- Drive own dogsled team
- Stay in simple wilderness cabins
- Weekly from December to April
- Good chances for Northern Lights
- Just 20 minutes transfer from Kiruna
- Our most popular 8-day dogsled tour
A week of husky sledding between cabins through snow-clad forests and across frozen lakes
Northern Lights Dog Sledding in Lapland is a challenging but accessible dog sledding tour taking you through silent ancient forests, across frozen lakes and river beds, in command of your own team of Siberian Huskies.
This experience is an 8-day dog sledding tour (arrival + departure + 6 days' sledding) in the wilds of Swedish Lapland, travelling between different cabin overnight locations and typically sledding between 25km and 50km per day.
Tours will normally combine point-to-point itinerary moving to new overnight cabins with one or two day sledding tours, giving the chance to run with faster, lighter sleds. Along the route you will stay in simple but comfortable wilderness cabins, some with sauna facilities to soothe your muscles after a long day's mushing on the trail.
You will be sledding through a beautiful landscape of frozen lakes and forest. Photo: Jonathan Lamb.
Good chances for Northern Lights
Swedish Lapland is a unique wilderness region, occupying 25% of Sweden's land area but with just 1% of its inhabitants.
Swedish Lapland is also an ideal location to see the Northern Lights. The long, dark Arctic night provides good chances to see this spectacular natural phenomenon during your tour.
The Northern Lights can be seen until around early April.
From the blue light of December to the long days of April
Northern Lights Dog Sledding in Lapland runs between December and mid-April and the area in which the tour takes places offers very good conditions for viewing the Northern Lights far away from light pollution.
Each part of the winter season offers its own special atmosphere - the period between December and February has the longest hours of darkness, a very special "midwinter" atmosphere with a lovely quality to the light, and generally lower temperatures, while the "spring winter" of March and April has longer daylight hours, a spring feeling in the air and typically milder temperatures.
Driving your own dogsled and caring for your husky team
The excitement and adventure of working closely together with your dogsled team of Siberian Huskies as you journey through the Lapland winter landscape makes Northern Lights Dog Sledding in Lapland an ideal tour both for novice mushers and those who have already discovered the joys of dog sledding.
The tour is suitable for adults with general good health and level of fitness and all specialist winter clothing is supplied as standard.
Lunch on the trail is often taken around the campfire. Photo: Ellen LeCompte.
Your arrival or departure days are a convenient opportunity to plan a visit to the world-famous Ice Hotel (entrance charge payable locally), located just 15 minutes from the kennels. Transfer from the Ice Hotel on arrival day or to the Ice Hotel on departure day can be offered as an alternative to transfers from/to Kiruna.
The Lapland wilderness is waiting and the dogs are eager to be off!
Northern Lights in Lapland
Lapland is an excellent location to see the Northern Lights. The Northern Lights are spectacular curtains of colour in the night sky caused by the interaction of solar particles with the Earth's atmosphere. Dark winter nights with clear skies and a New Moon offer the best conditions for the most spectacular Northern Lights displays, though many Aurora watchers also feel that the seeing the Northern Lights together with a Full Moon is a very special sight.
The Northern Lights may be seen throughout the season until early-mid April. Photo: Jo Lester.
Snowmobile tours (daytime or evening) are available to add as optional extra activities on your arrival/departure days.
As with all our dogsled tours, you will be involved in all aspects of the trip, and this is very much part of the experience. You will assist with caring for your dog team, including harnessing, feeding (and, yes, picking up poo!), as well as tasks around camp such as fetching water, chopping wood, preparing food, washing up, etc.
Arrival time is flexible depending on your travel plans - transfer (approx. 20 mins) is included from Kiruna airport or train station, from accommodation in Kiruna if staying locally before your tour, from the Reindeer Encounter experience mentioned below, or from the Ice Hotel if you are visiting there before going to the kennels.
Guests will normally arrive at the kennels anytime from early afternoon onwards.
If you are arriving in Kiruna early in the day (for example with the night train from Stockholm), there are a number of ways to spend time in the area before having transfer to the kennels:
- Reindeer Encounter and Sámi Experience in Lapland is just nearby and makes an excellent option for an afternoon activity on your arrival day. Tours start with pick up from local accommodation in Kiruna or the Tourist Information Office at 13.10, or from the Ice Hotel at 13.30 and your dogsled hosts will collect you from the Reindeer Encounter for transfer to the kennels.
