Ice Skating on Natural Ice

Ice Skating on Natural Ice

Photos: 1-5:J.Savelid; 6,7:Nature Travels

Ice Skating on Natural Ice (Sweden)

Carve your own tracks through a magical frozen world

Trip ice-skating in Sweden: Östergötland/Södermanland

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Overview

  • Required: Normal fitness level and swimming ability. Some previous skating experience (e.g. rink skating or rollerblades) is required for scheduled tours. Minimum age 16 for scheduled adult tours. Families with younger children (min. age 8 years) are welcome on the scheduled family tour or on private dates by arrangement.
  • Duration: 4 days/3 nights.
  • Accommodation: 2-person rooms in hostel accommodation.
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Ice skating on the clear ice of a frozen lake is a unique way to enjoy the beauty of a Swedish winter. In the wintertime, Sweden's extensive network of lakes make up a labyrinth of ice just waiting to be explored.

Ice Skating on Natural Ice is a 4-day trip-skating adventure under the expert guidance of local skating guides, who know the area intimately and will ensure that you find the locations with the best possible ice conditions for your tour. Ice-skating is an ideal way to experience the majesty and tranquility of the Swedish winter landscape. The sensation of gliding over clear lake ice is as wonderful as it sounds.

Ice conditions change regularly - your guide will know where the ice is best on a particular day. From your base at local hostel accommodation, you will head out each day to the most suitable area for your trip skating tour. The speed and distance covered will be adapted as far as possible to the needs and wishes of the participants - you should find that it is relatively straightforward to cover distances of 25km a day or more. At the end of the day, you can soothe tired muscles with a sauna and reflect on your day's skating adventures. There may even be the chance for a moonlight skating tour beneath the stars!

If you have never skated on long-distance skates before, don't worry - you will be surprised how quickly you can learn to trip-skate calmly and safely. However, you should have some previous experience of skating for this tour (for example on rink ice skates or rollerblades).

Your guide will be skating ahead of you at all times, keeping close watch to ensure the ice conditions are suitable. Skates, shoes, pack and full safety equipment are included as standard.

Trip skating gives you a very special perspective on a Swedish winter - see you soon out on the ice!

Itinerary

Day 1

Your guide will meet you from Stockholm Skavsta (NYO) or Stockholm Arlanda (ARN) for transfer to the skating area. The exact location for the best ice skating conditions will vary throughout the winter season - your guide knows the area intimately and will ensure that you are skating in a region with the best ice conditions at the time of your visit. You will check in at your accommodation and have a safety and instruction briefing with your guide, when you will also be given your equipment for the tour. You can then relax to enjoy your first evening dinner together.

Days 2-3

During breakfast you will prepare lunch packages for your days out on the ice. Based on the latest weather and ice forecast information, you will head out to the best possible skating area for the day. Once at the lake, you will begin by examining the ice before readying your equipment. You will skate in a line, led by your guide, who will be checking the ice and ensure that you avoid any potential weak spots. The speed and distance covered during the day will be tailored to the level of the group and ice conditions.

Skating on natural ice is a unique experience, and you will have regular opportunities to take breaks to admire the beauty of the winter landscape, chat about your technique or just relax and soak up the atmosphere. At the end of your day's skating, you will return to the minibus for transfer back to your accommodation.

A sauna before dinner is a wonderful way to soothe tired muscles and the perfect environment in which to reflect on the day's adventures with your fellow skaters. If conditions allow, there may even be the chance for a moonlight skating trip later in the evening!

Day 4

After breakfast you will head out for another day on the ice, skating as long as possible depending on scheduled departure times for the participants. On your way back to the airport, you will have time to stop for a shower and change of clothes and perhaps something to eat, before your guide transfers you to the airport for departure.

Dates & Prices

Dates

Scheduled dates:

23.01-26.01.14 (adult tour), 16.02-19.02.14 (family tour), 20.02-23.02.14 (adult tour), 27.02-02.03.14 (adult tour), 06.03-09.03.14 (adult tour)

NB: It may also be possible to join tours on other weekend dates between mid-January and mid-March - please let us know your preferred dates and we will be happy to check possibilities for you.

