Price from: 75 € /PP
You will either be picked up from your hotel (if it is a private transfer) or the central meeting point in Riga Old town (if open group tour) and driven to a Nature Park, located near the town of Ogre (45/50 min drive from Riga Old town). That is where you will meet the adorable huskies and Alaskan malamutes. You will have time to cuddle, snuggle and play with them (and of course take a lot of beautiful photos) while we prepare the sledge. After the sledging instructions, you will be ready to hit the trail. At a time there is only one sledge with two people on it (one as a musher and one as a passenger). The track is made the way that you do dog sledging 1.5km through the forest path, then turn around and let the dogs pull you and the sledge back to start. When you turn around, there will be a chance to swap so both of you will have a chance to enjoy the feeling of controlling the sledge. It is not mandatory, so if one does not want to be in charge of controlling the ride, he/she can sit also on a way back. If you are more than two people in a group the rest of you will stay at the beginning of the track where you spend time with the other huskies or wait in a warm van (in case it is too cold outside). For groups of 12 people or more, we have also found a solution by combining two husky dog providers so that everyone can enjoy the husky ride.
All husky dogs are rescued from the shelter, very often after being mistakenly chosen as pets or left by people who are not able to handle the character of huskies/malamutes. These dogs need a lot of exercise and they are truly happy to earn their living while giving a memorable experience to people who are taking part in this dog sledding tour.
The well-being of dogs is essential to us, so we swap dogs after each ride to give them time to rest. During the ride, dogs can go as fast as they want and we do not push them to go further than 3km (1.5km one way and 1.5km return). The husky ride itself takes approx. ten to fifteen minutes, depending on weather conditions and the energy level/excitement of the dogs. On some days the husky dog sledding tour is not possible to be done at all because dogs are getting two full days (or sometimes three full days) off each week and every day does not run more than 4-5 `rides`. It is not only for recovering physically but also mentally as during the week they meet many people and share a lot of emotions.
We can offer both husky dog rides with a sled in the case of snow and with a specially made cart on wheels in the case of no snow. Do not worry if it is freezing outside (sometimes we can get the temperature down to -20 degrees Celsius in January/February in Latvia). Huskies and Malamutes are made for cold weather so the activity will still go on. The only problem that can occur is if the temperature is around zero degrees. At the beginning of winter, when we have not received any snow that is still fine. During the winter, melting snow can make mud or puddles of water which can re-freeze again during the night. It can be dangerous for both people and dogs, so we cancel the rides, and in that case, you get a full refund.
There is a view tower located nearby the track, so after the rides, you can have a chance to go there for a lovely view of the forest.
As this is an outdoor activity, please dress warm and take gloves, a winter hat and a scarf with you.
You can extend sledding tour in Latvia by adding some other activities, for instance, booking a Sauna and a hot tub or visiting the former concentration camp of Salaspils.
Start your day by visiting Nature Park `Ogres Zilie Kalni `where you have a husky dog sledding and free time to visit the view tower of the park. Once you have played, cuddled and taken photos of each Riga husky dog, you are heading to Riga where a hot sauna and hot tub are waiting for you. In winter there will be a hole cut in the ice, so you can dip into cold water any time you want. If you like, you can have a small party with your friends at the sauna by making a BBQ and having a few beers. If you want to rent only the sauna (3 hours rent), the price is 120 EUR (if up to 6 people); if you the sauna with the hot tub (3 hours rent), the price is 220 EUR (if up to 6 people). The price includes return transfers.
Although both day activities sound completely different, the location of the former concentration camp of Salaspils gives us a chance to easily combine them, so at the end of the day, you have seen more sights and learn more about the history of Latvia. There are concrete sculptures from the Soviet times when the memorial park was created in the same place where once the concentration camp stood. You will also have a chance to explore the museum part of the sight, giving you a chance to look at video materials as well as letters, drawings and other artefacts regarding the holocaust. You can either visit Salaspils concentration camp before husky dog sledding or after. The price is 50 EUR (if up to 4 people) or 80 EUR (if up to 8 people). That includes transfers and a free time of 40 minutes to explore sights on your own.
Please note that dog sledding takes place in a forest and not near the husky dog farm. Once arriving at the place, where dog sledding starts, there won`t be any shops, cafeterias, or buildings where you can walk inside to get warm. As for the WC, there is a dry toilet without water options. That is why we suggest preparing for a Riga husky dog sledding by taking some extra layers of clothes, some snacks or sandwiches. The driver can make a short stop at the petrol station once we enter the city of Ogre (a few minutes before husky dog sledding) and you can buy some snacks, and hot drinks and use a restroom. Please inform the driver in advance, if you wish to stop at the petrol station. On cold days there will be a thermos with hot water so you can get tea on a spot and if you feel cold, you can stay in a car, while waiting your turn for husky dog sledding.
Please note that only two people (one sled) go at a time for husky dog sledding. While two people are on a track, you can spend time with the rest of the husky dogs which are on site. You can cuddle and take a picture with each dog. Another option is to walk to the view tower which is 5 min walking distance. You can climb up to the tower to take beautiful photos of the surroundings. In total that shall take 20-25 minutes.
There are multiple places where you can do sledding tours in Latvia. Nature Park `Ogres Zilie Kalni` is one of the closest options to Riga, meaning you won`t spend too much time travelling. Husky dog sledding is completely depending on the weather. The winters in the western part of Latvia usually are warmer and with less snow, therefore if you are looking for a sledding tour in Latvia, look for a destination eastbound of Riga, the region of Vidzeme being the most popular for husky dog sledding.