Please note: This is NOT a sponsored post. We paid for the entire cost of our stay a the Arctic Fox Igloos and all opinions are my own.
Lapland is the definition of a winter wonderland. What better way to experience the winter wonderland than spending the night in luxury under the stars at the beautiful Arctic Fox Igloos.
The Arctic Fox Igloos are located on the gorgeous Lake Ranuanjärvi surrounded by the arctic forest. In winter, Lake Ranuanjärvi is frozen and the arctic forest iS filled with snow capped trees.
I first heard about the Arctic Fox Igloos early in 2019 when we decided we wanted to end our four month trip around Europe in Lapland, Finland. The photos online looked like a winter dream come true but we weren’t sure the igloos were within our price range.
After months of constantly looking at the photos online, reading reviews on Trip Advisor and Booking.com we made the decision to tighten our daily budget on our trip and book two nights at the Arctic Fox Igloos. But, was it worth the money???
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Are you planning a visit to Lapland? Check out these other posts to help plan your trip
The Ultimate Guide to visiting Finnish Lapland in Winter
Taking the Santa Claus Express Train to Lapland
The Dreamiest hotel in the world: Arctic Treehouse hotel Rovaniemi
The best places in the world to see the Northern Lights
Where are the Arctic Fox Igloos Located?
Arctic Fox Igloos are located in Ranua, Finnish Lapland on the shores of Lake Ranuanjärvi. Ranua is situated 85km south of Rovaniemi, the business capital of Finnish Lapland.
Getting to the Arctic Fox Igloos
The Arctic Fox Igloos is located in the85km south of the capital of Lapland, Rovaniemi.
Despite being a small northern city, Rovaniemi is very easily accessed. If you are flying from abroad you can fly to Helsinki and connect to Lapland from Helsinki.
Flights between Helsinki and Lapland go daily, flights between London and Lapland depart on Wednesdays and Sunday’s, and flights between Istanbul and Lapland depart Tuesdays, Thursday and Sundays.
The train between Helsinki and Lapland depart several times a day and takes about 11 hours. I suggest taking the overnight train, you board the train just before bed time and you wake up in a winter wonderland. That is of course, if you are travelling in winter!!
Little fun fact, the train from Helsinki to Lapland is called the Santa Claus Express. You can read more about the Santa Claus Express here.
From Rovaniemi you can take the bus towards towards Posion matkahuolto, Ingan tupa. The bus takes about 1 and a half hours.
Rovanemi is easily accessed by car. If you don’t have your own car you can hire a car.
When driving in Lapland be aware of changing weather conditions, especially in winter and the long distances you need to drive.
The drive from Helsinki to the Arctic Fox Igloos is about 9 and a half hours. You can find directions here.
To the Hotel
If you are taking the train, bus or flying to Rovanemi the hotel will organise transfers for you. The transfer is 48€ per person each way.
However, we arrived in Rovanemi on the night train and it was well worth the price to organise a hotel transfer.
As soon as our train arrived at 7:00 am our transfer was waiting for us. It saved trying to work out the public transport and getting lost along the way.
How much does it cost to stay at the Arctic Fox Igloos?
The Arctic Fox Igloos are not a budget friendly option when visiting Lapland, Finland. However, we made the decision early on in our four month trip around Europe to stay at the Arctic Fox Igloos and we lowered our daily budget to allow for our stay.
Having said that, there are two rates for the igloos, the rates differ between winter and summer.
In winter a double occupancy igloo costs 570€ per night and for a four person igloo the price is 785€ per night.
If you keep an eye on the website, there are often deals or special prices.
When you arrive at the Igloos you will walk into the reception/restaurant. The reception area is quite small but the staff are welcoming.
Check-in is from 2 pm, however, if you need to check in early you can head to the Gulo Gulo Holiday Village and explore the Ranua Wildlife park.
Another option is to book one of your activities for the day you arrive.
We knew we would be arriving early so we booked our reindeer sleigh ride for the day we arrived so we would have something to do.
However, I emailed ahead and let the staff know that we would be early and we arrived there was a little confusion but after a few minutes the staff worked out that our igloo was actually ready. So we were able to check in straight away which was amazing.
Once we checked-in, the we were giving a sled to help us take our luggage to our igloo. The igloos are not located very far from the reception area but it was great to have a sled for our luggage seeing as we have to walk across the ice and snow.
Along the edge of the lake there are two rows of igloos, with the front row of igloos having a completely unobstructed few of the lake.
Each igloo is fitted with either one double bed or two twin beds, a small kitchenette and a bathroom, complete with its own sauna.
The bedroom/living area of the igloo has a complete glass window to give you a stunning view of the lake. The glass is heated to prevent snow from settling on the glass and obstructing your view.
The bottom two thirds of the Igloo have a curtain to provide you with complete privacy whilst still being able to look out at the night sky, and hopefully sneak a peak of the Northern Lights.
