One of our personal favourites and a break that sells out every year. This break is perfect if you are looking for a high-impact new year experience in a region famed for northern lights.
Traditional Lapland New Year & Magical Aurora Chase
Máttaráhkká Northern Lights Lodge combines a desire to make sure you get to see the northern lights with traditional Sami Heritage. These fuse together to create a special energy and as the lodge only has 7 rooms this break offers a real ‘home away from home’ experience.
We have included a range of the best Arctic experiences with guides we have worked with for well over a decade. This is bound to be a New Year break you will remember for a very long time!
- Fabulous ‘ Home away from Home’ 7 Bed Lodge in excellent aurora location
- Drive your own Sled Dog Team in pristine river valley setting
- Sami Introduction day with reindeer sledges & lunch cooked on an open fire in a Tepee
- Wilderness Snowmobile Adventure on private trails with views of Sweden’s tallest mountain
- Northern lights Snowmobile safari to search for the northern lights and toast in the new year
- Visit the original ICEHOTEL
- 4 nights Accommodation with breakfast
- Snowmobile Day Adventure in pristine wilderness with great views
- Drive Your Own Sled Dog Team in secluded River valley with wild moose in residence
- Sami Introduction day with Reindeer sled ride and lunch in tepee
- Northern Lights snowmobile Hunt to Guide’s vantage points
- Visit Original IceHotel and new IceHotel 365
- Meals as indicated
- Arctic Clothing Loan
A note on flights
While flights are not included in the holiday price, our team will happily provide a quote and arrange them for you. Simply ask one of our Travel Experts for details of the available options.
Day by Day Itinerary
Fly to Kiruna. Transfer to Exclusive Máttaráhkká Northern Lights Lodge. Welcome Dinner
On arrival, you will be met and transferred to the exclusive 7 room Máttaráhkká Northern Lights Lodge run by Andreas Mikko. There, you will have a briefing on your New Year Northern Lights holiday and be kitted out with your arctic clothing.
Settle in and after dinner relax by the fire in the lodge and enjoy a drink from the bar.
Enjoy a full hot and cold buffet breakfast in the hotel / lodge prior to collection for your day time Husky Safari.
Ylva Forssén is one of a select group of accomplished female husky guides, who runs a lovely kennel in one of our favourite valleys near Kiruna. She has a very unique relationship with her dogs and it is always a privilege to spend time with her.
Your journey from the lodge to the kennel follows a scenic road that leads to Kebnekaise, Sweden’s highest mountain. During the car ride there are great opportunities to see moose, as this is their wintering ground. Once you arrive at the kennels get acquainted with the dogs and receive detailed instructions about how to drive a team. Harness the dogs and feel their excitement as you attach the sled. Head out into the frozen river valley where you will have opportunities to take turns in driving the team whilst making stops to take photos. The location is outside the major tourist areas and we can almost promise that you will enjoy pristine arctic nature alone.
You will be out for around 2 hours before heading back to base for a warming lunch in the family home.
Over the years we have had many requests for guests to stay longer at the Kennels, interact with the dogs and do another trip out into the magnificent countryside. If you would like to make a day of it please see the option of extending below.
To make it more exclusive we only take a maximum of 8 guests at a time.
This evening, enjoy a leisurely dinner or alternatively choose the private Hot tub and Sauna evening at the lodge. This special addition includes an hour private use of the rooftop aurora hot tub.
Snowmobiling wilderness Trails. Visit the Original ICEHOTEL. Dinner and Snowmobile Aurora Chase
After breakfast, Mikko, your snowmobile guide, will meet and transfer you to Máttárahkká Northern Lights Lodge for your adventure along one of his private snowmobile trails. The beauty of being based at Máttárahkká is that you can snowmobile straight from the front door!
Explore forests and frozen lakes where the chances of seeing reindeer and moose in their natural habitat are good. Continue your excursion up to Mount Eatnamvárri, a real vantage point from where you have spectacular views. Miles and miles of untouched wilderness stretch out before you on one side of the mountain and on the other side, Kiruna nestles between the Loussavaara and Kirunavaara mountains.
New Year Dinner
Enjoy a traditional 3-course dinner prepared with the finest local ingredients.
Northern Lights Chase on snowmobiles
After Dinner Mikko or one of his guides will take you out by snowmobile through the dark arctic night to a place where there is zero light pollution. You will be surrounded by mountains that are rising like mysterious shadows towards the night sky and drive the snowmobile through the snow-covered landscape with the stars above you. We will make several stops along the way, drink hot beverages and wait for the northern lights to show up and dance for us in the night sky. At the top of Mt. Ednavaara you have a 360-degree view over the mountain ranges around you. Toast the New Year in the arctic wilderness and hopefully below the magical northern lights.
Sami Introduction day with Nils Håkan Enoksson. Visit the Original ICEHOTEL
After breakfast at the lodge transfer to the Sámi village of Rávttas, 20 minutes west of the lodge to meet with Nils Håkan Enoksson. Nils Håkan can trace back his family roots several hundred years and has interesting insights into how life has changed in this period.
