New Year in Norway
New Year in Norway
New Year in Norway
New Year in Norway
New Year in Norway
New Year in Norway

New Year in Norway

Trip Overview

A fabulous way to start 2019! A week of cross country skiing in the wonderful landscape that surrounds the mountain community of Gålå. The terrain surrounding Gålå is home to a vast network of groomed ski trails making it popular with both cross country ski racers, and recreational skiers. With access to 230 km (156 miles) of ski trails there is more than enough to keep you occupied! And if skiing by day is not enough there is also an illuminated trail where you can enjoy some evening skiing.


  • Stunning location with views to the Jötunheim mountains.
  • Improve your technique with top instructors
  • Small groups ensuring maximum progress
  • Ski from the hotel doorstep
  • Cosy mountain top hotel with sauna and pool
  • Excellent and plentiful Norwegian style meals
  • Optional extras; dog sledding, biathlon 
  • New Year's Eve celebration and fireworks!

Our hotel sits at the top of the mountain overlooking the lake of Gålåvatnet where the Peer Gynt spectacular theatre performances take place each summer. From the lounge you can enjoy a drink while taking in views of the alpine summits of the stunning mountains of the Jotunheimen and Rondane National Parks.

Perhaps the thing we love most about Gålå is the feeling of being high above the lake and enjoying the views to the Jotunheimen and Rondane National Parks while skiing beautifully groomed tracks. We can normally ski straight from the door of our hotel, it really doesn't get much more convenient than that! The area around our hotel offers access to several hundred km's of trails with the possibility to ski in different areas each day.

Gålå lies to the north of the Olympic town of Lillehammer and immediately east of the main railway from Oslo to Trondheim. In this respect it is easily accessible by train, direct from Oslo airport. In other words a perfect base for an excellent week of nordic skiing.

On New Years Eve our hotel will serve an aperitif, followed by a 5 course dinner, then a midnight snack and a celebration with a large firework display at midnight! What a great way to start 2019.

Top notch. Lindsay has a wealth of experience, and exudes enthusiasm. Always fun, and always encouraging, whether it’s gentle encouragement for beginners or those lacking confidence, or stretching those clients who are looking for something more demanding. It is always great to spend time with her. 


  • cable
  • house
  • airport
  • Today you arrive at Oslo Gardermoen airport and take the train north to Vinstra where your transfer will meet you and take you into the mountains to the tiny community of Gålå. The train journey offers great views of the Norwegian countryside, and it is not uncommon to see elk foraging in the woods beside the train tracks. The trains are modern and comfortable and have drinks facilities, and free wifi.

    Tickets are easily purchased on line at NSB and if you book in advance there is a considerable discount at around £45 for the return journey. You can choose to collect them on the train which makes taking the train north very easy. All train timetables are published just 3 months in advance, please note the times given below are based on current timetables and can change upon publication by a few minutes.

    At Oslo Gardermoen the train station is within the airport building and you should aim to catch the 1429 hrs train from Oslo Gardermoen airport to Vinstra, arriving at Vinstra at 1712 hrs. You can, of course, take alternative trains both on the arrival and departure days but this may incur a supplement if it requires a special journey by the hotel taxi. Please ask for details if this is the case.

  • Each morning our day begins with a leisurely breakfast served Norwegian buffet style, which means you can eat as much as you like. There is no excuse not to 'fuel up' for the day ahead. We then head to the hotel ski room to wax our skis and prepare for a day out in a winter wonderland.

    Even if you have never used 'waxing skis' before you will be guided by your Instructor and will soon relish the fast performance of a ski that is well waxed. A waxing ski is the traditional type of ski used in Norway, and precedes the new 'skin' and 'fishscale' skis which you may have previously used in the Alps. We love the atmosphere in the waxing room as everyone chats about the day ahead, and discusses which wax to apply to give the best performance on the day. Be prepared for lots of tales of bravado and adventures from the day before as we mingle with the other guests and the locals.

