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“Truly Amazing!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Saija Oy

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Saija Oy
Hucknall, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
55 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Truly Amazing!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 19, 2014

I stayed here for a week with my husband. It is one of he best experiences we have had. We booked with the company 'The White Circle' - who were very helpful throughout. They do a number of different packages there but we booked the 6 night Husky Safari and paid for an extra night at the lodge. The staff there were really friendly and helpful and The Lodge, accommodation & surroundings just picture perfect! I personally love the sun & heat but had a fabulous time there....even at minus 31 degrees celsius! All meals are included and are delicious - I'm sure we all returned home a little fatter. You have the option to try a number of things at an extra cost (even if not included in your package), and they are very accomodating with this.

Our accommodation was virtually a little flat. The rooms were really comfortable and warm and the bathroom was superb with underfloor heating & your own personal sauna.

You get winter gear for all the excursions and you are really well looked after by the guides.

The best part of the trip for me has to be the dogs. There are about a 100 dogs there - all really well looked after, loved, happy to be there, and happy to work. It is amazing spending time with them and the sledging and overnight safari really were a once in a lifetime experience. We met some truly amazing, like-minded people out there too. What a great trip!

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Bunnylicious
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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36 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (2)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Finnish first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Venice, Italy
Level Contributor
211 reviews
87 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 105 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 27, 2013

It was one of my best experience of all my travels/life ! The rooms of the Lodge are very comfortable and having the chance to have a sauna in your room after a cold day is really very satisfy. The room are very well organized and there is everything. The staff of the Lodge is always very nice and friendly. Besides they provide you of all the equipment that is of optimum qualities. Just near the lodge there is their Huskies farm and it’s possible to go there all the time for seeing the dogs. The excursion with the doges are organized in the best way and the guides are always very professional and kind. If the excursion is of full day at lunch time they prepared a good lunch. The experience of dogsled is really fantastic and if you can it’s a must to make the excursion of 2days sleeping in their refuge in the forest. The refuge is very comfortable and nice and you can have an unique experience. The staff organize many other activities like ski, snowmobile, walking with the dog or they rent you the equipment for skiing

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank albrizio
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Guildford, United Kingdom
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 11, 2013

We had a really splendid time at Saija-the accomodation was great- the food (home cooking) was very good -the staff and support exceptional-the trips out with the dogs pulling the sledges was a unique experience and our guide -Taina very supportive and friendly-this .by far , exceeded our expectations and we would thoroughly recommend the trip to both young and not so old

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank rogojons
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
57 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 11, 2013

This trip was for my birthday, it's something I've longed to do; a big dog lover; being outdoors and beautiful scenery. My husband and I arrived at Oulu airport and then we were driven to Saija, the journey approx 150 mins. On arrival we were welcomed and shown to our rooms. We were just across from the main lodge, the room was very welcoming, warm, very clean and had a private sauna. There was a fridge, kettle and microwave just in case you had brought some of your own provisions, there was a good selection of teas, coffee and hot chocolate. Flat screen tv in the lounge with a few UK/US channels.

On the first day you meet one of guides who gives you a short safety/info brief on your sled, how the dogs are attached, how to use your safety anchor.. then you get to see the dogs, although you will of already heard them!!!

Saija has approx 140 huskies; usually two dogs per run with one or two kennels; the dogs are very happy and well cared for, we learnt this through helping out after the drives and by walking a number of the dogs in the afternoons.

The first drive is approx 2 hours long and our guide Dina was a fantastic; very helpful, knowledgable ensuring your safety at all times. The second drive was longer, maybe 4 hours with a lunch stop after 2. It was fantastic to stop with the dogs in the middle of the beautiful landscape, Dina was very well organised and made a fire, fed us sandwiches and hot berry juice whilst the soup and coffee were warming. The soup was superb (minestrone) then hot coffee and cake. Evening meals were simple and hearty set out in a buffet style. There was a good selection of Red/Wine and Rose wines, also bottled beer, small selection of sweets which were reasonably priced.

The highlight of the trip was the two day one night stay. This exceeded our expectations. The lodge was warm, clean welcoming. One double bed downstairs and two double bunks and a single bed upstairs, I was worried about being cold, not a problem as there were two log burning stoves. Dina had her own bedroom nearer to the dogs and next to that was the sauna cabin. There was an outside loo, (very cold).

It was great to be involved with the dogs, unharnessing them, feeding them after the long day and of course getting them ready again the following day.

Our fifth day, my husband tried cross country skiing whilst I walked one of the dogs then after lunch we took two of the younger dogs out.

Saturday, out last day with the dogs, we decided to go out again on a short trip as we loved the experience so much! The afternoon was spent with the youngest puppy Blake and then there was the option of going to the Smoke Sauna and jumping into ice cold water!!!

