Cosmos

Northern Highlights & the Arctic Circle (6900) - 2015 / 2014

16 Day Tour from Helsinki to Oslo


Northern Highlights & the Arctic Circle
The historical city of Oslo at night
The historical city of Oslo at night
Oslo is the capital of Norway and the most populous city
Enjoy the colorful scenery of Norway
800.276.1241

Vacation Overview

Travel from Helsinki, Finland, to Oslo, Norway, via the breathtaking North Cape. This comprehensive journey crosses the Arctic Circle, and visits the Santa Claus Workshop, a gold museum where you can try panning for gold yourself, a Sámi park to learn about Sami culture and traditions, and the North Cape to experience the longest days in the Northern Hemisphere. Other highlights include a coastal cruise to admire the coastline from the water, a WWII museum, and stave churches. You will be mesmerized by pristine nature, never-ending forests, spectacular waterfalls, and enchanting fjords. Enjoy a delightful blend of culture, landscapes, and history on some of the most awe-inspiring routes in Europe’s Nordic countries.

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Headsets throughout the tour

Sightseeing:
Visits to Helsinki, Oulu, Rovaniemi, Tankavaara, Sámi Park in Karasjok, North Cape, Coastal cruise Honnigsvag-Hammerfest, Narvik, Mo, Mosjöen, Geiranger, Lom, Lillehammer

Scenic Highlights:
Arctic Circle crossing, Lapland and Santa Claus Workshop, Tysfjord ferry crossing, Atlantic Road

Guides:

Local Guide for city sightseeing in Oslo. Professional Tour Director while touring

NOTE:

  • Security cruise regulations require clients’ family and first name, D.O.B., gender, and nationality at time of booking.


Day 1Arrive in Helsinki, Finland

Check into your hotel. The rest of the day is free for you to start exploring Helsinki. Tonight, meet your Tour Director and fellow travelers.

Day 2Helsinki–Kuopio

An included orientation drive this morning features the City Hall and Parliament House, the Presidential Palace, and the great Lutheran Cathedral. Then, head north through unspoiled forests and lakes for an overnight in Kuopio. (B,D)

Day 3Kuopio–Oulu–Rovaniemi

Stop in the picturesque university town of Oulu, situated on the Bothnian Bay. Then, follow the shoreline as far as Kemi before heading inland to Rovaniemi for an overnight. (B)

Day 4Rovaniemi

A whole day to enjoy the capital of Finnish Lapland. For hundreds of years it was famous for exporting furs and salmon to the world’s rich and powerful. Unfortunately, the town was totally destroyed during World War II. The new town, which you’ll visit during this morning's orientation drive, was designed by Alvar Aalto in the shape of reindeer antlers. Sights include Lappia Hall, the Town Hall, the new modern church with its intriguing frescoes, and the Arctic Center. Afternoon at leisure or join an optional excursion to find out more about Lapland. (B)

Day 5Rovaniemi–Sodankylä–Tankavaara–Saariselkä

As you cross the Arctic Circle (66°31’N), you are in incomparable, unspoiled Lapland, land of reindeer and the midnight sun. Stop at the Santa Claus Workshop with a chance to meet Father Christmas himself. North to Sodankylä, where you see the charming Vanha Kirkko, Lapland’s oldest wooden church, dating back to the 17th century. At Tankavaara, visit the Gold Museum and try panning for gold if you wish. Overnight in Saariselkä, on the edge of the virgin wilderness and part of Finland’s major national park. It is the largest winter sport center in Finland and a paradise for hikers and mountain bike lovers in summer. (B,D)

Day 6Saariselkä–Honningsvåg, Norway

Via Ivalo you cross into Norway for a visit to the fascinating Sámi Park. Further into Norway and along the beautiful Porsangen Fjord to Honningsvåg on the island of Magerøya, home to 4,000 people and 5,000 reindeer. Tonight, one of the highlights of this tour is the included drive to the North Cape, Europe’s last northern outpost, on a sheer cliff rising 1,000 feet from the Atlantic Ocean. From May 11 to July 31, if the sky is clear, you’ll see the midnight sun rolling just above the horizon! (B,D)