    With 230 kms (144 miles) of trails to explore we have plenty to choose from, and with a variety of terrain from birch woodlands, to plateau, and mountains, we can choose the best tracks for the weather on the day. As this week is for 'intermediate' skiers we expect you to be able to get on your skis and 'go'. As with all our ski holidays there will be an element of coaching each day with the aim of improving your ski technique to allow you to get maximum enjoyment from the the hills and valleys of Gålå. If downhill skills are something you wish to work on, you can even take the small button tow in the downhill area and just concentrate on flying down the hills!

    Each day we take a packed lunch with us, and will take time to stop for a few breaks during our ski journey. The normal pattern is to leave around 0930-1000 hrs, ski for approximately 20 kms (12.5 miles), then return mid to late afternoon to enjoy a sauna, and swim before dinner. Or you can simply sit in the lounge and take in the mountain views.

  • Today you will transfer to Vinstra station for the train journey to Oslo airport. For the return journey we are awaiting clarification of train times, but it is anticipated that you can take either the 0613 hrs or 1151 hrs train from Vinstra, arriving at the airport at 0901 hrs and 1432 hrs respectively. The group transfer included in your trip fee will be timed to catch the 1151 hrs train. If you wish to take the early train, the taxi cost is 500 NOK. If there are other guests also taking the early train you will be able to share this cost. Please check all travel arrangements with us before you book your flights and trains.

    Many of our guests opt to spend an extra night in Oslo to enjoy this cosmopolitan city. You could, of course, choose to begin with a night in Oslo at the start of your journey.

It is always our aim to complete the proposed itinerary outlined above, however, it may be necessary for our guides/instructors to adjust the daily itinerary based on the weather conditions, group safety and enjoyment.


On all our trips we aim to accommodate our guests in well-situated, clean, characterful, family run accommodation. We are painstaking in our research to give you the best option possible and one that is good value. Our suggested accommodation, listed below, is subject to availability at the time of booking. We have given details of our favoured venues and those we intend to use. If unavailable we will book alternative accommodation of a similar standard.

Our trip fees are based on two people sharing a room. If you are travelling on your own your booking will be based on a twin bedroom sharing with someone of the same gender. 

However, on many of our trips single rooms are available on request for a supplementary fee. We recommend booking as early as possible to secure a single room as these are always limited in number. Please contact us for details. 

Wadahl Hoyfjellhotell


Wadahl Hotel sits high above the valley with fabulous views to the lake of Galavatnet. It is on the shores of the lake that a production of Henrik Ibsen's Peer Gynt is staged each summer. However, we will be there in winter and from the hotel lounge you can enjoy the sun rising over the distant Jotunheim mountains. The hotel has saunas and a swimming pool which is great for relaxing tired muscles at the end of your ski day. 

  • Norway is easily reached, with various international airlines offering direct flights from the UK and Europe to Oslo Gardermoen airport. Flights can also be taken to Torp, but please note you will need to allow enough time to transfer to Oslo Gardermoen for your train journey north.

    The train station at Gardermoen is located inside the airport terminal and is just a few minutes from the arrivals area. It makes connecting to your train for your journey to Vinstra very easy. Please see the itinerary notes under 'Arrival Day' with regard to train times. We aim to provide a transfer from Vinstra to your hotel on arrival and departure, but this is based on one collection for everyone arriving for the holiday and taking the 1429 hrs train from the airport. You can, of course, take alternative trains both on the arrival and departure days, but this may incur a small supplement if it requires a special journey by the hotel taxi.

    On our departure day we would aim to have the group transfer taking the 1131 hrs train from Vinstra arriving at the airport at 1432 hrs. It is possible to take a train at 0613 hrs arriving at 0901 hrs, however, this early morning transfer may incur a supplement. Please contact us if you wish to confirm details.

  • Please note that you must have the appropriate insurance for your chosen activity. As we will be travelling in the mountains, you must be covered for helicopter rescue, repatriation and medical costs. We also advise you to take out Trip Cancellation/Curtailment Insurance in the event of you being unable to join the trip for whatever reason. NB: The insurance referred to below should only be purchased AFTER we have confirmed that your trip is guaranteed to run. 

