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4th October 2017
You'll love exploring Sweden’s capital city which is beautifully situated over 14 islands connected together by 57 bridges. You'll find the city full of charm and atmosphere, old and new; for example Gamla Stan, the old city, is one of the largest and best preserved medieval city centres in Europe and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The whole of Gamla Stan and the adjacent island of Riddarholmen feel like a living, pedestrian-friendly museum, full of sights, attractions, restaurants, cafes, bars and places to shop...all with that 'olde worlde' atmosphere. With a crisp chill in the air and fresh snow sitting on the rooftops, there are few places more magical.
Your overnight train, or ‘norrlandståget’ (northern train), from Stockholm to Luleå is a romantic (yes, we did say romantic!) way of making your long journey northwards to Lapland. Your train leaves Stockholm during the early evening and arrives into Luleå the following morning. But don't worry, you don't have to sleep in your seat - we have reserved a comfortable 2-berth sleeper compartment especially for you with shower and WC either in the compartment itself or available in the corridor. You'll also find a buffet car on board serving simple meals and drinks though we think it is more exciting to travel like the Swedes and buy your own 'train picnic' in Stockholm before departure!
Luleå is truly a place of contrasts. You will be surprised by the international atmosphere of the town which has a bustling centre with an excellent selection of quality restaurants, bars and cafes from which to sit and experience everyday Arctic life. The city's Ice Road offers further opportunity to meet the locals as they ice skate, ski, walk, promenade with prams or simply walk the dog!
The beautiful Luleå archipelago has a total of 1300 islands and only 100 residents and is a unique wilderness environment where the sea around the island freezes up to a metre thick in winter and enormous ice statues, created by the build up of pack ice, can be seen out in the furthermost parts of the archipelago. This is a spectacular place to explore by snowmobile and dog-sled, experiencing a true Arctic wilderness during the day and returning to the city for the evening to mix with the locals and share their lifestyle. A Northern Lights hunt is included in your holiday as we know viewing these ethereal wonders is likely to be on your wish list.
Day 1 - Arrive Stockholm
Arrive Stockholm Arlanda Airport. Take either the Arlanda Express airport train or a taxi to your hotel (not included). You have the remainder of the day free to explore Sweden's beautiful capital city and find yourself a cosy restaurant where you can indulge your taste buds!
1 night STOCKHOLM - Clarion Hotel Sign (B)
Day 2 - Day in Stockholm before boarding the Polar Express to Lapland
Another full day in Stockholm to explore before departing at 2240 by overnight train to the northern city of Luleå, beautifully located overlooking the Lule Bay and the Gulf of Bothnia. A two-berth sleeper compartment has been reserved for your journey by 'Polar Express'.
1 night ONBOARD TRAIN (RO)
Day 3 - Arrive Swedish Lapland and Luleå
Your train arrives into Luleå at 1201. Make your way to your hotel and check-in. You now have the rest of the day to explore the city, relax in your hotel's lovely spa (charges apply) or take part in one of our featured 'Ice Road' activities.
3 nights LULEÅ - Clarion Hotel Sense (B)
Day 4 - Free day in Luleå followed by Northern Lights Hunt
Full day in Luleå to explore further and take advantage of an array of fun and exciting excursions (see Excursions tab).
At 2100 you will be picked up from your hotel for your included Northern Lights Hunt. Your trip takes you to the outskirts and nearby forests of Luleå, searching for the best spots to see the Northern Lights. Your guide will drive away from the city's light pollution, constanly checking weather conditions and the forecast to maximize your chances of seeing Aurora Borealis. Swedish Fika (tea/coffee plus cake or biscuits) is included during your trip. Return to your hotel around midnight.
Day 5 - Free day in Luleå for optional activities
A further free day to explore Luleå with the possibility to take part in an optional activity - see Excursions tab for more information.
Day 6 - Homeward bound
Relax and take your time savouring your final buffet breakfast in Swedish Lapland. Your airport transfer has been reserved in accordance with your return flight times.
Departure Days: Daily from the UK
Departure Dates: December 2017 - April 2018
Duration: 6 nights
Prices: based on two people travelling together and sharing a double/twin room and 2-berth compartment. Single room prices on request.
|Dep. Dates||Price from
|Dec 2017 - Apr 2018||£1395|
|Extra night Stockholm including breakfast||£110|
|Extra night Luleå including breakfast||£70|
TO BOOK: Either call us on 01274 875199 (our preferred option!) or email your requirements to firstname.lastname@example.org
PLEASE READ: The Terms and Conditions which apply to this holiday.
CLARION HOTEL SENSE (4 star) - Luleå
Stylish, atmospheric and comfortable are just a few ways to describe Clarion Hotel Sense. As its name suggests, this centrally located hotel works to heighten all of your senses: sight, touch, smell, taste and sound. Each floor is dedicated to a particular season and you will be able to see this through the tasteful decor. All rooms are equipped with modern facilities, including high-speed internet and flat screen TV. If you would like to truly indulge during your time here then head to the spa where you will be able to relax and choose from a variety of different treatments. On an evening the top floor offers a laid-back yet high quality bar and restaurant, and everyone who stays at the Sense will experience one of the best buffet breakfasts in the whole of Sweden!
CLARION HOTEL SIGN (4 star) - Stockholm ****
Stockholm's largest hotel is located in the heart of Stockholm city adjacent to the Central Station and Arlanda Express facing the Norra Bantorget Square. The hotel is brand new, built in 2008, and is a spectacular building dominated by granite and glass, leaning over the square reflecting the green park. The hotel has a wonderful restaurant, contributed by renowed chef Marcus Samuelsson. The eighth floor of the hotel holds Selma CitySpa where you can indulge yourself in the sauna, gym, spa with a spa treatment and/or in the heated outdoor pool, all with a fantastic view of Stockholm. All rooms are non-smoking and have TV, telephone, hair dryer, Internet access and some of the most comfortable beds we have ever slept in in the whole of Scandinavia! Lift to all floors.
