinavia and Arctic specialists, but don’t just take our word for it... for many years Discover the World has been voted as one of Wanderlust readers top 10 UK Tour Operators, out of a field of around 1500+ companies. We particularly value this award from the readers of the UK’s top travel magazine, as they certainly know a thing or two about travel! Booking with Discover the World will ensure you experience a quality, value-for-money holiday, financial and consumer protection, with 24/7 support and the assurance that you will be looked after every step of the way. More reasons why you should book with us AITO Quality Statement Discover the World is a member of the Association of Independent Tour Operators. The Association represents Britain’s leading independent tour operators and encourages high standards of quality and service. Discover the World abides by the Association’s Code of Conduct and adheres to the AITO Quality Charter which can be viewed at aito.com - visit the website to find out more about the Association or call 020 8744 9280. Scan with your smartphone and visit our website! Use the QR codes printed in this brochure to take you straight to our website when you scan them with your smartphone. The codes can be found on each holiday page and will link you to further information about the trip as well as the current prices. You must be able to access the Internet on your mobile device and it will need to be equipped with a QR code reader application, available for download at discover-the-world.co.uk/qr 5042 3 5042 ABTA No.V2823 © Andrey Stenkin
  5. 5. 5discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 5 Our top 5 things you should know about the northern lights How Do I Photograph Them? Generally you’ll need a tripod as exposures from several seconds to almost 20 give the best results. SLR camera users should try a wide angle lens with a wide aperture as well as setting their ISO levels to high - for further tips visit our website. On your winter holiday you’ll see numerous books and postcards showing spectacular night skies but these have been put together by people with years of experience – not to say that complete novices don’t succeed - we’ve had some amazing shots sent in to us by first timers! But more often than not, people tend to simply stand beneath a display and marvel at its magnificence – also beats having to take your gloves off to try and work your camera! Will I Definitely See Them? Most people appreciate the northern lights are a natural phenomenon and we can’t turn them on for you! But what we can do is get you to locations across the northern hemisphere where sightings are generally known to be better than anywhere else. And what’s more, those places have plenty of things to see and do during the day whilst you are not star gazing. Patience is the key as well as a clear, cloudless winter’s night. Displays can occur any time from around 5pm but most activity tends to be a little later - fortunately on many of our holidays featured in this brochure you can opt to be woken during the night so you don’t miss a thing! Why Are Displays Different Colours? Most people lucky enough to see the aurora will witness a display of neon green lights. If you are really lucky then that display might be yellow and red, or even multi-coloured. The differences depend on two main factors: what type of gas is reacting with the solar particles and at what altitude this activity is taking place. Most of it occurs 100- 200km above the Earth – a level where ‘excited’ nitrogen atoms glow green and blue. And above 200km, oxygen atoms glow red when reacting with charged particles from the Sun. What Is So Special About 2012-13? You may have heard about the Sunspot Cycle and how it is linked to sightings of the northern lights. The cycle is generally around 11 years and this coming season it reaches its peak, the Solar Max. Sunspots are temporary dark patches which are cooler than the rest of the surface of the Sun and when these increase in number, so too does the amount of solar flare activity and the subsequent possibility of auroral displays. This doesn’t mean you won’t see displays during other periods of the cycle, as activity is constant, just that displays at the peak may be more intense or more frequent. And if sightings experienced over the last season are anything to go by, then this coming season should see some incredible displays. What Are The Northern Lights? Solar flares are explosions ejected by the Sun. These flares contain charged particles and if they head our way, carried on a solar wind, Earth’s magnetic fields divert them. Most disappear into space but if some enter our upper atmosphere, around the Polar Regions where those magnetic fields converge, then these charged particles react with the gases found there. These magnetic fields create auroral ovals around the top and bottom of our planet which move and distort as the Earth rotates and solar flare activity increases. You have to be within an auroral oval for a chance of seeing this particle/gas reaction hence why you need to travel north. Please remember that witnessing a display of the aurora cannot be guaranteed even when conditions seem just right. Displays should be seen as a bonus to your winter break. Visit our website for more information about the northern lights and see remarkable images that will no doubt inspire you to travel north this winter. © Sara Winter
  6. 6. 6 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website6 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website Choosing the Right Destination For many people, the Arctic holds a deep fascination, it has for us for almost 30 years. And whilst we continue to operate an unrivalled collection of year round holidays across the region, quite a number of our clients prefer to visit during the winter months. It is hard to put your finger on what lures people to the far north at this time of year. For some it’s the untouched, snow-laden scenery and the chance of a relaxing, romantic getaway. For others it’s the howl of the huskies, the opportunity to drive a snowmobile or try other snowy activities. And for many, witnessing the surreal and enchanting northern lights is their dream. Fortunately all the carefully chosen itineraries in this brochure aim to provide optimum northern lights viewing opportunities but as we’ve mentioned previously, sightings can never be guaranteed and should always be seen as a bonus to any trip. Our knowledge of the places, people and pastimes you can visit, meet and experience in this surprisingly diverse region, sets us apart from other operators. Whether you are an independently minded traveller or prefer to choose something ‘off the peg’, let our experience be your guide. And whatever you are seeking for your winter holiday, we are confident we can help you find it. Take a look at the holidays in this brochure, browse the full collection on our website or contact one of our expert travel specialists and we’ll help you decide where to go this winter… © rosenmedia.se
  7. 7. 7discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 7 77discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 7 The land of fire and ice is truly enchanting. The closest of our winter destinations, Iceland offers a broad spectrum of things to see and do. Known for its wealth of volcanic and geothermal features, Iceland’s south and west are prime locations for a winter break whether you want to see killer whales in their natural habitat, take a look at the site of the infamous Eyjafjallajokull eruption and see other natural wonders, or simply indulge in some superb Icelandic hospitality in search of those elusive northern lights. With a number of its better known highlights in these areas, including many of the island’s spectacular waterfalls, our winter itineraries appeal to a varied range of ages and interests, whether you wish to travel independently or as part of a small group. Acquaint yourself with ‘small and friendly’ Reykjavik, also very stylish and chic, over a weekend break or use it as a base to explore further afield. Let us put together something just for you using our comprehensive tailor-made service, or maybe just extend your chosen itinerary. Opt for car hire and explore at your own pace, take a ride in or even drive an iconic superjeep, go on a day trip to check out the trio of wonders on the famous Golden Circle route – these are just a few suggestions for starters. There are many ways to can get to know Iceland and once you do, trust us, you’ll be back for more! Our Iceland holidays begin on page 10. Take advantage of our direct flights to this winter wonderland and you can have snow on your boots in no time! Swedish Lapland is the location for the world famous Icehotel. Enjoy a night sleeping on ice in a one-of-a-kind Art Suite, tucked up in a thermal sleeping bag upon layers of reindeer skins, after which you’ll most likely report having your best ever nights’ sleep! And with a wealth of optional activities and excursions on offer, you can make your trip as active or laid back as you wish. No trip to Swedish Lapland is complete without a spot of husky sledging. Whether on a short excursion or a full on wilderness safari, travelling by sledge or mushing a team of your own eager dogs is the ultimate way to travel. Or try snowmobiling, something to definitely bring colour to your cheeks and a smile to your face. Zip over frozen rivers and weave through forested surrounds for an exhilarating adventure – drive it yourself or ride pillion if you prefer. Testing your skills in a powerful car on an ice track is another, most definitely, exciting option. Team the Icehotel with Abisko National Park, probably the best place in the world for aurora sightings. Maybe combine the Icehotel with Iceland or Norway on a longer holiday. We also offer a trip to Abisko to see its glorious autumn colours, at a time when sightings of the northern lights are also possible. Our Swedish holidays to the Icehotel and beyond start on page 22. Iceland Sweden Travelling September to March Flying time from the UK 3 hours Whale watching / geysers / hotsprings / volcanoes / superjeeps Travelling December to April Flying time from London (direct) 3½ hours / via Stockholm 5½ hours (excluding time in transit) Icehotel / husky adventures / snowmobiling / Aurora Sky Station / moose safaris© Gillian Lloyd © Cathy Harlow© Cathy Harlow
