Utsjoki - New Year Twice
- Flights: direct return flights from London Gatwick to Ivalo
- Transfers: return airport transfers
- Accommodation: 7 nights' in a standard double or twin hotel room. Cabin upgrades can be arranged on request and subject to a supplement
- Meals: 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 7 dinners
- The following activities are included: snowshoeing, husky safari, reindeer sleigh ride, Northern Lights by snowmobile-pulled sleigh and Northern Lights snowshoe walk (order subject to change)
- Cold weather clothing provided for the duration of the trip
- Fully qualified guides and instructors during activities
If you have dreamt of spending New Year’s Eve, in a unique way, in beautiful winter surroundings, this trip is perfect for you; you can celebrate not only once, but twice!
Your week will be spent taking part in some thrilling activities. You will find yourself speeding over the fells on a husky sleigh, taking in the enchanting winter forest as reindeer pull you through the snow and taking a nature tour on snowshoes. You have free time available for when you want to relax or add extra activities to your holiday (details can be found in the ‘Personalise’ section). There are plenty of opportunities to learn about the Sámi culture during this trip, and your Sámi wilderness guide will teach you everything there is to know about the Sámi lifestyle, as well as give you the opportunity to experience it for yourself.
In the peaceful town of Utsjoki, where your hotel room overlooks the breathtaking Teno River and the Norwegian Fells, you will end the week with a traditional Finnish dinner and party, counting down to the New Year, then rewinding the evening as you cross the border to Norway and celebrate the last hour all over again.
©Klaus-Peter Kappest & Hotel Village Valle
Arrival and Welcome
Upon arrival into Ivalo, you will be greeted at the airport and transferred to Holiday Village Valle Hotel which will take approximately two hours.
A delicious evening meal will follow your arrival, after which you can relax and settle into your new surroundings.
Please note that the order of activities within your itinerary is subject to change and the agenda below should be used as a guide only. The exact order of your agenda will be confirmed upon arrival at the hotel.Included Meals: Dinner
Snowshoeing in the Sacred Valley and Northern Lights Snowshoe Walk
After breakfast, your fun begins immediately as you are given an introduction to a traditional Finnish pastime – snowshoeing.
During the tour, your guide will give you an introduction to snowshoeing before teaching you about the surrounding nature and wildlife, as well as how to read animal footprints, as it is often possible to see tracks from the likes of willow grouse, hares or reindeer along the way. You will then learn how to start a fire, which will act as your warming campfire that you can sit beside while you enjoy coffee, a snack and the surrounding landscape. You will be out for approximately two to three hours before returning to the hotel for lunch.
During the evening, your search for the Aurora will begin with an invigorating walk amidst the pristine winter landscape. Before setting off your guide will give you an introduction to the lights before instructing you on how to capture this natural phenomenon on camera which is vital for producing stunning pictures of the Aurora (you will need your own camera equipment). Hot drinks will be served as you walk beneath the dark skies and enjoy the beautiful and tranquil surroundings of this remote wilderness. Tonight’s snowshoeing will last between two to three hours.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Husky Safari in Tana
Once you have finished breakfast, you will be transferred to the husky farm in Tana. This farm actually lies on the Norwegian side of the River Teno, so you will be spending your morning in Norway.
Your friendly and loyal huskies will be waiting excitedly for your arrival, and you will have the pleasure of meeting them and playing with them before you begin. After meeting your musher and receiving instruction and a safety briefing, you will set off on your exhilarating safari with two people per sleigh, riding for around two hours over the beautiful, snow-covered fell landscape.
On your return, you will enjoy hot drinks and snacks by a toasty campfire, while you listen to stories and interesting facts about these Arctic family members. Following this, it is time to say goodbye to the huskies before returning to Utsjoki for lunch at the hotel.
The afternoon is free so you can choose how you want to spend your time. You could make use of the snowshoe or cross-country skis, which are free to use at your leisure (subject to availability).Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Reindeer Safari and Sami Culture
After breakfast, you will enjoy a truly authentic day, as a Sámi reindeer herder guides you through the magical experience of visiting a reindeer farm.
After a short walk to the farm, the herders will introduce you to the reindeer. You will be able to feed the animals and get to know them before they take you on your fantastic sleigh ride through the forest.
After the ride, you can relax and take a snack and a hot beverage in your guide’s cosy and authentic tepee while they tell you about his life as a herder and a little more about how the reindeer are so vital to Sámi culture history and economy. You will be out for approximately two hours this morning.
Lunch will be served at the hotel and your afternoon is open for you to spend it as you wish, followed by a delicious dinner in the restaurant.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Free Day and New Year Twice
Today is left free for you to decide which activities you would like to do. You may want to spend the day relaxing or making use of the facilities on site, creating your own activities. Alternatively, you can book an activity that is not already included in your holiday, like a scenic snowmobile experience (detailed under the ‘Personalise’ tab).
During the evening the anticipation of the oncoming New Year will have grown and you will be served a special New Year’s dinner and a glass of sparkling wine in the Deatnu restaurant, to celebrate the arrival of New Year in Finland.
After celebrating in Holiday Village Valle, the party will pick up and move across the bridge to Norway where, due to the time difference, the New Year won’t even have happened yet. The festivities will begin all over again as your countdown to the New Year for the second time.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
New Year’s Day and Northern Lights by Snowmobile-Pulled Sleigh
Following breakfast on New Year’s Day, you will once again have the day to enjoy at your leisure. The stunning winter wonderland surrounding the accommodation has a number of walking trails and thus you can enjoy a relaxing stroll amidst the beautiful winter landscape. Alternatively, a number of activities are available from our 'personalise' section.
