Long time no see friends! And sorry for the wait, but since we came back from Kiruna… We have been super busy! Both Erikas and I had a lot to do at work and I was then quite busy sorting and editing the 400 photos taken there. In today’s article and the first article of the Kiruna series, we wanted to share our experience in the Arctic circle! Giving you the reasons why we decided to spend some time there, why 3-4 days and not more etc. There is quite a lot to talk about, so get yourself a cup of tea, and let’s dig in!
So we decided to take just a couple of days off and went to Kiruna from Friday to Monday. Staying there for 3-4 days was the only alternative available for us job-wise. We could not really take off more time but we wanted at least one more day to have 3 nights there. And in fact, we never felt rushed.
We decided to fly from Stockholm to Lapland for a couple of reasons. First, because we did not have much time and we did not want to waste time in transportation. Second, because taking a train would have cost us the same amount of money – but would have taken 15 hours in the best case!!
Why going to Kiruna?
We really wanted to visit Lapland… Maybe it’s a thing when you move to Scandinavia…! Of course, we wanted to see the North, we wanted to experience the Arctic circle, but we also wanted to get to know Sweden better. Sweden is not just Stockholm or the main cities and so after living for a while in the most southern part of Sweden and now Stockholm, we needed to see how the North is!
We also thought that going to Swedish Lapland would make more sense for us as we live here in Stockholm. It is super easy to get direct flights to Kiruna and so transportation was neither long nor costly.
As you might notice, we decided to go there in February. For a few reasons actually! First, because I wanted to see some (proper) winter, with a lot of snow and a white landscape. Second, it’s a great time to go if you want to see the Northern Lights! Which we did – but we’ll talk about it later! And lastly, we decided to go there during the winter as we were not super interested in seeing the midnight sun. Since we live in Stockholm, we kinda have midnight sun already.
What about the Northern Lights?
At first, Erikas was beyond excited for the Northern Lights, and what’s better than having the experience in the Arctic circle?! It is quite magical! But for me, I think that I was not really believing that it could happen. But then, we arrived there, with a bright blue sky and no clouds. Meaning that we would have many more chances to see them! And then we both got excited about it!
Around 22/23h, we were outside, looking for them in the sky and… Nothing. Absolutely nothing. On the best possible day! But what to do, life continued and we went to the sauna. Met people there who told us that we could see the Northern Lights through the camera but nothing else. It just looked like a cloud or grey-ish mist in the sky.
We got a bit luckier on Saturday night, the “cloud” was bigger and with the camera, we could see the Northern Lights, bright blue. And on Sunday night, after the snowstorm (which lasted for the whole day), here they were! Stronger, more intense, and still looking blue through the camera.
Northern Lights Tips
We did not book a tour or anything to see the Lights, and we did not plan our trip around them either. And this is maybe why we did not feel disappointed. And we also saw them – a little!
We are also very happy with our decision on staying at Camp Alta – we wanted to be close to nature and outside the city. It really helped to avoid light pollution, and so we could have a beautiful clear and light free sky. By going to this camp, we did not need to travel anywhere to see the Northern Lights, so not only it saved us time and money but it was a genuine experience. We were on our own and we could decide when we wanted to be outside or even where to sit on the lake!
What you need to know is that Northern Lights do whatever they want. As much as you can plan and search, it’s a natural phenomenon and you cannot just make it happen. Regarding the forecasts, we used the apps “Aurora Forecast” and “Aurora Alerts”, it might not be the best help but it gives you a bit of heads up for when it can happen and how strong the lights will be.
Our experience in the Arctic circle & takeaways
We will go into a lot more details over the next week regarding prices, accommodation, tours, and others. But in this article, we wanted to share our feelings, emotions, and a few insights on this experience in the Arctic circle.
Fair to say that we have had a blast there and we did not really want to come back to normal life, work and so on! We got the chance to create a lot of unique and fun memories. Also, we have seen some of the most magical and untouched landscapes. And I mean, we were kinda on top of the earth for a few days! Just thinking about it is crazy!
We are both also very happy with our decision regarding the tour we went on and the accommodation we have picked. The location, a bit outside Kiruna, was perfect for us to pause the Stockholm life and talk or think about a million other things.
Overall, if this is something that you want to do – you should 100% go for it! And we have been there for not even 4 full days… I cannot imagine how great it must be to be there for a whole week!
⇒ More articles are coming soon, with more details, prices, itineraries and much more! I hope you are ready for that!! In the meantime you can follow us on Instagram – we are sharing all the photos from this amazing trip!
⇒ Let us know, have you ever been in the Arctic circle or Lapland? What did you think of it?
We do not know yet when the next article will be coming up – hopefully soon – but as we mentioned here, this year we are not sharing articles every week.