Northern Lights Snowshoe Safari

In search of the Aurora north of the Arctic Circle




From $1,540 Land only

Book this holiday

Holiday Overview


  • Guided snowshoeing in Sweden, suitable for beginners
  • A REAL winter adventure with two nights at a remote cabin
  • Free day for optional activities in the Abisko National Park
  • Great value winter activity holiday, all but one meal included

This is a guided winter activity holiday with a difference, as we don our snowshoes and head out into remote Swedish Lapland in search of the Northern Lights or Aurora Borealis. Snowshoes are the best way to explore here and the technique is easy to master making this the perfect holiday for those new to winter activities. Flying into Kiruna, we head up to the Abisko National Park, 200km north of the Arctic Circle; deep in the land of the Northern Lights. We spend our first night in comfortable chalets at the Abisko Mountain Station, where we meet our knowledgeable guide who will brief us about the coming days. We have a morning to explore Abisko and practice walking on our snowshoes before we head 35km out into the wilderness to the simple, but warm and comfortable, mountain cabins on the shore of frozen Lake Alesjaure; this will be our base for the next 2 nights. There is no road access to the area, so we will arrive by snowmobile pulled sled! High in the still white wilderness, away from civilisation, there is no light pollution to disturb our Aurora watching. With the dark nights and the area's favourable climate on our side, if the solar activity is good, you have a fantastic chance of seeing the Northern Lights from here. Not only are we in the prime location for Aurora spotting, this is also one most celebrated mountain areas in Swedish Lapland. During the days we wrap up warm and head out with our guide to investigate the pristine white landscape, we may even be able to track some of the area's wildlife. After a day out exploring in the snow we will be invited to warm up the Swedish way in the traditional wood sauna, before settling in for another evening of watching the night sky; we should have our warm clothes near by and be ready to run outside at any opportunity! After two nights at the hut we return to Abisko and have an evening free to relax before a day of optional activities with dog sledding, ice climbing or Nordic skiing on offer; those seeking another chance to see the lights may opt to visit the Aurora Sky Station. An excellent way to round off this winter adventure!

Is this holiday for you?

This winter activity holiday in Sweden is suitable for anyone of average fitness. No previous experience is required for the snowshoeing and there will be no steep ascent or descent, we will be covering relatively easy snow covered routes. The itinerary will be flexible and the guides will use their expertise and local knowledge to determine the best routes to take advantage of prevailing snow conditions and the abilities of the group. It should be noted that in some snow conditions snowshoeing can be quite energetic and you should have a reasonable level of cardiovascular fitness before coming on this holiday. Snowshoes and poles will be provided. During the snowshoeing excursions you will only be required to carry a small day pack with your daily essentials, extra layers etc... and your packed lunch. You will experience low temperatures on this holiday and should be prepared with suitable thermal clothing; evenings are always spent in heated rooms. Accommodation at Abisko will be in two or four bedded heated chalets and in Alesjaure in simple, but warm and cosy, cabins with four bed bunked rooms and outdoor toilet block. Please note that there is no mains electricity or running water at the cabins and group members will be expected to assist with 'hut chores' including cooking, cleaning and fetching water.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Meet at the Abisko Mountain Station. A single timed transfer from Kiruna Airport is provided.
  • Introductory walk and snowmobile transfer to Alesjaure.
  • Snowmobile exploration from Alesaure. Evening sauna and sky watching.
  • A morning of Snowshowing. Return to Abisko by snowmobile.
  • A free day for optional activities.
  • Departure day. A single time transfer to Kiruna Airport is provided.
Fri 12 Feb - Wed 17 Feb Code NLS /01/16/ Adult$1,540 Status Available Book now
Fri 26 Feb - Wed 02 Mar Code NLS /02/16/ Adult$1,540 Status Limited Availability Book now
Fri 04 Mar - Wed 09 Mar Code NLS /03/16/ Adult$1,540 Status Available Book now
Fri 18 Mar - Wed 23 Mar Code NLS /04/16/ Adult$1,540 Status Available Book now
The LAND ONLY dates and prices are for the itinerary joining in Kiruna. For clients making their own flight arrangements, Kiruna Airport is the most convenient for transfers to the group hotel. Please refer to 'Joining Arrangements and Transfers' in the trip dossier for further details.

Flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you have received your booking confirmation and the trip is showing 'Guaranteed to Run' or 'Limited'.

BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee*

* Against Land Only services.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • point
  • trip direction
  • airport
  • transfer
  • trek

Holiday Itinerary

  • Meet at the Abisko Mountain Station. A single timed transfer from Kiruna Airport is provided.

    Meet at the Abisko Mountain Station located approximately 1 hour from Kiruna Airport. A complimentary group airport transfer is provided for clients arriving into Kiruna on this day. Situated beside Lake TorneTräsk, the Abisko Station, built over 100 years ago, has recently been renovated to include a bar and a restaurant overlooking the lake. All around is a snow-bound landscape of undulating countryside covered in birch and pine forest, with views across to the peaks of the Kebnekaise range. This evening the guide will give us a short presentation on the subject of the Aurora and our itinerary for the coming days. KE Land Only package services begin with dinner. We overnight in one of the Mountain Stations comfortable cabins.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals d

  • Introductory walk and snowmobile transfer to Alesjaure.

    After breakfast we will be issued with our snowshoes and we will head out to explore the Abisko National Park directly from the Mountain Station. For those that have not worn snowshoes before this morning will be a fantastic introduction. We walk through untouched snow to some of the most beautiful areas in the vicinity, the famous Abisko Canyon or the old marble quarry. We follow wildlife tracks and with some luck we may spot one of the many moose that make the park their home. As we walk our guide will give instruction on how to use the equipment and also give important guidance on how to act safely and respect the mountains. We return to the Mountain Station to take lunch before our snowmobiles arrive and we climb into the comfortable sleds ready to be towed high up into the mountains to the cabins at Lake Alesjaure. We will be issued with thermal suits to keep us warm for the 1.5-2hr journey. Our group will have a cabin of our own and accommodation will be in 4 bedded mixed rooms (depending on the make up of the group) with either gas or wooden fire heating. Here in the heart of the land of the Northern Lights, miles from civilisation and any light pollution, we have a fantastic chance of seeing the Aurora. An evening of sky watching awaits us.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Meals bld

    • Time 3 - 4 hrs snowshoeing

  • Snowmobile exploration from Alesaure. Evening sauna and sky watching.

    After breakfast at the cabin we don our snow shoes and, armed with a picnic lunch, we head out into the beautiful surroundings and silent wilderness around Alesjaure. We should be on the look today as we may spot wolverine tracks or even see the actual animal! Today’s itinerary is flexible and the weather and the group's capacity/ability will help the guide to decide the programme. On returning to the cabins we will be invited to relax in the traditional wood heated sauna, which gives off a wonderful and relaxing aroma. If you’ve never had the sauna experience this is not to be missed and there are separate sessions for men and women. It is common practice to cool down with a cold shower afterwards (or during) and those brave enough can head out into the snow to chill out the natural way! In the evening we sit down to enjoy a meal we've all helped to prepare before another night of aurora spotting. We may even venture out into the night in our snowshoes in search of the lights.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Meals bld

    • Time 3 - 4 hrs snowshoeing

  • A morning of Snowshowing. Return to Abisko by snowmobile.

    After a good nights sleep, this morning we have another chance to explore on our snowshoes. We have a relaxed lunch at the cabin before the snowmobiles arrive to take us back to Abisko. The rest of the afternoon and evening we are free to relax and after three days in the snow we may want to kick back in the library and enjoy a good book. Those keen for some more aurora spotting may want to take an optional evening visit to the Aurora Sky Station.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

    • Time 1 - 2 hrs snowshoeing

  • A free day for optional activities.

