For the best experience the north can provide you with, you have to visit the best spots with the right amount of time and at the right time of the year. We at Kontiki Finland are experts in producing travel experiences in Finland and Scandinavia that meet the expectations of your dreams and commitment.
Saimaa Lake system is the largest lake in Finland with 14,000 islands! One of the largest freshwater lake in Europe, formed from the ice melt of the last Ice Age. The Saimaa Ringed Seal is an endangered species living only here in Finland.
There is more shoreline here in Saimaa than any other lake system in the world, with 15,000 km of shore, 50,000 cabins and just as many Saunas!
With Finland’s world famous Clean Air and exceptional water quality, health and wellbeing pursuits on each of the 14,000 islands, from Digital Detox, Wild Food and herb therapy, Organic Forests, and Sauna : Saimaa can be considered the World’s Largest Natural Spa.
The area is rich in culture too. As the former border area between Russia and Sweden, before Finland was independent, there are Manor Houses scattered throughout the region and the famous Castle in Savonlinna hails back to older times.
Rock paintings prove that this area was inhabited already around 5000 years ago, with paintings depicting Elk, Fish, People and Boats.
Highlights included for FIT & Groups:
*3 Nights accommodation
*Gym, Sauna, Pool & Lake swimming
*Visit to Savonlinna and Olavinlinna Castle
*Visit to Kenkävero Vicarage gardens, Manor and Design area
*Visit to the Organic Forest and making a Wild Food product with the Chef
When one thinks of Norway, it is impossible to forget the images of high mountains and deep waters around the Fjords. Could be that you also know about the ‘Most Beautiful train ride in the world’? Also, in Norway!
Our Norwegian story is clear and straight to the point. Oslo is so much more that just an airport city – it is highly recommended to take some time for personal discovery; A stroll down Karl Johan, Oslo’s main street or a walk along Aker Brugge, the Harbour area with its numerous shops, bars and restaurants! Locals also recommend visits to Vineland’s Sculptures in Erogner Park or visit some of the many museums in Bygdoy. Whatever the choice for free time, guests will be charmed by Oslo.
From Oslo central station, the Bergen Railway between Oslo and Bergen is considered one of the world’s most scenic train rides. They journey brings you across one of the Europe’s highest mountain plateaus and through vast and varied nature.
At Myrdal, guests change trains to the Flåm Railway between Myrdal and Flåm. Now this is the
STEEPEST train lines in the world running on normal tracks! The journey runs through steep mountains, past breathtaking waterfalls and through 20 tunnels. It is possible to see great views of the Fjords and mountains from this journey.
From Flåm, the fun continues with a beautiful scenic cruise from Flåm to Bergenwhich takes 5 hours, cruising on the Sognefjord, Norway’s longest Fjord, of which part is a UNESCO World Heritage listed natural area. The Fjord is surrounded by steep mountains with snow covered tops that stretch up to 1800 meters above sea level. Water falls cascade down the mountains and picturesque villages dot the landscape.
A Stroll in Bryggen is the symbol of Bergen Cultural heritage and has gained a place on the UNESCO World Heritage List, is a must! The Old Hanseatic Wharf is architecturally unique and is perhaps one of the most familiar images of all of Norway.
*Oslo – Bergen Railway (most scenic train ride in the world?)
*Flåm Railway journey (steepest train journey in the world)
The many different faces and cultural aspects of different Scandinavian and Baltic Capitals showcase the rich variety of history, modern life and activities that can be reach in one visit to this Northern European Region. People are friendly, proud of their society and most of all proficient in languages, so knowing some English will get anybody by just fine.
Norway – Vikings, Atlantic Coast and most advanced electric car infrastructure in the world. Not to mention the trolls, oil, beautiful people and cross country skiing. Norway having hosted the winter olympics in Lillehammer, this country’s DNA includes ski’s, high mountains and proud Viking heritage.
Oslo – the Capital, provides modern city with all of the latest technology, culinary delights etc, however if you are here, then one must become one with Vikings. Boasting one of the best Viking museums in the world, this is the starting point to understand life in the North from a historical perspective.
Sweden – Abba, Björn (Bear) Borg, Volvo and IKEA, this old North European Superpower which once in the 15 century ruled most of Northern Europe provides another view and to culture, people and modernity to the story, which is steeped in historical roots that sprung up from the Viking time.
Stockholm – the Capital – Since Vikings are checked, move decicevily to visit the VASA Museum, and
15th Century War ship that sunk in the harbour of Stockholm. Restored, covered and well cared for, this unique museum gives unique perspective to war history and life in the time of Kings, Queens and their subjects. Stockholm Old Town can swallow one day without making it boring. Kings Castle, rivers, cafes, shops this beautiful town is one to immerse one into modern take of 15th Century.
Finland – over 70% of the landmass is forested, 187 888 lakes, yes that many and only 5 million people – the 2017 SAFEST COUNTRY TO VISIT in the world. This unique country that has it’s history moulded by pagan time forest tribes to Great Sweden Rule for 600 years and Russian Imperial rule for another 108 year (for good measure) provides a natural view of the European cultural border with the East. Turning 100 years of age on 6th December 2017, Finland is finally mature.