  8. 8. 8 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website Norway’s dramatic scenery of deep fjords, sheer, snow covered peaks and traditional fishing communities can be even more dramatic in winter than during the summer months. Deep contrasts of light bring changing moods and great photo opportunities, and the further north you travel the shorter the days. When you reach the high latitudes above the Arctic Circle, the sun might not rise above the horizon between December and mid-January, but the magical blue light or ‘polar night’ this creates together with snow, the moon and stars, adds to an unforgettable Arctic experience. Discover the enchanting Lofoten and Vesteralen islands on an independent self-drive. Explore the rugged coastline from the deck of a Hurtigruten ship, and call in at some truly fascinating and endearing ports of call. And of course, Norway’s vast open skies often play host to performances of the northern lights! Team the historic city of Tromso with Spitsbergen, the largest island of the Svalbard archipelago for a true taste of the Arctic. Or maybe include a visit to the Swedish Icehotel and Abisko National Park, an itinerary especially for dedicated aurora hunters. Finally, our Great Nordic Odyssey is a full on 12-night adventure which offers so much, you need to read about it on page 48. Suffice to say, it is as much about the travelling and modes of transport as the wonderful places visited! Our Norway holidays begin on page 38. Authentic log cabins and crackling open fires are an integral part of many people’s idea of a perfect winter getaway. Our itineraries to Finnish Lapland offer just that in a number of beautiful locations, with of course the Finnish staple - private saunas. After a day out enjoying all kinds of activities in the guaranteed snow, a sauna session is just the ticket and you’ll soon wish you had one at home. The cabins we feature are built to a high standard. They come in a variety of designs such as open plan or with separate bedrooms, for anything up to 6 persons, with kitchenette and dining facilities, a lounge area and of course, that a private sauna. The snow in Finland seems remarkably bright, almost as if the locals respray it nightly. And so much of the white stuff falls here that the skyline is distinctive with trees bending and bowing under its weight. Explore this beautiful scenery by husky, reindeer or snowmobile safari as well as under your own steam on snow shoes or cross country skis - we also offer trips where downhill skiing and ice driving amongst other options, are available. An unusual feature at Kakslauttanen is the chance to stay overnight in a glass igloo, which is perfect for dedicated aurora hunters. Fly from the UK to Finnish Lapland via Helsinki, and onwards to Kittila, Ivalo, Rovaniemi, Oulu or Kuusamo, from where you’ll be transferred to your accommodation of choice. It is also possible to extend your holiday and stay over in the capital if you so wish. Our Finland holidays start on page 50. Norway Finland Travelling September to April Flying time from the UK 4 hours via Oslo (excluding time in transit) Hurtigruten / husky sledging / self-drive / snowmobiling / scenic railways Travelling November to April Flying time from the UK 4½ hours Log cabins / glass igloos / snowmobiling / husky sledging / horse riding / skiing Iso-Syöte © Kakslauttanen © nordnorge.com © Hurtigruten © Bard Loken/visitnorway.com
  9. 9. 9discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 9 Greenland Travelling September Voyages commence in Iceland, flying time 3 hours Voyaging / hiking / wildlife spotting / zodiac cruises / Inuit culture A winter holiday offers a whole new way to experience Canada, from the wilderness of the mighty Yukon and the vast Arctic tundra of northern Manitoba, to the spectacular Rocky Mountains and the vibrant cities beyond. The clear skies over Fort McMurray, northern Alberta, offer a 90%+ success rate of seeing the aurora borealis and a 3-night stay here is perfectly complemented by an independent tour through the Rockies. For the more active traveller, the ‘wilderness city’ of Whitehorse provides the base for a wealth of adventures such as dog sledging, snowmobiling, snow-shoeing and, conditions permitting, the chance to see the northern lights. Wildlife sightings are possible too - if you’ve ever wanted to see the mighty polar bear in his natural habitat, then a trip to quirky Churchill is a must. Every October and November these magnificent mammals congregate here, waiting for Hudson Bay to freeze over – offering an unparalleled chance of a close encounter with the world’s largest land predator. Extend your stay with a visit to one of Canada’s gateway cities – winter is celebrated in style here, with annual festivals in Montréal, Toronto, Ottawa and Vancouver. Featuring light displays, outdoor skating and ice-sculpting, as well as a variety of live entertainment and culinary experiences, a city add-on provides the ideal contrast to the northern wilderness. See a selection of our Canada holidays from page 56. Canada Travelling October to March Flying time from the UK 7 to 10 hours Polar bear encounters / northern lights / Canadian Rockies / winter activities Greenland is predominantly a summer destination. However in September, as the Arctic summer turns into autumn, take a voyage and discover its extensive coastline. Boasting spectacular fjords and some incredible icebergs, it is best explored by an ice-strengthened ship or a much smaller sailing schooner. Travelling ashore by Zodiac makes it possible to land at otherwise inaccessible bays to hike through pristine wilderness. Visiting remote Inuit communities is also a highlight, providing a rare chance to learn about the isolated way of life north of the Arctic Circle. And at this time of year you may be lucky enough to experience the optimum atmospheric conditions which produce the aurora borealis – a magical bonus to any Greenland voyage. See our Greenland voyage on page 54. © Richard Day© Ruby Range Adventure © Travel AlbertaAdventure © GCTC
  10. 10. Fact File Independent 3-nights at Northern Light Inn Breakfast basis Who for? Potential aurora watchers who like to do it in style! Per person from £199 (based on two sharing, excluding flights) Departures September to March 10 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website Northern Lights & Blue Lagoon The delightful Northern Light Inn sits on the volcanic Reykjanes Peninsula just a 20 minute drive from the airport. Relax and unwind by day in the surreal Blue Lagoon spa, just a lava rock’s throw from the hotel, and when the lights make an appearance, the hotel’s 360° degree observation lounge allows you to observe them in comfort. Highlights World-famous Blue Lagoon spa close by. Purpose-built observation lounge for uninterrupted views of the aurora. Easy access to the Golden Circle route. = Overnight stay Gullfoss ReykjavíkKeflavík Blue Lagoon Þingvellir Skógafoss Geysir ICELAND
  11. 11. discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 11 11 Outline Itinerary Day 1 Fly UK to Keflavík, transfer to hotel. Day 2 Visit the Blue Lagoon (entry fee included). Optional treatments are available at additional cost. Day 3 At leisure to enjoy an optional excursion or visit the Blue Lagoon (entry fee at additional cost). Day 4 Transfer to Keflavik, fly to the UK. Northern Light Inn Gullfoss Geysir This winter break is ideal for those who want a quick getaway to somewhere special with the emphasis on winding down and relaxing. The Blue Lagoon, Iceland’s most iconic attraction, is a large expanse of naturally heated powder- blue water, set amidst a jet black lavascape. It makes for some interesting photography but people mainly come here to bathe and enjoy the extensive range of massage treatments and therapies. Take an invigorating dip in the crisp Icelandic air, open to the elements – it is strangely enjoyable to be surrounded by clouds of steam as snowflakes drift down around you! And perhaps complete it with a silica mud massage or a salt glow treatment, one of the many on offer. Visit our website for a list of available treatments which we advise you to pre-book. The nation’s capital Reykjavík is a mere 30 minutes away by bus, perfect for a day out. But with so many of Iceland’s natural wonders on the doorstep, you’ll have plenty of options for filling your days with adventure. A popular choice is to explore Iceland’s south coast by guided superjeep, these magnificent vehicles tackling every kind of terrain thrown at them – see some of Iceland’s iconic waterfalls, basalt cliffs, black sandy beaches and impressive coastal rock formations. Alternatively, take a tour of three of Iceland’s most famous natural wonders following the Golden Circle route. Witness spouting geysers at Geysir’s geothermal area, the dramatic two-tiered waterfall Gullfoss, which can be partly frozen in winter, and marvel at the tectonic plates and dramatic rifts at Þingvellir National Park – awe-inspiring to say the least! Your first entrance to the Blue Lagoon is included in the price of the holiday and you can find a list of optional treatments on our website or just give us a call. The Northern Light Inn has a bright and airy feel, with a dining room that boasts panoramic windows and the 32 spacious guestrooms, comfy chairs and even more comfortable beds! Trip Details Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4). We offer a superb range of Iceland holidays available year round. Order online or by phone, call our specialists or see the full range on our website. Iceland
  12. 12. Aurora Nights One of our most popular winter self-drives. We aim to maximise your chances of an aurora sighting by offering a choice of two remotely located and very special hotels. With the freedom to go as you please, explore local natural wonders by day and wait in anticipation by night in exceptionally comfortable surroundings, for the main attraction! Fact File Self-drive (4WD) 3-nights at Hotel Rangá or Hotel Glymur Breakfast basis Who for? Independent travellers looking for a touch of luxury Price per person from £335 (based on two sharing, excluding flights) Departures September to March Highlights Hotel Rangá sits under vast open skies in the rural south, close to the Golden Circle route and several of Iceland’s iconic waterfalls. Hotel Glymur is located in the ‘Whale Fjord’, ideal for exploring the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, and is equally blessed with open skies and sweeping views. Both properties offer outdoor hot tubs – the experience of sitting in steaming waters whilst watching the lights overhead is not to be missed. Should an impressive display of the lights appear during the night, you can opt to have hotel staff wake you so you don’t miss it! Both hotels give northern lights presentations. 12 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website Reykjavík Rangá GullfossGeysir Skógafoss = Overnight stay Keflavík Vík Glymur Budir Grundarfjörður Snæfellsnes ICELAND Hotel Ranga Hotel GlymurÞingvellir