    Today is a free day to take advantage of the optional activities available from Abisko. You can choose to head out into the countryside with a team of husky dogs, try out Nordic skiing or ice climbing! Snowshoes will still be available for anyone keen to take a walk around Abisko. We will rendezvous back at the Mountain Station in the evening in time for another delicious evening meal. Lunch is not included on this day.
    There are a number of optional activities available from the Mountain Station in Abisko. They require no previous experience. Activities are subject to availability so we suggest you request your activities in advance to ensure a place. Once you have received your booking confirmation, please advise the KE office of your chosen activity so a place can be reserved. Note that these activities are to be paid for directly whilst at Abisko in local currency.
    Evening visit to the Aurora Sky Station:
    Though in Abisko you have a chance to see the Aurora just by stepping outside the door, you may also want to take an evening visit to the Aurora Sky Station. The Aurora Sky Station sits high above Abikso, you will want to wrap up warm for the night time ride on the chair lift. There's a cosy café, souvenir shop, look-out tower and northern lights exhibition, including a scale model of the solar system, to help you understand the Aurora Borealis. A guided tour is included. Cost includes: chair ride, warm overalls and a guided tour. Price from 695SEK (approx €75/$105)
    Ice Climbing:
    Ice climbing is one of the most exciting forms of climbing and during this excursion you’ll try your hand at climbing frozen waterfalls. Roped up and guided by a qualified instructor, the ice axes and crampons become your tools for climbing the vertical icefall down in the spectacular Abisko Canyon. Cost includes: Guide and equipment. 3hrs Price from 710SEK (approx €80/$110)
    Nordic Skiing:
    Try out Nordic skiing through the backcountry! This is a classic 3hr Nordic ski-tour for beginners. You will be provided with instruction and will be taught the basics of cross country skiing. Cost includes: Guide, skis, poles. Price from: 690 SEK (approx €75/$105)
    Dog Sledding - Trapper Tour:
    Sit warm and comfortably on a big wooden sled as you are driven through the Swedish Countryside pulled by a team of husky dogs. This traditional Trapper Tour takes you through mountain forests searching for the tracks of foxes, reindeers, moose, wolverine and much more. When the dogs are working in front of the sled they will be totally silent, and if you are lucky we actually see some of the wild animals living in the area. You have plenty of time to take pictures and ask questions. If you would like, you can help to harness and prepare your friendly team of dogs. 2hrs. Warm overalls provided. Price from 1250SEK (approx €140/$190)
    Dog Sledding - Musher Tour:
    This tour is an extreme sport and lots of fun! This is a chance to drive your own team of dogs. This tour does require good physical conditions, balance and strength. These dogs are long distance racing dogs and are born to run. Together we harness up the dogs and, after some instruction, we head on out into the wilderness. You will be required to handle the sled, sometimes going over big stones and around trees. You need to run in the uphill and break in the downhill. There will be some tricky sections where the trees are really close to the trail and you need to focus and steer the sled. On the frozen lakes we can let the dogs stretch out and we have a chance to see what they can really do! 3hrs. Warm overalls provided. Price from 1650SEK. (approx €180/$250)

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bd

  • Departure day. A single time transfer to Kiruna Airport is provided.

    We have a relaxed breakfast at the mountain station before taking the single timed transfer back to the airport in Kiruna. KE Land Only group package services end with breakfast.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • A professional English-speaking guide (days 1-5)
  • All land transport involved in the itinerary
  • Accommodation as described
  • All meals as described in the Meal Plan
  • Snowshoes and poles
  • Single timed group Kiruna Airport transfers

  • Travel insurance
  • Tips for local staff
  • Activities stated as optional
  • Miscellaneous expenses souvenirs etc.