I cannot say enough about this lodge, it is fantastic, I know where I will be on my birthday next year.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank mobberleymuts
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Royston, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
22 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 19, 2013

Could not fault this place! Rooms fantastic with private sauna. The staff were fantastic; helpful, friendly and knowledgable! The activities were brilliant! The dogs were gorgeous! I cannot recommend this place highly enough! You must go!

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Nichunt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Island of Malta, Malta
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 26, 2011

Saija's hospitality is unrivaled in the Finnish Lapland. We know. We've traveled to Kittila, Oulu, Ivalo, Rovaniemi, Posio, Inari, Ruka, Kakslautanen in search for a perfect place in Lapland. And finally found Saija. We travel more than 20 hours one way, to stay at Saija every year. It is always a warm home-coming welcome from everyone. This is one place where you could leave behind RUSH, HURRY and GROUNDHOG-DAYS. We are not the only ones addicted hook, line and sinker. We met a few guests who returned for more than 10 times. This says something special about the place and people at Saija. Saija's great chefs put most hotels run-of-mill kitchens to shame. Helena (the hostess) plans the daily menu to ensure no-repeats, and guests are treated to the most delicious Finnish home-cooked meals everyday. If you're undecided where to stay on your first trip to Lapland, we strongly recommend Saija.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank capybaradays
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, England
Level Contributor
119 reviews
63 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 98 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 21, 2010

We returned to Saija having previously visited in 2008 (and being the first tripadvisor reviewers). It is still the same formula so we had a great time as the staff, equipment and dogs are top notch - I won't repeat what I wrote previously. Everything is in good condition and has been maintained well.

We traveled at the end of the winter season last time so the place was much less full, this time we traveled during February and it was full. My teenage son and I were the only Brits, the vast majority of the guests being from Germany - a few Dutch and Belgian folk there. Most guests were middle aged, there was one child younger than my son amongst the guests, but the formula at Saija (at least away from Christmas time) is apparently aimed at adults.

Language is not a problem as all instructors and staff spoke excellent English and all instruction was given in English. I don't know if German might have been used by instructors if only German speaking guests had been present.

The temperature got down to close to -40C (or -40F - its the same thing!) some nights. It was around -23C during the day most days

Make sure that you bring good quality thermal under garments (including socks) with you plus extra layers of clothing - long johns might not look sexy, but in low temperatures warmth wins every time over glamour! Saija will provide you with outer wear (including hats/gloves/boots).

For the active trips these low temperatures aren't a problem, but we had been scheduled to go on the skidoo trip one of these colder days and it turned out to be just too cold for my son who was riding as passenger so we returned to base early that day and the remainder to the participants subsequently completed the trip.

On reflection, I probably wont do the skidoos again as compared to going out with the dogs they are just too noisy and smelly (not to say that the dogs aren't capable of being smelly in their own way ;-) )

We didn't have a problem with day light as most activities started around 10:00 and generally finished comfortably before 15:30.

We did a variety of dog trips including the overnight to the 'wilderness cabin'. Once again there was no sign of the Northern Lights (in five trips to Finland I've only seen a small show once). Jari, the wonderful guide, says low sunspot activity at present means the Lights are comparatively rare at present. However, a new moon meant that we could really enjoy the spectacular night sky - a real treat for somebody whose night sky is blighted by light pollution.

Saija doesn't pretend to offer night life. We took a small portable DVD player & disks and connecting cable to plug into the nice TV in the room to provide some additional entertainment (you need a SCART connector). The YLEMUNDO radio station on the TV has the BBC World Service News at certain times if you want a news fix - however it is nice to be out of contact for a little while.

There is good mobile coverage. The doesn't appear to be guest Internet Access - but, enjoy being offline for a while!

Given how many German people visit Saija I find it really surprising that there aren't any German reviews - perhaps writing reviews isn't their thing.

We traveled with Activities Abroad again and the arrangements were faultless. However, apart from getting the ATOL protection I wonder whether it might be just as easy to book directly and book tickets online with Finnair - I use the travel agent because I like the comfort of having some experts behind the scenes keeping an eye on things and making my life easier.

One downside of these types of trip is that generally one needs to change planes in Helsinski (although a few charters do operate directly from London to the northern airports - Activities Abroad has this as an option, but you have to stay the full week Sun-Sun, something that we were unable to do). With any change there is a risk of something going wrong, last time LHR had to close due to snow and we missed our connection in HEL (read previous review), this time a technical fault on the inbound flight from Kuusamo meant that whilst we made the connection to London in HEL our bags didn't. Perhaps we've just been unlucky.

Saija also has a summer programme, check their website for details.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank frozboz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Saija Oy

Property: Saija Oy
Address: Saijantie 8, Taivalkoski 93400, Finland
Location: Finland > Northern Ostrobothnia > Taivalkoski
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Specialty Lodging in Taivalkoski
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2 star — Saija Oy 2*
Number of rooms: 21
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Also Known As:
Saija Oy Finland/Taivalkoski

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