If lying on a beach, gently or seriously toasting, while the world shouts, howls and plays around you, isn’t your idea of a perfect location for this year’s holiday, why not experience what can officially be called a “polar opposite”? Exploring the Arctic has become an increasingly-popular travel destination for a winter holiday, and it’s easy to understand why. Here are five terrific reasons why you might want to consider the Arctic as a holiday destination…
Thar she blows!
Can you already tell the difference between a bow whale or a beluga, a minke or a blue? You might want to casually point out that these awe-inspiring marine mammals belong to the order Cetacea, or that the blue is believed to be the largest animal ever to have existed on the planet. You may be too busy taking pictures or videos. Whichever, one thing is certain, standing on the deck of a ship as it sails amongst these amazing creatures will stay with you for as long as you live.
The power of the white
If you asked a handful of friends to name an Arctic creature, would any fail to automatically think of Ursus Maritimus? Of course, unless you have those kinds of pals, they are much more likely to call them polar bears! These are almost the logo of the region, you might spot a lone male scouring the tundra in a serious search for food, you certainly wouldn’t want to be too close to a mother and her cub.
Ice, and not just in your drink
Imagine your tingling feelings of apprehension and awe as you spot your first-ever iceberg. Take a moment to consider how small humans are in the actual scheme of things. Learn how some are just freshly-broken from the body of ice, you may return with an informed perspective on global warming. Appreciate that what you are seeing, majestic and towering, is likely to have nine times that depth!
Spend some time just winging it
Wildlife programmes have been made about those birds, native of the Arctic, who make the trek south towards our shores at different times of the year. Like enjoying champagne in Paris, rather than Swindon, you have a chance to spot guillemots and auks, puffins and terns, kittiwakes and gulls in the place they really should be seen.
Time for the evening cabaret
Perhaps not the best description for a light show that swoops and darts across a darkened sky, but a sampling of the Northern Lights would be like a spectacular finale topping the bill at a theatre show. Of course, alternatively, there are times when you could experience an entire day during which the sun remains constant above the horizon.
A truly unforgettable experience
When folk tell you of their “unforgettable” holiday experiences, how often do they seem truly interesting? Taking a trip to Greenland or Iceland, even Lapland, you might stay hundreds of miles within the Arctic Circle at the foot of an ice fjord. You could bathe in a naturally-heated lagoon before exploring a unique volcanic landscape. There may even be a chance to cruise amongst icebergs, or even dart between them in a speedboat! What you might call a proper winter holiday.