End of January we took a plane from Helsinki to Ivalo with Norwegian to do some snowshoeing and cross-country skiing in Finnish Lapland. Even so it was quite cloudy on our trip we were lucky as most of the tourists visiting Saariselkä are usually visiting Lapland between February and April.

So it was not that crowded. Nevertheless, we decided to stay with Suomen Latu in Kiilopää which is located at the entrance of the Urho Kekkonen National Park for three reasons - less tourists, more wilderness and only 20 km away from Saariselkä which we visited with the daily ski bus running between Kiilopää and Saariselkä.

Snowshoeing and Cross-Country Skiing in Finnish Lapland - Finland

With Norwegian Air from Helsinki to Ivalo in Finnish Lapland - Finland

In Helsinki we were waiting to get on board of the Norwegian flight to Ivalo.

View from the Norwegian Air plane over Finnish Lapland Finland

The flight was pretty smooth. We had no turbulences. Here a view over Lapland shortly before landing in Ivalo.

Landing in Ivalo Airport - Finnish Lapland - Finland Winter

At the Ivalo Airport you have to walk from the plane to the terminal in order to pick up your luggage. The airport is quite small but is decorated in a “Lapland style”.

Lapland Finland

Lapland Airports Finland - Finavia

With the bus from Ivalo Airport to Kiilopää Suomen Latu hostel - Lapland Finland

With the Eskelinen bus we went from Ivalo Airport to Kiilopää. We paid for the bus ticket 13 EUR.

Skiing and Snowshoeing Suomen Latu Kiilopää Hostel - Finnish Lapland

Once we arrived the Fell Center Kiilopää we got our room key from the reception, carried our luggage to the room and changed our clothes in order to get ready for our first adventure. Night Snowshoeing!

Entrance to the Urhonen Kekkonen National Park at Kiilopää Suomen Latu UKK Finland winter

The entrance of the Urho Kekkonen National Park where we started our night snowshoeing tour.

Moon and stars over the Urho Kekkonen National Park at Kiilopää

The moon was sufficient to brighten up the area for snowshoeing.

Trees covered in Snow - winter Urho Kekkonen National Park - Lapland Finland

Like frozen creatures on our way up to the Fell.

Snowshoeing with a headlamp in Urho Kekkonen National Park - Kiilopää

The peak of the Fell.

View from a Fell during winter in the Urho Kekkonen National Park - Kiilopää Snowshoeing - Lapland Finland

The next day we woke up early and went cross-country skiing. We borrowed the whole equipment from the Fell Centre and they also properly waxed the skis beforehand.

View from a Fell during winter in the Urho Kekkonen National Park - Kiilopää Snowshoeing - Lapland Finland

The weather turned however bad and we had to ski in a snow storm.

Snow Storm in Urho Kekkonen National Park - Kiilopää - Cross-Country Skiing - Winter Lapland Finland

View from a Fell during winter in the Urho Kekkonen National Park - Kiilopää Snowshoeing - Lapland Finland

Cross-Country Skiing in Urho Kekkonen National Park Winter Lapland Kiilopää

Trying to capture some images and videos with the GoPro camera.

Winter Gear for Snowshoeing and Skiing - Wearing a GoPro camera and an Arcteryx Tecto FL jacket in Urho Kekkonen National Park - Lapland Finland - Suunto Ambit3

Later on we also participated in a guided tour which was organised by the Fell Centre. The guide was French and lived in Finland for over 16 years.

Winter Wonderland Finnish Lapland Finland

Back in the Fell Centre we went to the smoke sauna and had a swim in the river next to it.

Winter Wonderland Urho Kekkonan Natioanl Park Kiilopää

The Smoke Sauna of the Fell Center in Kiilopää Suomen Latu

Stairs down to the Smoke Sauna and outdoor pool at the Fell Center in Kiilopää Lapland

Dinner Buffet at the Fell Center Kiilopää Suomen Latu Winter

Dinner at the Fell Center Kiilopää.

Menu at the Fell Center Kiilopää Suomen Latu Winter

The next day we went to the Saariselkä Ski Resort to do some sledding.

Saariselkä Ski Resort Sledding bridge skiing winter

Endless amount of snow mobiles.

Saariselkä Snow Mobiles Winter - Lapland Finland

And of course Santa’s Office (by Arctic Resort Kakslauttanen).

Santa's Office in Saariselkä Finnish Lapland - Finland - Arctic Resort Kakslauttanen

Patrick entering a Tipi which we found on the way up to the Fell. Here we had a short break to warm ourselves up with warm tea.

Finnish Lapland

Konstantin taking pictures from the top of the Fell.

Taking pictures during our Snowshoeing trip in Saariselkä Fell photo camera winter

Lapland Landscape fence reindeer Saariselkä Finland

The view from the summit was just breathtaking.

Trees Winter Saariselkä Panorama Lapland Finland

Searching for the right way to walk.

Trees Lapland Finland Arcteryx Tecto FL jacket Kappa Pants Suunto Ambit3 Saariselkä winter snowshoeing

Checking the altitude with the Suunto Ambit3.

Wearing a Suunto Ambit3 in Saariselkä Snowshoeing winter

View towards the Saariselkä ski resort.

View towards Saariselkä Ski resort in winter - Lapland Finland

Konstantin sitting in a small hut on the way back to the centre of Saariselkä to take the bus back to Kiilopää.

Saariselkä Snowshoeing hut architecture Lapland Finland winter

Ready for snowshoeing adventures!

Observing a snowshoeing group on their way down from the Fell Lapland Finland

A group of tourists doing snowshoeing on the other fell.

Walking along a reindeer fence in Finnish Lapland Kiilopää Saariselkä Lapland Finland during winter

Patrick walking next to a reindeer fence.

snowshoeing in Urho Kekkonen Nationalpark Winter Panorama Lapland Finland

Observing Reindeers Winter Urho Kekkonen National Park Lapland Finland

And then we also some some reindeers …

Reindeer Fence Urho Kekkonen National Park Kiilopää Lapland Finland

Searching for a spot to cross the fence ….

Waypoing Urho Kekkonen National Park Winter Lapland Finland

Snowshoeing in Urho Kekkonen National Park Kiilopää Lapland Finland

Entrance Reindeer Fence Kiilopää Urho Kekkonen National Park Lapland Finland

And then we found a gate to cross the reindeer fence …

Luulampi Päivätupa Snowshoeing winter

The Luulampi Päivätupa hut where we decided to stay for a while before we returned back.

Snowshoes in Lapland Finland

Leaving our snowshoes in front of the hut.

Burning Fire Urho Kekkonen National Park

And lit on a fire to warm ourselves up.

Urho Kekkonen National Park Kiilopää Tree snow winter landscape Lapland Finland

Then we continues our way back to the Fell Centre Kiilopää.

Tubbs XPlorer and MSR Ascent Lightning in Urho Kekkonen National Park in Lapland Finland

Having fun with snowshoes in Urho Kekkonen National Park Kiilopää Lapland Finland

Lapland Finland

In general we had a very great time in Saariselkä and Kiilopää. We can highly recommend the Fell Centre Kiilopää. The price value is really good, your are close to the wilderness, the food was good quality and staff was nice too. We will definitely come back here in the future.

Update 18.04.2015: And here is also our Lapland Video

Interested in more stories from Lapland? Here is another story from the Abisko area in Northern Sweden.

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