Boat times from Kvikkjokk to the Padjelantaleden (2006):
09:30 (1/7 - 15/9)
13:30 (1/7 - 15/9)
17:30 (10/7 - 20/8)
Boat times from Padjelantaleden to Kvikkjokk (2006):
10:00 (1/7 - 15/9)
14:00 (1/7 - 15/9)
18:00 (10/7 - 20/8)
There is a sign at the waterside with the telephone number of the boatsman. The times are a bit flexible, it is only a small boat and a short tour, and the boatsman waits until everyone from the bus has arrived. So you don't need to worry right away if the bus has a slight delay.
The boat costs 100 SEK per person, one way.
25 km northwest of Kvikkjokk, Jokkmokk county, northern part in Sweden.
How to get into the park:
There are two ways to get into the park:
1. by helicopter (I'll try to write a separate tip about that)
2. Hiking into the park (there are no roads in and leading to the park, so by foot is your only way to get here).
From the south from Kvikjokk: a .... km long walking trail to the park. The easiest way is to take the boat from Kvikkjokk to the hiking trail and from there on hike the rest of the way. There are huts at Nunjes (13 km), Tarrekaise (7 km) and Såmmarlappa (13 km). After Såmmarlappa it takes about 4 kilometres to reach the entrance of Padjelanta National Park.
From the north: From Ritsem in Stora Sjöfallets National park, take a boat over the lake Akkajaure and follow the trail to Kisuris. May take a day including the boattrip.
Size of the park: 1984 km2 (14 km2 of glaciers, 10 km2 of swamp, 313 km2 of lakes)
In the photo I added a map of my hiking trip through the park, which is also the official route of the "Padjelantaleden / Padjalanta Hiking Trail". The total hike is about 160 kilometres long.
In the second photo you can see a detailed map of the National Park (from the parks website). On the map you can see the hiking trails, roads how to get to the park, the places where you can stay overnight, etc.
For the ones that don't have the time or energy to walk the whole Padjalantaleden, there is an alternative. There are helicopter flights on a daily basis that fly from Kvikkjokk to Staloluokta in the middle of Padjelanta National Park on the edge of the beautiful lake Virihaure. They even make a stop at Tarraluoppal if you wish.
The costs for a flight (2013) are, one-way:
Kvikkjokk - Staloluokta / Tarraluoppal:
1050:- SEK (Children under 12 years of age: 735:- SEK)
The maximum luggage is 20kg and for children under 12 it is 10kg. If this is not enough, you can arrange to take more with you in advance. Every additional kilo will cost you 20kr. Although do bare in mind that you have to cary those additional kilo's on your back as soon as you arrive.
You can read much more information and see the timetable of the helicopter service on the website of Articair.se. Unfortunately the website is only in Swedish, but the time table is rather clear, even without understanding any Swedish.
For me one of the absolute charms of Padjelanta is not only the amazing nature within the park, but also the fact that its location is so remote; far far away from the hectic modern society. The only 'real' way into the park is by foot, using a helicopter feels wrong somehow. But then again, who am I to judge? What I do know that the walk into the park is a part of the hike that I wouldn't have missed for the world, a hike that is beautiful in its own right! It takes more time and energy, but it feels so good to slowly leave the 'world' behind with every step you take, with every hours that goes by. And the reward is to finally take that step into Padjelanta and be hugged and surrounded by its beauty.
If you haven't got time to do the whole trip, or if the idea of approx 10 days hiking is daunting, there are a number of places you can fly to to make the trip shorter.
eg: Saltoluokta (most popular place), Sammerlappa, or Tarrelouopal.
From what I recollect prices were reasonable.
In 2005 there were 2 Boats a day from Ritsem across to the start of the trail. They are run by the STF (you get a discount with an STF card, I'm not sure whether that applies to a hostelling international card).
We caught the 14:00 boat one that connects with the bus from Gallivare which connected with the overnight train from Stockholm-integrated transport is great! I think this just went to Anonjalme. If you want to start at Vaisaluokta, the other place you had to catch the early morning boat which means an overnight stay at Ritsem STF-this boat also picked up passengers at Anonjalme.
The boats here were run by a guy called Bjorn-they were at set times, but you could always give him a call (mobiles reception was OK here) if you missed it or were v early. Boat times were posted at various places en route so it's not too essential to know these in before starting your trek.