This is the ultimate winter holiday:
Finland’s arctic resort
Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort is a unique venue located in Lapland which promises to appeal to guests from all over the world with its unique offerings. From glass igloos to reindeer safaris, here are some of the experiences on offer for travellers to the region.
Looking down from the skies above, it appears that an alien civilisation has landed in the Finnish wilderness and set up home. On closer inspection, however, it’s clear that these icy cocoons are actually glass igloos for guests to stay in. Inside, you’ll get completely unobstructed views of the shimmering Northern Lights, 250 km above the Arctic Circle. As well as beds, you’ll also get a toilet and some feature built-in showers. As of last year, there are also luxury versions that also boast a log cabin, if you fancy splashing out.
There aren’t many people who can say they’ve taken part in a reindeer safari. But with the Arctic Resort, you can do just that. First, you must equip yourself with some thick thermal clothing – in winter, temperatures can drop to a bone-chilling minus 40 degrees. Then you meet the reindeer herd and embark on a two hour ride through the snowy woods and experience the unspoilt nature of Lapland. During a break on the tour you’ll be able to warm yourself up and have refreshments over an open fire.
You’ll be anything but bored
If ploughing through snow at 100 mph is your thing, you can replace the herd of reindeer with some huskies. These excursions range from 15 minutes to epic overnight adventures. Other activities include snow tank treks, horse riding, gold panning, mountain biking and you can even try your hand at ice fishing on the nearby Lake Inari.
Drive an Icebreaker
Once you’ve enjoyed all the activities on offer in Kakslauttanen, nearby port town Kemi is well worth a visit. Lying on the shores of the Arctic Gulf of Bothnia, it has a population of around 27,000 people and is home to two tourist attractions: the world’s largest snow castle (which is reconstructed every year with different architecture), and the Icebreaker Sampo, which is anchored in the middle of the frozen sea. You’ll climb aboard with the crew and witness how one metre-thick ice breaks on the side of the ship.
The nearest airport to Kakslauttanen is in Ivalo, where Arctic Resort employees will be ready to pick you up when your plane lands. From there it takes about half an hour to get to the resort by car. Prices for a double room half-board stay in the glass igloo for a week in February start at £1,900 per person.