Private tours:

  • Start/end times and pick-up/drop-off location are by arrangement.
  • For groups of 2-8 persons, private tours on other dates between just before Christmas and late March are possible by arrangement. Please contact us to discuss your requirements.

The Price

Prices are in British Pounds. If you wish, you are also welcome to make your payment by bank transfer in Euros or Swedish Kronor. If this would be of interest, please let us know and we will be happy to provide prices.

Adult scheduled tours: £799/person based on two persons sharing. Single supplement for hostel accommodation: £39/person for 3 nights.

Family scheduled tours: £593/person.

For private tours, please contact us to discuss your requirements.

What The Price Includes

Accommodation

  • Scheduled adult and scheduled family tours: Shared 2-person (or family) rooms in hostel accommodation. Bed linen and towels are included. Please note that end cleaning is not included.
  • Private tours: Hotel standard accommodation is available as an alternative. Please contact us to discuss your requirements.

NB: Accommodation used depends on the location of the best ice skating conditions at the time of your tour. Where possible, accommodation with sauna facilities will be chosen, though note that this cannot always be guaranteed.

Meals

  • Scheduled adult tours: All meals from dinner on Day 1 to lunch on Day 4. Please let us know in advance if you have any particular dietary requirements. Scheduled adult tours have two guides, who also prepare meals during the tour.
  • Scheduled family tours: All meals from dinner on Day 1 to lunch on Day 4. Please let us know in advance if you have any particular dietary requirements. Meals are prepared together as a group at the hostel. Scheduled family tours have one guide.
  • Private tours: Choice of accommodation standard and board options are available.

Equipment

  • Trip skates
  • Skating boots (please advise shoe sizes in advance)
  • Daypack
  • All necessary safety equipment

Guide

Experienced and knowledgeable local guide.

Transfers

  • Local minibus transfers to/from Stockholm Skavsta or Stockholm Arlanda airport and your accommodation.
  • Local minibus transfers between accommodation and daily skating areas.

What The Price Does Not Include

  • Alcoholic drinks.
  • End cleaning of hostel accommodation (if you do not wish to do end cleaning of your room yourself, this can normally be arranged on site, price typically 150-200 SEK, about £15-£20, per room).

Practical Info

Health requirements/experience

You should have a normal level of fitness, be able to swim and enjoy the outdoors. Some previous skating experience (e.g. rollerblades) is required for scheduled tours. For private groups, the tour can be adapted to accommodate novice skaters.

Minimum age 16 for scheduled adult tours. For scheduled family tour and for private tours, younger children (min. 8 years) can be accommodated depending on experience.

Equipment/clothes needed

A detailed recommended equipment list will be sent with your booking confirmation.

NB: We advise you not to buy equipment or clothes for your trip or to incur other non-refundable expenses such as flights until you have received confirmation of your booking from us in writing.

Groups

No required minimum for tours to be confirmed to run. Maximum number of participants for scheduled tours: 8 persons

This experience is ideal for groups of 4-8 persons. Please contact us to discuss your requirements.

Trip Skating

Trip skating goes by many different names: tour skating, long distance ice skating, Nordic skating or wild skating. Popular throughout the Nordic countries, trip skating is particularly popular in Sweden, where the thousands of lakes create an ideal skating environment. More recently, it has been combined with kiting to create a new hybrid sport known as kite skating or kite blading.

The skates used for tour skating are rather different from standard skates, with longer blades around 50cm in length. Tour skates consist of a circa 50cm long blade, attached with binding to special skating boots similar to those used for cross-country skiing.

Additional Notes

This provider has received prestigious Swedish Ecotourism certification for its commitment to high standards to cultural and environmental sensitivity.

Location

Detailed information on travel options will be sent with your booking documentation. We are happy to advise on suitable connections and assist you with any aspect of planning your journey.

By Air

Fly to Stockholm Skavsta (NYO)or Stockholm Arlanda (ARN) airport, where you will be met by your guide.

Without Flying

Ferry from Harwich to Esbjerg (Denmark) for onward train connections to Nyköping, from where transfer can also be arranged.

Map of Sweden

Map of Sweden

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