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8 days - Independent Christmas tour for families
This action packed independent Christmas holiday is perfect for families looking for a magical experience in Finland. Taking part in safaris with huskies and snowmobiles and a visit to a real reindeer farm, you have got the main modes of transport covered.
With snowshoeing, children's snowmobiles, cookie baking, a private visit with Santa and his elves and lunch in an ice restaurant there is plenty for the whole family to enjoy. Staying in intimate cosy cabins or a family hotel, this tour will give you wonderful family memories to last a life time.
- Toast marshmallows around the fire and bake traditional Finnish cookies together
- Meet Santa on your own private family visit
- Enjoy a Christmas buffet before Santa arrives with a sack full of presents
- Lunch in a snow hotel and eat on tables and chairs made of ice
- Adventure out in the the winter wonderland, snowmobiling, husky sledding and meet reindeers
- Day 1
- 19 Dec: Welcome dinner
- Day 2
- 20 Dec: Husky adventure & cookie baking
- Day 3
- 21 Dec: Snowshoes & Elf kota visit
- Day 4
- 22 Dec: Torassieppi Winter Village and reindeer & Aurora snow train
- Day 5
- 23 Dec: Engines on, it's snowmobile time
- Day 6
- 24 Dec: Gingerbread House building and Santa visit before Christmas Dinner
- Day 7
- 25 Dec: Free day
- Day 8
- 26 Dec: Departure day
- Start/End Place
- Kittilä, Finland, Finland tours
- Country Visited
- Finland tours
- 7 Days
- Special Interest
- Easy Christmas tour - suits families with children of all ages.
Transfers from Kittilä airport (for scheduled flights).
- Return transfers from Kittilä
- Full board including Festive Christmas dinner and unlimited tea/coffee for adults and soft drinks for children
- 7 nights accommodation at Hotel Jeris
- Private family visit to see Santa and Santa present/letter service
- 9km husky safari
- 30km snowmobile safari
- Reindeer farm visit with 3 km reindeer safari and visit and lunch in the Winter Village
- Snow fun session including tobogganing, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, mini snowmobile (for children) and ice-hockey
- Snow fun activities & ice fishing
- Christmas crafting, cooking baking & gingerbread house making and marshmallow toasting
- Elf kota with marshmallows (cooking marshmallows around a fire in a traditional ski hut)
- Guided snowshoe walk
- Aurora snow train
- Protective outer thermal clothing for the duration of your stay - Thermal winter suit, winter boots, woolen socks, inner and outer gloves, winter hat and balaclava.
- 24-hour emergency service
- Taxes and service fees
International flight tickets, meals other than described, alcoholic beverages and soft drinks, travel insurance, visas, gratuities and any items of personal nature.
Day 1 - 19 Dec: Welcome dinner
Arrival at Kittilä airport and transfer to your hotel (approx 45 minutes). After a meeting with the staff at the hotel to explain the days ahead you will collect the much needed thermal clothes (thermal winter suit, winter boots, woollen socks, inner and outer gloves, winter hat and balaclava).
Head to the restaurant for the first of your included meals. The hearty buffet offering has a choice of local specialities and international favourites. Then, why not get your first taste of the frosty surrounds with some late-night tobogganing. Be sure to keep your eyes on the sky for the Northern Lights.
AccommodationOvernight in cozy rooms or cabins.
Day 2 - 20 Dec: Husky adventure & cookie baking
Today we head out to the local husky farm, with a tour of the farm and a chance to meet the lovely huskies. A 9km safari follows with adults having the chance to mush their own team and children being taken in the local guide's sleigh.
Returning to the hotel, after lunch, it's time for some traditional gingerbread cookie baking. Dinner in the restaurant.
Day 3 - 21 Dec: Snowshoes & Elf kota visit
This morning it is time for fun in the snow after breakfast. Test your skills at snowshoeing with a guide. It is a good way to explore the nature and catch nice views of the winter scenery. Lunch in the restaurant. In the afternoon you head to a nearby kota where you can make your own little keepsake elves while toasting marshmallows over the fire. Dinner in the hotel restaurant.
Day 4 - 22 Dec: Torassieppi Winter Village and reindeer & Aurora snow train
After breakfast, you will take a 10 minute bus transfer to the Torassieppi Reindeer farm. Visit a 100 year old unique Lappish farmhouse and a reindeer museum. Test your reindeer herder skills by throwing a lasso and then driving a 3km round in the forest with a reindeer sled next to Pallas-Ylläs National Park. A short walk brings you to the Winter Village with the ice restaurant, bar and impressive wall carvings. Lunch will be served in the ice restaurant.
