Winter dream cross-country skiing Finland: 7 days Kalevala ski tour through the vast wilderness of the East in Hossa National Park

7 Days

Your trip

Map Finland

This winter cross-country skiing tour takes you through the forests of northeastern Finland to the Kainuu region, located right on the Russian border.

Our route is characterized by untouched, peaceful and unique nature full of snow and ice.

You will stay in cozy and small family-run accommodations, where you can enjoy sauna and excellent food every night, as well as the hospitality of the locals.

The daily distances are about 30 km, the total distance of the week is 150 km. Therefore, good physical condition and experience on cross-country skis are mandatory requirements for this tour.

The groups are internationally mixed. The tour guide speaks English

Requirements & route

  • On the cross-country tour we cover approx. 25 – 42 km daily on cross-country skis and are thus on the move for approx. 5 – 8 hours per day including breaks.
  • You should have a lot of experience in cross-country skiing and a correspondingly good condition to be able to run the routes.
  • Everyone can run at their own speed. The guide runs with the slowest cross-country skiers.
  • The tracks for the ski tour are drawn by a snowmobile and it is possible to ski only in the classic cross-country technique.
  • The trip is not suitable for persons with reduced mobility. Please contact us for detailed information if needed.


  • The classic cross-country skis (approx. 44 mm width) are suitable for cross-country skiing.
  • You can rent the ski equipment from us (€ 60,-). Please indicate this when booking. We will then ask for your height, weight and shoe size.

Meeting point of the trip

The meeting point of the trip is Kuusamo airport (on request also the bus station in Kuusamo). At the end of the trip you will be transferred back to Kuusamo airport for the return flight.

Airport transfer

Transfer from Kuusamo airport to the first accommodation and from the last accommodation to Kussamo airport is included in the price. Flights are not included in the tour price. These can be booked, for example, at Finnair or at a travel agency.

Please note that there is only one transfer per day, which is coordinated with the flights in each case. If you miss it, the extra transfer is payable by you on the spot.

Please be sure to coordinate the times for the transfer with us again before booking your flight.

Country information

Please see our entry information for Finland on our Country Information page.

We recommend that you take out travel cancellation insurance. you can find a quote on our travel insurance page.

The special experience...

  • Look forward to peace, space, light and air
  • Experience a piece of the untouched winter landscape of the Hossa National Park
  • Enjoy the freedom of the open space, the warmth of the campfires and the evening sauna
  • Experience a guided group tour in the whiteness of the winter wilderness that you will not soon forget

From day to day


Your guide will welcome you warmly at Kuusamo airport. It will lead you directly to the inn“Rajakartano“. Here you spend – directly at the Hossanjärvi lake – the first two nights. The transfer from the airport in Kuusamo takes about 1 hour.

Ski tour in Martinselkonen, ~ 23 km :
Day 2: Sunday

Ski tour in Martinselkonen, ~ 23 km

After breakfast we will start right away! The route takes us so far south that we reach the edge of the eastern border zone of Finland.

We cross frozen lakes and swamps and penetrate forests covered with a thick white layer of snow. The silence around us here is almost palpable – only the sound of skis and poles pierces the stillness of the primeval forests.

Lunch is served by an open fire at a wilderness hut maintained by the Finnish Forestry Commission, and a traditional wood-heated Finnish sauna is already waiting for us at our destination, which really does one good after the first day of cross-country skiing in the cold.

6 hours
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Cross-country skiing tour Martinselkonen Wilderness Center - Arola, ~ 28km :
Day 3: Monday

Cross-country skiing tour Martinselkonen Wilderness Center – Arola, ~ 22km

Today we say goodbye to our hosts and continue our tour north through the nature reserve. In these virgin forests live brown bears,. However, we will hardly meet colleague Grisly, they still sleep in their caves under the thick blanket of snow until April. Wolf, lynx and wolverine are also at home in these forests. Very rarely these shy animals show themselves. However, numerous tracks in snow betray their invisible presence.

Towards afternoon we reach our destination for today, the farm inn Arola. Our hosts prepare dinner in a traditional log cabin from local ingredients.

7 hours
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day tour in Arola, ~ 27 km :
Day 4: Tuesday

Day tour in Arola, ~ 27 km

Today we will make another ski hike through spruce forests, following the tracks of reindeer.

For lunch we stop again in a wilderness hut. Coffee and hot soup is prepared over an open fire and served with sandwiches. In the afternoon we return to Arola for another night to continue enjoying the nice atmosphere and the warm hospitality of the hosts.

7 hours
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Other accommodation
Arola - Rajakartano, about 43 km :
Day 5: Wednesday

Arola – Rajakartano, about 43 km

Today’s cross-country day is the longest of all: It’s now neatly heading north. On the way we will see different types of forests, lakes and numerous swamps, which are very typical for local Finnish landscapes.

You will enjoy lunch today after about 20 kilometers. After lunch, the route first follows the course further north until we turn west to reach our next accommodation Rajakartano.

Of course we can enjoy Finnish sauna again – but this time with a possibility to swim in the ice hole!

8 hours
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Other accommodation
Day tour in Hossa National Park, approx. 35 km :
Day 6: Thursday

Day tour in Hossa National Park, approx. 35 km

The last day of cross-country skiing is spent on the trails of Hossa National Park, which just celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2017. Anniversary of Finnish independence was declared a national park. The nature here is characterized by glacial ridge formations, narrow and long lakes and beautiful pine forests. For lunch we will visit the Hossa Visitor Center – there is also a small souvenir store.

After lunch, we have two route options of different lengths to choose from. But no matter which one we choose, a hot sauna is waiting for us in any case in our accommodation. And with a little luck and contribution of nature we crown the beautiful cross-country skiing week tonight with northern lights.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Other accommodation
Farewell :
Day 7: Friday

Farewell day

Our trip ends with breakfast and return transfer (about 1 hour) to the airport in Kuusamo.