- Visit the Ice Hotel or spend some time in Kiruna town. More information on these options will be provided in booking documentation.
Once at the kennels:
- There are no organised activities as part of the tour this day (sledding begins on Day 2), but cross-country ski equipment and snowshoes are available to borrow free of charge for self-guided activities in the surrounding forest. Please ask your local hosts on arrival if you would like to borrow equipment.
- Evening snowmobile tours are available to add as optional extras in connection with the start day of your dogsled tour. Morning snowmobile tours also make a very good choice for an activity on your departure day. See under "Prices > Optional Extras" for details.
After breakfast you will meet your dog team and receive basic instruction in how to harness your team and handle the sleds. You will then load the sleds with the items you will need for your extended tour. In addition to personal packing, you will be taking sleeping bags, food (for humans and dogs!) and materials for the sleds and dog teams. After a final check it's time to head off to begin your dogsled tour, following your guide, who will lead the group.
Each participant will drive their own dogsled with own dog team of four Siberian Huskies. The dogs used are Siberian Huskies, ideally suited to dog sledding in this Arctic environment. Along the way you will stop at a suitable spot for lunch. At the cabins, everyone assists with tending to the dogs, chopping wood and fetching water. The day ends with dinner and a chance to reflect on your day on the trail mushing in the Lapland wilderness.
The days during your husky tour begin by taking care of the dogs followed by breakfast - but here the similarity ends, as each day is characterised by the route taken. You will be travelling through the wide expanses of Swedish Lapland, often called "Europe's Last Wilderness", with very good chances to see the Northern Lights during the long polar night, glittering white snow during the day, pure air and a unique silence.
There are a number of possible locations for overnight accommodation along the route - the choice of cabins used and route followed will vary depending on factors such as weather conditions and movement of reindeer herds in the area. The tour will normally feature a combination of dog sledding from cabin to cabin with possibly two consecutive nights at the same cabin to run fast and light with your team without packing for a day. The majority of the cabins are located in remote wilderness areas. Standard of accommodation is simple (no running water or electricity) but cosy and comfortable. The cabins are heated by wood-burning stoves and lit by candles, and water is drawn from nearby rivers and lakes. Toilet facilities are dry outside toilet houses.
Some of the overnight locations have sauna facilities and you will have the possibility to have sauna on at least one night of your tour. Weather and snow conditions will influence the level of challenge. The trail may be hard-packed and icy, or heavy and soft following freshly-fallen snow. Typical distance covered is between 25km-50km per day. After feeding and harnessing your dogs in the morning and making preparations to leave the cabins, you will typically be on the trail by around 10.30-11.00, reaching your destination sometime in the afternoon.
Your final day of dog sledding in the Lapland wilderness. A shorter day's sledding brings you to the kennels in the afternoon, where you will unload the sleds, say farewell to your dogsled team and return your equipment before spending your final night together in cabin accommodation to reflect on the week's husky sledding adventure.
After breakfast, you will be transferred to Kiruna train station or airport for departure.
Alternatively, why not take the opportunity to add a morning snowmobile tour before departure? See under "Prices > Optional extras" for details.
Transfers are timed according to your onward travel arrangements. If you are departing later in the day, you may wish to take some hours to explore Kiruna.
Please note that the above is a preliminary itinerary and may vary due to factors such as weather conditions, access to trails and seasonal changes and local reindeer herding activities. During periods of extreme cold weather, for comfort and safety sledding duration each day can be shortened.
With the exception of dates around the Christmas and New Year period, the majority of tour dates run Monday-Monday and/or Wednesday-Wednesday.