  13. 13. discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 13 13 For aurora watchers it is all about that important sighting. But typically, for our clients it is also about what you can experience during the daylight hours in a country as special as Iceland. On this short break, choose between two very distinctive properties offering first-rate Icelandic hospitality and take the chance to explore their scenic surrounds. Hotel Glymur is one of Iceland’s few boutique properties. At less than an hours’ drive from the capital, it occupies an incredibly picturesque spot overlooking Hvalfjörður (the ‘Whale Fjord’), close to one of Iceland’s cascading waterfalls from which it takes its name. It is also ideally situated for exploring West Iceland and the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, a region beloved of artists, writers and those seeking inspiration from nature at its most magical. The hotel offers 22 two-storey, executive rooms with a lounge area on the lower floor as well as two elegant suites and a selection of individually styled villas. Enjoy a relaxed atmosphere with many personal touches reflected in the décor, which includes Italian leather furniture and unique art. Every room has a magnificent view either overlooking the fjord or the mountains and the gourmet restaurant offers creative cuisine. Hotel Rangá is a luxury ranch-style hotel around a two hour drive from Reykjavík. It boasts uninterrupted 360° views and is close to Seljalandsfoss, and Skogafoss, two of Iceland’s most photographed waterfalls. The famous Golden Circle route with its must-see trio of natural wonders, Geysir, Gullfoss and Þingvellir, is also easily accessible. The hotel exudes sophistication and it has a reputation for excellent personal service. The 51 superbly appointed rooms include a Royal Suite and seven extraordinary suites in the ‘World Pavillion’ – see our website for details. The comfortable lounge and bar area sits above the gourmet restaurant which offers sweeping views, an extensive menu and wine list. Day 1 Fly UK to Keflavík, collect rental vehicle and drive your to hotel of choice. Days 2 & 3 At leisure to explore the local area / enjoy optional excursions. Day 4 Check out of hotel, drop off vehicle at Keflavík, fly back to the UK. Please note it is possible to extend your stay with a night in Reykjavík or perhaps the Northern Light Inn, adjacent to the Blue Lagoon. Contact us to discuss your options and visit our website for further information about all the properties mentioned here. Trip Details Outline Itinerary If you are looking for a self-drive holiday to Iceland we are the tailor-made experts. A whole host of year round itineraries of varying durations can be found on our website, along with details of all kinds of accommodation options. With a huge variety of optional activities and excursions also available, your itinerary can be tailored to fit pretty much whatever you’d like! Contact our travel team and they’ll be happy to discuss your plans. Further Self-Drive Options “I love Iceland because of its contrasts – the midnight sun and Arctic darkness, hot springs and frozen glaciers, green farmland and black deserts, and of course the northern lights!” Thora Ingvarsdottir, Iceland Specialist Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4). Skogafoss © Antony Spencer
  14. 14. Fact File Guided group tour 3-nights (2 Hotel Rangá or Hotel Glymur, 1 Northern Light Inn) Half board at Rangá or Glymur, breakfast at Northern Light Inn Who for? Aurora watchers who prefer to travel with like-minded people Price per person from £499 (based on two sharing, excluding flights) Departures September to March 14 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website Northern Lights Special The northern lights are without a doubt, a magical and unforgettable sight – an otherworldly phenomenon which has amazed people for centuries. On this escorted two-centre short break, the odds of a sighting are as good as they can be thanks to quality accommodation in fantastic locations and some scientific know how. Highlights Hotel Rangá is arguably Iceland’s top countryside hotel - its rural south location is perfect for uninterrupted northern lights sightings. Hotel Glymur sits overlooking the ‘Whale Fjord’ - ideal for exploring the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, and is equally blessed with open skies and sweeping views. The Northern Light Inn boasts a 360° aurora observation lounge and is next to the Blue Lagoon. All properties are ideal for exploring Iceland’s natural wonders by day. Visit Reykjavík as well as the Golden Circle trio of natural wonders. Northern lights © Hotel Rangá = Overnight stay Gullfoss Geysir Hveragerdi Hvolsvollur Reykjavík Keflavík Blue Lagoon Hotel Rangá Glymur ICELAND
  15. 15. discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 15 15 This is a hugely popular escorted break, not surprising given that the accommodation is first rate, the daytime activities give a taste of Iceland’s finest natural wonders, and the record for quality northern lights displays is superb. Following a late afternoon arrival relax in your hotel, either the luxury ranch-style Hotel Rangá in the south or boutique Hotel Glymur in the west, your departure date determining which property you will stay at - for details of both these hotels, see page 13. Something these hotels have in common, apart from fine dining restaurants, exceptionally appointed rooms and outdoor hot tubs, is that you can opt to have the staff wake you should an auroral display occur during the night. And on all departures, the second hotel is the Northern Light Inn on the Reykjanes Peninsula, next door to the Blue Lagoon. On a day trip tracing the Golden Circle route, experience three of Iceland’s captivating attractions – the spouting geysers at Geysir are fascinating, Gullfoss is a two-tiered waterfall that is as beautiful as it is impressive, and the rift and scars of Þingvellir National Park provide an intriguing look at Iceland’s volcanic heritage, still very much active today. You’ll also have time to visit Reykjavík – see the charming old town, the characteristic hilltop church Hallgrimskirkja, built in a style reflecting basalt columns, and the glass-domed Perlan. ‘The Pearl’ houses a revolving restaurant with an outside viewing platform which sits above six huge water tanks used to store the city’s naturally heated hot water. Creatively lit at night, this is another of Reykjavík’s distinctive landmarks. A dip in the Blue Lagoon will be the highlight on your final day, the surreal experience of bathing in the open air geothermal waters is said to be a ‘must’ on any visit to Iceland. Please note: due to differences in flight schedules, we have one 4-night departure of this tour, based at Hotel Glymur. This trip also includes a tour of the Snæfellsnes Peninsula. Day 1 Fly UK to Keflavík and transfer to Hotel Rangá or Hotel Glymur (dependent on departure date). Day 2 Visit the famed Golden Circle route and explore the volcanic landscape of Þingvellir National Park, see and hear spectacular Gullfoss and watch the spouting geysers of Geysir. Day 3 Head into Reykjavík for a half day of sightseeing then continue to the Blue Lagoon for an evening dip. Day 4 Optional excursions are available during the morning. Transfer to Keflavík for the flight back to the UK. Trip Details Outline Itinerary Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4). Hotel Glymur Reykjavík Geysir
  16. 16. Northern Lights & Volcanoes This escorted tour focuses on two of Iceland’s most fascinating natural wonders – the mesmerising northern lights and its otherworldly volcanic landscape. Staying in the heart of the countryside discover the iconic waterfalls of the south, explore the fabulous Golden Circle route and take a thrilling and exclusive excursion into the stunning Þórsmörk Valley in a monster 8WD vehicle! Fact File Small group escorted 4-nights (3 Hotel Highland, 1 Northern Light Inn) Half board at Hotel Highland, breakfast at Northern Light Inn Who for? Those with a specific interest in Iceland’s natural wonders Price per person from £694 (based on two sharing, excluding flights) Departures September to March Highlights NEW & EXCLUSIVE 8WD trip into Þórsmörk Valley – see the site of the 2010 volcanic eruption! Guided tour of the Golden Circle route and the south shore. Visit to a volcano exhibition at the foot of Eyjafjallajökull. 16 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website Eyjafjallajokull 2010 © James Appleton Photography = Overnight stay Gullfoss Reykjavík Keflavík Blue Lagoon Skogar Geysir Vík Þórsmörk Eyjafjallajökull Highland Þingvellir Hveragerdi ICELAND
  17. 17. discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 17 On this two-centre escorted break immerse yourself in volcanic curiosities in the stunning Icelandic Highlands, staying 3-nights at a wonderfully remote property 150km from Reykjavík. Contemporary Hotel Highland offers single storey accommodation in rooms, apartments and suites. It has a restaurant and an outdoor hot tub and its simplicity, solitude and stunning natural surrounds, are what makes this property special. Although remote, it has easy access to Iceland’s main road system, making it a good base from which to explore. Take a trip along the wild and windswept south shore and visit two beautiful waterfalls - 65m high Seljalandsfoss and 60m wide Skógafoss, as well as the coastal town of Vík with its distinctive offshore sea stacks. Also visit the fascinating volcano exhibition set up by the resourceful farmers at Þorvaldseyri; the farm that lies in the shadow of Eyjafjallajökull, where the infamous eruption of April 2010 occurred. And no trip to Iceland would be complete without experiencing the spectacular Golden Circle route. The final night is spent at the Northern Light Inn on the Reykjanes Peninsula, where you can head to the 360° observation lounge should the aurora make an appearance. It is also a short walk from the Blue Lagoon, one of Iceland’s premier attractions. Due to the popularity of this trip, we advise you to book early to avoid disappointment! Day 1 Fly UK to Keflavík, meet your guide and travel past sweeping lava fields deep into the countryside en route to Hotel Highland. Day 2 Enjoy a thrilling 8WD adventure on a mammoth Ice Truck into Þórsmörk Valley. Day 3 Tour the scenic south coast. Day 4 Explore the Golden Circle route and transfer to the Northern Light Inn. Day 5 Visit the Blue Lagoon (entrance fee included) and enjoy a swim before transfering to Keflavík for the flight back to the UK. 17 Trip Details Outline Itinerary Geysir Highlands This holiday includes an exhilarating journey into wooded Þórsmörk Valley, criss-crossed by streams and rivers, aboard a huge 8WD Ice Explorer. Travelling across terrain that no other vehicle can access, you’ll witness the impact of the 2010 Eyjafjallajökull eruption and see where the lake that existed at the foot of the Gígjökull glacial tongue has completely disappeared! Watch the 8WD film on our website. NEW for the 2012/2013 season Þingvellir Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4).
