What would you say to an experience where someone takes you to a chilly snow-coated forest and leaves you there alone, and you paid for the privilege of that experience?
Well, that is precisely what one budding entrepreneur in Finland is doing. Riitta Raekallio Wunderink has an idea that will help people reconnect with nature. And she has been executing it in one of the coldest most northern regions of Finland.
What is Arctic Cocooning ?
The Arctic Cocooning experience begins with a guided walk through family woodland. The guides will take you through magnificent trees that are hundreds of years old. But this is just warming you up to the scenic beauty. You eventually reach a clearing with hammocks, which the program describes as cocoons. This part of the experience is where the real fun begins.
In the next phase, Riitta and Steffan will lead guests through some sensory exercises and relaxation techniques. Guests will settle into their hammocks, and they are tucked in with warm blankets. The experience lasts from 20 to 45 minutes. The experience and duration depend mostly on the outside temperatures at the time you sign up for the program.
The Arctic Cocooning is an exciting concept. In Finland, even babies nap outdoors during wintertime after being packed in cozy in their baby resting areas.
The guests either take a nap or rest as they gaze at the Arctic Sky. Sky gazing may be the best part of the whole program. Potential visitors like yourself can be without having to anything or go anywhere.
The experience doesn’t call for snowboarding, or endurance and the ability to trek up a mountain to reach a certain peak.
Nay, you get to the spot and exist, you have to be there, one with nature.
However that is not the end of the experience. When you are done cocooning, you get to sit by the fire with the other guests and roast lingonberry marshmallows with the other guests.
You also get to try a hot blueberry soup, a traditional winter delicacy in the region. If you want, you can even ask for cookies and aromatic artisan coffee.
It sure sounds like a millennial heaven to me.
The minimum number of guests the family accommodates is two, and the maximum is 10 in one group. The experience isn’t that expensive, it costs around 98 euros.
The Raekallio runs the business together. For years they worked on a tree adoption program collectively called Halipuu, which translated directly to tree hugger.
They operate on their land.
In 2017, Riitta, along with her family, decided they wanted to share the sense of being sheltered by the Lapland forest with the world. And that is when Arctic Cocooning began. To date, it is the only venture of its kind. According to the Raekallios, the forest has many healing benefits.
What is Lapland Like?
There are more reindeer than animals who have made Lapland their habitat. It is one of the few places on earth with the world’s cleanest air.
The place is located over the arctic circle and has days of complete darkness during winter, and then there are days in summer where the sun shines for 24 hours.
The place welcomes 750,000 visitors every year who travel to hike, ski, or catch the breathtaking views of the Northern Lights.
Truth be told, arctic cocooning would probably be one of the more reasonable trends in 2019 and beyond.