- Spend a night in a unique glass igloo – lay in bed and gaze at the stars (and if lucky, the Northern Lights!)
- Discover the Sami culture and remarkable arctic wildlife of Finnish Lapland
- A visit to Rovaniemi, the home of Santa Claus
- A visit to a traditional husky dog farm
- A relaxing 6 day cruise along the coast of Norway, by far the best way to experience the country’s stunning fjords and historic coastal towns
- A day excursion to the medieval town of Tallinn in Estonia.
- Return flights to Helsinki from any main Australian airport
- 6 night Hurtigruten Coastal Voyage in outside cabins, including breakfast, lunch and dinner onboard
- 8 night’s accommodation in 4 star hotels
- Transport in first class coaches as per the itinerary
- Train from Rovaniemi to Helsinki
- Fully guided from Bergen to Helsinki
- Breakfast daily, 6 lunches, 11 dinners
- Local sightseeing with English speaking guides including entrance fees
- Taxes, service and reservation charges
- The services of a Bentours’ tour manager throughout the journey.
As Australia's leading Scandinavian Specialists, we are proud to announce our participation and sponsorship of the 2018 Scandinavian Film Festival this coming July! The film festival has become a highly anticipated event in which world-class Scandinavian films are shown across screens nationally in Australia.
To celebrate this years partnership we are giving away an epic northern lights adventure for 2 people worth $20,000 on Bentours 'Follow the Lights' 15 Day escorted small group tour, departing March 2019. Join us at Palace Cinemas nationwide for nights of celebration of Nordic cinema, language, culture, cuisine, and your chance to win a trip of a lifetime!
Bentours Follow the Lights tour will give you the ideal opportunity to see the Northern Lights. The Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis, are a natural phenomenon seen in northern latitudes during October - March. This bucket-list adventure will stay with you for the rest of your life, as you bear witness to nature's most dazzling light show. Read more about the trip with our full itinerary below.
Day 1 ARRIVE BERGEN (Norway) Make your way to the hotel, or have Bentours arrange a private transfer. Tonight, meet the tour manager, and fellow travellers to hear about our exciting tour over a welcome drink. Overnight: Clarion Admiral Hotel (or similar). Room Category: Standard Room.
Day 2 BERGEN - NORWEGIAN VOYAGE NORTHBOUND (Day 1 of Norwegian Voyage Northbound) This morning is at leisure. This afternoon, depart from the hotel with an English-speaking guide on a tour of picturesque Bergen. Pass St. Mary’s Church & Haakon Hall. Walk around the colourful and picturesque fish markets and old Hanseatic wharf at Brygge. Visit Troldhaugen, the home of Norway’s most famous composer Edvard Grieg (1843 - 1907). Troldhaugen consists of the Edvard Grieg Museum, Grieg’s villa, the hut where he composed music and his gravesite. The tour ends at Bergen pier where we board the Hurtigruten ship. The ship departs Bergen and heads north towards Floro and Alesund. Meals: Breakfast & Dinner onboard. Overnight: Onboard MS Trollfjord / MS Finnmarken / MS Nordkapp. Cabin category: Polar outside/Arctic superior.
Day 3 ALESUND (Norway) (Day 2 of Norwegian Voyage Northbound) We navigate the skerries and islands further north before reaching Alesund, renowned for its beautiful Art Nouveau architecture. Leaving Alesund we head north towards Trondheim. Meals Included: Breakfast, lunch & dinner onboard
Overnight: Onboard MS Trollfjord / MS Finnmarken / MS Nordkapp.
Day 4 TRONDHEIM (Norway) (Day 3 of Norwegian Voyage Northbound) Arrive early in the morning into Trondheim, with time to explore Norway’s first capital. Look out for the storehouses along the river built on wooden stilts. Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner onboard. Overnight: Onboard MS Trollfjord / MS Finnmarken / MS Nordkapp.
Day 5 ARCTIC CIRCLE & LOFOTEN ISLANDS (Norway) (Day 4 of Norwegian Voyage Northbound) As we cross the arctic circle, the hunt for the arctic light begins! Onboard learn more about the ‘Aurora Borealis’ during a presentation, focused on this phenomenon. Later, enter the dramatic and narrow Raftsund, and if the weather and ice conditions allow, sail to the entrance of the famous Trollfjord. Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner onboard. Overnight: Onboard MS Trollfjord / MS Finnmarken / MS Nordkapp.
Day 6 TROMSO (Norway) (Day 5 of Norwegian Voyage Northbound) After a morning stop in Finnsnes, the ship continues to Tromso, the gateway to the Arctic, for a prolonged stay. After an exhilarating day in Tromso, we continue our northbound journey. The ship is now sailing into the area along the coast with the best chance of seeing the Northern Lights. Meals Included: Breakfast, lunch & dinner onboard. Overnight: Onboard MS Trollfjord / MS Finnmarken / MS Nordkapp.
