These five excursions are the Big Five of Levi. Everyone should experience these at least once. Here are also some tips on how to make the most out of them.
1 – AURORA BOREALIS
The best time of the year for Aurora Borealis is during autumn when there is no snow on the ground yet. You might see the Northern Lights twofold as the reflection can be seen on the surface of the water or ice when a lake is frozen over. The steel-like 5 centimetres thick ice is strong enough for you to enjoy the phenomenon on the ice. Grab something to lay on, a pillow, hot chocolate and sandwiches. You can lay there and feel the cracking and popping sounds of the ice in your bones.
TOP TIP! A great place to see and capture the Aurora Borealis is the Levi summit. Focus towards north.
2 – HUSKY SLED RIDE
When you stand in a sled and dash through the snow being pulled huskies, you are “taking a load off” to put it mildly. Shorter stretches are more suitable for children and people with disabilities but to make the most of your excursion, take a longer one. On a 20-kilometre ride you feel one with nature and the husky pack. On the next day you might feel some pain in muscles you didn’t even know existed.
HUSKY RIDES IN NUMBERS
500+ sled dogs in Levi
Rides from 2 to 20 kilometres (there are even 2–3 day trips)
5–6 sleds in one convoy
3 – REINDEER RIDE
Just like with husky rides, there is something primal and fun about reindeer safaris. Just like with snowmobile safaris, you can combine some other activity with it, like ice fishing or snow shoe walking. Usually the reindeer sleighs are in convoys with a herder or a guide. A semi- domesticated reindeer in Lapland is like a cow. Every part from the hooves to the antlers is used.
DID YOU KNOW 1,5 times more reindeer than people in Lapland. In Lapland, it’s not considered polite to inquire about the number of reindeer someone owns. It’s like asking a farmer how much he earns.
HOW TO GET ALONG WITH REINDEER Don’t touch the antlers. The reindeer don’t like to be pet much, either. Stay calm, make no loud noises. It’s better to refrain from alcohol before the excursion to be able to fully enjoy the trip.
4 – SNOWSHOEING
Snowshoeing combines exercising, the outdoors and relaxation, and suits everyone able to move. A glorious experience is going snowshoeing in the woods during the night with a headlamp. You can watch the stars and the Northern Lights, listen to the silence and the sounds of the freezing temperature, the trees come to life, foxes yelp and boreal owls sound their mating calls. There is no need to fear the animals. You might bump into a reindeer or a moose but usually they avoid people.
2 H – Usually the duration of a snowshoeing excursion.
5 – SNOWMOBILE SAFARI
A snowmobile is the traditional vehicle used by reindeer herders and foresters. It’s easy to operate but you need a driver’s licence. Children or those without a licence can also go on a snowmobile ride either by sitting in the back or driving on a special track. Please bear in mind that some of the tracks open usually in January when the heavy maintenance vehicles have been able to make their rounds everywhere.
The concept of the Big Five comes from the most dangerous animals everyone wants to see on the savannahs of Africa. Levi’s Big Five is about the excursions everybody wants to experience. Book your excursions and activities from Visit Levi or levi.fi, or call 016 6393300.
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Photography is letting light enter the camera, says Juha Tolonen, teacher of photography and entrepreneur in the tourism sector in Levi.