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Latest Review Wilderness Auroras Andrzej Hardonin (Reviewed 01, Mar 2012)
Apart from the actual Northern Lights, the best activity was the dog-sleds because it was such a unique opportunity. And I left thinking the snow-mobi ...
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the aurora zone
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Husky Safari Ice Hotel Northern Lights Snow Mobiling
Included in the price...
  • Flights: Return flights from London Heathrow to Kirkenes (via Oslo). Non-UK and regional departures on request (routes are subject to change)
  • Transfers: Return airport transfers
  • Accommodation: 3 nights at Thon Hotel or Scandic Hotel
  • Meals: 3 breakfasts, 1 lunches, 2 dinners
  • The following activities and equipment are included: Sightseeing tour, ice fishing, fishing for king crabs and Northern Lights hunt by snowmobile, husky safari, visit to Snowhotel and dinner (the order of activities is subject to change)
  • Services of experienced guides and instructors
  • Winter clothing is provided for the activities

Kirkenes has so much to offer visitors and for those who are short on time, this three-night holiday is sure to deliver.

Only 15 kilometres from the border with Russia, Kirkenes feels like a real frontier town. As you walk by the harbour you will hear Russian and Finnish voices mingling together and the signs will also feature Cyrillic text - it is truly unique. Surrounded by wilderness, Kirkenes acts as an ideal hub from which to sample the unforgettable experiences that this remote region can offer.

With a rugged coastline and a mountainous backdrop, this is a playground which promises some truly memorable activity days. The town also offers some rather distinctive attractions which draw people from all over the world. These include the famous Kirkenes Snowhotel and the delectable delicacy that is king crab.

This may only be a short break of just three nights but we make sure that you get to enjoy all of the must-try activities. You will dog sled through the outdoors, visit the Russian border, try your hand at ice fishing, dine on the freshest possible king crab and witness the Snowhotel.

Of course, one of Kirkenes' other attractions is its location in prime Aurora territory. You will try and exploit its excellent Northern Lights record during a night of Aurora hunting in the remote Pasvik Valley.

With a choice of modern accommodation available, you will return to a centrally located base each night following a day of unforgettable experiences in the Arctic. This may be a short break but you will head back home with a wealth of wonderful memories.

Suitable for

Anybody aged 18 years and over.

Barry Nolan - Travel Expert - The White Circle

Our Opinion

“This is one of my favourite winter activities – Northern Lights and King Crab... it’s the perfect combination for a magical evening in Norway. If you thought lobster was the king of seafood I challenge you to try this magnificent King Crab and then decide. Another real highlight for this holiday is the night in the Snowhotel. Its small capacity means that you will always find a warm welcome and also time to chat to the guests and staff about their experiences deep in the Arctic Circle.” Barry Nolan


Your Opinion

"No problems about booking. Good information provided. Your local agent, Pasvikturist was very helpful and made it possible for us to book an additional activity. Their use of small local providers in addition to the Snowhotel company gave the holiday a personal touch as the group sizes were mostly quite small. The Thon Hotel is very well situated (we saw the Northern Lights twice from it) and the food is good. The Rica Arctic has now changed its name to Scandia. Other local attractions are Surf and Turf in Kirkenes for food, and the Borderlands Museum." Richard Smith - Feb 15

Kirkenes Hotel

For this holiday you will either be based at the Rica Arctic Hotel or the Thon Hotel in Kirkenes city centre. Both hotels offer 3 star accommodation and are both comfortable and ideally located for exploring the town of Kirkenes during your free time.

Rica Arctic Hotel
The Rica Arctic Hotel is based in the centre of Kirkenes close to the main pedestrian street and around 2 km from the Hurtigruten Terminal. It exudes a relaxed and comfortable atmosphere and has some fantastic facilities including an indoor swimming pool, a sauna and a solarium.

The restaurant serves a fantastic à la carte menu for dinner and a varied buffet breakfast. There is also free Wi-Fi throughout.

Rooms are double or twin and all have an en-suite shower room, hairdryer, phone and TV. Superior room upgrades are available on request.

Thon Hotel
The Thon Hotel is located on the quayside in Kirkenes, just a short distance from the Hurtigruten Terminal and offers wonderful views over the Fjord. It is furnished in a modern and simplistic Scandinavian style and offers free Wi-Fi throughout.

The restaurant offers an exciting à la carte menu with both local and international dishes and an exciting breakfast buffet.

Rooms are double or twin and all have an en-suite shower room, hairdryer, phone and TV. Superior room upgrades are available on request.

Day 1: Arrivals and introduction
Upon arrival at Kirkenes Airport, you will be greeted by a local guide who will transfer you to your hotel. You have a choice of two hotels here in Kirkenes with either the Rica Hotel or Thon Hotel at your disposal; both offer excellent facilities.

There are no lengthy transfers and the drive from the airport will take roughly 15 minutes. Your guide will assist you in checking into the hotel and run through the details of your upcoming holiday. You can settle in and relax this evening ahead of tomorrow's adventures.

As you will be arriving in the late evening we recommend dining at the hotel tonight (payable locally). 

Day 2: Sightseeing, Ice Fishing, Fishing For King Crabs And Northern Lights Snowmobile Safari 
After a hearty breakfast in your hotel, you will be collected by an expert local guide for your sightseeing tour of Kirkenes and the surrounding area. You will visit the Russian border post where there are views across to some of the most westerly Russian settlements (it's all rather James Bond here!). Next on the itinerary is the mining town of Bjørnvatn where you will gain an insight into over 90 years of mining history. Continuing through the wilds to Storfjell, you will stop to admire the views before heading back to Kirkenes. 

