It is snowing, you are feeling chilly even with that thick down jacket of yours. Now, imagine floating on water with ice around you, looking at northern lights dancing across the night sky. Sold? We were! When we saw the Northern Lights Ice Floating activity, we knew we had to join!
14 Oct 18
Northern Lights Ice Floating
When we were in Rovaniemi, we joined the Northern Lights Ice Floating tour with Safartica. The tour was about three hours and cost EUR92. For accommodations located within 10 km from Safartica’s office, return transfers were included Since we were staying in the Arctic Light Hotel which was right next to the office, we just took a walk there.
Before The Dip
Our Northern Lights Ice Floating tour was a really small group, just four people, including the two of us. The guide cum driver picked us up and drove us to the designated lake where we were gonna float, on freezing water! Upon reaching, we changed into a red suit that covers the whole body, except the face. Our guide wasn’t lying when he told us that the suit was used for rescue missions where temperatures were sub-zero. The suits were superb at keeping us dry and warm, although somehow, my companion’s inner wear was a little soak.
The lake was really dark, with just two spotlights shining into it. If you let your imaginations run wild, it was quite scary to think that you will be jumping into pitch dark and ice cold water. So, I tried not to think about it while waiting for my turn to dip into the cold water. The suit made us extremely buoyant. So to make sure we are floating, we had to walk down the stairs and glide out on our backs. For a more surreal and clear view of the sky, the guide switched off the lights when all of us were comfortable in the water.
Getting on our feet
Once hitting the water, we started floating away so that the next person had space. After a while of floating around, the guide taught us how to flip into the upright vertical position. Being in the vertical position was like trapping water without effort but with your legs having a slightly compressed feeling.
We were told that the Northern Lights Ice Floating tour from earlier today had to manually break the ice as most of the lake was frozen. Then the guide showed us how to break the ice. Basically, we push ourselves up onto the ice and then we exert a downward force to break it. It was fun initially but it can get tiring so most of us ended up sitting on the (ice) edge after a while.
Floating on our backs
Due to the cloudy sky, we didn’t manage to catch the Northern Lights. Despite that, floating under the dark sky, with our ears tightly enclosed by the suit, we could hear the quiet waters. It really was an incredibly peaceful feeling. Sometimes, we would hear the splashing from one of us trying to flip up into the vertical position but mostly, it felt really peaceful.
After The Dip
Since we were a small group, our friendly tour guide allowed us to float for almost two hours, which was more than adequate. After changing out of the suits, traditional Finnish drinks and ginger biscuits were provided while the guide went on to pack his stuff before sending us back to our hotels.
In an ideal world, our Northern Lights Ice Floating tour would look like above. However, northern lights are natural phenomena and no one can guarantee the sighting of those amazing lights while floating on ice. Hence, we did have a unique and enjoyable experience even though we were disappointed that we didn’t manage to catch the lights. One thing we would change is to join the Northern Lights Ice Floating tour during the day. Our sense of sight didn’t really get to enjoy much. The day tour would probably have satisfied our eyes (and camera) more.
Have you tried the Northern Lights Ice Floating tour in Finland or elsewhere? Share with us your experience in the comments below. Cheers!
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