Bus transfer back to the hotel. Dinner in the restaurant. Later, head out on the aurora snow train. Search for the lights whilst driving around in the heated carriage, a stop will be made for drinks and snack around the fire.
Day 5 - 23 Dec: Engines on, it's snowmobile time
Breakfast in the restaurant. This morning it is time for fun in the snow. Test your skills at snowshoeing, cross country skiing, tobogganing and for the children a chance to drive their own mini snowmobile under supervision. Lunch in the restaurant.
In the afternoon, it is time to start your engines and follow the guide through snow covered forests, over frozen lakes and swamps, amongst the fells. Driving distance is about 30km and you will drive 2 persons per snowmobile.
Festive dinner is served in the restaurant.
Day 6 - 24 Dec: Gingerbread House building and Santa visit before Christmas Dinner
It’s Christmas Eve, and with the celebrations well under way, you have the morning at your own leisure. After lunch we will build and decorate our own gingerbread house. Christmas dinner in the restaurant with an evening with Santa.
Day 7 - 25 Dec: Free day
Today you will have a free day to spend as you wish as a family. Lunch and dinner in the main restaurant.
Day 8 - 26 Dec: Departure day
After breakfast, transfer to Kittilä airport.
Price is for 2 adults & 1 or 2 children (5-12 years old) sharing quad cabin. Reduction applies for kids aged 2 to 3. Please contact us for a personalised quote for larger families.
Tentative early date and price for 2022.
26 Dec 2022
Remember to bring a gift for Santa to deliver. Please note that included lunches in Scandinavia are often hearty soups with bread.
A full itinerary will be given in resort and changes to the program itinerary according to weather conditions may happen.
Interactive Tour Map
Travelling with young children
Here are some suggestions and tips from our staff who have kids themselves, for travelling in Scandinavia with younger children. We hope that you will find this advice helpful and be sure to ask us for more information before travelling as our staff have all grown up in Scandinavia.
In general, Scandinavia and Finland are very child-friendly destinations and if you have any special requests or questions while here, please contact the staff at your hotel immediately. Almost all restaurants can be considered child-friendly with baby chairs and sometimes also drawing utensils, books or toys, and when using public transport, Scandinavia offers some great support for families with younger children. Baby changing tables in public toilets, play equipment and play rooms at airport terminals and family wagons in trains with playing area for the little ones are common place.
When possible, we suggest arriving to Scandinavia or Finland a day or two earlier before your holiday program begins so that your younger children can adjust to the time zone. Young children arriving from the Southern Hemisphere generally wake up at around 4 - 5am for the first few mornings before they get accustomed to the new time zone. Be sure to have breakfast provisions ready for this, as it is unusual for anything to be provided from the hotel at this early hour. We suggest bringing packages of the child's favourite breakfast cereal from home plus tea bags etc. to help in those first few days. Likewise, quiet entertainment for those early hours might be a good idea as well.
Hotel rooms in Scandinavia more likely than not, only have twin beds pushed together to make a double if required. The spare children's beds are often foldout beds. Generally, it is easy to arrange at reception for the cots but be sure to ask for help if something doesn't seem right. We were provided a cot without a mattress once - very uncomfortable indeed if we hadn't chased that up!
Also, in Scandinavia it is not common practise to have tea or coffee provided in the room, and even if there is a kettle, there might be nothing else. We suggest travelling with a small supply of your own tea bags/coffee, and asking directly at reception for a kettle on arrival.
Feeding your children adequately is probably the hardest thing to do on an arranged holiday - kids are out of wack with jetlag, fussy and hungry for their own comfort food. When hotels and packages provide set times for meals and buffets, it is important to come prepared.
It is handy to take a small cooler bag already from home filled with snacks, utensils and fresh food. From the breakfast buffets it is usually acceptable to take a small amount of fresh food such as boiled eggs, rolls and fruit for morning and afternoon tea for the little ones.
We would also suggest that you give your kids a taste of what’s to come before their holiday on some foods that they are likely to get in Scandinavia. Meatballs, European flavoured sausages, soups & then treats like cinnamon buns and waffles are typical children's menu items. Cinnamon is a very common flavour used in Scandinavia and Finland.
