Lapland is an amazing wilderness destination. Situated at the Arctic Circle in Finland, it borders the Gulf of Bothnia, Sweden, Norway, and Russia’s Republic of Karelia, and is by far the least densely populated area in the country. The number of reindeer (200,000) exceeds the number of people (181,815)!
We began our winter adventure in the southern port of Kemi, on The Sampo, an icebreaker once owned by the Finnish government. We cruised on the Gulf of Bothnia and took the opportunity to hop in for a swim in subzero waters.
The most traditional way to travel in Lapland is by reindeer sleigh. As the reindeer slowly travel through the wintry landscape, you experience the feeling of eternity and being a part of nature.
More than thirty-plus feet of annual snowfall and consistent subzero temperatures provide the perfect opportunity to try a few winter activities:
After a full day of Lapland fun and adventure, there is nothing better than enjoying a reindeer steak and a good bottle of wine, and most importantly a hot Finnish sauna.
And then, retire for the night in a glass domed igloo.
If the skies are clear, you can experience the grand finale: the Northern Lights, on the border of Finland and Russia at midnight. Northern Lights photos by Wilderness Safaris Saariselkä Oy.
Many thanks to our Trip Leader Ingrid Cercek, for being bold and developing this wonderful new trip in the winter wilderness!
-Photos and text by 8-time WT adventurer David Angelus, Northern Lights images by Wilderness Safaris Saariselkä Oy, Expedition to Lapland