Lapland : The Ultimate Christmas Experience
18/12/2015What do you think when think of Lapland? Snow? Father Christmas? Rudolf the red nosed reindeer?
That’s exactly what I thought as well, but never before have I been so taken a-back by such a destination. Yes, there is snow, Yes I did visit ‘Father Christmas’ and there certainly are a lot of reindeer dotted around but there is so much more to Lapland!
My first Lapland experience was in the village of Levi. Looking around the snow glistening landscape here, it did make me feel as though I had been catapulted onto a set from a Hollywood Christmas movie. My first night was spent at the authentic chalet; Taivaanvalkeat. Perfect for families, this chalet provides multiple fun activities to enjoy as a family including a special ‘Santa Experience’… need I say more. The village of Levi was only a short walk away and it had everything from humble cafes to small gift shops and incredible ski paths.
Next on my agenda, Villa Laavu. If a retreat in your own private log cabin is what you are after then look no further. Villa Laavu is an impressive cabin situated on top of Utsavaara hill close enough to the Levi that it has an inclusive feeling. Designed by one of Finland’s most prestigious architect Matti Sanakenho, it oozes luxury and finesse. With 7 doubled bedrooms spread over 3 floors, open plan layout, specially designed log fire and equipped with 2 saunas to soak in, I was completely blown away by it.
Next the beautiful Levin Igloos – yes, I repeat, an igloo. It was like nothing before. The igloo is in essence a hotel room with a glass exterior. Although I thought it would be small, it was the opposite, spacious, light, airy and with a fully functioning bathroom. You feel as though you are completely hidden from the exterior world. It was like something out a dream. There is no dining room but instead guests are personally driven to town for dinner and then driven home afterwards. And if that wasn't special enough, breakfast is delivered to you in the morning.
Next on my itinerary was Aurora Chalet in the tiny village of Yllas. Named after the Aurora Borealis, the Chalet has the best seat to get a look at one of nature’s most magnificent events. On a clear night you can sit from the comfort of your exceptional bedroom and be memorised by the glittering, colour light phenomenon. The Chalet combines modern day living with traditional features such as oak wood floors and a two sided fire, that keeps both the sitting room and dining room toasty. It feels really remote here but a fantastic place to take the family.
My penultimate stay was in Lapland’s first adult only hotel Beana Laponia. This hotel is absolutely perfect for a romantic trip with cosy bedrooms and home cooked meals. The hotel’s owners take special care to look after you – they even showed me the best ski paths and their own husky farm! And having a husky farm by the property means that as guests you have full access to husky sleighs and trips , which I definitely recommend!
Lapland has a plethora of activities from skiing to husky safaris to aurora hunting. All of which are a memory you will never forget. There is something truly magical and mysterious about Lapland – maybe it has something to do with the inescapable Christmas feeling. But I think it is because you are made to feel totally welcomed and at home.
If you wish to learn more about Lapland please enquire here.
By Katy Horwich