finland forest

10 Reasons to Visit Basecamp Oulanka in Winter

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Oulanka National Park: a sprawling, 104 square kilometre haven of wilderness in the north of Finland. This is prime adventure territory, so it should surprise no-one that this environment has been enchanting and thrilling Exodus folk for over a decade.

2015 marked the 10th anniversary of our first visit to Basecamp Oulanka, a cosy eco-lodge of log cabins nestled just a few miles short of the Arctic Circle. To celebrate 10 years working together, here are our top 10 reasons to visit Oulanka – one for every year of adventure.

 

Basecamp Oulanka

1. The Guardian put it in their Top 10 European National Parks.

According to The Guardian, who listed Oulanka as one of their Top 10 European National Parks, this place “looks stunning all year round.” We couldn’t agree more. But it is in winter that the park truly comes into its own, as the snow falls and transforms the scene to white.Oulanka National Park in winterOulanka National Park in winter

2. 140sq km of fairytale forest at your fingertips 

You can discover 104 square kilometres of wilderness and wildlife amongst the ancient pine trees, a rare protected boreal forest nestled on the brink of the Arctic Circle.

Snow-laden trees of FinlandSnow-laden trees of Finland

3. Learn to ski on a frozen lake

Lake Juuma freezes each winter, creating a thick, smooth surface dusted with soft, powdery snowfall – ideal conditions to try cross-country skiing for the first time.

Cross-country skiing Cross-country skiing in Finland

4. Race across the wilderness with your new best friends

Your own team of huskies? Enough said.

5. Your own traditional log cabin

Finns may be famous for their summer cabins, but Basecamp Oulanka’s tranquil wooden cabins hold their own in the snow too, with eco-friendly underfloor heating. Combining a modern approach to sustainability with a traditional feel, they're built using lumber from the forest on your doorstep.

Basecamp Oulanka cabinBasecamp Oulanka cabin

6. Snuggle up by the fire

Who can resist the lure of the cosy communal fire, as outside the snow falls and the temperatures drop, whilst you eat reindeer stew and put your feet up after the day’s adventuring… bliss.

Roaring cabin fireRoaring cabin fire

7. Build (and sleep!) in your own igloo

Well, ok, not an actual igloo. The quinzee is a tiny ice shelter built from compacted snow. After creating your own on the shores of the lake, you can bed down for the night like a bona fide survivalist.

Fun in the snowFun in the snow building a quinzee

8. Relax in the sauna and outdoor hot tub

Finns invented the sauna, so there is nowhere better to unwind after a day in the snow… except perhaps the outdoor hot tub, with a beer, watching the snowflakes lazily fall onto the pine trees surrounding the cabin.

9. Snowshoe where feet alone won’t take you

Snow stops nothing here – in fact, it gives new opportunities for adventure! Clip into snowshoes and a whole landscape suddenly becomes accessible, including areas you couldn’t get to even on a sunny day in August.

Snowshoeing in finlandSnowshoeing in Finland

10. Last but not least… Northern Lights Excursions

New for winter 2016/17 Oulanka, we've introduced new special departures with nighttime snowshoeing in search of the elusive Northern Lights. Pick one of these weeks (labelled in the Dates & Prices section) and you'll take to the wilderness by night, walking out on snowshoes to see the fabled aurora borealis dance across the sky. Though never guaranteed, the Northern Lights would undeniably be the icing on the cake for any Finnish adventure.    

Northern lights over Basecamp OulankaNorthern lights over Basecamp Oulanka

There's never been a better time to visit Basecamp Oulanka in winter. View our trip to Finland in more detail below. 

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