Helsinki – Clean, Beautiful, Small, Friendly, Tasty and Modern, has it all in different ways that Oslo and Stockholm. Providing clear influence of Imperial Russian era coupled with strong Finnish history of “being in the middle” and not belonging to anywhere but here. This statement requires further explanation to fully understand the difference that Visiting Finland gives its guests; Finnish Language, It’s own language groups Fenno-Ugric languages, which in essence means that it is nothing like Russian, nor is it anything like Swedish, Norwegian, Danish or the other Germanic languages. Not technically part of Scandinavia nor the Baltic. Don’t feel bad, the Finns don’t, this is the promised land of the forest people, fire worshipping midsummer dancing, northern lights gazing, equalitarian people who are schooled in an education system that rivals all.
Highlights: 6 nights
*2 Nights Oslo
Guided tour and Visit to the Viking Museum
*2 Nights Stockholm
Guided walking tour of Gamla Stan (Old Town) and Royal Palace
*2 Nights Helsinki
Guided walking tour of Helsinki Harbour markets and Helsinki Cathedral
*Day tour tickets to Tallinn with Guided walking tour.
Program with 2 nights in the Finnish Arctic and 1 in the capital city
Start: Helsinki End: Ivalo Airport
The midnight sun is a natural phenomenon that occurs in the summer months in places north of the Arctic Circle or south of the Antarctic Circle, when the sun remains visible 24 hours a day.
In Northern Lapland, the sun remains above the horizon between End of May – end of July. This very special time excites the senses with various shades of light, along with the summer colours of green, blue and reds and orange of the skyline.
This time of year is the time of Midsummer festivities at the end of June, when the whole of Finland celebrates an old pagan tradition of staying out late at night, celebrating and indulging. Pagan traditions are performed, in light hearted spirits.
A visit to see the Midnight Sun, can be a short affair, seeing as the days are so long! We suggest 2 nights in Lapland with one night in Helsinki at the start or finish (where the light is also late into the evening, with long late sunsets and very early sunrises!).
Most people have seen amazing images of snow-capped mountains, dare-devil rock climbing, midnight shamans, Glaciers and thermals springs. Most tours take guests to visit one or two of them, but most time is spent in the big cities close to airports.
This tour is different, the highlights are daily, with only minimal time spent in populous areas.
One Touch of Nature makes the whole world Kin – William Shakespeare
Highlights of the Tour:
FJORDS of Norway – One of the largest in the World.
One of the most visited natural phenomena in Norway, the Fjords still feel huge and empty spaces that give the “wow” factor!
Travelling by cruise through Sognefjord, one of the longest Fjords in the world, amidst steep mountain ranges, is the perfect way to admire the coastlines dotted with picturesque villages
Steepest (and most beautiful) Train Ride in the World
In the span of a brief hour, the train takes you from sea level at the Sognefjord in Flåm to the Myrdal mountain station at 867 metres above sea level. During the journey, which takes guests through 20 tunnels, there are great viewpoints of the grand Norwegian Scenery.
Waterfalls – 225m high
During the Flåm Railway ride, some of the best “wow” moments are when riding past any of the 5 huge waterfalls on the route. Kjosfossen is among the most famous Waterfalls in Norway, at a staggered 225m in height and its sheer volume reminds us that nature is a powerful mistress.
One of the largest Archipelagos in the world for number of islands!Between Helsinki and Stockholm, there lies the Archipelago Sea and the Stockholm Archipelago, combined have a total of 68,000 islands! When journeying between the two cities by ferry cruise, guests can take advantage of excellent views from their cabin with a sea view, or from the deck! Both cities offer excellent chances of visiting islands right from the city centre.
The entire region gets through the dark months by dreaming of the White Nights! During Spring and Summertime, the late sunshine means extra Vitamin D, longer days to fill with all the sweet goodness of the nature and people. Try night swimming in the clean waters along the way.
World’s Biggest Natural Spa
At least, it must be, as the vastness of Saimaa Lake System is unparalleled in terms of cleanliness, accessibility and number of islands.
With 14,000 islands INSIDE the lake system, and 15,000km of coastline, every turn offers views of outstanding natural beauty. Clean waters, natural therapies – one can sauna, steam, eat, breath and bathe in one of the the cleanest (and safest) nature areas in the world. Natural Luxury at its best.
Over half of Europe’s largest lakes are in Finland.
Wild Organic Forest Food
The cleanliness of the region cannot be overstated enough. While Finland, Sweden and Norway tend to keep their Wild Food secret closely guarded, we can let you in on the secret.
We have Wild Certified Organic Forest that guests can visit! The Organic institute believes that over 97% of all Finnish forests could be certified!
Forests, woodlands and swamps are filled with wild berries, and “Everyman’s Right” means that people are free to collect as much as they can carry from the wild forests.
From Spring Strawberries, Summer Bilberries (wild blueberries), Raspberries to elusive Cloudberries, wild forest herbs and plants there is a lot to chose from when it comes to snack time.