DOG-SLEDDING - DRIVE YOUR OWN from Luleå Centre
Description: Our dog-sledding tour from Luleå City Centre begins with a transfer to the dog-sledding ranch Brändön Lodge which is located overlooking the Luleå Archipelago. Transfer to the lodge takes approximately 30 minutes in one direction. On arrival at the lodge you will be equipped with thermal clothing including overalls, boots, hat and mittens, before transferring to the nearby husky ranch where you will receive full instructions and a health and safety briefing. Your activity includes learning how to take care of your dogs, how to instruct them and drive your sled. Each sled has one driver and one passenger with the opportunity to swap over part way. Your journey takes you on a forest and lake trail where the only sounds you will hear are the swish to your sled rails and the instructions you shout to your dogs. Of course when they are not running the dogs like to let you know that they want to be off again...!
Operates: Late December to beginning April
Duration: Transfer from Luleå at 0915, return to Luleå at 1500. Please note, this activity does NOT include lunch.
Price: £295 per person
NB! Important information regarding dog-sledding tours - please click here
LULEÅ ICE ROAD ACTIVITIES BY CROSS-COUNTRY SKIIS, ICE-SKATES, KICK-SLED OR FAT-BIKE from Luleå City Centre
Description: Your large playground is the ice of the frozen river, bays and sea or the snowy forests around Luleå city. From January to March you will see the citizens of Luleå taking tours on the specially prepared ice-road that circles the city and peninsula using different means of conveyance, for example skies, skates, bike or kick sled. We want you to be able to share their icy experience and Arctic lifestyle in Swedish Lapland so we are very happy to be able to offer a selection of fully guided Ice Road experiences! Your guide will pick you up from your Luleå city hotel. Equipment is included in all tours.
For the following tours you have the choice of Nordic Cross-Country Skiis, Ice-Skates, Kick-Sled or Fatbike.
3-hour tour (includes Swedish Fika)
Price: £110 per person
3-hour tour (includes Muurikka BBQ lunch on the ice)
Price: £130 per person
A Muurikka is a portable griddle pan, reminiscent of a wok, which cooks food over an open-fire. They are almost considered an essential piece of equipment in Swedish Lapland!
A two-hour night tour on the ice in the Luleå bay. A magical experience out on the ice-road where the only light comes from your headlamp. Then stop for a coffee break, turn your headlamp off and look for the Northern Lights.
Price: £120 per person (skiis, ice-skates, kick-sled) or £130 per person (fatbike)
SNOWMOBILE ACTIVITIES from Luleå Centre
Description: All our snowmobile tours from Luleå City Centre begin with a transfer to Brändön Lodge which is located overlooking the Luleå Archipelago. Transfer to the lodge takes approximately 30 minutes in one direction. On arrival at the lodge you will be equipped with thermal clothing including overalls, boots, balaclava, mittens and helmet, before receiving full instruction and a health and safety briefing. You have the choice of a 2-hour tour or a 4-hour tour, both of which include lunch with the shorter tour having lunch served in Brändön Lodge's restaurant and the 4-hour having an outdoor, wilderness lunch. Both safaris explore the snow-covered forests which form the backdrop to Brändön Lodge; needless to say this is an extremely scenic journey with a stop for tea/coffee (lunch for 4-hour trip) along the way.
Operates: Late December to beginning April
Duration: Transfer from Luleå at 0915, return to Luleå at 1500. Those taking the 2-hour tour will relax at Brändön Lodge after their activity, following lunch, and return to Luleå with those taking the 4-hour tour.
Prices: Prices are per person and are based on two people sharing a snowmobile with the opportunity to swap around during the trip. Supplement for being a solo driver as given.
Snowmobile tour, 2 hours including lunch at Brändön £235 per person, supplement for solo £95
Snowmobile tour, 4 hours including wilderness lunch £299 per person, supplement for solo £110
NB! Important information regarding snowmobile tours - please click here
Who is this holiday suitable for?
It is actually suitable for anyone although it will especially appeal to those who do not want to spend all of their holiday in one place but would rather explore a few places and use local transportation between them. The three featured destinations are all rather important in their own right. Obviously Stockholm, being Sweden's capital, is her main city and is a delightful blend of Scandinavian and Baltic. Luleå is the largest city in Sweden's Arctic region and is the last spot of civilisation before the great expanse of Arctic wilderness.
Are the compartments on the overnight train comfortable?
Yes, they are very comfortable and most people will have a private shower and WC in their own private compartment or alternatively in the corridor outside. The trains have a buffet car where you can purchase something to eat in the morning prior to arriving in Luleå. Travelling by overnight train is rather adventurous and provides an exciting and sustainable alternative method of transportation to simply taking a domestic flight.
What sort of clothing will I need?
You will need clothes for cold/cooler outdoor weather: warm trousers, a woollen pullover or fleece sweater, a warm wind and waterproof jacket and rain pants, woollen socks and an insulated bottom layer, like thermal underwear. A hat, scarf and gloves that are made from material that will dry overnight are great protection in Iceland’s winter weather and strong winds. Sturdy comfortable (hiking) boots are necessary for walking and when there is snow and icy terrain.
Do I need to bring any sort of equipment with me?
You don't need to but we would certainly recommend the following:
Are special diets catered for?
Absolutely! Just let us know at the time of booking what your requirements are so that we can inform our suppliers and ensure you are provided with delicious alternatives where appropriate.