Outside, icicles hang from a roof laden in deep snow, while fir trees sculptured by ice, stand like frozen sentinels under a crisp night sky. Inside everything is warm, cosy and relaxed. A log fire roars, and a golden glow from glass-roofed cabins is discernible in the distance.
This is the Muotka Wilderness Lodge, located deep inside the Arctic Circle in Finnish Lapland, in the middle of nowhere. This new addition to the Inghams Lapland programme offers a 7-night adventure that includes all meals and activities such as reindeer and husky safaris, guided snowshoe and cross-country ski trips and an evening hunting for the Northern Lights.
It is a real wilderness adventure where days are filled exploring outdoors and evenings are spent relaxing in the sauna or sat by a crackling fire. Activities include mushing your own husky sled or snowmobiling to a reindeer farm to try lassoing and learning about the reindeer herders’ way of life.
The lodge is 15km from Saariselkä village, Inghams’ most northerly Lapland destination; an idyllic location in the Urho-Kekkonen National Park. Muotka Lodge is tastefully designed with spacious rooms in the main lodge. Alternatively, you can stay in cosy Nordic-style log suites, a few steps away, which have their own sauna and fireplace.
There’s also a chance to spend a night in the Aurora glass cabins, which look like igloos and have glass roof windows so you can lie in bed watching the stars and – if lucky – the Northern Lights. These cabins are free for one night for Inghams’ guests staying at Muotka between 8th and 28th January 2017. For other dates there is an additional charge from £59-£99 per person. Another holiday option is to choose a two-centre holiday spending 4 nights in Saariselkä and 3 in Muotka.
Nothing beats the silence and beauty of this unspoilt destination. Being in a national park there is no light pollution. The nights are magical with great clusters of stars filling the inky night, or skies filled with the swirling, dancing Northern Lights, that once seen are never forgotten.
Although the Northern Lights might be right outside your bedroom window there is also a trip included in the holiday to Muotka’s Aurora Camp where you are taken by a snowmobile-pulled sled to hunt for them. As you spend time in this magnificent, vast landscape where the low sun and shorter days have a mystical and moody glow, it is hard not to fall under the spell of this Arctic wilderness where reindeer run wild, and sleighs are the main mode of transport.