  18. 18. Killer Whales & Northern Lights A pioneering and exciting group tour to Iceland’s Snæfellsnes Peninsula. Our 2012 trips sold out early and participants were treated to incredible sightings of orca and the northern lights on every departure. Book early for the coming season which is expected to be just as successful! Highlights THE premier Iceland winter wildlife holiday. Superbly situated choice of accommodation, great for aurora sightings. Includes two boat trips into Breiðafjördur Bay to observe orca as they hunt for herring. Full day tour of the stunning Snæfellsnes Peninsula. Visit the Volcano Museum & Blue Lagoon. Accompanied throughout by an Iceland guide and naturalist – plus a cetacean expert on the boat trips. 18 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website Fact File Guided group tour (around 25) 4-nights at Hotel Framnes (full board) or 4-nights at Guesthouse Grundarfjörður (breakfast basis) Who for? Wildlife enthusiasts and those interested in the aurora borealis Price per person from £598 (based on two sharing, excluding flights) Departures January to March Reykjavík = Overnight stay Keflavík Grundarfjörður Snæfellsnes Blue Lagoon ICELAND Kirkjufell © Miles Cowton
  19. 19. discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 19 19 Due to the enormous success of this trip last season, we’ve developed this holiday to also include a budget accommodation option in addition to offering a departure which features the Whale Festival in Grundarfjörður. The Snæfellsnes Peninsula protrudes from Iceland’s west coast like an arm reaching out into the Atlantic, and is is one of the most magical and romantic places in the country. At its tip the majestic glacier, Snæfellsjökull, sits atop a volcano which is breathtakingly beautiful and believed by locals to hold mysterious powers. Whatever they may be, this location is proving to be hugely popular for our winter visitors. Thanks to very little light pollution in this remote location, sightings of the northern lights have been especially frequent and their intensity over the 2011-12 season has been outstanding. In the fishing village of Grundarfjörður, spend 4 nights full board at the traditional waterfront property, Hotel Framnes, or on a breakfast only basis at delightful Guesthouse Grundarfjörður. Hotel Framnes has 29 rooms - standard, with mountain views, and superior which boast sea views. And incredibly, orca have been spotted out in the bay from inside the hotel! Alternatively, Guesthouse Grundarfjörður offers modern yet simple accommodation close to the shoreline, providing views of the bay and with a little luck, whales! Choose between twin, double or family en suite rooms as well as self-catering apartments with one or two bedrooms. Full details are on our website. Cathy Harlow is one of our team of naturalist guides. An Iceland expert, she has guided around, written books on and photographed her second home for many years. And for several seasons, she spent time as a whale watch guide in Tysfjord and Lofoten in northern Norway, where hundreds of orcas gathered to feed on overwintering herring in the fjords. During the two included boat trips out into beautiful Breiðafjördur Bay, you’ll be joined by an experienced cetacean specialist, with the knowledge and a passion for one of the most enigmatic of cetaceans. Read more about the specialists on our website. Winter nights on Snæfellsnes are long. Whilst we cannot guarantee an aurora sighting, chances are very good so you may find yourself tempted to stay up for quite a while. With a day trip exploring the peninsula, a visit to the pretty village of Stykkishólmur which includes the Volcano Museum as well as a dip in the Blue Lagoon, this is a holiday on which to make good friends and share some wonderful experiences. Outline Itinerary Day 1 Fly UK to Keflavík and transfer to Grundarfjörður, a 3 hour drive. Day 2 Morning whale watch trip (2-3hrs) then a village walk. Day 3 A full day guided tour of the Snæfellsnes Peninsula including a visit to Snæfellsjökull, the distinctive glaciated volcano at its western tip. Day 4 Another whale watch trip then visit picturesque Stykkishólmur and its Volcano Museum. Day 5 Transfer to the Blue Lagoon (entrance fee included) then continue to Keflavík and fly back to the UK. Trip Details Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4). An EXCLUSIVE, one-off departure for cetacean enthusiasts. This very special week-long trip includes 5-nights in Grundarfjörður combining whale watching trips with a programme of fascinating lectures from many top whale experts, as well as sightseeing. Also includes a night in Reykjavík and a night at the Northern Light Inn close to the Blue Lagoon. 7-nights 17 February 2013 Visit our website for further details. “There were some killer whales in the fjord and the gannets were going mad! Fantastic sight. David Attenborough would have been green with envy!” Shelagh, Manager of Hotel Framnes WhaleFest 2013 Only 1 departure!
  20. 20. Aurora Superjeep Challenge Superjeeps are unmistakably Icelandic. On this itinerary, accompanied by a professional guide, you’ll get to drive, through the rugged and challenging terrain of Iceland’s spectacular Highlands. Based at a remote rural hotel, perfectly situated for northern lights sightings, you’ll venture out somewhere new each day. Fittingly end the trip with a Víking feast! Fact File Guided self-drive tour 5-nights (4 Hotel Highland, 1 Hotel Víking) Full board basis Who for? Adventurous types & budding Top Gear presenters! Price per person from £1,672 (based on 2 sharing, excluding flights) Departures October to March Highlights Drive an Icelandic superjeep! Explore the spectacular Highlands and beyond. Drive the Golden Circle route. Comfortable hotels with excellent food including a Víking Feast! Increased chances of aurora sightings due to remote location. 20 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website = Overnight stay Reykjavík Keflavík Blue Lagoon Hekla Landmannalaugar HighlandHafnarfjörður ICELAND Landmannalaugar © ISAK © Hotel Viking
  21. 21. discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 21 21 For years there has been a trend to modify 4WD vehicles in Iceland enabling the locals to visit areas previously out of reach during winter time. This 6-day tour is one-of-a-kind as it offers participants a real hands-on self- drive adventure using specially modified Land Rover Defenders, the ISAKs, in convoy and accompanied by expert guides. In addition to exploring the Highlands, you’ll visit the famous Golden Circle route: Gullfoss; Geysir and Þingvellir, together with the capital Reykjavík. Spend four nights at Hotel Highland, located at the start of the Sprengisandur Route. From here, take challenging day tours which allow you to get well and truly off the beaten track and explore breath-taking parts of the southern Highlands. The hotel offers comfy yet simple accommodation. There is a restaurant which serves high quality, locally-inspired dishes, and it also has a sauna and an outdoor hot tub, ideal for relaxing in after the day’s adventures – possibly with the aurora making an appearance overhead as you soak! The ISAKs are modified Land Rover Defender 110’s with elevated suspension and trademark oversized tyres, generally 38”. The engines are diesel, they have onboard GPS, VHF radios for car-to-car communication, and all the modifications required for a safe, secure and surprisingly comfortable assault on Iceland’s demanding terrain. Part of the driving technique on some of the more gnarly lava tracks and over snow and ice, is to reduce tyre pressure so the vehicle effectively ‘floats’ over the surface. Then, once back on more stable ground the tyres are re-inflated using the onboard compressor - not a cigarette lighter, Jeremy Clarkson take note! You’ll soon get used to driving these robust machines - it can become quite addictive! Take it in turns to do the driving with your fellow passengers, there will be plenty of time for each of you to test your skills. During the three separate day tours in the Highlands you’ll head north to Jökulheimar and the edge of the Vatnajökull glacier; head east to Landmannalaugar and possibly go hiking in its distinctive rhyolite mountains as well as take a dip in a geothermal pool; head south to explore impressive Mount Hekla and its volcanic surrounds with some hiking and a visit to the Highland Centre included. And at this time of the year, sightings of the aurora, especially in these remote locations, are a real possibility. After leaving Hotel Highland follow the Power Line Trail, crossing several rivers and visiting Iceland’s second highest waterfall. Continue on the Golden Circle route and see the waterfall Gullfoss, the fascinating spouting geysers at Geysir and the rifts and ridges in Þingvellir National Park, where converging tectonic plates define the landscape. Head for Hafnarfjörður and a final evening of fun! After days of feeling empowered having mastered a superjeep like a true Icelander, how better to end the trip than with a lively and tasty Viking feast and an overnight at Hotel Viking, where else! This brilliantly-themed hotel offers ‘Viking style décor’ although thankfully much more civilised than you might think, and you won’t have to sleep in a Longhouse! Outline Itinerary Day 1 Fly UK to Keflavík, transfer to Reykjavík. After a safety briefing and a familiarisation with the controls, drive to Hotel Highland in time for dinner. Day 2 Tour north to Jökulheimar. Day 3 Tour east to Landmannalaugar. Day 4 Tour south to Mount Hekla. Day 5 Tour west then take the Golden Circle tour en route to Hafnarfjörður. Day 6 Transfer to Keflavík, fly back to the UK. Please note: If you wish to extend your stay or perhaps include any additional activities, or if you want to rent the Defender exclusively, please give us a call. Trip Details Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4). Highlands
  22. 22. 22 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website The Icehotel The Icehotel is literally breathtaking and has to be seen to be believed! With an ingenious mix of ice and snow, otherwise known as ‘sni-ce’, plenty of engineering know-how and supreme design flare, it is created each winter then left to melt back into the river Torne in late April, with no two designs ever the same. The 2012/13 incarnation celebrates the 23rd anniversary - each year heralding more inventive and even quirkier designs. Consisting of a variety of sleeping accommodation (the top-of-the range Art Suites never ceasing to amaze) and a spectacular Icebar, these rooms radiate from a magnificent central hallway, complete with ice crystal chandeliers. Close by, but with a separate entrance, is the magical Ice Chapel for those truly white weddings. When first hearing about the Icehotel you’re likely to have a lot of questions such as what is actually there, where do you shower and isn’t it too cold to sleep? Answers to all these questions can be found on our website or ask one of our travel specialists – they’ve visited personally so their advice is spot on. The answer to that last question by the way; many people find that the silence, cool fresh air and of course a cosy thermal sleeping bag, gives them the best nights’ sleep they have ever had! Although the main part of the hotel is built of ‘sn-ice’ there is a separate building alongside which houses plenty of warm showers, WC’s and sauna facilities. Also housed in heated buildings are a couple of lounge bars and an excellent fine dining restaurant, which also serves the daily breakfast buffet. There is also a log-cabin style restaurant just far enough away for you to walk off your meal afterwards, perhaps with the northern lights illuminating your way home. You may have seen the Icehotel on TV or in photographs, or know someone who has visited. In our opinion nobody can quite convey how special the Icehotel really is - it isn’t just about a stay in the world’s coolest hotel (literally!), it is about a complete experience and one that you really need to try first hand. SWEDEN Retro Drive © Leif Milling/Artists N Chistyakova & K Ile