... included in your travel pact

  • from / to Kuusamo
  • Accommodation in rooms for 2 - 4 persons, toilets and showers outside the rooms.
  • (On day 1 and 2 some rooms with private WC and shower).
  • 6 x breakfast, 4 x lunch outside, 1 x lunch in restaurant, 6 x dinner
  • 5 x coffee/tea with snack in the afternoon
  • Accompaniment by certified wilderness guide (English speaking)
  • Snowmobile guide who prepares the trails and picnics especially for the group (day 2 - 5)
  • Transportation of luggage (1 piece of luggage / person)
  • Transportation from and to the airport according to the tour description
  • Bed linen and bath towels
  • 5 x sauna, 1 - 2 x ice swimming

... and bookable:

  • Cross-country skiing equipment: skis, poles and boots

Dates and prices

guaranteed travel dates 2024

24.02. – 01.03.2024
02.03. – 08.03.2024
09.03. – 15.03.2024
No minimum number of participants, max. 12 people

Other travel dates on request and only if the minimum number of participants is reached each Saturday: 03.02. – 30.03.


Price per person in double room :: 1.150,- €

Additional services

complete equipment: skis, ski poles, boots :: 80,- €


Is there a minimum or maximum number of participants?

No. The trip is carried out in principle. However, if the group is only 3 people or less in total, there may be changes in the itinerary or planned accommodations. We will inform you before the start of the trip. The maximum number of participants is 12.

Can I book an extra night near the airport?

Yes. Please inquire if you would like an extra night in Kuusamo. Please note that the bus transfer to and from the tour is to the airport. An individual pick-up at individual hotels is unfortunately not possible for logistical reasons.

What do the accommodations offer?

They are on the road in the wilderness. You will be accommodated in rooms with two, three or more beds in simple but cozy log cabins in the forest. Single rooms are not available. The cabins each have cozy common areas. A wood-burning sauna awaits you in the evening.

What kind of weather can we expect?

We start the tours from the end of January, when the sun is already high enough for all-day hikes. At the beginning of February there are about 9 hours of daylight: from 8:00 to 17:00. At the beginning of March already about 12 hours from 6:30 to 18:30.
The daytime temperature usually varies between -5 and -20 C. However, higher temperatures are also reached – or falls to -35 C. Even if the nights are very cold, the temperature usually rises quite quickly during the day.
The weather during these months can be cloudy or sunny. In general, sunshine is more likely in March than in February. It can be very windy. Snowfalls may also occur.

What is the best thing to wear?

Your clothing is a personal choice, of course, but you should prepare for cold. During snowshoeing your body usually generates enough heat, but during breaks you will quickly get cold. Therefore, it is very important to wear a warm coat or vest during the stops. It is best to wear several thin layers than few thick ones. The outer skin should be windproof. Please pay special attention to warm feet, fingers and face.
We recommend the following equipment:
– Underwear – Synthetic underwear (polypropylene, polyester), wool or silk is better than cotton. Skin tight underwear removes moisture from the skin.
– Midlayer clothing – eg. Fleece or wool clothing. Mid-layer clothing allows thermal adjustment, insulation depending on the weather and physical activity.
– Outerwear – windproof coat and pants (it is not necessary to be waterproof like Gore-Tex).
– Head – Windproof hat that also protects the ears. Remember to protect your face as well. A balaclava or scarf can be useful.
– Hands – Windproof mittens protect your fingers better than gloves. For the breaks you have another pair with you. Large mittens that you put over the other.
– Feet – wool blend socks are the best choice. Cotton sports socks are not good for cold weather!
– Winter shoes should have thick soles and be one size larger than your summer shoes. Ideal shoes have enough space even for knitted wool socks, which can be pulled over the other socks.

What other equipment should I have with me?

– Backpack (15-20 l)
– Thermos bottle
– Water bottle
– Headlamp, flashlight
– Lunch box
– Toiletries
– Personal medical care, plaster
– antibacterial wrist
– Earplugs against the snorers
– Sunglasses & Glasses
– Snowshoes and poles
as well as
– Jacket and pants for snowshoe hikes
– warm jacket for breaks
– Thermal Long John pants and shirt, synthetic, wool or silk
– Midlayer clothing for cold weather like fleece or wool clothing
– Mittens or gloves and a pair of large mittens that can be pulled over the others
– Winter boots for snowshoeing
– Warm socks
– a hat, earmuffs can also be useful
– Scarf or balaclava
– Slippers or thick wool socks for the cabins
– Casual clothing
– Swimwear for ice swimming

What time zone is Finland in?

Finland is 1 h ahead of Berlin. So it’s 6:30 pm in Finland when it’s 5:30 pm in Berlin.


Sauna! The sauna is considered a sacred place. Body and soul are washed. A traditional Finnish sauna is available every evening during the tour, except on the evening of arrival. Traditionally, people do not go in mixed groups or in bathing suits. Your hosts usually organize sauna shifts – usually the ladies go first. After that it’s men’s shift.
Modern saunas have separate bathrooms with showers. In saunas without running water as in the cottages, you can wash in the sauna. There is hot water, buckets and shovels. Sauna in Jatkonsalmi is located on the lake shore. So there is a possibility of ice swimming.


Tipping is generally not expected in Finland. But if you want to say thank you to your tour guide or for a good service, feel free to put something together….

Please note: Depending on the weather, the routes through Hossa National Park and Martinselkonen Nature Reserve vary.

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  • 119
  • 7 Days
  • challenging
  • trip from place to place
  • Winter
  • Cross Country & Snowshoe
  • Camp
  • Group tour

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