During this trip, the group will spend 3 nights at the comfortable "Mountain Station" at Abisko and two nights in a mountain hut with limited facilities. At the Abisko Mountain Station, accommodation is in 2 bed and 4 bed rooms with shared toilet and shower facilities and comfortable communal seating areas. The Mountain Station has a sauna, a restaurant and a bar. The mountain hut offers simple but comfortable accommodation, there is no electric or running water. In the hut you will find a combined kitchen and day room, bedrooms, drying room and a separate outside toilet block. The hut also has its own traditional wood fired sauna! Accommodation at the mountain huts is in 4 bed bunked rooms, which, depending on the make up of the group, may be mixed gender. Pillows and blankets are provided. Single rooms are not available.

View the gallery below for images of the style of accommodation used

All meals, with the exception on lunch on day 5, are included in the holiday price, from dinner on day 1 to breakfast on day 6. Meals whilst staying at the mountain cabin (Alesjaure) will be prepared from preserved food via communal cooking, to be co-ordinated by the guide.

Whilst staying at the mountain huts, everyone will be expected to assist with preparing meals. Breakfast will consist of bread, porridge or muesli with dehydrated milk, coffee, tea, hot chocolate and some jam. Lunch will be bread, sandwiches and soup, made up from hot water from a thermos. Dinner will be co-ordinated by the guide and will also be mainly dehydrated and processed food. Some fresh food items will be carried from Abisko on the dog-sledges. Whilst staying at the Mountain Station at Abisko, our delicious meals will be taken in the restaurant, Here we will be treated to a three course meal, which will include traditional Swedish dishes. Note that, whilst staying at the mountain cabins, group members on this trip will share hut chores including preparing meals, washing up and carrying water to the huts.

Clients arriving at Kiruna Airport on day 1 of the land only itinerary will be met by the local guide or KE representative who will arrange the transfer to the Abisko Mountain Station. The flight from Stockholm normally arrives in Kiruna in the early afternoon and the transfer takes approximately 1.5hrs. On the last day of the land only itinerary you will be transferred back to Kiruna Airport for the flight which departs at lunch time.

Clients making independent travel arrangements, or cannot take advantage of the timed transfers from Kiruna airport should meet the group at the Abisko Mountain Station in the early evening of day 1.

Private transfers, public bus and trains are available to the Abisko Mountain Station from Kiruna and Kiruna Airport. Please contact the office for further information.

Hotel contact details and an emergency number will be provided with your booking confirmation.

The group will be accompanied by a professional, English-speaking Swedish snowshoe guide on days 1 - 4. Whilst at the mountain cabins group members will share in the 'camp' chores. Typically the group will split into teams, one responsible for meal preparation, one for washing and tidying the hut and one for fetching water to the hut. This will be coordinated by the trip leader. The guide will leave the group after the return to Abisko on day 4 and all other acitivities will be coordinated through the staff at the Abisko Mountain Station.

Approximately £100 (or equivalent in US dollars, Euros etc.) should be allowed for miscellaneous expenses, drinks and souvenir purchases. If you are intending to buy considerable quantities of soft drinks or beer, or expensive souvenirs you should adjust this figure accordingly. This amount will also allow you to pay reasonable tips to the local staff should you wish. We recommend that you carry some of your travel money in the form of currency (Swedish Krona) since there will be not be any opportunities to change it once you leave Kiruna. There is no ATM in Kiruna airport, but you can withdraw cash at ATM's at Stockholm/Arlanda airport when you change flights. If you would like to take part in any optional activities from Abisko these are payable locally and you will need to budget accordingly. Optional activities can be paid by credit card.

There is no baggage limitation on this trip, other than that imposed by your air carrier. Whilst snowshoeing, you will be carrying any items which are needed during the day's tour. This will include additional warm clothing plus your thermos flask, packed lunch, and camera etc.. You will also be required to carry a small amount of group safety equipment. Please note that in winter weather, you will not want to attach equipment to the outside of your pack, so you will need to make sure all equipment will fit within. Your main luggage will be transported to the cabins in the snowmobile pulled sleds. Any items, such as travel clothes, which are not needed during the 2 nights stay at Alesjaure should be packed in a small bag (which you should take with you for the purpose) and left at Abisko.