  23. 23. 23discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 23 Ice Accommodation Standard Snow Rooms are in the shape of an igloo and generally sleep two. Ice Rooms are slightly larger with the addition of ice ‘furniture’ and typically sleep two also. Northern Lights Suites are exclusively themed to capture the magic of the aurora borealis, and Art Suites are the most spacious and impressive of all, fabulously themed and with no two alike. For your night on ice you’ll be given a thermal sleeping bag so you won’t need to wear layer upon layer of night clothes. Beds consist of a large block of illuminated ice upon which sits a mattress then a layer of reindeer skins. Heated Accommodation There are three types of ‘warm’ accommodation. Kaamos Rooms are en suite hotel rooms for two. The chalets have two bedrooms and kitchenette facilities - Nordic Chalets are ‘light and bright’ with modern furnishings, a double bed and bunk beds and Arctic Chalets have a double bed and a single bed. For detailed descriptions of all the rooms, and further images please visit our website or call us to talk through your options. Accommodation As a guest at the Icehotel you’ll generally have a night ‘sleeping on ice’ with two or three nights in warm accommodation, on a breakfast basis. There are various categories of both. Snow Room Chalet Lounge © Dennis Bromage Deluxe Suite © Photobigben.com/Artists M Vroom & M Vonk Kaamos Room Art Suite © Leif Milling/Artist M Dillistone Chalets The UK’s only direct flight to the Icehotel Fly Heathrow to Kiruna in 3½ hours! Convenient flying times Meal, wine, beer and soft drinks included in the price Avoid the extended flying time and hassle of changing planes in Stockholm Discover the World representative at Heathrow to assist with check in Upgrade to Premium Class for just £150pp and enjoy business class check in, Fast Track Security, SAS Business lounge access at Heathrow plus other benefits Departures December to March When on holiday, especially on a short break, we believe that it is essential to make the most of your time away. One of the easiest ways to do this is to use the most convenient flight options available and avoid any unnecessary time ‘in transit’ or changing planes. With this in mind we introduced a direct flight from London Heathrow to Kiruna, just 20 minutes from the Icehotel. This is the only direct flight from the UK. Whilst we do offer the option to fly via Stockholm, and indeed the chance to stop over there, our direct flight is the quickest way to reach the Icehotel. With sociable flight times, a full meal service and pre-bookable seats, our 3½ hour direct flight is not just the quickest way but also the most comfortable and enjoyable way to get to the Icehotel. discover-the-world.co.uk/directflight
  24. 24. 24 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website By far the most popular activity is husky sledging. Whether mushing a dog team of your own, or letting someone else take the reins, a husky trip is not to be missed. Choose between a short excursion and a full-on safari, see page 32 for details. Reindeer and moose safaris are available too, typically including a taste of traditional food around a Sami campfire. For those wanting a real adrenalin rush, try ice driving around a specially designed track. Hone your driving skills under the supervision of a skilled instructor then head out onto the track and test the car and your abilities at up to 100km/hour – so much fun! Snowmobiling is another enormously popular pastime and you’ll feel just like a local as you whiz through a Christmas-card landscape. For something more gentle, try your hand at ice sculpting – a really absorbing activity for all the family (over the age of 12) that will surprise and delight. Other activities are available from the Icehotel such as snow-shoeing and cross- country skiing, both with instruction so novices can feel at home too. And for avid northern lights watchers, you may be lucky and have a sighting whilst on horseback - riding a sure-footed and friendly, purebred Icelandic horse. Alternatively, take an evening trip out on a snowmobile in search of the northern lights. Specific details, durations and prices of all our excursions can be found on our website, or call us.. Not surprisingly these optional activities and excursions, are very popular therefore we strongly advise pre-booking to avoid disappointment, and to secure the lowest price. Simply give us a call and we can include them in your itinerary. Activities & Excursions The Icehotel aside, one of the main attractions of Swedish Lapland is the sheer range of optional activities. Try your hand at some unusual and often exhilarating things to do and really experience this wonderful winter realm. Ask the experts Our specialist team, who have all visited the Icehotel, will be happy to answer any queries you may have – here are some frequently asked questions. Q What is it like to sleep on ice? A Sleeping on ice is a great experience and what most people come here to do. However, if you prefer to spend all your nights in heated accommodation this is also possible, subject to availability. There is much to offer during this winter break and the experience is just as unforgettable wherever you sleep! Q Is the Icehotel a good place to take children? A The Icehotel is not the most child-friendly of hotels particularly for very young children; there will be restrictions when taking part in excursions as most activities will need participants to be at least 8 years old. We would strongly advise you to book warm accommodation for the duration of your stay. The Icehotel does not provide a Children’s Menu in either of the restaurants. © Mlenny Photography© Will Gray
  25. 25. 2525discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 25 Weddings at the Icehotel The experience of getting married at the Ice Chapel is particularly something to cherish, thanks to the uniqueness of the venue. For that authentic touch, opt to arrive at the chapel on a reindeer sledge and after the ceremony, enjoy a delicious à la carte wedding breakfast in the Icehotel restaurant, or go for a more homely option at the rustic Homestead. Visit our website to see a selection of images from our previous ‘Happy Couples’. And our dedicated wedding specialist is here to advise at every step. Give us a call if you are considering a wedding, renewing your vows or proposing. Who knows, you may be lucky enough to have the northern lights appear, bringing a perfect end to a perfect day. “Our photos were amazing and we don’t even remember getting cold whilst they were being taken. But I’m definitely glad I had my snow boots on under my dress!” © Kathryn & Edward Klein Ice Chapel © Photobigben.com/Artists M Vonk, C Berg, M Vroom, J Willem & M Meijer © Ferran Traite Soler © Homestead restaurant
  26. 26. Icehotel Break Take our classic 3-night trip to the simply magnificent Icehotel and discover what all the excitement is about! Marvel at the ingenuity of the design, enjoy fine local cuisine and try an assortment of thrilling winter activities, including husky sledging and snowmobiling. And a sighting of the northern lights might even add to this already perfect winter break! Highlights Exclusive direct flight option – be there in 3½ hours! Experience ‘sleeping on ice’. Fully independent with a comprehensive collection of optional activities. Fact File Independent short break 3/4-nights (1 Snow Room, 2/3 Kaamos Room) Breakfast basis Who for? Those looking for a truly unforgettable travel experience at the ‘coolest’ hotel in the world Price per person from £870 (via Stockholm) / £1,099 (direct) based on two sharing, including flights Departures December to April 26 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website SWEDEN © © Photobigben.com/Artists L Pobornikova & V Tsarski Art Suite © RTH Sigurdsson
  27. 27. 2727 Whether you choose the flexibility of travelling via Stockholm or the convenience of our exclusive direct flight allowing you to maximise your time away, your Icehotel experience will exceed your expectations. From the novelty of a night sleeping on ice to the sheer thrill of mushing your own team of huskies, the simple pleasure of chinking ice glasses to the awe of witnessing the northern lights - this winter wonderland delivers on every level. The world famous Icehotel, open from December to April, has around 50 rooms built each year from a blend of snow and giant blocks of crystal clear ice, harvested from the waters of the local river Torne. Guests on departures before early January may be able to see some of the international ice sculptors and artists at work, finishing off their creations and other aspects of the hotel. After that time you can see the completed hotel in all its glory and for a truly unique experience, upgrade to one of the stunning Art Suites, each individually themed – sometimes bizarre, breathtaking and out of this world! The interior, around -5°C, actually feels quite pleasant, especially when outside temperatures can drop way beyond that! For the duration of your stay, you’ll be kitted out in a one piece thermal suit, boots, gloves and a hat. But if you feel you still need warming up then head to the Icebar where colourful vodka cocktails are served in chunky ice glasses, naturally! Your itinerary is designed to allow you the freedom to make your time in Jukkasjärvi as active or relaxing as you wish. There are so many different experiences to be had here that you might have trouble deciding what to do – so give our experts a call and they’ll help you choose - of course you can also look at the extensive list on our website! Day 1 Fly UK to Kiruna (either direct or via Stockholm) and transfer to Jukkasjärvi. Check in at the Icehotel for a 3 or 4-night stay – one night in a Snow Room. Guided tour. Days 2-3/4 At leisure to enjoy optional activities or just soak up your surrounds. Days 4/5 Transfer to Kiruna for the return flight to the UK (either direct or via Stockholm). Please note: Which night you’ll spend in a Snow Room will be advised at the time of confirming your booking – it may be possible to upgrade your ice accommodation or stay in a 2-bedroom chalet subject to availability. Optional activities and excursions should be booked in advance in order to benefit from our specially negotiated prices and to ensure availability. If travelling via Stockholm it may be possible to extend your stay in the capital city – contact us for details. Trip Details Outline Itinerary Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4). discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 27 Festive Icehotel What better way to celebrate the festive season than to spend it somewhere that boasts perfect Christmas-card scenery. Wrapped up with rosy cheeks, amongst snow-laden trees glistening in the winter sun, the atmosphere couldn’t be better – enjoy either a torchlight procession to a picturesque church for a Christmas day carol concert, or a New Year’s Eve gala dinner included in the itineraries as well as a host of optional activities. We also offer pre-Christmas treats, which incorporate time at the Icehotel with the Christmas Markets in Stockholm, to immerse you in that festive spirit.