The bathroom and Sauna are provided with complete privacy with a wooden wall.
The kitchenette is fitted with a kettle, a microwave oven, refrigerator and a table and chair for two. The kitchenette is big enough to make some simple meals or prepare some snacks.
Dining at the Arctic Fox Igloos
The Arctic Fox Igloos do have a small restaurant and it is possible to dine at the restaurant each night. The meals are the same each night but there are couple of choices.
Meals need to be ordered at reception in the morning of dining. I suggest definitely eating at the restaurant one night, eating a chicken (or reindeer) curry in the warm restaurant while looking out over the snow and to the frozen lake.
Unless you are driving, supermarkets are not easily accessed so stop at a supermarket on the way. If you choose the hotel transfers they will stop at a supermarket for you to pick up supplies for lunch, dinner or snacks.
Finally, it is possible to have dinner at the Gulo Gulo Holiday village. If you are doing a night time activity you might want to have dinner at the village before you head out on your activity.
We stayed at the Arctic Fox Igloos for two nights, one night we had dinner at the restaurant and the other night we created a platter/charcuterie board.
Things to do at the Arctic Fox Igloos
All activities are conducted from the Gulo Gulo Holiday Village. The Village is located about 6km from the Arctic Fox Igloos. However, as part of your reservation, transfers to and from the Village are free of charge.
Enjoy the view
One of our favourite things to do was to sit on the heated floor of our igloo and watch the moon rise over the frozen lake. We spent many hours sitting on the floor eating from our charcuterie board and drinking wine (PS you must try some cloudberry wine!) and looking at the view.
I would never have guessed that looking out at the frozen lake and the night sky would have been a highlight of our stay.
A traditional Finnish Sauna Experience
A visit to Finland would not be complete without a traditional Finnish Sauna experience.
Inside your igloo there is a small sauna for you to enjoy. There are instructions just outside the sauna there instructions on how to use the Sauna.
Keep in mind it will take time for the Sana to heat up, so don’t plan on a Sauna right before you’re heading out. Instead, turn on the Sauna grab a drink and sit and admire the view.
Traditionally, people are naked when they go into the sauna but this one is totally up to you! Finnish people will sit in the Sauna (the top seat is the hottest), and then head straight for a dip in a cold pool or lake, or you could just jump into the snow outside your igloo door.
Once you have cooled off head back to the Sauna and repeat the process.
Adding more water to the rocks will produce more steam and increase the temperature.
Don’t spend too long in the Sauna and remember to drink water.
Ranua Wildlife Park
One of the main “attractions” at the Gulo Gulo Village is Ranua Wildlife Park. The coolest thing about the Ranua Wildlife Park is that you don’t see the animals that you see at your “regular” zoos. Instead you see arctic animals such a wolverines, polar bears and the arctic fox just to name a few.
There is something so beautiful about wandering around the zoo as the snow is falling and seeing animals, we have only ever read about or seen in movies.
When you are at the wildlife park, don’t forget to stop in at the ice bar to grab a hot chocolate or maybe something a little bit stronger.
Hunting the Northern Lights
One of the main reason that travellers head north to Lapland is to see the Northern Lights. Ranua is the perfect place to hunt the Northern Lights as it is remote and away from light pollution.
At the Arctic Fox Igloos there are a couple of options to see the Northern lights. You can go on a horse sleigh ride out into the wilderness or a snowmobile safari.
We decided to go on a snowmobile safari. You are provided with a quick lesson on how to drive a snowmobile and provided with snowsuits to keep you warm.
After your lesson it is off to find the Northern Lights. You will head out for about an hour until your guide finds the perfect place in an open space where you are more likely to see the lights.
Once you find your resting place, your guide will light a fire where you can have a warm juice and cook some sausages while you cross your fingers and hope the lights will make an appearance.
On the night we went on our safari, we were so lucky to see the lights! They appeared a couple of times during our Safari, but they were not the strong lights you see in Instagram photos.
However, it is was still an incredible feeling to finally see the Northern Lights. They danced in the sky in front of our eyes and were such a beautiful sight.
I did not take my DSLR camera on the Safari as I wasn’t sure about taking it on the snow mobile and I regret this! If you have a camera, take it!
The photos come out so much better on a camera than on a phone. If you don’t want to carry your camera on the snowmobile you can ask your guide to put it in their trailer.
The Northern Lights Safari’s last approximately three hours. You can book directly online or with the Arctic Fox Igloos.
Reindeer Sleigh Ride
Another must on a trip to Finland is to go on a Reindeer Sleigh ride. Your guide will walk you and the reindeer for 3 km, while you are tucked nice and warm under a blanket in the sleigh ride.
It is a bit odd just sitting in a sleigh while someone walks through the snow so you can enjoy a sleigh ride but it is still extremely worth it.
Half way your reindeer will stop for a wee break and gives you a chance to chat to your guide and learn more about Reindeers.