You can enjoy lunch at the hotel (not included) and relax ahead of this afternoon's activity.

In the afternoon, you will embark on an ice fishing experience which will take roughly three hours. Your guide will take you to a frozen lake where they will show you the simple skills which are required for this ancient pastime. Ice fishing has grown from an essential way of sourcing food to more of a hobby for modern Norwegians, but the traditions and techniques remain relatively unchanged.

This evening you are set for a real treat as you are collected from your hotel at around 6pm for an evening of Northern Lights hunting and delicious food.

Your local guide will take you to a nearby harbour where your purpose is to pull up the large crab pots from the freezing cold waters and hopefully encounter some of the creatures which have really put Kirkenes on the culinary map – the king crab.

A king crab's leg span can grow up to 5ft 9inches and these impressive sea creatures are prolific on the seabed of the reassuringly deep waters of the Barents Sea and have become synonymous with the region. Once your catch has been landed, you will travel on to a basecamp around 10 minutes from town for the start of your snowmobile adventure.

Snowmobiling is a thrilling activity and will allow you to see a great deal of the local area in an exciting way. Following full instructions and a safety briefing, you will set off behind your guide travelling two people per machine. To upgrade and ride one person per snowmobile see the 'Personalise' section for more information. Your destination is the Siberian Taiga Forest around Pasvik. Upon arrival here, you will visit a traditional Norwegian farm dating from 1854 (as long as the trail conditions permit access) and will be given an insight into how people have made this remote part of the world their home.

As you will be in a remote region for the evening you will hopefully have excellent views of the night sky and, as this is prime Aurora territory, you could be in for a real treat if conditions are favourable.

Following your snowmobile adventure, you will return to the base camp for a very special dinner. In a traditional lavvu, you will sit around the cosy fire and enjoy the king crab caught earlier in the evening. This is sure to be some of the freshest seafood you have ever been able to enjoy and is certainly a wonderful end to the day.

Day 3: Husky Safari, Snowhotel visit and dinner
Regardless of whether you class yourself as a dog lover or not, you are almost certain to fall for the huskies you will meet today after breakfast. Your guide will give you an insight into the relationship between man and husky and will provide an overview of the lives of these working dogs. 

Following this introduction, you will be given a full safety briefing to prepare you for the trail before setting off in pairs. One person will be the passenger and the other will control the sled (there will be the chance to swap drivers) and together with your team you will cover around 20-25 kilometres during your safari. To upgrade and ride one person per sled, see the 'Personalise' section for more information.

Back at the husky farm, a hearty lunch will be waiting for you and you can sit back and recount the experience you have just enjoyed.

This evening you will be taken to the magnificent Snowhotel for an unforgettable evening. Upon arrival, you will be given a guided tour of this monument to snow and ice architecture. You will enjoy the stunning sculptures, the beautifully decorated rooms and the ice bar. There will be many photo opportunities before you head to a nearby warm restaurant for your evening meal.

For those who would like to upgrade and spend their last night in Norway at this remarkable hotel, we can arrange for you to stay in a cold room here rather than returning to your Kirkenes hotel (you will have checked out earlier in the day). The full details of this experience can be found in the 'Personalise' section of the holiday page.

Day 4: Depart or extend your stay
After breakfast at your hotel (either in Kirkenes or at the Snowhotel), you will be collected for your transfer back to the airport and your return flights home.

If you would like to extend your time in Norway then we can arrange for you to enjoy a city break in Oslo on your way home. Please speak to our Travel Experts for more information.

Weekly activity programme for Northern Lights, King Crab and a Snowhotel .
Name Duration (hours) Distance (km) Adults from
Drive your own dogsled

This is the perfect opportunity to experience the excitement of controlling a pack of huskies. This upgrade will let you drive one person per sled, rather than swapping half way through. 

- - £55
Drive your own snowmobile (Northern Lights king crab tour)

Snowmobiling is an incredibly addictive activity. You might want to have a vehicle all to yourself. This upgrade lets you do just that by driving one per sonwmobile.

- - £35
Spend the night at the Snowhotel

You can spend your third and final night at the fantastic Snowhotel. You will be given a guided tour and dinner with the rest of your group. Then you will check into your snow room.
The rooms are carefully crafted from ice and snow to offer a once in a lifetime experience for the guests who stay here.
You are given an Arctic-grade sleeping bag, which will ensure that you are cosy and warm despite the room temperature of -5°C. You will have your breakfast at the hotel in the morning and relax in one of the saunas, depending on your airport transfer departure time.
You will travel from the Snowhotel directly to the airport for your return flights home.

24 - £90
Price per person based on 2 adults
Depart Adult
15/01/2017 £1745
22/01/2017 £1775
29/01/2017 £1745
05/02/2017 £1795
12/02/2017 £1775
19/02/2017 £1775
26/02/2017 £1745
05/03/2017 £1775
12/03/2017 £1775
19/03/2017 £1745
Supplements :
Name Adult
Single Supplement £130
Overnight in the Snowhotel (per person based on 2 sharing a double/twin room) £90
N.B. Prices in brackets denote a price deduction.

Pricing Notes

Alternative dates are available for a minimum of two and a maximum of twelve persons.