    For ease of reference the clause relating to Insurance as set out in our Terms and Conditions is given below:

    Insurance: It is a condition of booking that you are insured against medical expenses, injury, illness, death, cost of repatriation, and personal accident risks. This must include cover for the activities to be undertaken during the trip. For tours taking place outside the United Kingdom you must ensure that your insurance covers rescue from the mountains, including helicopter rescue. It is the right of the leader to make a decision to call for helicopter rescue if such assistance is needed. Costs incurred by you, the client, due to an evacuation, rescue or other emergency event shall be your responsibility. Any subsequent costs incurred for expenses not limited to but including such costs as hotels, food, transport etc shall be borne by you, the client. You are responsible for ensuring insurance cover is adequate for the particular needs of your chosen activity. You must be fully aware of the implications involved in arranging your own travel insurance and understand the limitations and exclusions of the policy. By agreeing to our Terms and Conditions you are authorising Tracks and Trails Ltd or the person employed to lead the trip for Tracks and Trails Ltd to instigate rescue and/or helicopter evacuation procedures without previously obtaining the permission of the company issuing your insurance policy. We reserve the right to cancel your booking at any time if we are not satisfied you have the necessary insurance policy covering your activity. Please ensure that your insurance covers you to the maximum altitude given on your trip itinerary. If you are unsure or are joining a bespoke trip then please contact us for specific details. Most of our trips have a maximum altitude of 3,000 metres, except the Tour de Monte Rosa which reaches 3316m. You must bring all insurance documentation with you at the time of the activity. We also recommend your insurance covers you for trip cancellation and baggage loss/damage. Tracks and Trails Ltd are unable to accept responsibility for the loss or damage to any client equipment or luggage.

    For further details, please read the Insurance section on our website.

  • Our hotel sits at around 1000m (3280ft) and the skiing ranges from 800m (2624ft) of altitude to 1150m (3772ft). We regularly ski in this area, and so far we have only been met with good snow conditions. King Bore - 'King of Winter' - from Nordic mythology says he can't promise anything, but in Gålå they begin to prepare the tracks as soon as they have enough snow in December and continue until mid-April or after Easter. Gålå also has a small downhill ski area which means that we sometimes make use of the ski tows to save our legs on the climb back to the hotel. It does mean that if you feel the urge you could do a day of alpine skiing. However, the overall 'feel' of Gålå is one of being a great cross country ski area, rather than an alpine resort.

  • We use 'classic' style cross country track skis for this trip. You can choose to bring your own, however do check with us first to ensure they are the correct type of ski and boot and are suitable. At Gålå we do things the Norwegian way, and our hire skis from the hotel are 'waxing' skis, which provides a great opportunity to learn the art of waxing. Your instructor will provide daily waxing sessions to ensure you get the best out of the skis. Grip waxes are the traditional way of travelling on skis, and give greater glide than 'fishscales'. Don't be confused by all of this, just ask your instructor! We are always delighted to help you enjoy the whole Nordic experience. If you wish to bring your own skis then do feel free to chat with us. If you own 'fishscales' or 'skintec' skis it is quite acceptable for you to use them, but please note you may find them slower than the 'waxing' skis. However, on any days when the waxing is tricky you may find you have the advantage!

    Your instructor will help with organising the ski rental on the morning of your first ski day at Gålå. The total ski hire is expected to be 775 NOK for 6 days. Please make your payment directly to the rental shop at the hotel (credit cards are accepted). To ensure we get the correct sizes equipment hire is arranged in advance. Please make note of your equipment hire on our booking form. We will need to know your height, weight, normal shoe size (you must give us your everyday shoe size and not your personal adjustment for wearing boots) and the measurement of your height up to your armpits (for ski pole hire).

  • This trip requires a minimum of 4 clients to book before it can be guaranteed to run and we take a maximum of 9 clients per instructor. By keeping the group numbers small you will get the very best of instruction during your week allowing you to make as much progress as possible.