A full list of tour dates for the 2021/22 winter season will be published shortly. Christmas and New Year tour dates will be follows:
- November: 24.11-01.12.21, 29.11-06.12.21
- December: 01.12-08.12.21, 06.12-13.12.21, 08.12-15.12.21, 13.12-20.12.21, 15.12-22.12.21, 20.12-27.12.21 (Christmas tour), 21.12-28.12.21 (Christmas tour), 27.12.21-03.01.21 (New Year tour)
- January: 02.01-09.01.22, 03.01-10.01.22, 05.01–12.01.22, 10.01.22-17.01.22, 12.01-19.01.22, 17.01-24.01.22, 19.01-26.01.22, 24.01-31.01.22, 31.01-07.02.22
- February: 02.02-09.02.22, 07.02-14.02.22, 14.02-21.02.22, 16.02-23.02.22, 21.02-28.02.22, 28.02-07.03.22
- March: 07.03-14.03.22, 14.03-21.03.22, 21.03-28.03.22, 28.03-04.04.22
- April: 04.04-11.04.22, 11.04-18.04.22*
Early season tour dates are: 2020/21 winter season: 25.11-02.12.20, 30.11-07.12.20, 02.12-09.12.20; 2021/22 winter season: 24.11-01.12.21, 29.11-06.12.21, 01.12-08.12.21
|Standard Prices (per person)|
|Early season tours||GBP|
|Christmas and New Year tours||GBP|
|All other dates||GBP|
|Optional Extras per person (see description below)|
|Snowmobile daytime tour 2.5 hours (shared one per two persons)|
|Snowmobile daytime tour 3.5-4 hours (shared one per two persons)|
|Snowmobile evening tour 2.5 hours (shared one per two persons)|
|Snowmobile evening tour 3.5-4 hours (shared one per two persons)|
|Supplement to drive own snowmobile (all snowmobile tours)|
- Snowmobile tours: Can be added as an extra activity for your arrival or departure day in connection with the start/end of your dogsled tour. Daytime tours can be added on arrival or departure day. Evening tours can be added only on arrival day. Solo travellers must choose drive own snowmobile option. Duration given is approx. total tour duration including initial instruction and breaks: 2.5 hour tours include snack/coffee, 3.5-4 hour tours include lunch (daytime) or dinner (evening). Evening tours give good possibilities to see Northern Lights if conditions are suitable. Min. age 10 years. Min. age to drive own snowmobile 18 years. Participants wishing to drive must hold full driving licence and be able to show licence locally. Morning tours typically begin with pick-up at 10.00. Evening tours typically begin with pick-up at 18.00 (up to 25th March) or 20.00 (from 26th March onwards).
What's Included »
Accommodation in cabin at base camp and simple cabins along the route. You will have access to sauna on some nights.
Accommodation for the first and last night is normally in simple one-room cabins at the kennels, which have four bunk beds and electricity/electric radiator. There is a communal hut for meals/socialising. Dry outside toilets.
Example cabin accommodation at the kennels normally used for first/last night
The cabins along the route are located in remote areas, where standard of accommodation is simple (no running water or electricity) but cosy and comfortable. The cabins are heated by wood-burning stoves and lit by candles, and water is drawn from nearby rivers and lakes.
Everyone assists with camp duties such as chopping wood, fetching water and washing/tidying up.
Sleeping accommodation on all nights during the tour is shared. Cabins along the route will typically have one or two sleeping rooms, each with bunk beds. There are a number of cabins which may be used during a tour - which are used for a particular tour will depend on factors such as weather conditions, movement of reindeer herds and other activities in the area.
Example of typical cabin accommodation used during the tour
All meals from dinner on arrival day to breakfast on departure day (breakfast, lunch, dinner + coffee/snacks, etc). Please let us know if you have any special dietary requirements.
Equipment and Clothing
- All necessary equipment during dog sledding tour including sleds with own dogsled team. Each participant drives their own sled with four Siberian Huskies.
- Warm winter clothing for all activities: snowscooter overalls, winter boots, hat, gloves, inner and outer socks.
- Sleeping bag, sleeping sheet and pillow case.
- Thermos for hot water (there is no need to bring a separate water bottle).
- Bag for personal items and clothing.
(additional items such as long-johns may be available on request - please ask if there is a particular item of clothing or equipment you require)
Clothing provided as standard
- Instruction in harnessing and sled handling.
- Services of local guide.
- Return transfer between Kiruna airport or Kiruna station (or from accommodation locally) and the cabins in connection with your tour. For guests, wishing to visit the Ice Hotel on arrival or departure day, pick-up from the Ice Hotel on arrival day or drop-off on departure can be offered as an alternative (guests will then travel independently between Kiruna and the Ice Hotel).
- Travel: We do not arrange flights or domestic travel, but are happy to advise on suitable connections and assist you with any aspect of planning your journey. See under "Getting There" for general travel information.
- Alcoholic drinks.
Good To Know »
You should have a general good level of fitness and enjoy the outdoors. You should also be comfortable living in close proximity with others.
Minimum age for scheduled tours 18, but for private tours younger participants can also be accommodated. Please contact us to discuss your requirements.
