Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

A few weeks ago I was contacted by Mazda Belgium. The email goes as follows: “Hello Sarah, I see on your bucket list that you would like to admire the Northern Lights. Are you up for a roadtrip with Mazda Europe through Lapland to chase the Northern Lights? To which I naturally answered “HELL YEAH”. Not with these exact words, but that’s what I ment.

A road trip with the Mazda CX-5 departing from Lulea, the gate of Lapland, to Rovaniemi in Finland, better known as the home of Santa Claus. And as icing on the cake a husky safari with an overnight stay in one of the most beautiful hotels in Lapland. This was the program of our three-day trip through Lapland. Short but sweet!

Arriving in Lulea | Sweden

Arriving in Lulea Sweden, I was picked up by Mazda Belgium with of course a brand new red Mazda CX-5. Besides the slick design, I was quickly introduced into the wonderful world of cars and their latest technical gadgets. When I wanted to close the trunk after loading the luggage, I was amazed by the fact that it closed automatically with one push on the button. Yes, I am not exactly a car expert, so in my world this is already state of the art.

After checking in at the Elite Stadshotellet, I received a safety briefing with the other journalists and bloggers to prepare us for what we could expect from a road trip through Lapland. During this briefing I got a little nervous. I hadn’t really thought about driving in these weather conditions, such as snow and slippery surfaces. Moreover, I had even never driven with automatic transmission.

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

After the briefing, my nerves calmed down during a delicious dinner in Restaurang CG. In the meantime I got to know my road trip co-pilots Peter and Anja better. They also reassured me for the upcoming drive. Confident and perhaps a little tipsy of all that wine, I went to the room with a great feeling. A quick facetime with Jan and then to bed for an early morning.

From Lulea in Sweden to Rovaniemi in Finland

After a few hours of deep sleep it was time to wake up . As people sometimes say “the early bird catches the worm”, that’s how I felt in that moment. I was very excited to start our roadtrip. I couldn’t wait to admire the enchanting winter wonder land in Lapland

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

Mazda Lapland experience

So we left again with the red Mazda CX-5 from Lulea to Rovaniemi. It was a 250 km drive and took us about 4 hours with toilet- and photo breaks. We left safe and sound and I decided to take the wheel after fifteen minutes. There it was, my first experience with a Mazda CX-5 driving with an automatic transmission through the snow. It took me some time getting used to!

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

Besides to the fact that I did not had to shift gears, I discovered some features of the Mazda CX-5 that made this ride very pleasant for me.

The head-up display ensured that the most important information such as navigation, speed, etc, was projected on the windshield. This way I could keep my eyes on the road while driving and at the same time check this info. Despite the studded tires that were required due to the weather conditions, the Mazda CX-5 drove very smoothly. As a result, I often drove faster than allowed. Fortunately, the head-up display indicated when I was going a bit too fast so that I could easily adjust my speed to prevent me from getting a fine.

I also found the lane keep assist very useful because it corrected me when I deviated from the road. But the most pleasant feature for me was the steering and seat heating! A must for when you travel to a cold destination.All this made me feel comfortable and safe while driving in these weather conditions and in a new environment.

Drive together

When we got back on the road after a short break, it felt like I had been driving this car for years. Along the way the song of the Red Hot Chili Peppers popped up in my head “Road trippin with my two favorite allies. Fully loaded we got snacks and supplies, … ”

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

The landscape became really beautiful when we crossed the border with Finland. Only then we could behold the real winter wonder land as I had imagined with snowy roads and surfaces, pine trees and those typical colored houses.

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

The landscape became really beautiful when we crossed the border with Finland. Only then we could behold the real winter wonder land as I had imagined with snowy roads and surfaces, pine trees and those typical colored houses.

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland
David Smith

The design of the car is gorgeous. It’s based on the Kodo philosophy that stands for “soul of movement” that you will find in both the powerful lines of the exterior and the sleek design of the interior.

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland
David Smith

Rovaniemi | Finland

Husky safari

When I arrived in Rovaniemi and checked in at the Arctic Treehouse hotel at the Santa Claus village, I ate a delicious hamburger with fries for lunch. Then it was already time to leave for the next activity, the husky safari in Husky point.

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

A bit funny to experience just the opposite of that morning during the husky safari. From technological excellence to a traditional way of transport based on animal power. From a warm comfortable leather seat to an outdoor hard sled. But this made the experience only more amazing.

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

We were allowed to take turns driving or sitting in the sled with a front row view of the enchanting landscape of lapland. Driving the husky sled was a job not to be underestimated. It took me a while to find the right balance, because of course you had to brake going down or help push when going up. The dogs were super enthusiastic and almost unstoppable, even though the temperature was already a little too hot for them. When climbing a hill, they looked back imploringly to ask for help with pushing the sled.

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

Along the way we paused in a teepee where we were served warm berry juice, a typical Finnish drink. At first I thought it was Glüwein and so I was shocked to taste that it was so sweet, but it was delicious.

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

After the break it was my turn to take a seat in the sled and enjoy the spectacle.

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

Afterwards we could visit the farm where I literally and figuratively fell for Dolly the Diva. The one dog on the farm that does’t work but is served. So I can still learn something from her 😉

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

Mission Northern Lights

After this unforgettable experience we returned to the hotel where a delicious 3-course dinner was waiting for us. The intention was to spot the Northern Lights after supper. Unfortunately, there was nothing to see, so we decided to spend our evening at the hotel with a tasty gin and tonic.

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

That night I got up every hour to catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights through the large window of my personal luxurious tree house. Unfortunately it couldn’t spot it. The next morning we left home, without checking the Northern Lights off my bucket list. But this is a good reason to revisit for a longer period.

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

The Mazda Lapland experience was a unique and unforgettable experience for me.

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland
David Smith

Thanks for reading!

If you have any questions, please leave a comment below.

Yours truly,

Sarah

Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

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Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland
Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland
Road tripping through winter wonderland with a Mazda CX-5 | Lapland

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