If you’re up for a little bit of an adrenaline rush, I suggest you go on a Husky Safari.
You and your partner will learn the basics of driving a husky sleigh and then you take it in turns of driving and sitting in the sleigh.
Listening to the sounds of the dogs barking and howling, ready to run will make your heart start racing with a mixture of nerves and excitement.
As soon as the led sled takes off the rest of the gang can’t wait to run! Riding in the sleigh out into the wilderness is amazing. Especially if you are booked in in the afternoon you can watch the sunsetting over the arctic trees as you sped along behind your huskies.
At the end of your safari make sure you take some time to pat your huskies before they head into their kennels for the night.
As you return the huskies to the kennels you can hear the other dogs barking and howling, wishing they had been out running.
You are offered suits to wear and I suggest you take one. You will get warm when you are driving the sleigh but you will cool down very quickly when you are sitting in the sleigh. The more layers you are wearing the better.
One of the most fun things we did was free! Whilst waiting for our reindeer sleigh ride we saw a lone sled begging for someone to ride it!
Lucky for us, right by the sled was a hill perfect for sled riding. We spent a good half an hour going up and down the hill, falling off and laughing!
I recommend finding a sled and a snowy hill during your stay and spend a little bit of time sledding!!
Building a snowman
Do you want to build a snowman??
Finally, you can’t visit a snowy destination without building a snowman. Whether it is outside your igloo or at the Gulo Gulo Holiday village make sure you find some where to build a snowman!!
There are many other activities that you can do whilst you are at the Arctic Fox Igloos. The activities listed above are the winter activities and just a few activities that we did. There are more activities available and there are a range of summer activities too.
The Northern Lights at the Arctic Fox Igloos
Be prepared to find it hard to sleep! Both nights were we at the igloos I found it so hard to sleep. Not because the bed was uncomfortable or it was too bright outside, but because I kept waking up to check if the Northern Lights were lighting up the sky.
When you check in you can ask the staff to give you a wake up call if the lights appear.
If you are lucky enough and the Northern Lights do dance across the sky during your stay, you will be able to see them from the comfort of your bed.
I suggest you head outside (no one will care if you are in your sleepwear) and see if you can snap a picture of the lights above your igloo.
During our stay we were lucky to see the Northern Lights but we weren’t at our igloo when the lights came out, we were on our Northern Lights Safari.
Just remember, the Northern Lights are a natural occurrence and unfortunately you are not guaranteed to see the lights.
When is the best time to visit the Arctic Fox Igloos?
Depending on whether you are summer person or a winter person the best time to visit the Arctic Fox Igloos will change.
We visited in January (not a bad place to spend your birthday!) and we loved the winter wonderland. Being able to walk on a huge frozen lake was such an incredible experience.
If you are hoping to glimpse the Northern Lights you will want to visit during the winter months.
Before we visited Lapland we were worried that the short days would impact our experience but it didn’t impact us at all. The sun rose at about 10 am but it started to get light at about 8:30 am and sunset was at around 2 pm but it was light until 3:00 – 3:30 pm.
How many nights are needed at the Arctic Fox Igloos?
We stayed at the Arctic Fox Igloos and thought this was a perfect amount of time. Two nights gave us one full day to enjoy the igloo but we were also able to fit in all the activities we wanted to do.
If your budget only allows for one night then that would be a good amount of time too. A lot of people we met at the igloos were staying for one night and then spending the rest of their trip at the Gulo Gulo Holiday Village.
We could have stayed longer but our budget only allowed for two nights. If I was to return to the igloos I think we would spend two nights again.
As we arrived at 8 am we felt as thought we were there for two full days and two nights.
Are the Arctic Fox Igloos worth the price?
Before our stay I read a lot of reviews and there were quite a few complaints so I was nervous that we had wasted our money.
However, the minute we walked into our igloo and the snow started falling outside the window I knew we made the right choice.
The igloos are still relatively new and so of course there will be some kinks that are being worked out.
However, we did not have a single complaint about our stay and we had an amazing stay. We were travelling on a budget and we thought it was well worth the money we spent.
I would return to the Arctic Fox igloos in a heart beat …. I had better get saving!!
Tips for staying at the Arctic Fox Igloos
As soon as you book at the Arctic Fox Igloos, email request a front row igloo. If a double bed is important to you, you might want to request one of these as well.
Make sure you stock up on snacks and if you are planning on cooking stop by a supermarket on the way or ask your transfer driver to take you to the supermarket.
If you would like some alcohol during your stay it will be cheaper to buy it at the supermarket than to keep heading to the bar.
During your transfers from the Gulo Gulo Village and the Arctic Fox Igloos you can also ask for a quick supermarket stop if you forget anything.
Pack plenty of layers, you will be very warm in the igloo but it gets very cold during activities so make sure you have lots of warm layers.
Would you visit the Arctic Fox Igloos, Ranua or have you been? Let me know in the comments below
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