Vuokatti - New Year Adventure in Finnish Lakeland
- Flights: return flights from London to Kajaani (via Helsinki) (flight routes subject to change)
- Transfers: return airport transfers
- Accommodation: 5 nights in a Hill View Suite (upgrade to Lake View Suite available for a supplement, subject to availability)
- Meals: 5 breakfasts, 5 dinners
- The following activities are included in the holiday: husky safari, snowmobile tour, Katinkulta Spa tickets, Northern Lights snowshoe and ice-fishing (order subject to change)
- Fully qualified guides and instructors during activities
- Cold weather clothing for the duration of your stay
Vuokatti is a pristine winter wonderland set in the Lakeland region of Finland. Finns have often considered it a hidden gem and they travel up here from the south to enjoy the pristine snowy landscape.
Like any winter wonderland, the main priority is to get outside and explore. Vuokatti is an ideal family destination as there is a fantastic range of winter activities available, all of which are operated by expert guides, who are hugely passionate about the area. We have included our favourites on the agenda, but you can tailor your holiday and add in additional activities should you wish. There are also downhill ski slopes nearby which are easily accessed via the free ski bus.
The spectacular landscape is perhaps best explored via a snowmobile and during this trip, you’ll visit the stunning Vuokatti Hills for a brilliant vantage point of the surrounding area.
Your holiday also includes local favourites too, such as ice fishing. This traditional Finnish pastime takes place on a frozen lake where you will drill a hole in the ice and try to catch fish, as you admire the stunning winter landscapes around you.
A husky safari always captures the imaginations of both adults and children alike, mainly because of the eager dogs who love to pull sleds. It is difficult to put into words the experience of being pulled along by ‘paw-power’ alone. Just don’t forget to give the dogs a cuddle after!
The dark nights and northerly location also mean that it is possible to witness the Northern Lights in this region and we have included an evening snowshoe adventure in search of Nature’s greatest light show.
Your accommodation is at the wonderful Hotel Vuokatti and Suites, which is an excellent base for families, combining modern comfort and facilities with easy access to the wilderness.
This holiday takes full advantage of all that is on offer in this relatively undiscovered area of Finland and you are sure to leave with a wealth of New Year memories.
Image credits: Vuokatti Safaris and Tuomas Kaakinen, Asko Kuittinen And Visit Finland
Day 1 Arrival and Welcome
Following your arrival at Kajaani Airport, you will take the transfer to your hotel in Vuokatti which is approximately 40 minutes. Dinner will be served in the restaurant and the remainder of the evening will be free for you to really settle in.
The hotel has 3 saunas including one which looks out towards the frozen lake and offers views of the night sky. You may spot the Northern Lights if you are lucky. There is also plenty of space for children to play in the snow and the hotel has toboggans which can be used free of charge. Just make sure Mum and Dad don’t get to them first!Included Meals: Dinner
Day 2 Husky Safari
After a leisurely breakfast, you will join a local guide and make your way to the husky centre, around 5 minutes’ drive away. Prepare to be greeted by an assortment of happy barks and howls; these sled dogs love nothing more than to run and so they get very excited for the trail.
You will be given full instruction and a safety briefing before setting off on a 6km trail towards the Vuokatti hills, with one person (an adult) driving and a second enjoying the views from the sled. The barking is suddenly replaced by silence and the dogs become focused on pulling the sled. Travelling amidst a winter landscape with a team of sled dogs is difficult to put into words, but it will be sure to provide lifelong family memories. You will spend between 30 and 40 minutes out with the dogs, depending on conditions.
Following the safari, you will get the opportunity to meet the dogs and learn about their lives. This activity lasts around two hours in total and includes hot drinks.
The remainder of the day is yours to spend as you wish. You can make use of the nearby downhill ski slopes (either a 500m walk or a short ski bus ride) or there are some additional activities which can be added to your holiday, which include the chance to meet Father Christmas, so please see the ‘personalise’ section of the holiday page for details.
Dinner will be served in the restaurant this evening.Included Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 3 Ice fishing
After breakfast, you will enjoy the traditional Finnish pastime of ice fishing.
At the lake, you will assist your guide with drilling a hole in the ice before dropping in a line and waiting to see if a fish will bite. Pike, perch and trout are the most common species in this area. Hot drinks are included and the activity will last around 1.5 hours in total.
Following the tour, you will be transferred back to the hotel where you can simply relax and enjoy the winter surroundings and the hotel facilities or include some additional activities. See our ‘personalise’ section for more details.
Dinner will be served in the hotel restaurant.Included Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 4 Snowmobile to the Vuokatti Hills
One of the best ways to travel over the winter landscape is by snowmobile, and today’s adventure will take you to some incredible vantage points.