  28. 28. Abisko & the Icehotel This incredible short break has it all – a stay at the Icehotel with the chance to try a range of winter activities, as well as a night at the Mountain Station in Abisko National Park, where spectacular displays of the northern lights are not uncommon. Take a chairlift ride to the Aurora Sky Station and, fingers crossed, the lights will appear… Highlights Time at the world-famous Icehotel. Chairlift ride to Aurora Sky Station, Abisko National Park regarded as one of the best places in the world to see the northern lights. Convenient direct flights between UK & Sweden. Fact File Independent short break 3/4-nights (2/3 Icehotel, 1 Abisko Mountain Station) Breakfast basis at Icehotel, half board in Abisko Who for? Those looking for a winter break with a difference Price per person from £1,233 (based on two sharing, including direct flights) Departures December to March 28 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website SWEDEN Aurora Sky Station © rosenmedia.se
  29. 29. 2929 As Lapland winter breaks go this one is pretty hard to beat. Your holiday includes two or three nights at the Icehotel (depending on your chosen itinerary) where you’ll have ample opportunity to experience some of the many optional activities, some of which can be found on page 24. The extra special addition to this itinerary is a night in Abisko National Park, regarded as one of the best locations in the world to observe the northern lights. A natural occurrence in the behaviour of the prevailing winds in the area means that cloud rarely forms, creating ideal conditions for auroral appearances. This anomaly in cloud formation makes Abisko one of the driest places in Sweden, even though it is close to some of the country’s top ski resorts which are amongst the wettest! The Abisko Mountain Station is the only hotel located within the national park, a convenient walking distance from Abisko Canyon and the chairlift up to the Aurora Sky Station, a trip on which is included in this itinerary. As an optional extra, choose to have dinner at the Sky Station at the summit - eating delicious home cooked Swedish cuisine whilst keeping a look out for the lights, through enormous picture windows, is to be recommended - please contact us for details. The Aurora Sky Station boasts a large outside deck area ideal for aurora watching, and inside you can warm up by a log fire. With such expanses of sky here, when sightings occur, the lights can be enjoyed from ground level too - from the scenic surrounds of the Mountain Station as well as from its lounge areas which offer giant picture windows - even the restaurant and bar have panoramic views. At the Abisko Mountain Station, which has unique views over Lake Torneträsk and the surrounding mountains, you can enjoy peace and quiet and, more importantly, no light pollution to hinder any northern lights viewing. Trip Details Day 1 Fly UK to Kiruna and transfer to the Abisko Mountain Station for an overnight stay. After dinner take the 20 minute chairlift ride to the Aurora Sky Station. Day 2 After breakfast, transfer to the Icehotel for a 2-night stay (one night in a Snow Room) – day at leisure to enjoy an optional excursion. Day 3 Free for optional excursions or just soak up your surrounds. Day 4 Transfer to Kiruna for the flight back to UK. Please note: This itinerary operates in reverse on some departures and we also offer several 4-night departures – at Christmas, New Year, during February Half Term and at Easter – visit our website for details. Outline Itinerary Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4). © rosenmedia.se Art Suite discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 29
  30. 30. 30 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website This action-packed adventure is the perfect way to experience Lapland’s great outdoors. Mush your own team of huskies through the beautiful forested surrounds of Jukkasjärvi, enjoy a spot of snowmobiling, sleep in a rustic lodge and spend a night in the famous Icehotel. And if conditions are right, you may even see the amazing northern lights! Fact File Small group escorted 3 or 4-nights (1 Mushers Lodge, 1/2 Wilderness Lodge & 1 Icehotel) Full board basis on the trail, breakfast at the Icehotel Who for? Those who enjoy a challenge and the great outdoors Price per person from £1,499 (based on two sharing, including direct flights) Departures December to March Highlights Mush your own team of dogs. Get a real sense of the wilderness out on the trail. Snowmobile from the Musher’s Lodge to the Icehotel. Experience the breathtaking Icehotel. Wilderness Husky Adventure SWEDEN © Will Gray
  31. 31. 31discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 31 Many visitors to Lapland take a husky sledge excursion as travelling behind a team of eager dogs is the perfect way to explore. By driving your own team of dogs, this holiday allows you to experience a total sense of adventure and accomplishment. The itinerary is aimed at the novice ‘musher’ – accompanied by your vastly experienced guide, take turns at the helm and then enjoy a spot in the sledge so you can fully appreciate your pristine surrounds. When on the trail the ‘whoosh’ of the sledge runners on snow and the panting of the dogs are the only sounds you will hear, it is only when the sledge stops that the dogs become more vocal. Sledging days can prove physically demanding so these trips are unsuitable for children or those without a good general level of fitness. Whilst sledging, remember to be on the lookout for Arctic wildlife and the telltale signs of footprints in the snow – possibly even spot a moose! And at this latitude, in such a remote location, when the skies are dark keep your fingers crossed for an appearance of the northern lights. The Wilderness Lodge is ‘home’ for one or two nights on the trail depending on your chosen itinerary. The overnight accommodation is bunk-bed style, in shared rooms or cabins. It’s pleasantly rustic with no electricity supply but you’ll be kept warm and cosy by the large log fire. There are basic washroom facilities, a wood sauna and an outside toilet. On the penultimate day of the trip, say farewell to the dogs and exchange paw power for horsepower, arriving in style at the Icehotel by snowmobile. The final night will be spent here after you’ve had a guided tour of this amazing construction and perhaps a warming vodka cocktail in the Icebar. Outline Itinerary Day 1 Fly direct London Heathrow to Kiruna, transfer to the Mushers Lodge. Dinner and overnight stay. Day 2 After a briefing set off on the sledges, alternating mushing duties. Lunch on the trail – overnight at Wilderness Lodge. Day 3 Again alternate handling the team of dogs on your way back to the Mushers Lodge. After lunch then drive to the Icehotel by snowmobile - overnight in a Snow Room or warm room. Day 4 Time at leisure to explore the Icehotel and its surrounds or take an optional excursion. Transfer to the airport for the flight back to the UK. Please note: we offer a 4-night version of this itinerary which has two nights on the trail - and each participant has their own team of huskies to mush. Trip Details Following a longer and more challenging trail, on this tour participants are responsible for their own team of 3 to 5 dogs including feeding, harnessing and settling them overnight. The trail is 4 days and is aimed at those with previous husky sledging experience. Full details are on our website. Ultimate Husky Adventure 6-night itinerary Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4). © Christopher O’DriscollWilderness Lodge
  32. 32. 32 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website Exclusive Wilderness Escape Enjoy an EXCLUSIVE weekend with your family or friends in beautiful Swedish Lapland. A night is spent at the Fjellborg Husky Farm with time to get to know the dogs before setting off for the wilderness camp, home for the second night. Take in the silence of the forest, enjoy your rustic surrounds and perhaps try a traditional sauna with a roll in the snow! Your last night is spent at the magnificent Icehotel. Highlights Traditional wilderness experience. Husky Sledging - choose to mush, ride as a passenger or both! Private tour - not shared with other participants. Fact File Private tour (max 6 participants) 3-nights (1 Fjellborg Husky Farm, 1 Wilderness Camp, 1 Icehotel) Breakfast basis plus 1 lunch & 2 evening meals Who for? Those looking for a private wilderness experience Price per person from £1,769 (based on 2 sharing, including flights) Departures December to April O N O U R W EBSITE:REA D AW A RD -W IN N IN G TRAVEL W RITER W ILL G RAY’S A CCO U N T O F TH IS H O LID AY,EN JO YED W ITH H IS FA M ILY. SWEDEN © Will Gray
  33. 33. 33discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 33 On arrival at Kiruna you will be collected by your guide from the Fjellborg Husky Farm. Kenth and Ann Fjellborg, together with their staff, will be your hosts during your stay at the farm until you transfer to the Icehotel. Your accommodation is a 3 bedroom apartment with modern interior. Each bedroom has twin beds and WC; shower and sauna facilities are shared amongst your party. There is a fully equipped kitchen/diner with views over the husky kennels. Just across the frozen water of the River Torne you will see the flickering lights of Jukkasjärvi and the Icehotel. Before dinner you will have a guided tour of the kennels and a short sledge ride to get familiar with the dogs and the art of mushing. If you have children in your party they have a chance to try their own sledge as well as take a ride on a child- size snowmobile. After all this outdoor excitement, settle down for an evening meal prepared by your hosts, kick back and perhaps enjoy the sauna. In the morning you may wish to help your guide to prepare the dog teams ready for your wilderness adventure. There will be one larger team of huskies for your group and smaller teams for individuals to try their skills at mushing. Take turns driving the dog team or just sit back and relax on the guide’s sledge – whatever you choose, this is definitely the most authentic way to experience the pristine surrounds. Traverse frozen lakes, glide through the forests and follow the shores of the River Torne, stopping for a traditional campfire lunch made by your guide. On arrival at the Väkkärä Wilderness Cabin your party will have exclusive use of the four bedroom master cabin. There is a lounge area with a cosy wood burner but as this is in the traditional wilderness style, the outdoor WC and wood-heated sauna are in separate buildings. There are other cabins in the surrounding area, which may share the use of the facilities. Dinner will be served in the main building by the open log fire, perfect for exchanging stories about the day’s experiences. Try your luck with ice fishing and perhaps have your