Arctic Sweden & the Icehotel Trip Notes

Ways to Travel:
Guided Group
Destinations:
Sweden
Programmes:
Winter
Trip Code:
CSI
Activity Rating - Moderate
Moderate

You are moderately fit and possess a spirit of adventure. Some previous experience is required for most activity based trips.

7 Days Flight Inclusive
7 Days Land only
Min age: 18

Trip Overview

Deep inside the Arctic Circle in Swedish Lapland sits the peaceful hamlet of Lappeasuando. From here all that lies ahead is a land characterised by deep forests, frozen lakes and the extraordinary Northern Lights.

Our base is ideally located to explore the surrounding wilderness, with a week packed full of activities. Our Arctic adventure culminates with a memorable night in the magical Icehotel, the perfect end to a truly unforgettable adventure trip.

At a Glance

  • 4 nights lodge, with en suite dormitory-style rooms, 1 night wilderness camp, 1 night Icehotel
  • 5 days of mixed activities
  • Group normally 4 to 12, plus guides and instructors. Min age 16 years
  • Travel by private minibus
  • Countries visited: Sweden

Trip Highlights

  • Action-packed break in Arctic Sweden
  • Stay at the world-famous Icehotel
  • Dogsled in silent forest trails
  • Visit a reindeer herder and learn local Sami culture

Is This Trip for You?

This magical winter trip combines a stay at the peaceful hamlet of Lappeasuando with a night in the world’s famous Icehotel and a daily mixture of winter activities. The temperatures in Scandinavian during winter are often low with limited daylight in the early part. The trip level is 3, moderate so a reasonable level of fitness is required. (see our website for further information on our grades).

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Group

There will be local guides and drivers where needed. As each activity requires different skills there will be a specialist leader for each activity. Should you have any queries during your stay, one of the staff members at Lappeasuando will be on hand to help you.

Adult min age:
18
Min group size:
4
Max group size:
12

Itinerary

Land Only Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Lappis Lodge, Lappeasuando.

    Start Lappis Lodge, Lappeasuando.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included:
    Dinner
  • Day 2

    Morning at leisure; afternoon snowshoe excursion.

    After a hearty Swedish breakfast we have a little time to get familiar with our winter surroundings. In the afternoon we head out into the wilderness using snowshoes. This is the perfect way to get closer to nature as we break new trails through the snow, reaching those areas where the snowmobiles and skis could not (distance is around 8km although the route may change depending on conditions. Please note that in the December departures, due to shorter daylight hours, some of this snowshoe will be done in the dark). Out here, where there are no other sources of light, we have an excellent chance to see the incredible Northern Lights.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 3

    Morning guided ice fishing; afternoon free for optional snowmobiling.

    Today we begin the day with a spot of fishing. However, this is not fishing as we know it; this is traditional ice fishing. Through drilled holes in the ice you will be shown how to use the small ice fishing rods to, with any luck, catch what lurks beneath the ice. In the afternoon there is the opportunity to try the optional activity of snowmobiling. If you take this option then you will have a fantastic ride starting along the frozen Kaitum and Kalix Rivers. The route then takes a wide loop over lakes and through forests before arriving back at our base. Alternatively if snowmobiling is not for you then there are further activities available from the Lappis lodge (please see the 'optional excursion' section of the trip notes for more details).
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 4

    Dogsled training and expedition to wilderness camp.

    Spend the morning learning the basics of dogsledding, and after an early lunch, you and your riding partner (you ride 2 to a sled) head out with your own team of 5 to 6 dogs. The dogs are well trained and extremely friendly, and most of all they love to pull sleds. Anyone worried about driving their sled can opt to sit back and enjoy the ride in the cosy passenger seat of their own sled while their riding partner does all the hard work. In deep snow you may need to help push the sled; if the trail is more compacted, the dogs can travel up to 15 or 20 km/h. Falls are not uncommon in the first hour or so. If you do fall, the only rule is 'don't let go of your sled', as the dogs don't stop to wait for you! The guide is also never far away and is on a snowmobile. Our night is spent in the wilderness in a simple lodge, nestled between the Kaitum and Kalix rivers.
    Basic Hotel

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 5

    Return to base on dogsleds via frozen lakes and pine forests.

    Those who want to can rise early to help feed and water the dogs and get them ready and harnessed for the days sledding. We take a different route back to our homebase, with plenty of time to enjoy the scenery and the excitement of mushing your own team. Lunch is usually taken by a campfire by the side of the trail, in a simple cabin or sometimes back at base, depending on conditions. While on the forest trails keep your eyes peeled for Elk (Moose), Snow Grouse (Ptarmigan) or even Capercaille.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 6

    Traditional Sami lunch with reindeer encounter; afternoon transfer to Icehotel.