Full instruction and a safety briefing will be provided before you set off on the trails towards the Vuokatti Hills. Adults will travel two people per machine and the children will journey in a sleigh pulled by the guide’s snowmobile.
Please note drivers must be over 18 years old and hold a valid driving licence and there will be the chance to swap drivers during the trip. In total, you will be out for around two hours.
The remainder of the day is yours to spend at leisure.
A New Year's Eve dinner will be held this evening, in the hotel restaurant.Included Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 5 Vuokatti Katinkulta Spa and Northern Lights Snowshoe
Your New Year's Day pace is nice and leisurely. We have included tickets to the Vuokatti Katinkulta Spa in your holiday, here you will find a wonderful swimming pool, numerous hot tubs and a water slide for the kids. It provides a welcome break from the cold weather. A free ski bus leaves from the accommodation approximately every two hours between 9 am and 4.30 pm so you have a choice of when to head to the spa and come back, just make sure you’re back at the hotel for dinner!
During the evening, an expert guide will lead you into the forest for an evening adventure in search of the Aurora Borealis. You will strap on your snowshoes and follow forest trails, searching for any flickers of colour in the northern sky. The tour will last approximately two hours, and following the walk, you will enjoy some hot drinks and snacks.Included Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 6 Departure
After breakfast, you will say goodbye to Vuokatti after a memorable New Year adventure in the Finnish Lakeland. You will then be transferred to the airport ready for your flights home.Included Meals: None
Included in price
Vuokatti Hotel and Suites
Hotel Vuokatti enjoys a prime location close to Lake Nuasjärvi in the Kainuu Province of Finnish Lakeland. This wonderful hotel has 18 spacious rooms and 29 modern suites offering a high quality, peaceful environment from which to enjoy your holiday. It is a wonderful location for children and free use of the hotel toboggans always provides hours of entertainment.
Within easy reach of shops and the ski slopes of Vuokatti (both around 500m), this is the ideal location for families looking to combine winter wilderness activities with modern amenities.
A free ski bus stops at the hotel, so getting around is nice and simple and it allows you to tailor your free time together.
- You will enjoy your breakfasts and evening meals in the hotel restaurant, which has an impressive lookout over Lake Nuasjärvi. Here a range of local ingredients such as moose, pike and reindeer are served alongside some more international options
- There is also a small café and lobby bar area which serves coffees, drinks and snacks
- Lunches are not included to give you the freedom to explore independently during your free time. There is a selection of cafes at the ski centre. You may also prefer to make use of your suite’s kitchen facilities and visit the local supermarket.
- For children, there are a number of toboggans provided by the hotel which are free to use
- The hotel has numerous saunas for guests to use. There is even a large sauna with panoramic glass windows looking out onto the frozen lake. NB: the panoramic sauna is not open every day (reception will provide details) and so we cannot guarantee access to this during your holiday
- There is a small but well-equipped gym for guests to use should you wish for some indoor exercise during your stay
- Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the hotel
Vuokatti Hill View Suites:
These well-equipped suites are ideal for families and offer a high standard of accommodation. They are situated in an annexe, a very short walk from the main hotel building.
The Hill View Suites are 49.5m2 and offer two bedrooms. The largest bedroom comes equipped with a double bed and the small room features a sofa bed for 1-2 people. There is a second sofa bed in the sitting room which again can sleep 1-2 people. Whilst the suites can sleep up to 6 people, we find that they are most suited to families of 4.
All the suites have a kitchen with modern appliances (dishwasher, oven, microwave, coffee machine), a living room with smart TV, a dining area, a shower room and a private sauna. As the name suggests, these suites offer views of the surrounding hills from their glazed terrace.
Bed linen, towels and end of stay cleaning are of course included (guests are asked to simply ensure that the dishwasher and the bins are empty). If you would like to have a mid-stay clean or a change of linen during your stay, then this can be arranged for a supplement.
Vuokatti Lake View Suites:
For those who would like a little extra space, then the Lake View Suites are ideal. They offer 58 square metres of space and two good sized bedrooms. Again they are in the separate annexe building just a short walk from the main hotel.
Both bedrooms have a double bed, and there is a sofa bed for 1-2 people in the living area, so in total, they can sleep up to 6 people.
Please speak to our Family Travel Experts for a quotation.
Personalise this tour
Meeting with Father Christmas and his reindeer
A stay in Lapland wouldn’t be complete without meeting the famous man in red and his trusty animals! During this activity, you’ll be transferred a short distance to Santa’s Village where reindeer await.