This experience will give you a glimpse of the traditional lifestyle of the Sámi people and affords the opportunity to get up close with Lapland’s most iconic creature – the reindeer.
During the visit you will have an opportunity to feed the reindeer and absorb the magical relationship between the Sámi and their most prized resource. Your visit includes a ride on a traditional ‘Reindeer powered sled’, the means by which the Sami people traversed the Arctic for centuries.
To end the encounter Hakan will invite you into his traditional Sámi lavvu (teepee) where you will be served a traditional meal around an open fire.
Visit Original Icehotel
This afternoon visit the original Icehotel as well as the revolutionary Icehotel 365. Admire the spectacular individual Art Suites designed by leading artists from around the world, take a cocktail in the unique ice glasses at the sculptured Ice Bar and peep into the Ice Chapel to see if a wedding ceremony is taking place! This is the original Icehotel featured in many television programmes and is still the best.
Return to the lodge to relax.
Leisurely start and Flight Home
After the New Year celebrations enjoy a leisurely start to the day and breakfast before a late morning transfer to the airport for your flight home.
Where You'll Stay
Máttaráhkká Northern Lights Lodge
We are proud to offer this small intimate lodge, run by one of our long standing partners, Andreas Mikko, for exclusive use by our clients.
This 7 room intimate lodge is situated in a super location on a slight elevation with magnificent views across the arctic tundra to the Abisko alps. The emphasis at the lodge is on two elements, Sami culture and ensuring you have the best chance of seeing the northern lights.
This small intimate lodge used to be a Sami handicraft centre until the owners had the idea to turn it into an exclusive retreat. With only 7 bedrooms and an open plan lounge and dining room, the emphasis is on relaxing in a cosy environment. The rooms have a downstairs en-suite room with a staircase leading to a loft sitting room.
If you are a group of 8 or more friends or family traveling together and wish to have the lodge privately please let us know. This is a great way of celebrating a big birthday or wedding anniversary
The lodge has a fabulous sauna and a very unusual northern lights hot tub on the roof where you can star gaze or hunt for the Aurora. (This carries an extra charge).
Other benefits of a stay here mean that you can snowmobile straight from your doorstep into the Arctic wilderness.
Evenings are focused on good food, relaxation and the Northern Lights so if you are looking for a ‘home away from home’ experience then look no further.
Please fill out the enquiry form below to receive a quote for this package.
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See what our clients say
Thoroughly enjoyed the trip. The Abisko Mountain Lodge was fantastic, every member of staff was friendly welcoming and charming. Accommodation, upgraded room was excellent. The food in the lodge definitely deserves the high reviews. Good breakfast, great hime made lunch soups and extremely tasty evening dinners.
The included trips were great. The only let down was the camera night, couldn’t see the lights no one fault, but we were walked through thigh high snow to be left on a frozen lake for the duration of the trip. There was no warning of the difficult walk and we had a 91 year old with us and I have hip problems! That said the guide was great, as were the ones on the skimobile and husky rides. We went up to the sky station in a snow storm with high winds, added to the experience!
Would go back in a heart beat.
We had little communication with Weekend a la carte, no need as all communications were clear and contained all the information we needed. Very informative emails
Would use again if going back
This vacation has without without doubt, has been the best experience we have ever had. The organisation from the minute we landed in Kiruna until we departed at the close of our trip was second to none. The transition between hotels was always seamless and punctual. Everywhere we stayed was beautifully clean and the meals were top quality. Every driver was polite, entertaining and very knowledgeable, furnishing us with invaluable information about Sweden and the activities in which we were to participate. The snowmobiling was wonderful giving access via our guide, to stunning panoramic views of the mountain whilst viewing reindeer in their natural habitat.
Our guide demonstrated how to use the snowmobile safely he was pleasant and informative. When visiting the reindeer on the Sami reservation; we found the brother and sister team who hosted lovely. Again they were so hospitable and helpful and feeding the reindeer up close was a wonderful experience.
They provided additional activities for us to try and we were treated to a traditional Sami lunch in their hut. They provided us with invaluable information appertaining to their culture and caring for their reindeer. The reindeer were in superb condition and happy in their environment. Similarly, when out with the dog sleds the experience was magical. Two hours of beautiful scenery, and frozen lakes, finishing with a one-on-one experience massaging the dogs. Magic! We were so impressed with the care that was placed upon ensuring the dogs were comfortable, well-nourished and so loved by their owners/handlers.
Now to the photographic experience. A large group of us were treated to a demonstration of how to operate some serious camera equipment with tripod. Each of us was loaned the camera and given assistance setting up the camera on a frozen lake in preparation for the appearance of the Northern Lights. We were taken to this lake on large wooden sleighs pulled by a snowmobile. We cannot speak too highly of the two young men who accompanied us on this experience. They could not do enough for us. They were there to offer assistance with our cameras throughout the two-plus hours we were on this beautiful lake.