catch prepared as part of the dinner! Then relax and enjoy the peace and tranquillity, occasionally broken only by the howl of the huskies. Here in the wilderness you are perfectly situated should the northern lights make an appearance so be sure to check the night sky from time to time. In the morning you might like to help feed the dogs and harness them ready for the drive back to the husky farm. Once there, it is time to say goodbye to the dogs and your hosts, before transferring to the Icehotel. Take time to look around and marvel at the amazing designs made of ice and snow or perhaps join one of the afternoon or evening excursions. Don’t forget to try out the Icebar before settling in for the night in your Snow Room - should you prefer to upgrade to an Art Suite or stay in a warm room, please mention this at the time of booking. Trip Details Day 1 Fly UK to Kiruna (direct or via Stockholm), private transfer to Fjellborg Husky Farm - dinner and overnight stay. Day 2 Depart by husky sledge to the Wilderness Camp – lunch on the trail - sauna and dinner at the camp. Day 3 Prepare the huskies and set off on the trail back to the farm, transfer to the Icehotel and overnight in your choice of accommodation. Day 4 Transfer to Kiruna for your flight back to the UK either direct or via Stockholm. Fully Flexible This private tour can be tailor-made to your exact requirements. You might prefer to just visit the Icehotel and spend the final night back at the Husky Farm, or opt to spend all three nights at the husky farm and not stay at the Wilderness Camp – simply call us to discuss your options. Outline Itinerary Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4). Will Gray & family © Will Gray
  34. 34. Iceland & the Icehotel This fantastic winter break combines fire and ice! Discover Reykjavík and some of Iceland’s amazing natural wonders; visit vibrant Stockholm and spend time in beautiful Swedish Lapland at the Icehotel. With a huge choice of optional activities available throughout, this flexible itinerary allows you to make this holiday as active or relaxed as you wish. Fact File Independent short break 7-nights (3 Hotel Reykjavík Centrum, 1 Hotel Diplomat Stockholm, 3 Icehotel) Breakfast basis Who for? Those looking for a unique winter experience Price per person from £1,598 (based on two sharing, including flights) Departures December to March Highlights Spend time in Reykjavík and beyond - perhaps visit the Blue Lagoon, Golden Circle route and more! Enjoy shopping and dining in Stockholm. Marvel at the Icehotel and opt to explore pristine surrounds on a number of activities and excursions. 34 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website ICELAND & SWEDEN Gullfoss Reykjavík
  35. 35. discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 35 35 This is a unique opportunity to visit two incredible destinations and two distinct capitals. Contrast the classic snow-laden scenery of Lapland with the volcanic curiosities and geothermal wonders of Iceland. Contrast too, stylish and sophisticated Stockholm with the charm and ‘small and friendly’ character of Reykjavík. Reykjavík is blessed with numerous natural wonders all within easy reach, by escorted tour or private vehicle should you wish to rent your own. For three nights you’ll be based in a centrally located hotel and you’ll have the freedom to choose how to fill your days. During February, Reykjavík plays host to a couple of festivals with special events organised around the city. Enjoy the turn of the century charm and relaxed atmosphere of Hotel Diplomat, your overnight accommodation in Stockholm, centrally located so you can make the most of your day here. Go sightseeing, shopping, visit a museum or sample some of the wonderful bars, restaurants and cafes that make this such a lively city. Next stop, the Icehotel! Learn more on pages 22-25 - here you’ll have a night ‘sleeping on ice’ and two nights in a heated Kaamos Room. Your time in Lapland is also at leisure but we’re sure you’ll be tempted to include an excursion or two – husky sledging and snowmobiling being the most popular. We highly recommend the evening trips in search of the northern lights and as with all of the optional activities, we strongly advise pre- booking to ensure availability. On this holiday, you’ll take advantage of our exclusive direct flight between London Heathrow and Kiruna, cutting down on travelling time. Between Stockholm, Reykjavík and London the flights will be with Icelandair. Please note: If you wish to extend your stay in Iceland, Kiruna or Stockholm please call us. Day 1 Fly UK to Keflavík, transfer to Hotel Reykjavík Centrum for a 3-night stay. Days 2-3 At leisure to enjoy one of the many excursions on offer or perhaps opt for car hire. Day 4 Transfer to Keflavík for the early morning flight to Stockholm - rest of the day at leisure then overnight at Hotel Diplomat (airport transfers in Stockholm are not included). Day 5 Make your way to Arlanda Airport for the flight to Kiruna. Transfer to the Icehotel and check in for a 3-night stay (1 night in a Snow Room). Days 6-7 Free to enjoy optional activities. Day 8 Transfer to Kiruna for our exclusive direct flight back to the UK. Please note: This itinerary also operates in reverse, determined by departure date - visit our website for details. Trip Details Outline Itinerary Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4). Stockholm Skogafoss
  36. 36. 36 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website In the month of September nature transforms Abisko National Park into a vibrant show of autumn colours, a beautiful mix of oranges, reds and golds. And when darkness falls, nature plays her part once more, often illuminating the skies with the aurora borealis. On this two-centre trip, spend time in Abisko as well as Jukkasjärvi, located by the shores of the Torne River. Highlights Aurora Sky Station visit (September only) in search of the northern lights. Hiking and wilderness experiences in Sweden’s glorious Abisko National Park. Fact File Small group hiking and wilderness tour (max 12 participants) 3 or 4-nights (1 or 2 Abisko, 1 or 2 Jukkasjärvi) Full board basis throughout Who for? Northern lights hunters, photographers and nature lovers Price per person from £1,279 (based on 2 sharing, including flights) Departures September to November Abisko & Autumn Colours SWEDEN © rosenmedia.se
  37. 37. 37discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 37 37 In September the birch trees begin to turn from green to shades of orange, red and yellow, completely altering the look of Abisko. The national park has superb hiking trails, including part of the famous Kungsleden Trail, and there is nothing more exhilarating than spending time in the great outdoors, taking in the stunning scenery and with a bit of luck, spotting a moose or two. The Abisko National Park is regarded as one of the best locations in the world to observe the northern lights, due to the clear air and virtually cloud-free skies. On September itineraries, a chairlift ride to the top of Mt. Nuolja is included for the group, spending the first evening at the Aurora Sky Station on lookout for the northern lights. When visiting in October and November, autumn colours are replaced by a glistening frost covering the treetops, and you may experience some of the first snowfalls of the season. Instead of a visit to the Aurora Sky Station, walk to Lake Torneträsk and gaze skywards - being well away from any light pollution means increased opportunities for spotting the aurora. Leaving Abisko, transfer to Jukkasjärvi and the site of the famous Icehotel, where you’ll stay in a two bedroom Nordic Cabin. Although the actual Icehotel will not be built until later on in the year, there is an opportunity to visit the Ice Production area and enjoy a drink from an ice glass. Depending on the weather conditions, the construction of the Icehotel can usually be observed from around mid-October. Enjoy a 3-course dinner in the Icehotel Restaurant, prepared with local ingredients, which will certainly be a treat for your taste buds! After dinner watch a presentation about the myths, legends and science behind the northern lights and then go out in search once more for the magical aurora. Those who have opted for the longer 4-night tour will depart in the morning by boat and travel along the River Torne to the wilderness camp, Luspen - should the river be frozen, alternative transport will be provided. There will be time to explore, relax or perhaps try your luck with fishing for grayling and trout. After a sauna and a wilderness dinner, prepare for your final northern lights watch of the trip. Outline Itinerary (September) Day 1 Fly UK to Kiruna via Stockhom, transfer to Abisko Mountain Station for a 2-night stay, enjoy a short walk and introduction to the history of Abisko, visit the Border Defence and Rallar (railway workers) Museums. After dinner take the chairlift to the Aurora Sky Station. Day 2 Take a 10-12km hike in the national park. After dinner visit the Aurora Sky Station or if weather conditions prohibit the operation of the chairlift, take a walk in the beautiful national park. Day 3 Transfer to Jukkasjärvi, keeping a look out for moose and reindeer grazing by the road side! Dinner and a talk on the northern lights. Day 4 Those on a 3-night trip transfer to Kiruna for the flight back to the UK. Those on a 4-night trip take a boat trip on the Torne and stay overnight in a wilderness cabin. Day 5 Transfer by boat to Sokakielinen, then by bus back to the Icehotel in time for lunch. Transfer to Kiruna for the flight back to the UK via Stockholm. Please note: It is possible to extend your stay in Stockholm – contact us to discuss your options. October & November departures: Itineraries generally have 1 night in Abisko, 1 night in a Nordic Cabin at the Icehotel complex and 1 night at the wilderness cabin, Luspen. They also include an Aurora hike in Abisko National Park, instead of a visit to the Aurora Sky Station. See our website for further details. Trip Details Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4). © rosenmedia.se © rosenmedia.se © Staffan Widstrand/imagebank.sweden.se
  38. 38. 38 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website Finnmark is a wild and wonderful area of northern Norway which boasts spectacular scenery, from rugged island seascapes to vast mountain plateaux. This coastal adventure starts in Tromsø and takes you to the top end of mainland Europe, throughout which endless skies give ample opportunities for aurora sightings from land or whilst at sea. Highlights Kongsfjord Guesthouse – a hidden gem in the Arctic. Hurtigruten Coastal Voyage. Kirkenes Snow Hotel (20 Dec to 20 April only). In Pursuit of the Aurora Independent holiday 7-nights (2 Tromsø, 2 Hurtigruten, 2 Kongsfjord, 1 Kirkenes) Breakfast basis plus 2 evening meals onboard ship and full board in Kongsfjord Who for? Northern lights and Arctic enthusiasts, photographers Price per person from £1,599 (based on 2 sharing, including flights) Departures September to April Fact File NORWAY: Tromsø, Kongsfjord & Kirkenes © Knutt Jensen © Kongsfjord Guesthouse © nordnorge.com© Leslie A Kelly
