Not your average school holiday, dog-sledding through the snowbound forests and mountains of Swedish Lapland will leave an indelible memory and provides a good opportunity for a bit of family bonding.
LAPLAND FAMILY HOLIDAYS
Led by a professional guide, pilot your own team of Siberian
huskies along remote trails. Huskies are good-natured and energetic
dogs that live for running. You will be responsible for looking
after your team, feeding them and helping to harness and unharness
them at the beginning and end of the day.
After days spent gliding through beautiful winter landscapes,
nights are spent in private log cabins deep in the wilderness.
These are simple but comfortable, heated by wood-burning stoves and
equipped with saunas. Again, there is an element of hands-on
teamwork required - for example drilling a hole in a nearby frozen
river or lake to get fresh water. Your guide will prepare
traditional Lapp meals such as reindeer stew with cloudberries.
SEE THE NORTHERN LIGHTS
On clear nights, there is also a good chance of witnessing the
Northern Lights - the extraordinary natural light show that occurs
when charged particles from space enter the Earth's atmosphere,
creating shimmering bands of colour across the night sky.
STAY A NIGHT AT THE ICE HOTEL
Combine the dog-sledding with a night at the world-famous Ice Hotel
in nearby Jukkasjärvi. Rebuilt each year using 30,000 tons of snow
and 4,000 tons of ice from the Torne River, the hotel melts away
each spring to become part of the river again. A night in this
cathedral-like igloo is a great experience, sleeping in special
thermal sleeping bags on beds of ice, covered with reindeer
Activities at the Ice Hotel include ice-sculpting, snow-shoeing,
ice-fishing and snowmobile safaris in search of the king of the
forest - the elk (moose). There's also the chance to learn a bit
about the local Sami people, and their traditional way of life in
harmony with animals and nature.
On the way home, stop off in Stockholm for a day or two and
explore this beautiful city.