  • These holidays are designed for those who can confidently get on their skis and go! You should already have done multi-day journeys on cross-country skis and enjoy spending the day travelling from point to point while carrying a small daypack. We would expect you to be able to ski at a steady pace over a variety of terrain and snow conditions, including icy tracks when necessary. As a minimum we expect you to have good control of speed and direction, and have a very effective snowplough. You should be familiar with the colour coding system for trails, and be able to assure us you can ski ‘red’ tracks with confidence. On any point-to-point journey we can expect to deal with a variety of weather from heavy snowfall to strong winds, and for this reason we expect a degree of self-sufficiency in terms of keeping yourself warm, and dry. It is possible that these tours may encounter sections of 'untracked' snow or old prepared trails, therefore making the distance covered more strenuous. Further tuition will be given at these stages if required. You should be at a very good fitness level and be able to ski approximately 6-7 hours and cover 20 (12.5 miles) – 35 km(18.7 miles) per day.

    However, due to the shorter daylight hours at New Year we usually ski for about 5 hrs per day on this trip, and cover around 20 km (12.5 miles).


  • Since 2013 we have skied in Norway at New Year, and have found temperatures ranging from minus 4 degrees Celsius to minus 13 degrees Celsius. Temperatures can, of course, dip even lower so you should be prepared with plenty of warm clothing. In general we have had good weather, and good snow conditions. 

    With regard to daylight hours we have found that there is more than enough daylight hours to enjoy a lengthy ski. And if you find that is not enough then there is a floodlit ski track for evening exercise. In general we start skiing about 0930 hrs, and are back at the hotel before 1530 hrs when the sun goes down. With a pool and sauna available to enjoy, and dinner taken Norwegian style at an early hour, usually about 1830hrs, we find the day is well-filled with activity. 

    The best advice we can give is that you have enough warm, and waterproof clothing, and make sure you have several pairs of gloves!

  • There are currency exchange facilities/banks in Oslo Airport or you can obtain Norwegian Kroner prior to your arrival. Credit cards will be accepted in the hotels. Oslo airport has a left luggage store available if needed, which is at the east end of the arrivals hall. 

  • Due to the specialised nature of many of our holidays, we co-sell a number of our trips with 'partner' companies. Our partners are carefully selected to ensure they reflect our own ethos and standards in terms of the service we offer to our guests. By encouraging our partners to sell our trips it means that your chosen holiday may reach its 'minimum' number earlier, allowing us to guarantee the trip and to give you the go-ahead to book your travel arrangements.

    There may be occasions when our partners have helped to book your accommodation and organise the logistics for your trip. On these occasions your hotel may have recorded your room reservation in the name of our partners. 

    We guarantee that any partners with whom we work will offer the same package as Tracks and Trails. The price will be the same, though occasionally our partners may be operating in a different currency. Your itinerary and the items that are included, or not included in your trip fee will also be the same. 

    We believe in team work, and enjoy working with other small high quality companies. If you have any questions about this policy please contact us and we will be happy to discuss it with you. 


Prices may vary depending on date.


Sat 29 Dec - Sat 05 Jan
Code: GAL1 18
Price: £1695 Full

What's Included

  • 6 full days of instruction by a fully qualified BASI Nordic Instructor
  • Full-board accommodation for 7 nights, including breakfast, picnic lunch, dinner. Based on two sharing
  • Free use of the swimming pool and spa
  • Transfer from Vinstra station to your hotel on arrival and on departure
  • Use of grip waxes as required
  • Tracks and Trails memento - a gift to take home!
  • Single rooms available

What's Not Included

  • Insurance
  • Flights
  • Train fares between Oslo and Vinstra
  • Drinks
  • Ski hire - approximately 775 NOK for 6 days
  • Optional extra activities, such as alpine skiing
  • Use of any alpine lifts

Top notch. Lindsay has a wealth of experience, and exudes enthusiasm. Always fun, and always encouraging, whether it’s gentle encouragement for beginners or those lacking confidence, or stretching those clients who are looking for something more demanding. It is always great to spend time with her. 

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Grade: Intermediate


At a Glance

From Price £1695
Holiday Type Cross Country Skiing
Duration 8 Days
Group Size 9
Minimum Age 17
Maximum Altitude 1150m (3772ft)
Countries Visited Norway
Meet In Vinstra, Norway
View all Cross Country Skiing Holidays