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Arctic Circle Express

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Embark on a Nordic rail adventure of a lifetime to visit the best Norway and Sweden has to offer.

You are viewing the 2022 itinerary. Select your departure year
20212022
17 days From $4,795 per person

2022 Tour code: GR-ACJA-22

About the tour

Majestic mountains and heavenly fjords in Norway combine with the tranquil landscapes of Sweden on an epic journey that includes every great Scandinavian rail experience.

Start with a guided tour of both modern Stockholm and its historic Old Town, followed by a day to explore on your own. Next, head inland by train to Östersund and view the beautiful scenery at every turn, before you cross the Arctic Circle into the 'Land of the Midnight Sun.'

Then travel through Sweden's breathtaking mountains and into Norway, arriving in Narvik with a day at leisure. Follow the coastline south to Trondheim, where you have a free day to explore the musical history of the area on your own.

Enjoy the trek along the River Rauma with views of national parks as you approach Geiranger. There you will partake in a Geirangerfjord Boat Cruise alongside the steep sides of the fjord.

Experience an amazing train ride through the fjords to Flåm, and watch the mountains and valleys unfold outside your window. Once in Flåm, take an excursion on the Flåm Railroad, one of the steepest lines in the world, and then enjoy a visit to Sognefjord, Norway's longest and deepest fjord.

Wrap up your journey with a free day to explore Bergen, and then travel through the most remote areas of western Norway as you head to Oslo.

Highlights

What’s included

Itinerary

Day 1 - Stockholm

Arrive in Stockholm and transfer to your hotel.  Meet your group and tour manager at the welcome meeting at 6:30 pm in the hotel lobby.  Overnight Stockholm.

Includes
  • Dinner
Day 2 - Stockholm Sightseeing

A guided sightseeing tour presents the beauty of Stockholm today. Enjoy a look at the modern architecture and the contrasting Gamla Stan (the Old Town), with its narrow streets. We take a traditional Swedish 'fika', or coffee break, relaxing over a hot drink and slice of home-made cake. The remainder of the day is yours to explore Stockholm at leisure. Perhaps learn about Scandinavian maritime history at the Vasa Museum or visit Skansen, the world's very first open-air museum. Overnight Stockholm.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 3 - Inland to Östersund

Departing Stockholm, we head inland by InterCity train to Östersund, nestled on the shore of beautiful Lake Storsjön, Sweden's fifth-largest lake. On arrival, we check-in at the Clarion Grand Hotel, which is located right near the train station. Take the rest of the day at leisure to enjoy this city, which offers museums, beautiful architecture and serene waterside views. Overnight Östersund.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 4 - The Inlandsbanan and Lapland

We leave Östersund and head north, traveling towards the untamed wilderness of Swedish Lapland. The train makes several scenic stops along the way, presenting the beauty of Sweden. Our journey on the Inlandsbanan tourist train takes us through a landscape of crystal clear lakes and towering forests, crossing the Arctic Circle into the "Land of the Midnight Sun." On arrival, we visit the Inlandsbanan Museum before getting a real taste of Lapland with a visit to a Sami village in Slagnas. After mingling with reindeer and learning about the local traditions, we transfer to Arjeplog for the evening. Dinner this evening is at our hotel and is served Scandinavian style, around an open fire in a tiipii. Overnight Arjeplog.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 5 - Crossing the Arctic Circle

We continue our adventure through the north as we travel by coach to Jokkmokk. Crossing the Arctic Circle is a true milestone of this journey and it is celebrated as such with a ceremony. As we arrive and check-in at the Hotel Jokkmokk, the evening is at leisure to relax. Overnight Jokkmokk.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 6 - The Ofoten Railroad to Narvik

Take in Sweden's breathtaking mountains, traversing steep slopes and marveling at the sheer drops to the fjords below, aboard one of the world's most northerly railroad lines, the Ofoten Railroad*. The journey takes us on a northerly route to Narvik, a beautiful Norwegian city with a colorful harbor and an imposing mountainous backdrop. We stay at the Thon Hotel Narvik. Overnight Narvik.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 7 - Explore Narvik

Today we explore Narvik, visiting the town's war museum to learn about the pivotal role Narvik played in the Second World War. The remainder of the day is at leisure. Overnight Narvik.

*Please note: you will need to take an overnight bag with you as your main luggage is transported to Stiklestad.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 8 - The Polar Express

Today we travel to Fauske via coach, and upon arrival, we board our train to Verdal. This memorable journey takes us along the incredible Nordland Railroad on the "Polar Express." Magnificent fjords and bristling forests surround the tracks, and stunning scenes of wild Norway are on full display. As we arrive in Verdal this afternoon, check-in at the Scandic Stiklestad and enjoy the serenity of this quaint region. Overnight Verdal.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 9 - Stiklestad

This morning we travel to Stiklestad, the site of one of Norway's most famous battles and the place where King Olav met his death in 1030. A guided tour presents the immense history of this destination. Following our tour, we enjoy lunch and then admire the rugged Norwegian coastline as we travel by coach to Trondheim. Our southbound concludes this evening as we arrive at our hotel, the Radisson Blu Royal Garden Hotel. Overnight Trondheim.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Trondheim
Day 10 - Explore Trondheim