They advised where to position the camera and when the Lights appeared, what a performance. We had a two-hour display of this most breathtaking phenomenon. We were so fortunate to be able to experience this once-in-a-lifetime occurrence for which we are so grateful. We will never forget this memorable holiday and cannot thank you and everyone who assisted in making a lifetime dream come true. Karen & Andrew Adamson
We had the most fabulous time and everything worked like clockwork. The guides were extremely knowledgeable and extremely competent. The food was excellent and the experiences, especially Husky Homes, were brilliant. We saw the aurora lights at the mountain top in Abisko where the photography tour will be an enduring memory of a wonderful time. I would very much recommend Weekend a la Carte as a proficient tour operator.
We had five fantastic days in beautiful Iceland, as we had never been before Aurora Nights helped with everything and made the holiday so easy and stress free. We stayed at Hotel Ranga which was amazing, we very much enjoyed the tours and the guides were brilliant, very knowledgable and friendly. We will certainly be returning to Iceland and wouldn’t hesitate to book through Aurora Nights again, special thanks to Abigail as her experience and reccommendations made the trip even better.
Dear Abigail, We have safely returned from Iceland and we wanted to say a huge and sincere thank you for all the plans that you put into place to make this one of the most memorable holidays we have ever had. It was simply beautiful each and every day. The cabin was idyllic and so cosy and warm. The tour guides were so knowledgeable and friendly and the scenery was breathtaking. All the arrangements worked so well and we will remember the trip for a long time to come.
Thank you once again.
We had a fantastic 4 nights that included glaciers, waterfalls, geysers, the aurora borealis and more! Lovely hotels, especially Hotel Ranga. We filled every moment and felt thoroughly invigorated on our return.
We did the aurora nights break and had a great time overall. Everything related to flights, hire car, and hotels ran smoothly. There were a few issues largely relating to the weather and driving conditions (we travelled in mid March), but what we did manage to do was amazing.
The blue lagoon was easy to access from the airport and was a brilliant experience. We booked the standard package and it came with a free drink and face mask. Facilities were clean and organised with free toiletries in the shower rooms, which helps if you’ve gone there straight from the airport.
The drive to Hotel Ranga afterwards was long but fine (check out the road on google streetview to know what to expect). The hotel and staff were great. We were limited to one option as vegetarians on the bar and a la carte menus, but the food was lovely and if you are a meat eater you will see options of unusual dishes like puffin and reindeer.
Our northern lights super jeep trip was cancelled on both nights due to a poor forecast, but we were lucky enough to get an aurora wake up call from Hotel Ranga the first night. We couldn’t use the hottubs as there are only a few and they were always taken in the limited time we spent at the hotel, so don’t go expecting to get lots of time in one and you won’t be disappointed. View them as an add on if you can time it right. We were travelling with an 11 year old, so we didn’t stay up really late. If you are a couple you probably have a better chance of getting one later on.
The glacier/volcano super jeep trip was outstanding. Our driver, Íbí was excellent. She went above and beyond and gave us such an awesome experience. We were also super lucky with the weather the first two days and had great views across Iceland.
The ice cave tour was also incredible and the guides running it were excellent. The group size was much bigger than expected (especially after the more exclusive volcano super jeep tour), but it was broken down into smaller groups that were managed well, with plenty of time factored in for photographs. There were several unexplained delays getting to the cave during the tour that meant we weren’t able to ‘mini tour’ the rest of the South Coast afterwards, so if you plan to do the ice cave don’t overplan for the afternoon as you may not have much time. Not a huge disappointment for us as we got to experience the cave, but I imagine someone who planned a full itinerary afterwards might be frustrated by the estamiated timings not always being right and subject to change with the weather (which was wicked that day).
Driving around Reykjavik was a horrible experience as we arrived around rush hour and weren’t prepared for all the traffic, having only experienced quiet roads along the south coast. It was difficult finding a parking space, so be prepared to drive around a little when you arrive. If you haven’t driven on the right before and are not a confident driver this could leave you feeling stressed. Again, check out the roads into Reykjavik on Google maps to get a sense of what awaits if you aren’t used to self-driving.
We didn’t get to tour the golden circle because of road conditions/ice/road closures, so we spent the day in Reykjavik instead. This turned out okay for us as we did some of the attractions (Lava Centre and Fly Over Iceland – both hughly recommended), but it ended up being an extra expense and we missed out on the golden attractions. Again, not a big issue if you are aware this could happen. The weather is so changeable that having a plan B is a good approach.
Weekend a la Carte sent us a text warning us about the bad weather conditions, which we’d already seen on the Safe Iceland app, but we were grateful for anyway. It was good to know they were looking out for us!
All in all, a remarkable trip, with some unique experiences. If you book this in the knowledge that nature will have her own way, and you may not see everything you want (especially in winter), you will have a great time. Ranga is definitely the best place to maximise your chances of seeing the lights.
Overall very good. Staff excellent and helpful. Accomodation basic but was what we expected. Tour guides very good (nature walks, snow mobiles, dog sleighs). Sky station disappointing as we never got to go up due to the weather and this seem to be a recurring feature.The alternative walk at night and meal was a let down as a result.Overall would recommend to others.