I’m writing this blog as a cat person who is kinda afraid of dogs. But because of that, this can hopefully show you that Husky safari in Rovaniemi is for everyone and that there is no need to worry about it. If you go to Lapland, there are a lot of husky farms that will be more than happy to take you for a safari. The only thing you need to count is that it usually costs money, but it is worth the investment. For my husky Safari, I choose a company Safarctica that is located in Rovaniemi. I believe that even if you choose a different operator, your experience will be very similar.
Info about Husky safari in Rovaniemi
How to book a tour
The first thing you should know is probably the fact, that there are a lot of tour companies in Rovaniemi and a lot of them will offer some sort of Husky safari. So first you should probably have a look at what kind of tour you would like and what are they offering. Most of the companies have several options for Husky safari. Some of them take an hour, some two hours, sometimes even a six-hour trip, during which you can also fish in the frozen lake or visit some national park, that is around.
You should also be prepared to ask the right question. For example, you should know, whether you will be controlling the sled your self or if there will always be someone to drive you around. If you take a longer trip, you should know, whether there is food in the price or if you will be paying something extra. And because most of the safari tours are taking place in someplace behind the city, you also need to know, whether they will drive you there and what time will the bus arrives, perhaps even if you can borrow some clothes.
One hour tour of Husky safari in Rovaniemi – it usually takes place either in the morning, around 10 am or sometime in the afternoon, usually around 3 pm. The tours like this usually contain about 5 minutes of preparation, where you will be explained how to control the sleds, 40 minutes of a ride with about 5 minutes break in the middle. In the last 10 minutes before the shuttle back to Rovaniemi arrives, you will be explained about the history of the husky breed.
Two-hour tour, which is the one that I took, is also divided into similar parts, you will also get to know how to control the sleds. But you will get to ride significantly longer. I think we drove for about 20km in the winter wonderland behind Rovaniemi. Overall, it was about an hour and 15 minutes of driving with some breaks in the middle.
Day tour with husky is the one that takes about 6 to 7 hours. It is usually a little bit further behind Rovaniemi. It contains the preparation and a lot of riding with sleds. The ones that I saw that took that long were also containing fishing in the ice for lunch, so you would probably catch your lunch, otherwise, I’m sure that they will have prepared something for you in case that there is no fish. This option is probably not good for vegans.
Price of the tour
Finland is, in general, quite an expensive country. So there are no surprises when I tell you that the Husky safari tours in Rovaniemi are also pretty expensive.
One hour Husky safari cost something around 150 euros.
Two-hour Husky safari was for about 175 euros. This is why I choose it because for me it was “only 25 euros” for an extra hour, which sounds pretty good.
The Day tour is usually a little bit more costly, the price list that I saw showed 275 euro per day.
More info about a husky safari in Rovaniemi
Let’s do this in form questions and answers!
Is husky safari good for kids?
Yes and no, the only way of taking your child to this tour is that the kid will be in the sled the whole time and you will be always controlling the sleds. Otherwise, it is not allowed for very good reasons. The dogs are fast and can be harder to control.
Is there a lower price for kids?
Not that I know of not that I have seen.
How old can the children be?
They should be old enough to sit in the sleds alone without falling off them or trying to jump out of them. I haven’t seen exact age, I think that th child needs to have at least 120cm or be about the age of 10 to be able to do it.
Isn’t the riding harmful to the dogs?
No! Huskies are very temperament breed and are happy to run long distances. The Alaska huskies that are doing all the sledding, are used to very low temperatures and in summer they cannot be working at all because it is too warm for them. So they are pretty happy to run in these extreme conditions.
Is it hard to control the sleds?
I was worried about it, but no, it is surprisingly easy, basically, you just step down on brake every time the dogs are running too fast and they would slow down. There is nothing dangerous or uncomfortable about it. I was also worried, but the most difficult situation was there when we stopped for a while and the dogs jumped around and switch their position. Their trainer had to put them back in their places, so they can run comfortably. But that was the only difficult situation we had. Besides, you are going to the places that they know, so there is no confusion or situation where they would run away.