    Today we transfer to the Nutti Sami reindeer camp outside Jukkasjarvi. After a traditional Sami lunch cooked over the fire we will meet, greet and feed the reindeer. This is a wonderful insight to the life and work as a reindeer herder and the indigenous Sami lifestyle. In the afternoon we will then transfer to the fabulous Icehotel with time for a guided tour of the individually designed rooms, chapel and Absolut ice bar. Our rooms are available from 6pm and dinner (not included in trip cost) is reserved in a nearby traditional homestead or the IceHotel restaurant depending on availability.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch
  • Day 7

    End Icehotel, Jukkasjarvi.

    End trip after a hearty breakfast at the Icehotel's comfortable and warm restaurant.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast

Accommodation

Lappis Lodge, Wilderness Camp & Icehotel

The world famous Icehotel at Jukkasjärvi

Our accommodation for 4 nights is the comfortable 'Lappis Lodge', with en suite rooms, restaurant and sauna. The rooms fit a maximum of 4 in single-sex dormitory style accommodation. Twin rooms are available with a supplement. One night is spent in a wilderness camp; a Sami tent heated by wood-burning stoves with sleeping mats and reindeer skins for beds.

Our final night is in the world-famous Icehotel in Jukkasjarvi, where we usually reserve ice rooms, with unique artwork decorating the room. Throughout the week you will be served a wide variety of delicious local cuisine.

Where a single supplement is available, paying for a single only guarantees a room for single use. It does not always mean a twin or double room will be provided for sole occupancy.

Food & Transport

Eating & Drinking

All meals are included (dinner only on day 1, and breakfast only on day 7), except dinner on day 6, the night of the Icehotel, which is excluded. We recommend to spend dinner on this night in the traditional homestead, not far from the Icehotel.

Meals that are included are usually prepared by our guide and they may ask for some help with the preparation and washing up.

Breakfasts: these are Scandinavian in style including: tea or coffee, porridge, yoghurt, muesli, cheese, ham, and flat pitta style or rye bread.

Picnic lunches: warm soup, with cheese and bread or sandwiches.

Evening meals: menus might include meatballs, reindeer stew, salmon, sausage, Swedish hash, and cooked vegetables. Cordials and water, plus tea or coffee after the meal.

Vegetarian options also available and well catered for.

Transportation

Transfer to and from the airport is by heated minibus or taxi. All other transport is as per the itinerary above.

Weather & Seasonality

When to go

Temperatures should remain below 0degC for the whole season, however recent years have had some unexpected fluctuations, both warmer and colder. The lowest temperature in 2008 was -40 and the warmest was +8degC, just a few weeks apart. Generally you should expect much colder temperatures in December and January, around -35 to -25degC. As the days get longer the temperatures rise to around freezing point by April.

Weather Information

Temperatures should remain below 0ºC for the whole season, however recent years have had some unexpected fluctuations, both warmer and colder. The lowest temperature in 2008 was -40ºC and the warmest was +8ºC, just a few weeks apart. Generally you should expect much colder temperatures in December and January, around -35ºC to -25ºC. As the days get longer the temperatures rise to around freezing point by April. Daylight hours As we are inside the Arctic Circle, from 01 December to 07 January the sun remains just below the horizon during the day. But it is not dark - there is plenty of reflection from the snow - expect 4-5 hours of daylight. At the end of January daylight hours increase to 6-7. In February there are 10 hours, and in March 15 hours. Northern Lights The stunning Aurora Borealis are one of nature's most awe-inspiring sights, and seeing them hover above us on a cold winter's night is an experience never to be forgotten. Scientists will tell you the Northern Lights occur 'when solar wind particles collide with air molecules in the earth's atmosphere, transferring their energy into light'. The 'season' runs from October to March. Within this window the slightly better months are October, February and March. During periods of high solar activity (not forecastable) they can often be seen every night, but the sky has to be clear of cloud cover, and you need to be away from other light sources. Displays can vary in intensity - from a greenish-yellow glow moving gently around the sky, to a spectacular multi-coloured show dancing across the heavens. Sightings not only vary in intensity but in duration too, from just minutes to sometimes hours. On a 7 day long stay you have a very good chance of seeing some aurora, and a reasonable chance of seeing the most spectacular light show on earth at its best.

Weather Charts

Joining Instructions

Travelling flight inclusive from London: 7 days

Airport transfers are included for those on the group flights. Please note that transfers are not included for clients arriving on any other flight, even if Exodus has booked it. Those arriving from London on non-group flights should read the airport transfer section below for information on reaching the start point. Please check with the Exodus office.

