Discover Benelux, Issue 72, December 2019

Page 64

The rush of the drive in Wintery Scandinavia TEXT: MYRIAM DIJCK  |  PHOTOS: DAE

Imagine driving through an icy landscape with a bright blue sky above. The car rushes quietly over the frozen lake surrounded by dark green pine trees covered in thick layers of snow. Suddenly, there is a bend in the track, the car begins to slip and you are about to lose control. The rush of panic instantly turns into calm determination. Remembering your training, you steer into the slip and, with ease, you get the car back on track. “This turning point is the most exciting part,” says Dutch Automotive Events (DAE) founder and director Wilfried Giesen. “When you are not afraid anymore and you feel in control as the car 64  |  Issue 72  |  December 2019

starts to break away. Then you can really start to enjoy the drifting or anti-spin.”

are a real experience you should do at least once in your life,” Giesen says.

This is a snapshot of the Ice Drive Experience offered by DAE. Since 2010 the company has organised trips to Scandinavia and especially Sweden where participants can take the latest Volvo cars for a spin on a frozen lake. During the multi-day excursion, you do not just experience the beauty of the Scandinavian landscape in wintertime, you also learn how to control a car in the most extreme situations.

While the focus is on the ice driving, cultural elements and Lapland activities are also included, such as riding snow scooters, doing a husky trip, going to an ice hotel or visiting the local Sámi population. Guests will stay in a luxury hotel in the idyllic surroundings of Arvidsjaur. He continues: “I also keep an eye out for the northern lights. That way, our guests can see them if they would like to, as otherwise, it usually means getting up in the middle of the night.”

Lapland activities “The trips are not just about the rush of the drive, it’s about improving your driving skills and much more than that. They

Extreme driving DAE caters especially for two types of travellers. On one hand are the car en-