If you are part of an arranged program, be sure to ask at reception if you need anything in particular. The hotel staff will be more than happy to warm up baby food and organise more snacks or fruit.
We recommend seeking all available information from the reception or activity provider when considering what optional activities will suit your younger children. These activities can be cold and involve a transfer a certain distance from the hotel. If you are uncertain why the activity is being run at a particular time, please ask for clarification as there is often a reason that you might be unfamiliar with. We all know as parents that children generally perform better earlier in the day than later, however, the activity providers might have a safety, logistic or climate reason for picking a certain time.
In Scandinavia, it is often left up to the parents to make decisions about age limits and suitability (unlike other regions where everything is stipulated) so be sure to ask reception or other guests who have done the activity for further advice.
We usually don't recommend winter activities, such as longer husky safaris, snowmobile safaris and late evening Aurora Hunts to children under the age 4-5. This of course depends very much on a child as every child is different, but for younger children we recommend shorter excursions as it can get very cold sitting still in a sled. Some operators also do not take children under the age of 5 on their tours, so please ask us specifically before travelling about these limitations.
This is going to make or break your holiday in Scandinavia in the winter. Be sure to refer to our comprehensive packing list provided in your pre-departure information and be on the look out for the best protection for your children in the cold. Winter is great time for kids to play outside and snow-based activities will keep the young ones entertained for hours as long as they have appropriate clothing.
Extra (non-cotton) layers that can be added or taken away when needed, heat warmers and slip on crampons for the older children are recommended. Mittens where all fingers except the thumb are together are often warmer than gloves, and extra pair of mittens will come in handy after building a snowman or two. A balaclava type of hat that covers both the neck and ears and which can also protect part of child’s face if needed, is also great under a warm and windproof beanie.
The base-layer next to skin should be either wool or synthetic blend, never cotton. With perspiration cotton turns quickly damp and then cold, no matter what other warmer clothing items are layered on top of it.
Many of the hotels and activity providers also do offer warm outer clothing for hire, but if traveling with small kids, please do check beforehand that correct sizes are available.
- Heat warmer pads for inside gloves and boots. Please note that these should not be used directly against the skin, hence for hands, you will need to use the pads in between the two pairs of gloves/mittens recommended in our packing list
- Good boots and warm woolly socks for your little ones
- Bags & suitcases that can easily be carried by one parent if the other is carrying children. Many of us use Trunkies for our travels so that our kids can sit on them, or sometimes the kids can pull the cases themselves. If your child is small enough to be carried, we highly recommend a baby or toddler carrier that leaves your hands free for handling the luggage.
- Provisions for the first day or two whether it is snacks, nappies or fruit drinks.
- Books, drawing pencils or other tranquil inside activity and your child’s favourite teddy!
Travel insurance is compulsory for all tours with 50 Degrees North. Please ensure that you have this organised as we will need to see proof of this upon issuing your tour documentation. Please contact us for a quote or visit http://www.suresave.net.au/
Practical Information for travelling and packing for Scandinavian Winter
- Warm wind and water proof jacket and trousers large enough to fit thick woollen jumper/clothing underneath
- Rain trousers – waterproof and breathable material
- Warm windproof cap/hat
- Warm gloves or mittens. Mittens where all fingers except the thumb are together are often warmer than gloves.
- Windproof gloves or mittens, which you can pull over the warm gloves
- Warm scarf
- 2 pairs of long woollen underwear (Merino wool in a few different thicknesses is perfect)
- 1-2 warm woollen jumper(s), or one jumper and a warm fleece
- Woollen or fleece trousers
- 2-3 pairs of warm woollen socks
- Warm & sturdy footwear with good grip
- Clothes for indoors, i.e. a shirt, T-shirts and jeans or cotton trousers
- Back pack for day trips (approx. 30 litre)
- Light footwear/trainers (mainly for indoors)
- Sun screen & Lip salve (the sun reflects off the snow and the air is dry)
- Hand warmers
- Nordic Grip anti-slip soles for walking on ice
- Personal medication
- Water bottle - thermo, or include a cover to keep warm (or you can stick it into a warm sock)
- Travel documents (including insurance)
- Photo ID
- Note book and pencil
- Camera, memory cards and charger
- Chargers for other gadgets
- Extra batteries for your cameras as they are used fast in cold conditions.