There are alternative flight options from regional airports (Bristol, Liverpool, Manchester…) Please ask our Sales team for more information. 

Travelling land only: 7 days starting and ending in Lappis Lodge

Your trip normally starts at our accommodation in Lappis Lodge in the afternoon of Day 1 of the itinerary. Details of how to reach the start point are provided in the Final Joining Instructions ‐ sent
approximately two weeks before departure.

Accommodation check‐in times are normally from around 3pm.

 

Regional Flights

The Flight Inclusive price is based on a London departure, but we are happy to tailor this to your local or regional airport. Please ask about flights from local or regional airports.

If booking regional flights other than with Exodus, you must allow a minimum connecting time (in addition to the international check-in time) of 1 hour at Gatwick, and 1.5 hours at Heathrow; this is longer than the official minimum, but baggage handling is known to be subject to delays.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

Transfers Details

Airport transfers are included for those on the group flights.

Please note that transfers are not included for clients arriving on any other flight, even if Exodus has booked it. Those arriving from London on non‐group flights should read the airport transfer section below for information on reaching the start point. Please check with the Exodus office.

Location start:
Lappis Lodge
Location end:
Lappis Lodge

What to Take

Essential Equipment

Winter Equipment/Clothing Provided: 

Insulated overalls

insulated boots

mittens and a fur-lined hat

Balaclavas are also available, but you may prefer to bring your own.

Sleeping bags are provided for night in the wilderness lodge and special sleeping bags are issued to you for your night in the Icehotel.

You will need the following: Bearing in mind that temperatures vary from month to month, but are not always predictable, you need to pack for a wide range of temperatures from very cold, to mild. In colder temperatures you should wear full winter clothing under your overalls: thermal underwear; thin gloves (to wear under provided mittens); jogging bottoms or thermal underwear; at least two warm fleeces and a jacket or ski jacket. Balaclava (for December to February only). In warmer temperatures you can wear less underneath the overalls.

Other essential equipment:

  • Sheet sleeping bag liner
  • Casual footwear for evenings and travelling
  • Torch (head-torch recommended, with spare batteries)
  • Water bottle (thermos flask optional);
  • Towel
  • Swimming costume (for saunas)
  • sunglasses,sun-cream and lipbalm - from Febuaray onwards

Apart from your main luggage, we recommend that you bring one small holdall or rucksack, to use as your smaller bag to take to the wilderness cabins, and a small daysack for the ski day, or to put in your sled.

Note on temperatures below -30ºC: They say contact lenses can freeze, especially when snowmobiling - ski goggles may help. Water-based cream/moisturisers may freeze in very low temperatures. Camera batteries usually stop working in low temperatures, so take spares.

Internal Flights Weight Limit

23kg

Practical Information

Passport

Sweden

All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid beyond the intended length of stay. It is your responsibility to have the correct personal documents and to obtain your own visa, if one is necessary, in accordance with the regulations of the country you are to visit. The information offered below is to help you with that process. We are not responsible for the actions of local immigration and customs officials, whether at points of entry or otherwise, and any subsequent effects.

Visa

Sweden

Visa regulations can change without notice: please check the current regulations in good time to obtain a visa if one is required.

Vaccination

Sweden

There are no specific health risks.

Travel health can often be something people forget about before going away, but a little preparation and knowledge can go a long way to help you stay fit and healthy while abroad.

The above information can change at short notice; as we are not qualified to answer all your questions about travel health we strongly recommend you contact your Medical Professional or a Travel Health Clinic at least 8 weeks prior to departure for up-to-date information. Please note: vaccinations that are routinely recommended to residents of the UK, North America or Australasia are not considered to form part of the travel health advice, and you should ensure these are kept up to date where necessary.

For additional information please visit: https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries

Insurance - are you adequately covered?

It is a condition of joining any of our holidays that you must be fully insured against medical and personal accident risks (to include repatriation costs and air ambulance or helicopter rescue services where appropriate). On arrival in destination for your trip, you will be asked to present details to your leader or local representative of your policy.

If you are resident in the UK we strongly recommend the Exodus travel insurance policy, this is specifically designed to cover all activities on your trip. If arranging your own policy please ensure that you are covered for all activities that are part of the trip, optional activities that you intend to take part in and/or on high altitude itineraries, that you are covered up to the maximum altitude of the trip.

If you are a UK citizen and travelling in Europe you should obtain the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) from your Post Office. This gives you medical care at a reduced cost, and some cases for free, in many European countries, but should not be considered a substitute for adequate insurance.

Local Time

Sweden's Timezone:
Europe/Stockholm CEST (GMT +02:00)

Electricity

Sweden's Electricity:

Standard 2 pin European plugs.

