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Going to sub-zero temperatures in the dead of winter may be the farthest thing from your mind. But visiting the Nordic countries during winter has an attraction all of its own; one that is unique, spell-binding and delivers a truly one of a kind experience that will have you gushing with stories to tell family and friends.

Get ready to be wrapped in a dreamy cocoon of snow whilst looking at the spectacular glow of the Northern Lights.

Sweden

Venture to Jukkasjärvi, 200km north of the Arctic Circle to tour the infamous Swedish Icehotel. Do you know that each year, they redesign the art exhibits so that visitors will have something exceptional to photograph. Be amazed by the beautiful ice sculptures made from waters that flow through the Torne, a river that acts as a northern border with Finland. There is no shortage of activities in Jukkasjärvi. You can ride a snowmobile or opt for a dogsled and explore the winter wildlife. And who says safaris are exclusive to the arid African heat? Sweden boasts of its winter safaris where the sight of wolverines, moose, wolves, musk oxen, brown bears, and lynxes is something to behold.

You can also pack your poles and try your luck, caveman style, as you catch fish from frozen lakes. It will be a different kind of challenge for the fishermen at heart.

During the night get treated with the magical hues of the Northern Lights that dance across the sky. Get swept away with this magnificent play of lights as you lay ensconced in ice igloos.

Finland

Sure, Finland in winter means snow. LOTS of it. The daylight hours are short but this is a small inconvenience compared to the surreal landscapes that will just take your breath away. Finland can be roughly divided into four regions – Lapland, Helsinki, Lakeland and Coast & Archipelago. Each of these regions has its own style and attractions.

Take Lapland for instance. If you’re a child at heart, visit Rovaniemi’s Santa Claus Village. Amaze yourself with the Arctic Circle Line, where, at least once a year, the nights last for 24 hours. Shops and restaurants abound. See for yourself Santa’s Command Center where Santa supposedly plans out the trip he makes every December 24 and sorts out his naughty or nice list! You can even take an old fashioned sleigh ride with the reindeer.

Prepare to be wrapped in a fairytale-like blue light as you visit museums and for the more adventurous, the famous sauna experience. The traditional sauna involves plunging in the icy Baltic Sea and running straight into a room heated for several hours with a wooden fire to sweat it out for a bit.

Denmark

There’s a reason Denmark is one of the happiest places on earth. It’s simply a wonderful place to find yourself. And for visitors old and young, one of the best places to share a wonderful Danish experience is the Tivoli Gardens amusement park. It is highly accessible for it is only a walking distance from the Copenhagen Central Station. There is something for everyone – from nostalgic ferris wheel rides, outdoor ice skating, and hall of mirrors, this place is perfect for a family outing.

During winter, the place transforms into a magical wonderland with stunning light installations and decor. Not to mention, the Tivoli Gardens also host concerts and theatre productions. So much to see and do, it’s unlikely you’ll have a spare moment to be bored.

The Christmas atmosphere in Copenhagen is unlike any other place in the world. Stroll through the busy and beautiful Christmas markets and treat yourself with Æbleskiver, a classic treat of fluffy pancake balls with fresh jam and a light dusting of sugar best paired with a hot mug of Gløgg, authentic Danish wine with almonds and raisins.

Norway

Kirkenes, a small town located near the Russian border will fulfill all your winter expectations. Stay at the Snowhotels from December to April and enjoy countless of outdoor activities such as dogsledding, ice fishing, and snowmobile tours.

If you’re down for a cozy, wondrous Christmas experience – nobody does it better than the Norwegians. Christmas stretches from December up until around February when there’s a maximum of five hours daylight. Homes are be lit with lamps and candles and you can indulge in ginger bread and hot chocolate; a wondrous laid back feel to one of the busiest seasons of the year.

Finally, your Norway getaway wouldn’t be complete without chasing the Northern Lights which are best viewed between the months of September and March. The swaying, flaring movement of the green, red, yellow, and purple hues of the lights in the night sky alone is enough to make you want to make the trip to this winter wonderland.

If you’re thinking of heading North for Summer and beating the heat over Christmaswe’d be delighted to help you tailor a trip to perfectly suit you or your family.  You can call us on (02) 6041 5577, visit the office at 601 Dean Street, Albury or book an appointment with one of our expert travel agents via the form below.

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