Swedish Lapland and Iceland offer the two most contrasting Northern Lights Holiday Destinations.
Swedish Lapland is home to Abisko, probably the world’s best location for consistent sightings of the Northern Lights and a must visit destination for all Aurora Lovers!
It is also home to two iconic properties – the Original ICE HOTEL & Unique Tree Hotel.
Additionally we offer exclusive lodges and luxury cabins in both Sweden & Iceland and some of the best Arctic experiences including Husky sledding, snowmobiling, whale watching, Volcano & Geysir 4WD safaris with some of the top guides.
Fabulous multi destination trips combine Swedish Lapland with the best Northern Lights locations in Tromso and Iceland for some truly amazing longer Northern Lights holidays.
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We have an extensive Northern Lights Information Hub if you wish to learn more about this truly amazing phenomenon.
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Sweden ranks very highly as a northern lights holiday destination. Unlike its neighbours everything in Sweden is small scale and suits a more discerning traveller. From small family run lodges and cabins to two of the most unique properties in Scandinavia, the Original Ice hotel and the unique Tree Hotel you can construct an intimate but varied holiday experience.
The team at Weekend a la Carte have an in depth knowledge of this region. We travel several times a year to view new places, experience new things and meet new people. This knowledge is reflected in our itineraries which we continuously try to ensure are the best in the market.
Swedish Lapland stretches from Lulea, the thriving town on the eastern side of the region through the inland rivers, lakes and fells to the border with Norway at Abisko.
We are often asked ‘ Where should I go’ when referring to a northern lights holiday and we openly say that Abisko should be on every aurora hunters radar. Situated along the fabled King’s Trail, one of the most spectacular hiking trails in Europe, Abisko is a mecca for aurora hunters. The reason for this is its unique micro climate that results in more clear nights than in any other place in the region.
After all having clear nights is the primary goal for northern lights holiday makers and then it’s down to nature and physics which are answered in our information hub on what are the northern lights and when can you see the northern lights?
Abisko is 90 kilometres from the most established tourist destination in Swedish Lapland – Kiruna. There are daily flights to Kiruna from Stockholm with a flight time of around 90 minutes. From Kiruna you can either do a transfer to Abisko (around 1 hour) or you can enjoy a spectacular northern lights holiday in and around the town.
On one side you have the original IceHotel celebrating its 30th reincarnation. This incredible complex is built every year for the 4 month winter season and no 2 hotels are ever the same. As the popularity of the concept has grown over the years the team at the ICEHOTEL decided to launch an all year round version of the ICEHOTEL and thus ICEHOTEL 365 was born.
Whether you wish to stay and experience the ICEHOTEL or simply see it we have a range of itineraries that combine this with other select places that give a rich and varied northern lights holiday experience.
Many of our clients like smaller scale places to stay and we complement the ICEHOTEL with two places we rate highly. Máttaráhkká Northern Lights Lodge is a 7 bedroom lodge 5km outside Kiruna which sits on an incline with commanding views westwards towards the Abisko Alps. It is a perfect base for an adventure into some spectacular scenery.
Also worth noting are the Arctic Gourmet cabins, 2 cabins situated in a remote valley, where gourmet meals are served in probably Sweden’s smallest restaurant and also Camp Ripan which is the ideal spot for a family northern lights holiday.
We have over the years realised that while clients, when planning a northern lights trip talk about where they wish to go and what they want to do upon their return they more often than not talk about who they met and the guides that looked after them. We place a huge emphasis on the guides we use in Sweden, many of whom we have worked for more than a decade. You will find in our breaks that we refer to people by name which makes the whole experience that much more personal.
Andrea Mikko who runs Máttaráhkká Northern Lights Lodge does most of our snowmobile tours, Ylva Sievertsson looks after our guests on snowmobile tours, Hakan Enoksson guides our clients through the life of the Sami whilst Petri Tuominen ensures that everything runs smoothly and clients are in the right place at the right time!
Moving to the Eastern part of Swedish Lapland your arrival point is the thriving university town of Lulea which is situated on the edge of the Gulf of Bothnia, which freezes, due to the amount of river water that is swept into it during the summer months. This frozen expanse creates a stage for some wonderful snowmobile and even hovercraft adventures when based at either Brandon or Pine Bay lodge.
It is possible to have a cost effective northern lights break based in the city itself but most guests head to the coast or to the interior, an area rich in forests, lakes and rivers.
Around an hour’s drive from Lulea is the unique Tree Hotel with its eye catching design. Stay in a UFO, Birds Nest, Mirror Cube or one of the other 7 rooms and join an international client base that has flocked from all over the world to experience this radical concept.
Around 45 minutes away from the Tree Hotel, in a remote river valley location is one of our favourite places, The Arctic Retreat. If you are looking for an authentic northern lights experience in wonderful log cabins then this is a must.
If you want to get off the beaten track and experience a traditional Sami experience, the Sapmi nature camp run by Lennart Pittja, is recommended. Stay in a Sami Tepee in the middle of Lapponia, one of Europe’s last great wilderness areas.
Sweden is increasingly a destination for Autumn aurora hunters, where fly drive programmes are popular. Experience the Autumn Fall with incredible auroras for a simple special northern lights experience.
As experts in Swedish Lapland we create journeys that allow you to explore the whole of the region and also drop down into neighbouring Norway too! Connections by the regional train network run well between Lulea and Kiruna allowing you to combine say the Tree Hotel with the ICEHOTEL or create a journey that goes from one coast of Lapland to the other. For the intrepid explorer or if you are travelling from far and want to do as much as you can in a short time then you can combine Sweden, Iceland and Norway in one mega northern lights holiday.