Money

Sweden's Currency

The national currency of Sweden is the Swedish Krona (SEK), with an exchange rate at the time of publication of approximately 11.7 to the UK£ and 5.9 to the US$.

Exchange rates are correct at the time of publication.

ATM Availability

There are no cash machines locally so you should either withdraw cash at the airport or purchase Kroner before you travel. At the Icehotel it is possible to pay for souvenirs and drinks by credit card but you will need sufficient cash for other purchases during the holiday.

Extra Expenses & Spending Money

Almost everything on this holiday is included and there are few places to spend money. Nevertheless you will need some local currency for drinks and souvenirs at the Icehotel.

Optional Excursion on day 3

Snowmobile excursion: 1150SEK for 2hrs

Snowshoes, kick sledges and ice fishing equipment are free of charge to hire. 

Responsible Tourism

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Exodus Community

Join the Exodus online community

Don't forget to visit the Community area on our website. You can view the range of Exodus videos and podcasts, read trip write-ups which have featured in the national media and take advantage of some special deals on travel gear and equipment.

In the Community Travel Forum you'll find the Departure Lounge where you can discuss your trip with fellow travellers before you depart. When you get back from your holiday remember to upload your images to the relevant trip page on our website. This helps other people see what our holidays are really like and you'll be entered automatically into our monthly photo competition.

To make full use of the Community you'll need to join My Exodus. It's free, registration is simple and easy, so what are you waiting for?

Important Information

On all guided trips

Although our leaders are well trained to deal with different capabilities, if they have any concerns about someone’s ability to safely partake in an activity, or their impact on other people’s enjoyment, we authorise them to take necessary action which, in some circumstances, may involve asking someone to miss that activity.

Although rarely enforced, by booking this trip you agree to section 14 of our Booking Conditions which clearly states that our leaders have the authority to do this. In these circumstances we will ensure anyone sitting out is safely provided for and offered alternative options where possible. Refunds will not be provided for activities missed and customers may be liable for additional costs incurred.

On all trips

In booking this trip you should be confident in your ability to participate in all activities described in these Trip Notes. If you have any doubt about your suitability you should call the Exodus office and ask to speak to one of the experts on this itinerary.

In an emergency, please contact our 24 hour out of hours service on +44 (0) 844 326 7041.

Every time that you travel abroad you should take the time to read the warnings in the essential information in the brochure.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers, and details of how to reach the start point, will be sent to you approximately 2 to 3 weeks prior to departure. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

The information in these Trip Notes is given in good faith. Where differences exist between the Trip Notes and our current brochure or website, the Trip Notes supersede the brochure and website. All holidays can be subject to unexpected changes; in order to enjoy them you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary. Occasionally, as stated in our brochure, it may not be possible to follow the itinerary as planned. This may be for a variety of reasons - climatic, political, physical or other. In these circumstances we will make the best possible alternative arrangements that maintain the integrity of the original itinerary.

As fuel prices, airport taxes and exchange rates fluctuate, and airlines manage their rates to match demand, it is proving harder than ever to guarantee our Flight Inclusive prices. Although we endeavour to keep our website as accurate as possible, daily fluctuations mean that our Flight Inclusive price may be out of date. For accurate prices we recommend that you contact one of our Travel Experts, or your Travel Agent.

TRAVEL AWARE –STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD

 

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office and the NHS have up-to-date advice on staying safe and healthy abroad. For more on security, local laws, plus passport and visa information, see https://travelaware.campaign.gov.uk/

Keep informed of current travel health news by visiting https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/

Advice can change so check regularly for updates.

For all latest travel information about your holiday, please visit our Travel Safety Advice page.

How to Book

1. Check availability

Go online to check availability, or contact us by phone or email.

2. Secure your place

You can provisionally hold a place on this trip, usually for between three and seven days.

3. Complete your booking and payment

When you're ready to book, go to www.exodus.co.uk for online booking, book over the phone or you can complete a booking form (available online or on request by calling us). We accept all major credit and debit cards, or you can pay be cheque. Book with confidence: Exodus is fully licensed and bonded as a tour operator. We hold Air Traffic Organisers Licence (ATOL) number 2582 issued and bonded with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). We are also bonded to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and we are members of the Federation of Tour Operators (FTO) and ABTA ‐ The Travel Association. This means you can book your Exodus holiday with confidence, as all monies paid to us for your trip are fully protected.

TRIP NOTE VALIDITY

These Trip Notes are valid from the "Current as" date on page one. They will occasionally be updated post booking and pre-departure; if there are any updates that significantly impact the inclusions or itinerary bookers will be written to separately. All customers will also receive a link to the most up-to-date version of the Trip Notes with their Final Joining Instructions pre-travel.