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

This holiday does not involve any significant ascent to altitude and we would not expect any altitude issues with this trip

The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum. Temperatures do vary, and you can regulate your body temperature by increasing and decreasing the number of layers you wear.

You must bring the following items:

  • Warm and Waterproof hiking boots (above ankle length)
  • Warm ski socks
  • Regular socks
  • Gaiters
  • Shoes / Trainers / sneakers or similar (for use in the cabins)
  • Fleece under trousers and/or ski trousers, salopettes
  • Waterproof overtrousers / rainpants
  • Long johns/thermal underwear
  • Underwear
  • Thermal baselayer shirts (2 x long sleeve)
  • Fleece jacket(s) or warm jumper/pullovers
  • Warm jacket (synthetic or down filled)
  • Windproof/waterproof jacket with hood
  • T-shirts
  • Lightweight thermal gloves
  • Warmer gloves or mittens
  • Warm Hat
  • Lightweight balaclava or facemask
  • Scarf or neck warmer
  • Sunglasses
  • Daypack c.30 litres / 1800 cubic inches

    Sun protection (including for lips)

  • 1 ltr water bottle
  • Thermos flask
  • Camping mug
  • Spoon or Spork
  • Foam mat (for sitting on at lunch stops)
  • Washbag and toiletries
  • Small Towel/Travel Towel
  • Sleeping bag liner or sheet sleeping bag
  • Pillow case
  • Headtorch/headlamp and spare batteries
  • Ski goggles (useful if weather bad or on snowmobile transfer)
  • Basic First Aid Kit consisting of the following: Antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), painkillers, plasters and blister treatment and re-hydration salts (Dioralite). Glucose tablets and multi-vitamin tablets are also a good idea.

The following items are optional:

  • Antibacterial hand wash
  • Camera, media, batteries
  • Swimmers (for sauna)
  • Pen-knife (remember to put all sharp objects in hold baggage)
  • Small padlock (to lock the trek bag)

All equipment for the optional activities is provided

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required. The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice. If you are travelling outside the EU you should have at least 2 blank pages in your passport.

Visa Europe

UK and USA passport holders do not require a visa.

You should contact your GP or travel clinic to check whether you require any specific vaccinations. UK residents should obtain a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This entitles you to state provided medical treatment, but is not a substitute for medical travel insurance which is still vital when travelling overseas.

We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

It makes a lot of sense to spend some time before coming on an active holiday getting some additional exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. While regular walking is the best preparation for this holiday, a weekly exercise plan (running, cycling, swimming etc.) is also good for developing cardio-vascular fitness

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

The best time for Aurora viewing is in February and March. By the beginning of March there is lots of daylight (sun rises at 0700 and sets at 1700 approx.) and the temperatures start to rise. The ambient daytime temperatures are still low - several degrees below freezing - though, because the air is so dry here, it does not seem so cold. Night time temperatures in February and early March can be as low as -30°C though -10 to -15 °C is the norm from mid March through April. Thanks to the influence of the Gulf Stream it is actually warmer here than its Arctic Circle location would suggest. During the day the sun warms the snow, causing a little softening and then at night it re-freezes to form a crust which is perfect for skiing and snowshoeing. Long, sunny days are quite usual at this season, although it is also possible that we might encounter short-lived snow storms.

The Rough Guide to Sweden. Proctor and Roland. Sweden - Lonely Planet Guide. Baine and Cornwallis

Tourist & Hiking Map. 1:100 000. Sheet BD6 (Abisko - Kebnekaise) Piblisher: Lantmateriverket.

A detailed topographic map in colour, at a smaller scale than most UK hikers; maps but with a useful 25m. contour interval. The map is in Swedish with an English legend.

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