Following dinner, you will enjoy another Aurora activity as once again you venture towards the Teno River valley on a snowmobile-pulled sleigh. Enjoy the pristine surroundings during the tranquil winter evening before stopping for warm drinks and interesting tales about the Northern Lights. It’s a magical experience to sit beneath a dark sky, north of the Arctic Circle, and hopefully, this will be heightened by the appearance of the spectacular natural phenomenon – the Aurora Borealis. You will be out for approximately two to three hours this evening.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Free Day and Traditional Dinner in a Lappish Kota
After breakfast, you can enjoy your final day in this stunning Lappish wilderness at your leisure. With a number of activities to choose from you will have plenty of magnificent options from which to continue your exploration. Alternatively, you can simply relax and enjoy the stunning terrain.
During the evening, you will enjoy a special, traditional Finnish dinner in a ‘kota’, an indigenous Sámi tent, similar in shape to a teepee. You will eat by the open fire while your host tells you about life in Utsjoki, and may sing some 'Joiku' for you, a specific type of traditional Sámi song.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Today, you will say farewell to Utsjoki. You will enjoy breakfast before been transferred to Ivalo Airport in preparation for your flight home.Included Meals: Breakfast
Included in price
Personalise this tour
Cross-country skiing is one of the oldest methods of travel used by the Sámi people. Using the cross-country skiing equipment will allow you to make the most of the snow-covered landscape and explore the untouched wilderness that surrounds the area and to appreciate the beauty of this remote region. You will enjoy a real sense of silence during this activity and hopefully, encounter some of the local wildlife such as elk, hare and willow grouse. There will be a break for warm drinks en-route. This activity requires a minimum of two participants.
A minimum number of 2 participants is required for this activity to take place.
Duration: 2 hours
Tour to the Arctic Ocean by car
You will be driven over the border into Norway to the magnificent Varangerfjord and the fishing village of Nesseby. A trip will be made to the nearby Sámi museum to learn more about the indigenous people of the Nordic countries, and you will also find out about contemporary life by the Arctic Ocean. Time will be made to visit a ‘seita’, or Sámi worship site, and there will be a picnic lunch along the way. Heading back, a stop will be made at a Sámi handicraft workshop in the village of Tana.
A minimum number of four participants is required for this activity to take place.
Duration: 4-5 hours
Fell scenery tour
If you want to experience something different, why not try this scenery tour? On a sleigh pulled by a guide’s snowmobile, you can sit back, ride through the snow and take in the incredibly peaceful and clear fell surroundings. You will drive to a breath-taking viewpoint that offers you a fantastic vista of the River Teno.
A minimum of 2 participants is required for this activity to take place.
Duration: 2-3 hours
You will take a short, 15-minute transfer to the nearby small lake ready to try this popular Finnish pastime and number one winter sport for locals. You will learn the secrets of a successful ice fishing experience, and if you are lucky you may find yourself catching arctic trout or salmon trout. You also have the opportunity to try drilling a hole in the ice yourself with a special ice drill.
While you are busy fishing, your guide will prepare warm drinks by a campfire for you to enjoy during this activity.
A minimum number of 2 participants is required for this activity to take place.
Duration: 2-3 hours
Dates & Prices
Thank you for your interest in this Artisan Travel experience.
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Even though Holiday Village Valle was not our first choice of accommodation (based on pictures) it absolutely exceeded our expectations. The rooms, even though basic, are very spacious and clean and comfortably designed. The fact that there is limited accommodation made the stay very personal and allowed for pleasant interactions with other guests and the staff. Food wise, we have absolutely no complaints, we were served local, nourishing and delicious meals three times a day: king crab legs for New Year's eve, raw salmon tartare, beetroot spreads, rabbit stew and we even got home brewed kombucha. We also had a lovely Sami dinner in a hut. The activities were always well organised and planned and the guides were very flexible and accommodation. Did you want to go at a later time, stay a bit longer on a certain spot, etc everything was feasible. They really went out their way to make the stay as enjoyable as possible.
The only reason I would not go back to Utsjoki is because there are so many places in the world to visit and so little time in which to do it! All spot on!
If someone had told me before our holiday that I would be capable of managing my own team of huskies and spending 2 days travelling over frozen lakes in the Arctic with them, I would have called them bonkers! It was TOTALLY AMAZING! The dogs were so friendly and so happy and you could tell they just loved running together pulling the sledge. We had magnificent weather too, loads and loads and loads of snow and blue-sky days, so the views across the lakes and forest runs were outstanding.
Amazing winter holidays. Great communication and support from Artisan Travel and very welcoming team at Utsjoki. Enjoyed every day and activity, well planned and organised, traditional food very tasty and amazing place surrounded by nature. Lots of opportunities to see the Aurora lights:). Thank you, Silvie & Chris
Highly enthusiastic guides and restaurant staff. No faults in the entire trip! Strongest lights were seen on New Year's Eve pre-countdown which made it more special. Will be returning to Holiday Village soon!
Excellent trip, had a blast. The dog sledding trip. It was amazing! The sky was this beautiful pink colour the whole time we were there, almost like sunrise and sunset the whole time. It was beautiful scenery and so much fun. The dogs were so adorable, and so happy to be running. We had a nice fire after to warm up. Everyone had a great time! I also really liked the New Year's Eve festivities. The winter games that day was fun. I loved the fireworks at midnight when it was snowing! Also really liked releasing the lanterns into the snowy sky. Then we walked over to Norway and celebrated again. It was a fun night. The Northern Lights were out the best we had seen too earlier at dinner. Great finish to the week.