Husky safari in Rovaniemi – my experience
Meeting before and pick-up
A lot of tourists that I met haven’t been fully prepared for true Lappish winter. In this case, it didn’t really matter. I came to the Safarctica office for about 20 minutes early. First I didn’t know why they would want me to meet them earlier. These 20 minutes are really handy in case you are one of those guys who are fine with jeans in every weather but in Lapland, you will find out that maybe it doesn’t apply close to the arctic circle. So you can get here your warm clothes, including very warm overalls, gloves, and shoes.
If you feel very warm in your regular clothes, it is ok to keep it, but just think about the fact, that you will be around furry animals, so you might go out with a lot of hairs as a souvenir. Take it from someone who finally manages to wear all the warm clothes and refuses to change them and walk home with an extra layer of fur.
Meet the sleds and the dogs
It takes about 15 minutes to get to the Husky farm. Even though you hear farm, it doesn’t mean that they eat Huskies. Or at least people there were decent enough not to mention it.
As a first, you will meet the sleds and get the instruction. For me, it was one of the scariest parts. For some reason, I thought that I will just sit in it and have a look around. Well, I was wrong before and I will be wrong again! Our guide started by: “The important thing is that you are always under control of the sleds. Not the dogs.” I just immediately thought: “Cool. But I have no idea where I’m going.”
It gets more and scarier as the guide was explaining how to make them go slowlier or how to stop the sleds. It gets even more difficult when he started to explain how you sign people behind you that you are slowing down or stopping. At the time when he gets to the part of what I would like to call horror scenarios, I was quite in panic, keep telling myself, that this would never happen with cats.
After the instructions, we went to meet the dogs who were ready and excited. In fact, I have never seen a dog who would be that excited about running with me and started to feel bad about all the hot chocolate, that I bought in Lapland.
Here is when it gets funny. I wasn’t the only cat person who join this husky safari adventure. The other girl, also a solo traveler, shared my view on the cat-dog perspective. So none of us are very well known how different dogs look like. When people say “husky” I immediately see the grey dog with blue eyes and a white tummy. So when I saw these Huskies with all kinds of color both of fur and of eyes, I just thought: “These are not real, they don’t look like the dogs I know from Instagram!” I got this explained later on.
But first the ride.
Fast and furryous: husky drift
This is when the adventure of husky safari really starts. As frightened as I was, I decided that I will try to drive first and sit later. And so we went off from loud and probably very excited dogs to the Lappish wilderness.
Frankly, I don’t know why I thought that this is going to be a super fast and dangerous ride. Especially when I’m used to riding a horse. It wasn’t like that. I wouldn’t say that the dogs were slow, but they definitely weren’t too fast and so the need for using the break was pretty minimal. And after 5 minutes I actually get even comfortable with the break and start enjoying myself. Hanni, the other traveler kept asking me if it is really too bad to control them. Surprisingly it really wasn’t.
Even easier than riding a horse considering that here you have fewer orders to give to the dogs – or at least if you are driving in a tour like this. I actually had some issues with stopping. But that was only because I wasn’t used to breaking with one leg and at the same time sign the guys behind us. Overall that was the only thing about it, that was more difficult. But not impossible.
We drive in the forest and in the fields, so we have the opportunity to see all kinds of Lappish nature wonders. From the trees covered in snow to the fields with beautiful cozy houses around.
The in the middle of this adventure, we get the opportunity to change places with the one who was so far just enjoying the view. Which we did. So now I have confirmed from another cat person, that adventure with dogs like this isn’t the worst! And with the view and our furry friends very enjoyable.
Ride first, information later
It might sound weird, but I actually really appreciate that we get all the information about huskies later on. But more information and stories are also part of the husky safari. Things like when do they staring their training and how much kilos can they take, are not useful for the ride itself. And the truth is that after the ride in temperatures below zero, everyone appreciates some time in a warm room with hot tea.
Here I finally find out, that those weren’t ‘fake huskies’ like I thought in the beginning. Apparently, there are more kinds of huskies. Siberian one – which is the grey one that people get to know from any social media. It is pretty but it wouldn’t be able to drag with sleds. And then the Alaskan husky. They look different. They are smaller, but they can drag up to 100 kilos per dog. And in case you are still feeling like you are hurting the animals, huskies are used to -20 degrees.
I won’t spoil more facts about huskies in case you would like to join this adventure. But here is a nice bonus. At the end of this tour, you will get to play with a puppy and feed dogs. And it is fun even for cat people!
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