After enjoying some hot drinks and Christmas treats, it’s on to the main event – meeting Father Christmas! You will head towards his cottage for a private meeting, where you can take a family picture together and the children will receive a small gift.
There will also be time to pet and feed the reindeer during your visit.
Duration: approximately 1 hour.
Please note: transfers are not included unless the activity is happening on the same day as a husky safari.Read more
Upgrade to include a short reindeer sleigh ride:
You may wish to upgrade your activity and include a reindeer sleigh ride. You’ll hop into a sleigh and be pulled a short distance (approximately 50 metres) so you can experience Father Christmas’ favourite mode of transport!
Price including a reindeer sleigh ride:
Child: £67From £48 per adult
From £48 per child
If you would like to explore the scenery further during your stay, then we can arrange for you to enjoy a snowshoe hike in the hills around Vuokatti.
Your guide will point out any animal tracks you stumble across, and you can explore off the beaten track, using your snowshoes to keep you from sinking into the deep snow.
Hot drinks and snacks will be served during the trip
Duration: Approximately 2 hours
Min group size: 2 people
Availability: Monday and Thursday at 10.30am
Credit: Vuokatti SafarisFrom: £61 per adult
From: £44 per child
Dates & Prices
We include more, no hidden costs
Price based on: two adults sharing a Hill View Suite with two children (4-12 yrs)
For our full booking terms and conditions please click here
Holiday group size (approximate)
Minimum 8 people and maximum 30 (approximately)
We always try to provide an approximation of the group size you can expect to be with for the duration of each of our holidays. It may be that you are joined by others for parts of your holiday (such as transfers and particular activities) but the above number reflects those you can normally expect to be with from beginning to end. If group size is something which is particularly important to you, please speak to our Travel Experts and they can suggest the best holidays for you.
Tailor-made holiday group sizes will vary for all activities as will the group size for any additional activities you book.
Minimum numbers required for a holiday to operate
Some of our holidays require a minimum number of participants to operate (as listed in the ‘Group Size’ section). If your holiday departure has not yet reached the minimum number, you will be told at the time of booking. In the unlikely event that your chosen date is not guaranteed by nine weeks before your scheduled departure date, we will contact you to discuss the available options as per our booking conditions.
Minimum and maximum age
The minimum age for this holiday can be found in the ‘Key Facts’ section of the holiday overview.
Younger family members may be able to participate but may not be able to take part in all activities. Please contact one of our Travel Experts if you have any questions.
The order of activities listed in this agenda is provided for guidance only, your final and detailed itinerary will be provided either with your final travel documents (which are uploaded into your online account around a week prior to departure) or upon arrival.
Medical History and Advice
We want our holidays to be accessible as they can be and will do our best to accommodate any special requests and requirements where possible. We have a wide range of holidays and destinations and so our travel experts will help find the best holiday for you.
In order to give us the best possible chance to do this we ask that if you or any member of your party has any medical condition or disability which may affect your holiday or has any special requirements, that you tell us at the time of enquiry or booking. You must also promptly advise us if any medical condition or disability which may affect your holiday develops after your booking has been confirmed. You may need to provide a doctor’s note and proof of insurance in some cases as the health and safety of our clients is absolutely paramount.
In providing this information you are allowing us to work with our expert local partners to ensure that your whole party can enjoy the holiday. By letting us know in advance we can discreetly work with you to adapt any part of the holiday which may potentially be challenging. Being able to prepare for this in advance makes an incredible difference to what we can offer and minimises any impact on your party and the rest of the group.
Unfortunately, if you choose not to share this information with us in advance then it may limit some or all of the itinerary you have booked, and we cannot be held accountable for any additional costs or missed activities resulting from this.
It is vitally important that you advise us prior to departure of any medical or dietary condition relating to any member of your party so that we may notify our local staff before you arrive. We recommend only drinking bottled water from bottles with unbroken seals and be vigilant about the use of ice in drinks and ice cream.
Insurance is not included in your holiday, but it is a pre-requisite to travelling with us. You will need to ensure that you have cover for all the activities that you will be participating in during your holiday.
It is extremely important that you take out a suitable travel insurance policy at the time of booking. Plans do sometimes change, and you will need this policy should you need to cancel your holiday.
If you are struggling to find a suitable policy then details of our preferred provider, who will cover you for all the activities we offer, can be found on our website by clicking here. Please note that this policy is available to EU residents under the age of 75 only.