  39. 39. 39discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 39 Fly far above the Arctic Circle to Tromsø, the largest city in Northern Norway. Steeped in history, this vibrant metropolis provides a perfect base from which to visit many attractions such as the striking Arctic Cathedral, fascinating Polar Museum or the Polaria Centre. Or if you prefer to spend your time outdoors, try one of the many optional excursions such as dog sledging or snowmobiling. From Tromsø, set sail on the Hurtigruten for Finnmark. This region lies along the same latitude as Alaska to the West and Siberia to the East. Although inland temperatures can dip well below zero, the Gulf Stream ensures the coastline and more importantly, the harbours do not ice over, meaning that this remote Arctic region can be fully explored. As you voyage north, winding between islands and fjords, you’ll swear it gets darker each night, the ‘big skies’ lending themselves perfectly to keeping watch for the aurora. The next day Honningsvåg is your port of call where we highly recommend the optional excursion to Nordkapp (North Cape). The snow covered landscape en route is empty, except for herds of reindeer which provide a glimpse of true Arctic scenery. The Visitor Centre at the top of the 307m cliff includes a super widescreen film presentation of a helicopter flight over the area - not to be missed! Outside is the much-photographed steel globe at the end of the promontory. Next stop is Berlevåg harbour, the only village in Finnmark actually on the open Arctic sea. Its 1000 residents are protected solely by the breakwaters - it is difficult not to feel completely at one with nature when alighting here. The Kongsfjord Guesthouse is an absolute gem, just a 30 minute drive from Berlevåg and in an enviable location boasting sweeping views over the fjord. This lovingly restored 19th century farmhouse affords a high standard of accommodation with tastefully furnished rooms and a homely restaurant which specialises in local dishes. Your host, Åse and her team are here to make sure your stay is truly memorable. There is a range of daytime activities on offer including show-shoeing, ice fishing, boat trips for bird watching and king crab fishing, or you could explore with one of the complimentary kicksleds. With next to no light pollution in this area, Kongsfjord offers good chances to star gaze and view the aurora borealis. From Berlevåg, the final leg of the coastal voyage takes you east into the remote port of Kirkenes. While staying here you can visit the Russian border, a mere 10km away; try your hand at a winter activity and see the Kirkenes Snow Hotel (open Dec-Apr), with its individually crafted snow suites and ice bar - you can even opt to spend a night there. Day 1 Fly UK to Tromsø via Oslo - 2-nights at the Thon Hotel Tromsø or upgrade to the Rica Ishavshotel. Day 2 At leisure in Tromsø. Day 3 At leisure. Join the Hurtigruten – 18:00 set sail - dinner and overnight onboard. Day 4 Arrive Honningsvåg or take an optional excursion to North Cape. Dinner onboard before arriving Berlevåg, late evening. Transfer to Kongsfjord Guesthouse for a 2-night stay. Day 5 At leisure or take an optional excursion. Day 6 At leisure - after dinner transfer to Berlevåg - Hurtigruten to Kirkenes. Day 7 Arrive Kirkenes, transfer to Thon Hotel Kirkenes or Rica Arctic Hotel. Afternoon free for an optional excursion, includes a visit to the nearby Kirkenes Snow Hotel (20 Dec - 20 Apr). Day 8 Fly Kirkenes to the UK via Oslo. Please note: London Heathrow or Gatwick flights available – we advise booking optional excursions in advance to secure availability – should you wish to sleep overnight in the Kirkenes Snow Hotel, please contact us for details. Hurtigruten has adopted a dynamic pricing policy - see page 41 for details. Trip Details Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4). Outline Itinerary © Kongsfjord Guesthouse © Kirkenes Snow Hotel © Trym Ivar Bergsmo
  40. 40. 40 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website Hurtigruten Coastal Voyages Hurtigruten traces the dramatic Norwegian coastline from Bergen and the southern fjords, up across the Arctic Circle, all the way to Lofoten and the top end of Europe. It is the name of the route rather than one of the collection of ships that ply it year round. On a winter voyage, as well as the variety of daytime activities and sights, the northern lights prove a big attraction - huge vistas providing the canvas for often spectacular displays. Fact File Norwegian coastal voyage 5 to 11-nights (onboard) Full board on the set voyages Who for? Northern lights enthusiasts and those who enjoy sea and coastal scenery Price per person from £708 (based on 2 sharing a cabin, also includes 1 hotel night but excludes flights) Departures September to March Highlights Northern lights ‘alert system’ onboard. Good choice of interesting onshore excursions. Stunning fjord, mountain and Arctic scenery. Choice of Voyages 6-night voyage north: Bergen – Kirkenes 5-night voyage south: Kirkenes – Bergen 9-night voyage: Bergen – Kirkenes – Trondheim Classic 11-night voyage: full round trip Bergen – Kirkenes – Bergen NORWAY © Yannik Ortmanns
  41. 41. 41discover-the-world.co.uk/arctic-experience Talk to the experts 01737 214 257 41 On a Hurtigruten coastal voyage you are always in eyeshot of the remarkable scenery. More than just a means of travel for the locals between remote ports, this route and the ships that sail up and down it year round, have become a popular way for visitors to explore the region. Hurtigruten ships are working vessels which call in at different ports throughout the day and night, transporting goods and passengers. Choose to cover the full route or just a section and enjoy a traditional, informal and very different kind of cruising. Every evening a ship sets sail from Bergen heading north, navigating through narrow passages and past rocky shorelines distinctive of the Norwegian coastline. The next day it arrives at Ålesund, allowing passengers 3 hours to explore this picture- postcard Art Nouveau town. Continuing north, the ship passes the peaked Romsdal Alps, navigating through islets and skerries before an evening arrival at Kristiansund. Early on the third day the ship stops off in Trondheim, the first capital city of Norway. Here you may wish to visit the famous gothic cathedral of Nidaros or perhaps just take a walk in this ancient city and soak up the atmosphere. The fourth day will bring the excitement of crossing the Arctic Circle and from here on you should keep an eye out for the northern lights, although the ship also has a northern lights alert system in place. At the Lofoten and Vesterålen islands, navigate the narrow Raftsund Strait, passing the looming crags of the Trollfjord. Day five will bring an early arrival at Harstad before continuing past the beautiful island of Senja. In the afternoon there will be a 4 hour stop in Tromsø, with a choice of shore excursions - it is also easy to explore the town independently on foot. The highlight on day six is the optional shore excursion to North Cape, which is advisable to book in advance. The ship then heads east towards the pretty fishing villages of Kjøllefjord, Mehamn, and Berlevåg. You have the option to join an evening snowmobiling excursion at Kjøllefjord, picking up the ship again at Mehamn. On day seven, the ship arrives in Kirkenes. Take a husky or snowmobiling tour or visit the creatively crafted Kirkenes Snow Hotel. If you are disembarking here, perhaps spend a night or two in this Arctic town. This is the outline for the 6-night northbound voyage - those returning to Trondheim or Bergen on the southbound sailing will depart Kirkenes in the early afternoon. For the 5-night southbound sailing schedule, please see our website – the classic 11-night voyage is a combination of a north and south sailing. We can also assist with booking your flights and overnight accommodation in connection with your chosen voyage. Excursions An excellent choice of shore excursions is available. Although they can be booked onboard, it is strongly advisable to do this at the time of booking your holiday to ensure availability. Please visit our website for excursion details and prices. The Fleet The Hurtigruten fleet consists of 13 ships, with 11 operating on these winter voyages. The ships vary from older, beautifully authentic vessels to larger and more modern ships. Although cabins have private facilities, berths may be either twin or bunk. You will be advised the name of the ship at the time of booking, however this will be subject to change. The standard of onboard accommodation and facilities is consistently high and the atmosphere informal and relaxed. The large, comfortable lounges offer excellent views through enormous windows and there is ample deck space so whether you’re admiring beautiful untouched scenery by day, or watching surreal dancing lights at night, you’ll have plenty of room to manoeuvre. Scan with your smartphone for more holiday information on our website (see page 4). Trip Details Hurtigruten has adapted a dynamic pricing policy which means that the price may change according to time of booking and popularity of the voyage - early booking is therefore recommended. Your final price will be confirmed at the time of booking. It is also possible to book shorter port to port journeys, please contact us for information. 2013 Voyages © Hurtigruten © Arild Heitmann © Stein J Bjorge
  42. 42. 42 All our holidays are bound by our Terms & Conditions, which can be found on our website Lofoten & Northern Lights On this wonderful self-drive trip see the peaked mountains and tranquil fjords of northern Norway as they form a stunning backdrop to an already perfect setting of isles, inlets and quaint fishing villages. The Arctic light here is forever changing from burning red at dusk and dawn to the beautiful blue of polar night. And once skies are dark, the northern lights have a chance to take over. Highlights Some of the most dramatic and spectacular Arctic island scenery. Drive between islands and see picture-postcard fishing villages. Viking history, arts and crafts. Optional activities, such as kayaking and whale watching. Fact File Self-drive 6-nights (1 Harstad, 2 Sortland, 3 Henningsvaer or Svolvaer) Breakfast basis Who for? Northern lights hunters, photographers and independently minded travellers Price per person from £1,210 (based on 2 sharing, including flights) Departures October, November & January to April NORWAY

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