Travel

AACI Kosher Magical Lapland Adventure   

February 15-21, 2023

Lapland is an area in northern Finland, Sweden and Norway. It is most likely that Lapland does not resemble anything else on earth.

You are going on an adventure where you will see landscapes and places that you have never seen before. You will return with white photographs of snowy hills and rare photos of the famous northern lights – the Aurora Borealis. You will ride snowmobiles through breathtaking landscapes, sail on a real icebreaker and visit the ice hotel. You will take a crash course in Husky dog sleighs and ice fishing and visit the famous snow hotel.  This will be a trip to another world, a journey of a lifetime, and a place so unique you will remember it forever.

Day 1- Wednesday, February 15th
Tel Aviv – Rovaniemi – “The Hunters’ Forest”
Welcome to Lapland! A Lapland local guide will welcome us at the airport in Rovaniemi, the capital of Finnish Lapland and winter paradise! We immediately transfer straight to the safari houses where you will be equipped with safari gear (thermal overalls, shoes, socks, gloves & caps).

Continue by bus to Vaattunki nature area, where local lumberjacks still live and work.  Vaattunki is a great example of natural unspoiled Arctic forest.
Afterwards our bus will take us to the hotel for a welcome buffet dinner.

 Day 2- Thursday, February 16th
After breakfast, we begin our snowmobile safari!  Before we start out, we will receive a briefing on the use of snowmobiles.  At the end of the training, we’ll practice what we learned in our thermal clothing and helmet, riding on a snowmobile.   Our journey will take us through deep snow at the foot of mountains and river ice. We will travel approximately 10 km to a fishing camp on a frozen river to experience how the local people called “Lapps” live in this land.   We’ll learn how to catch fish on a frozen river with a special drill to make a hole in thick ice and throw your stick into frozen water. Lunch by a campfire!

Return to hotel on the snowmobiles.

Day 3- Friday, February 17th
After breakfast we have an hour’s ride to Kemi. Arrive at the harbor and board the Sampo ice-breaking cruise ship.  We sail out into the frozen bay. The ship will stop in the bay to allow you to walk on the ice or for the heroes among you to jump into the icy waters! The ship’s crew will hand out special suits to provide floatation and resistance to moisture for this activity. Lunch will be served in a restaurant.

Next stop is a visit to the Ice Hotel for a tour. This hotel is rebuilt every year and completed by mid-February, and is a not to be missed part of a trip to Lapland.
Return to hotel on the snowmobiles to prepare for a restful and warm Shabbat.
Friday night dinner and tefillah at hotel.

Day 4- Saturday, February 18th
After kiddush and tefillah, we will take a walking tour to the Arktikum Science Museum.  The Arktikum exhibitions lead guests on an adventure to Finnish Lapland and the Arctic region. The review of the history of Finnish Lapland spans from Rovaniemi to Upper Lapland and from prehistory to about the 1970s. The Arctic region is examined in light of the Arctic research of today and that planned for the future. The exhibitions provide a comprehensive review of the history and culture of Lapland as well as of Arctic knowledge.

Return to hotel for an early Mincha and “seudah shlishit.” Maariv & Havdalah will follow

Day 5- Sunday, February 19th
After breakfast, we will transfer by coach to the Husky farm where dozens of huskies greet us with their howling and yapping. We will learn about the breeding methods of these dogs and the cooperation between them and the Sami.  These friendly husky dog teams are anxious to take us for a safari in the surrounding wilderness. After a short training session, we set out for an unforgettable journey, which will give us a glimpse into the old Lappi way of life. On our return, we will enjoy a hot drink and snacks by a campfire and get familiar with these wonderful animals.

Continuing on to a Reindeer breeding farm where we will have a chance to ride the reindeer sledges for a short while. After lunch, we will hear from a reindeer shepherd about his everyday life, and about reindeer and their special habits. In the afternoon, we will go to an Ice-carting rink to try our skills driving on Ice! Lunch in a typical wooden house.  We will continue and visit “Snowman Park” where we will enter a magical world… in short – an experience for everyone!

After dinner we will travel by bus, outside the city, to a special dark area to position ourselves in the best spot. From there we can try and observe the “Northern Lights” phenomenon (this is a natural phenomenon over which we have no control). And we will be waiting

Before this amazing natural event and think about it – it started in the sun, a few minutes ago, 150 million km from here…wow!

**There is no guarantee of seeing the northern lights.

Day 6- Monday, February 20th
After breakfast, we travel to the visitor center of the Naava Luosto-Pyhä National Park located at the foot of the Kultakero waterfall. The center’s offers a fascinating exhibition about the nature and cultural history of this park, with its deep ravines of the region, the high peaks, and the sacred sites of the ancient Sami forest people. We will then take the cable car to the top of the mountain for a stunning view of the entire reserve and a hike!  Enjoy a hot drink before we go back down in the cable car for our lunch… At the end of the visit – we will take the winding road down to the canyon to reach the bottom of the frozen waterfalls. Return to Rovaniemi.

Day 7- Tuesday, February 21st
After breakfast, we will drive to Santa Claus village located directly on the Arctic Circle.  This village was built as a gimmick. We will have time for souvenir shopping after which we return to the hotel, give back our equipment and transfer to the airport for our flight back to Tel Aviv.

Itinerary and scheduling subject to change

Price including flights:
€3,590 per person in a double room
€3,875 single person
If you do not require a flight, please email for price info@aaci.org.il

€75 pp addition for non AACI member or join AACI

   Trip includes:

  • Hotel accommodation: Scandic Pohjanhovi
  • San D’or charter flights (for those who choose) directly to/from Rovaniemi
    Arctic clothing rental (snowsuit, shoes, gloves and socks)
  • Self-driven snowmobiles and ice-carting including safety helmets.
  • Self-driven Husky sledges (2 people per sledge)
  • Reindeer experience including “driving course”.
  • Ice-breaker cruise
  • Frozen waterfalls, walk through forests.
  • Ice Castle, Renau Zoo, Artikum Museum
  • 6 nights’ accommodation at 4 star hotel
  • Fresh and delicious Kosher breakfast and buffet dinner with arrangements for making sandwiches for lunch or lunch served by campfire.
  • Mashgiach/Sefer Torah
  • Transportation in heated coach as per itinerary
  • Local guides for the excursions and visits as per program including entrance fees
  • Israeli English-speaking tour leader
  • Porterage at hotel and tips for drivers and guides
  • AACI staff escort

Not included:

  • Expenses of a personal nature
  • Any activity not included in above itinerary
  • Medical/Covid/ Insurance for Winter Sport

Terms of payment:
Upon Registration 50%
Until January 18, 2023 – full payment

Cancellation:
From time of registration until:
December 28, 2022 – €1000 per person
January 18, 2023 – 100%

Lapland Registration Form 2023

 For additional information, please email info@aaci.org.il