Day 7Honningsvåg–Coastal Cruise–Hammerfest–Alta

An early start today: one of the highlights of this vacation is a fjord cruise from Honningsvåg to Hammerfest. You will enjoy some of Norway’s most beautiful coastal and mountain scenery as you cruise southwards. Disembark at Hammerfest and drive to Alta, situated at the mouth of the world’s richest salmon river, for an overnight. (B,D)

Day 8Alta–Narvik

Continue your unforgettable journey south along the stunning shoreline of Norway. The road meanders along Kvaenangenfjord and Lyngenfjord. You are now in the Troms Province, still way beyond the Arctic Circle but with a climate mild enough to allow very successful farming. Hear about fierce World War II battles as you approach Narvik, rebuilt after near total destruction. (B)

Day 9Narvik

Visit Narvik’s War Museum and relive how Norwegian troops, with the help of their allies, showed the world that the Nazi war machine was not invulnerable. Afternoon and evening are at leisure. Optional excursions are available. (B)

Day 10Narvik–Mo

This morning, enter Nordland. Not far from Mo you cross the Arctic Circle again and return to a world where the sun rises and sets every day of the year. Overnight in the little town of Mo I Rana. (B)

Day 11Mo–Mosjöen–Trondheim

On the agenda today: picture stop in Mosjöen; the spectacular Laksforsen Waterfall; the forests and rivers of Namdalen Valley; and vistas of Trondheimfjord, the World War II hideout of the German battleship Tirpitz. (B,D)

Day 12Trondheim–Geiranger Area

Leave Norway’s third-largest city, also known as the “Gateway to the North,” this morning. Travel via the spectacular Atlantic Road from Christiansund to Molde to reach the Geiranger area for an overnight. (B,D)

Day 13Geiranger Area

Enjoy the sites of this enchanting area on your own or join the optional Geiranger fjord cruise. (B,D)

Day 14Geiranger Area–Lom–Lillehammer

Today, travel via Dalsnibba for a stop in Lom. Take pictures of the stave churches before heading toward the famous winter sport resort, Lillehammer, host of the 1994 Winter Olympics. (B)

Day 15Lillehammer–Oslo

Head for Oslo via Eidsvoll. On arrival, vistas of Akerhus Castle, the 14th-century fortress guarding the harbor, a highlight on the included tour that features the soaring City Hall, National Theater, Parliament, Royal Palace, Broadcasting House, and Gustav Vigeland’s stark sculptures of people and animals in Frogner Park. (B)

Day 16Oslo

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (B)

Transportation:
Scheduled transatlantic flights and airport transfers in Helsinki and Oslo if Cosmos issues the air tickets. Touring by private first-class air-conditioned motorcoach. Coastal cruise; Tysfjord ferry crossing


HELSINKI Holiday Inn West-Ruoholahti (F)
KUOPIO Sokos Puijonsarvi (F)
ROVANIEMI Scandic (F)
SAARISELKÄ Holiday Club (F)
HONNINGSVÅG Rica Nordkapp (F) or Rica Honningsvag (F),
ALTA Rica Alta (F)
NARVIK Riva Narvik (F)
MO Rica Fjordgården (ST)
TRONDHEIM Quality St. Augustin (F) or Quality Panorama (F)
GEIRANGER AREA Geiranger (F)
LILLEHAMMER Clarion Hammer (F)
OSLO Comfort Borsparken (ST)

Buffet breakfasts; 7 dinners


With Cosmos, there’s no better way to get to know your destination than through the eyes of your Tour Director. Averaging over a decade... we’d like you to meet a Tour Director, who is representative of the type of expert that will be with you on your vacation.

ARNE HANSEN

Years of Experience: 3 years

Where can you hear authentic Scandinavian stories about mountains and myths, fjords and fables? A place where the ever-changing light on the granite and water creates mystical moments when everything-and-anything is possible? Join my world on an exciting tour to Northern Europe!

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