No previous dog sledding experience is required. Dog sledding can be physically demanding. You must be able to brake the sled when going downhill and also assist the dogs during uphill sections by stepping off and running behind the sled for short distances (note, however, that this tour runs in a landscape of frozen lakes, rivers and forest so will be less demanding than sledding in mountain terrain). Tasks around the cabins (fetching water, chopping wood, etc) can also be physically demanding.
If weight >95kg, please contact us to discuss suitability.
What makes this "Medium"?
As a reasonably long tour (6 days' sledding), this experience will typically have a higher level of challenge compared to shorter tours in similar terrain, but a lower level of challenge compared to tours of corresponding duration in mountain terrain. Accommodation is in simple cabins on all nights. Some participants may experience this tour as more challenging, and weather and snow/trail conditions can greatly influence this.
NB: Perception of difficulty is very subjective. What is hard to one person may be easy for another and vice versa, depending on factors including level of fitness, age and previous experience. Weather conditions/temperatures can also dramatically affect the actual level of challenge encountered.
For information on any equipment and/or clothing included as standard for this experience, please see under "What's Included".
A detailed recommended packing list for personal items to bring will be sent with your booking documentation.
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. Note of course that the most appropriate clothing to use as well as the level of challenge experienced during any outdoor activity may vary significantly depending on factors such as the time of year and the particular weather/temperature conditions during your trip.
Preparing for your trip:
For further reading, we also have a number of general information articles to get you ready for your trip, covering a wide variety of topics from what to do on a city break before/after your tour, advice on packing, eyewear for winter and considerations for female travellers.
A total of minimum two persons is required for scheduled tours to run. You are of course welcome to book as a solo traveller.
Combine This With
This experience makes a good combination with the following:
Maximum group size 6 persons for scheduled tours.
This experience is also available as a private experience for groups. For private tours, larger groups can be accommodated. Please contact us to discuss your requirements.
This provider has a detailed environmental policy and has received Swedish Tour Quality certification.
The sleds are made in a local workshop just 100m from the kennels, while many of the dogs' harnesses are sewn by a local family.
Will I see the Northern Lights?
This experience is located in the far north of Sweden, one of the world's best locations for seeing the Northern Lights, and offers good chances to see a display during your tour. Wonderful displays are regularly seen on the tours. However, it is important to bear in mind that the Aurora is a natural phenomenon and sightings can never be guaranteed in any location - it is not possible to search for a display. The skies may be cloudy, there may be no activity, or you may be fast asleep after a day of adventure on the trail!
Getting There »
See below for a summary of travel options. To learn more about how to travel to this experience, please get in touch!
Detailed information on travel will be provided in response to your enquiry. We are happy to advise on suitable connections and assist you with any aspect of planning your journey.
NB: Please ensure that you make a booking with us first and wait for confirmation that your spaces are reserved before making any travel arrangements.
Fly to Stockholm then onward to Kiruna by night train or domestic flight connection. Transfer from Kiruna airport or train station is included.
Ferry Dover-Dunkirk or Newcastle-Amsterdam for onward train connections to Kiruna.
Gallery & Reviews »
"Great service and flexibility, great documentation. [The best parts were] the people I met along the way, the relationship with the dogs, the immersion after a few days." Kevin, New Year tour 2020/21
"Very hard to pinpoint a best part, but the cabins were incredible and how lucky we were to be the only two on the tour!" Alex, December 2020
"I absolutely loved all of this trip. I loved having a whole week out in this incredible landscape, with no screens, no electricity, just amazing scenery that changed with the light every day. I love adventure and being outside and I found the level of challenge just right. The minimal cabins were perfect for me, I don't need luxury and I enjoyed the task of creating a new home each cabin we arrived in. Our guide was just fantastic. He looked after us so well, so many little touches, really sensitive to the different needs of the group, and no big ego to contend with. If you get a chance to be led by him you are guaranteed a fantastic time. He set us new challenges, seeing that we were a competent group, and this made the adventure all the more exciting. His love and care for the dogs was wonderful to see. He soon allowed us to join in with the axeing, cooking, fire lighting, and as an experienced expedition leader this was exactly what I needed. This trip is for people who love adventure and being outdoors. If you need your creature comforts this trip is not for you. Be prepared for freezing weather, outside toilets, bore holes, fire lighting, cold feet, and lots of meat prep. If you are up for the hard work, you will be infinitely rewarded. This trip is amazing." Polly, February 2020