Today includes a guided tour during which we'll visit the Old Quarter, Bakklandet, Nidaros Cathedral, and the Royal Residence. The afternoon is free for you to continue exploring one of the oldest cities in Norway. Overnight Trondheim.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 11 - The Rauma Railway

A spectacular journey through the magnificent, contrasting landscapes of Norway aboard the 71-mile Rauma Railroad lies ahead today. We follow the course of the emerald-colored River Rauma for much of the journey; the tracks following the river as it winds around the hillsides and below jagged mountain peaks. As we climb over rounded mountain plateaus, impressive vistas across unspoiled national parklands stretch into the distance. As we disembark the train, a motorcoach takes us to Geiranger for a two-night stay at the Havila Hotel Geiranger. This hotel stands at the head of the Geirangerfjord, one of Norway's most spectacular sites. Overnight Geiranger.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Raumabanen Railway
Day 12 - Geirangerfjord boat cruise

We are surrounded by the beautiful scenery of the spectacular Geirangerfjord as we cruise through the serene, deep water. Looking up, the steep sides of the fjord seem to tower over the boat. In the sunshine, this UNESCO World Heritage site is alive with color and contrasts - the lush greens of the trees clinging to the rock contrasting with the deep blue water and the brilliant white of the snow-capped peaks in the distance. When it rains, countless waterfalls appear from nowhere, flowing majestically and crashing down into the water below. After our cruise, enjoy a scenic drive from Hellesylt to Geiranger, passing Hornindalsvatnet Lake and Stryn. Overnight Geiranger.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Geiranger
Day 13 - Through the Fjords to Flåm

We leave Geiranger by coach this morning and continue our scenic voyage through Norway's incredible fjord country en route to Flåm. We travel through valleys hemmed in by lofty mountains and along steep-sided fjords, every bend in the road offering a new and interesting perspective. We stop in Kaupanger to visit the town's stave church. Built in the 12th-century, this wooden church is famous for its 22 staves--the most in any stave church--and is a Norwegian Cultural Heritage Site. As we reach Flåm at the head of the Aurlandsfjord, enjoy spectacular views and rural serenity of the Fretheim Hotel. Overnight Flåm.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Flåm
Day 14 - The Flåm Railway to Bergen

A memorable excursion aboard the  Flåm Railroad takes us up into the mountains along one of the steepest lines in the world. As we travel through the mountain range, the rail line twists and turns to accommodate the extreme terrain. We reach the end of the route at Myrdal and return to Flåm, where we board the express boat for an afternoon journey along Norway's longest and deepest fjord, Sognefjord. Navigating coastal islets and skerries, we end the day in Bergen. After checking in at the Scandic Neptun, the evening is yours to relax. Overnight Bergen.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Flåm Railway
Day 15 - Bergen

Today we are treated to a guided tour of Bergen and enjoy a look at a number of the town's most significant sites. One of the highlights of the tour is Bryggen, the Old City, which boasts UNESCO World Heritage designation. Here we see the wharf and the surrounding historical buildings. Bergen itself is nestled beneath seven hills and is surrounded by fjords; the views as we make our way through the city are simply spectacular. After our tour, we enjoy a seafood lunch at Bergen Fish Market. The remainder of the day is yours to continue your discoveries of this eclectic city. Overnight Bergen.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch
Bergen
Day 16 - The Bergen Railroad to Oslo

We leave Bergen by train and embark on a magnificent journey on Northern Europe's highest railroad line, the Bergen Railroad. The train climbs high above the tree line and crosses through some of the most remote areas of western Norway before descending through pastures to the elegant city of Oslo. After checking in at the hotel, spend some time enjoying the sites of the city before rejoining the group for your Farewell Dinner. Overnight Oslo.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 17 - Tour Conclusion

Your Arctic adventure concludes after breakfast this morning. A group transfer is provided to Oslo Airport for flights departing after 2 p.m.

Includes
  • Breakfast

Additional information

Departure times

Departure times vary based on selected rail vacation. This information will be provided in your final documents. For more information please speak with your rail specialist.

Mobility information

Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular vacation with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.

Hotels

Hotel Hornavan, Arjeplog

Hotel Hornavan, Arjeplog

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Scandic Neptune, Bergen

Scandic Neptune, Bergen

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Fretheim Hotel, Flåm

Fretheim Hotel, Flåm

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Union Hotel, Geiranger

Union Hotel, Geiranger

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Hotel Jokkmokk, Jokkmokk

Hotel Jokkmokk, Jokkmokk

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Thon Hotel, Narvik

Thon Hotel, Narvik

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Scandic Byporten, Oslo

Scandic Byporten, Oslo

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Clarion Hotel Grand Ostersund

Clarion Hotel Grand Ostersund, Ostersund

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Scandic Stiklestad

Scandic Stiklestad, Steinkjer

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Scandic Continental Hotel

Scandic Continental Hotel, Stockholm

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Radisson Blu Royal Garden Hotel, Trondheim

Radisson Blu Royal Garden Hotel, Trondheim

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Trains

Bergen Railway
Flåm Railway
Inlandsbanan
Nordland Railway
Ofoten Railway
The Raumabanen Railway

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Upgrades

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Global Rail Adventures Brochure

Global Rail Adventures Brochure

The definitive guide to our 2021/22 Global Rail Adventures

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