My partner and I had a mixed experience during our stay at The Border Inn. The husky sledding was completely exhilarating! Much more difficult than I imagined which made a day of not falling off the sled a real achievement! It is an activity we would both love to do again. Ending the day with sauna was a fabulous immersion in culture and we both came to love the experience by the end of the week. The attentiveness of Katja as a host made our stay comfortable and was very much appreciated.
Unfortunately, we had a few disappointments. We did not feel the warm welcome from Philip that other guests have expressed in their reviews - his minimal interaction and communication often created an awkward atmosphere and did not give us confidence when sled training. The accommodation was very simple. We were well-prepared and looking forward to the rustic accommodation in the cabins, but did not expect basic accommodation in the main lodge. We were given a bunk room, not the more private double bed in the Guest cabin. The lodge accommodation lacked privacy, comfort and space - there were no curtains on the windows, 1 toilet and 1 shower was shared between 4 people and the seasonal 'worker' also lived in the guest area. There weren't any complimentary facilities like tea or coffee in the shared living area, or a glass of wine to accompany dinner. Although we could live with this, we had higher expectations of the lodge due to the slogan 'Luxury Arctic Safaris'. We thought the price we had paid (3591 euros) afforded greater comforts. We were further disappointed that we weren't offered any of the additional activities such as ice-fishing or snow shoeing which we were of the impression were included in the price. We do think a week was too long. We weren't as active as we wanted to be and we were generating ideas ourselves to ensure we maximised our experience in the beautiful wilderness.
As a note, we do not recommend going in Spring. Witnessing the Spring melt was beautiful, but it also made husky sledding more challenging. The melt prevented us completing the tour as we could not get over the swamps to the cabins. We appreciated the effort of Philip and Katja in getting us out on the sleds each day and/or night!
We have taken many wonderful memories away from our stay at The Border Inn and it's beautiful surrounds. Even though we had a mixed experience, we do not regret our choice to celebrate our 40th birthdays with husky sledding!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Border Inn is a luxurious dog sledding lodge located in the wilderness of northern Finland and situated 2km from the Russian border.At The Border Inn we specialise in week long Husky Safaris which are run along the Finnish-Russian border.We also offer snow machine tours, ice fishing and a variety of other winter programmes. ... more less