The UK Foreign Office Advice
Our clients’ safety is at the centre of everything we do, and our operations team continually assesses and monitors the destinations we feature. We carry out thorough risk assessments and work closely with all of our suppliers to continually follow best practice. For up to date travel advice the UK government offers its Travel Aware website as well as the advice detailed below.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office Advice
We receive all updates from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) with regards to travel advice and we always ensure that we follow this advice in our operations. The FCO issues travel advisories for countries based on a very wide range of factors. They may provide notification about things as simple as a football match and crowds, or they may go so far as to advise against all travel to a region. We ask all our clients to refer to the relevant Travel Advice by Country for the destinations they are visiting in order to make an informed decision on the safety of the destination based on the details provided. It also provides vital information regarding entry requirements, embassy information, local laws and customs as well as specific safety and health. Guests should take responsibility for keeping themselves up to date with this advice. Please also ensure that, if you are transiting through another country, you have read the advice and meet the entry requirements for that destination too.
The FCO travel advice is applicable to British Passport Holders. Most governments will issue their own travel advice for a region and, if you are not a UK resident then you can find some helpful links below:
Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade http://www.smartraveller.gov.au/
New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade http://www.safetravel.govt.nz/
Canadian Consular Affairs Bureau http://voyage.gc.ca/
The U.S. Bureau of Consular Affairs http://travel.state.gov/content/travel/english.html
If the FCO deems that there is an unacceptable level of risk for UK citizens then, together with the government, they may issue an advisory against all travel to a region or country. If such an advisory is published, then we will act accordingly, and this may require the cancellation, curtailment or amendment of a holiday itinerary. These decisions are made on the basis of ensuring our clients’ safety and will affect all clients on the holiday, regardless of their nationality.
If one of our local experts suggests an amendment due to a situation which develops locally then we may also take the decision to amend an itinerary appropriately.
If we have to cancel your holiday prior to departure you will be offered the option of an alternative trip (where any price difference will either be refunded to or covered by you) or a full refund of the monies paid.
If we have to curtail a holiday, then you will be refunded for any costs for the elements we have been unable to deliver, where we have been able to secure a refund from our suppliers. If we must reroute a holiday, then any basis for refund is determined on a case by case basis and dependent on whether the central holiday experience was provided or not.
Booking activities locally
Additional activities can be booked locally in almost all our destinations. However, as per our booking conditions, we cannot be held responsible for any injury or loss incurred through participation in activities which are booked at your destination outside of our holiday itinerary (see our ‘Terms and Conditions’ for further details).
When arranging any such activity please always ensure that safety is your primary concern.
In some of our destinations, you can borrow or hire equipment for use in your free time. You do so entirely at your own risk. You must ensure that you are correctly prepared, have the necessary equipment and knowledge (maps, etc.) and ensure that where applicable, you follow marked routes. We recommend discussing your plans with the local teams who will be able to advise on the most suitable options for you.
Always let the reception/guide know where you are planning to go and take a torch and mobile phone (with the hotel/guide’s phone number stored). It is also a good idea to leave your contact number and the time you expect to return to the hotel should the hotel need to contact you.
Flight schedule changes and connecting transportation
On your documentation, we will confirm your flight schedule. Sometimes the flight number, routing and timings might change prior to your departure. If the change is classed as a significant change then we will contact you to discuss this. Please see our booking conditions for details.
Flight schedule changes can impact on your pre and post-holiday travel arrangements if these have been booked separately to your holiday. We strongly recommend that you do not book transport (such as trains or transfers), car parking or non-connecting flights to the departure point for your holiday until you have received your final confirmed travel times when your final travel documents are issued. We are not responsible for the effect of any schedule change on your pre or post travel arrangements. We strongly recommend that you do not purchase non-flexible or non-refundable tickets to avoid cancellation and penalty charges.
Booking your own flights cancellation disclaimer
If you have chosen to book your own flights, then you will need to wait until we confirm to you that the holiday departure has met the minimum numbers required to run (if applicable to your chosen holiday). Once the holiday is guaranteed to run, you will be informed and you can then make your arrangements.
If transfers are included in your holiday, please ensure that any potential flights will be met by our standard transfers (speak to one of our Travel Experts for advice) otherwise private transfer supplements may be applicable. Once your flights are booked, please send us a copy of your detailed flight itinerary.
Please be aware that most tickets are non-refundable in the case of cancellation. For this reason, we strongly advise you check the rules of the ticket and check the limitations of your cancellation insurance before booking. We cannot be held liable, in the unlikely eventuality that we should be forced to cancel or amend your trip, for losses incurred relating to any flight booking you have made.
Terms and Conditions
Our full booking terms and conditions can be found on our website: https://www.activitiesabroad.com/booking-conditions
The Barriball Family's New Year in Vuokatii 04 January 2019 by Nicola Barriball
We all had a great time 28 December 2018 by The Button Family
We all had a great time, the overall experience has left us with wonderful memories. We look forward to booking our third holiday with you!