Day 7 HONNINGSVAG & THE NORTH CAPE (Norway) (Day 6 of Norwegian Voyage Northbound) Honningsvag is the nearest port to the North Cape - at 71° 10’ 21” N, only 2,000 kilometres from the Geographical North Pole. Continue to Kjollefjord where we might see the Northern Lights on a clear, starlit sky. Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner onboard. Overnight: Onboard MS Trollfjord / MS Finnmarken / MS Nordkapp.
Day 8 KIRKENES – KAKSLAUTTANEN / SAARISELKA (Finland)
Admire dramatic coastal vistas as we approach Kirkenes, to disembark the cruise this morning (no porterage service is available at Kirkenes Pier). Enjoy a short drive through Kirkenes, and learn more about its history and a quick stop at the Russian border, before making our way towards Finnish Lapland. We arrive to the small village of Inari, and visit the SIIDA Sami museum. After the visit, we continue to Saariselka. Meals: Breakfast onboard & dinner in hotel Overnight: Santa's Hotel Tunturi (or similar). Room Category: Superior rooms.
Day 9 SAARISELKA (Finland) Today we visit a husky farm*. The barking of enthusiastic dogs will welcome us! The head musher talks about the life and training of these unique arctic animals, and we have the chance to take some amazing photos of the breath-taking arctic wilderness. *Important note: For departures from December onwards, this visit may include a ride on a husky wagon or sled, however this is weather dependant. Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner. Overnight: Santas Hotel Tunturi (or similar). Room Category: Superior rooms.
Day 10 SAARISELKA - SINNETTA (Finland) This morning we depart Saariselka, and visit Santa’s Village. Perhaps have a photo with Santa Claus himself! An early afternoon departure from Santa’s Village, we travel to Sinetta. Here we experience the true wonder of Finnish Lapland, spending the night in a glass igloo. Staying overnight in a glass igloo feels like sleeping in the open, however inside the igloo it is warm and cosy. The igloo village is set in a clearing, surrounded by pine trees, sufficiently far away from the city lights, to create ideal conditions for catching the Northern Lights, and enjoying starry skies. Sleep peacefully as the “Aurora Alarm” searches the skies for you. Meals: Breakfast, & dinner. Overnight: Arctic Snow Hotel & Igloos (or similar). Room Category: Glass Igloo.
Day 11 SINNETTA (Finland) Depart Sinetta and transfer to Rovaniemi. The remainder of the day is free to explore Rovaniemi, or participate in one of the optional excursions, which will be advised 6 months prior to tour departure (additional cost). Meals: Breakfast & dinner. Overnight: Sokos Hotel Vaakuna (or similar)
Room Category: Standard.
Day 12 ROVANIEMI (Finland) Today is free to explore the small city of Rovaniemi on your own, or participate in one of the optional excursions (additional cost). Meals: Breakfast. Overnight: Sokos Hotel Vaakuna (or similar). Room Category: Standard.
Day 13 ROVANIEMI – HELSINKI (Finland)
An early transfer to the station this morning, and we catch the train to the Finnish Capital, Helsinki. Stroll across the road to the hotel on arrival. Meals Included: Breakfast. Overnight: Holiday Inn City Centre (or similar). Room Category: Standard.
Day 14 HELSINKI – DAY EXCURSION TO TALLINN (Estonia)
Today we have an early start with a full day excursion to the medieval town of Tallinn in Estonia. Take the ferry across to Tallin for a combined bus and walking tour of the most interesting parts of the city. Stops will include the baroque Kadriorg Park, Song Festival Grounds and the seaside district of Pirita. Walk through the winding, cobble stoned streets of the Old Town, cross Toompea Hill, before continuing to the Palace of Toompea that today houses the Estonian Parliament ‘Riigikogu. Visit Aleksander Nevskij Cathedral and the Dome Church. There will be time at leisure in Tallinn before boarding the ferry to return to Helsinki. We say goodbye our fellow travellers tonight at a special farewell dinner. Meals Included: Breakfast (on ferry) & dinner. Overnight: Holiday Inn City Centre (or similar). Room Category: Standard.
Day 15 DEPART HELSINKI
Our tour ends after breakfast at the hotel - no transfers have been included however we can offer these at an additional cost. Meals: Breakfast.
Departure date: March 2019.
This year’s Scandinavian Film Festival runs from the 10th of July - 5th of August and includes a strong line-up of 21 films showcasing new talent and award-winners such as the Icelandic black comedy Under the Tree. For festival information, updates and film screenings, visit the Scandinavian Film Festival website.
To be in the draw to win a trip for 2 on Bentours 15 day 'Follow the Lights' escorted small group tour simply see a film as part of the festival at any participating Palace cinema Australia wide this July & August and visit our competition page to enter your details along with your proof of ticket purchase: bentours.com/film-festival-win. Please note that the competition is open for entry on the 10th of July and ends on the 15th of August 2018.
*Conditions apply. Competition ends 15th August 2018. 1 entry per person. Proof of ticket purchase must be provided on the entry form. Prize is for a fixed departure in March 2019 and is not transferable. Return airfares from any main Australian airport included. Visit bentours.com/film-festival-win to enter the draw.