Highest peak of the winter season is now over and one of the highlights was in the beginning of March when old friends from Asturias, northern Spain travelled to Hossa for a return visit. Nigel and Joann, who are originally from the UK, are running a special countryside hotel Posada del Valle, resting within its own organic farm where one can enjoy delicious food, cozy atmosphere and if you´re up for it, conquer a few peaks by foot in the beautiful surrounding area of the Picos de Europa. This was their first trip high up to the north so Hossa Travel was thrilled to have the privilege to introduce and arrange a special holiday not experienced in the past!
Our program was tailored and scheduled for a four day trip but the main focus was on activities and experiences that are included in the Hossa Travel “Surrounded by wilderness” -winter tour that combines an active, yet leisured holiday with staying in an authentic, Finnish farmhouse setting, taking care of the reindeer and exploring the vast wilderness around.
Range of activities
So what we did was we went for a snowshoe hike on two days, spent one day with the reindeer trying to catch some fish through the ice on the way, practiced our musher skills with dog-sledding and enjoyed the sauna of course. The fish we caught this time were nothing to brag about but that´s ice-fishing. The walking with the snowshoes was particularly enjoyable as the icy surface of the snow, created by cold nights alternating with warm days, carried our whole weight really well and basically it was possible to go anywhere. Some Siberian Jays joined us on the campfire during our second day of walking on snow, lovely surprise. Weather conditions varied from blizzard to sunshine during our days outdoors so we were confronted with the many faces of winter in a short period of time.
Sustainability is an important value of the business at the hotel Posada del Valle so it was great to introduce reindeer herding and to be able to cook and serve some of the best handpicked wild delicacies available out here and anywhere! Reindeer herding is an great example of ethical meat production and last season was good with the wild edibles, so it was bilberries for breakfast and mushroom soup (boletus pinophilus) cooked on the fire for lunch for example. It was really nice to discuss and reflect ideas about travel and food as I was dealing with the true professionals here. These wild, handpicked ingredients are still hard work to collect, pick and preserve in greater extent so tasting multiple of them is a treat for small groups.
There´s a first time for everything
We spent many beautiful days together and my guests left having spent an enjoyable first holiday in the north. The fact that you have a range of different activities to try out, get to feed and take care of our own herd of reindeer and stay both in an authentic, Finnish farmhouse and in a cabin with all the comforts during the same trip, you´ll enjoy yourself but you´ll also face the local culture first hand and gain new perspectives. The Hossa area works as a great setting for all this, just spending time in a remote destination like Hossa is an experience itself!
When all the attention-consuming aspects are minimal and the only sounds you hear is the living fire in the stove and the humming wind outside ,relaxation is maximal! 🙂 Special thanks to Nigel and Joann and to all the people who Hossa Travel worked and headed outdoors with during this overwhelming winter season 2015!