Christmas in Lapland: Part Two (singing Christmas carols in my underwear in the snow)
Why is it, where ever you are in the world, it gets ridiculously hot in bed during the night but when it comes to having to get up, it’s always freezing?
Breakfast is very clearly 6.30-10am. We arrive at 9.30 and eat. At 10am my entire family seem confused as to why all the food has gone. “Because breakfast finishes at 10” I said. They don’t seem to understand and assume it is just because they are in a hurry to finish because Christmas Eve is the equivalent of Christmas Day in Finland. I’m sure they will be equally confused tomorrow.
On Christmas Eve morning we went sledging and I went so fast, that when I approached the snow at the end I was scared to crash into it and so I put my feet out in front of me to try to stop and the full force of the sleigh pushed on my foot. Luckily not the one I sprained on Halloween but the other one. So now I’m walking like a scarecrow as I’ve hurt both my legs!
After dinner we went to my sisters room and opened presents which was eventful after a day of drinking. We opened a few small gifts (there is only so much you can put in a suitcase) and it was mostly all for my niece anyway. After, we went back to our cottages and me and Pete stayed up having a few drinks and watching Home Alone on TV. Suddenly, there was a knock on the door. Santa? No, my sister (armed with beers). We had a few drinks and then started singing Christmas carols. We got louder and louder until (not long after) we received a text from my mum (next door) to tell us to be quiet as it was 1am and she was trying to sleep.
Of course, that only drove us to carry on and not long after we went out in our bare feet in the snow (me in just my underwear) and started singing carols outside their front door. They let us in and we performed a little concert at the foot of the bed for them. There is video footage of all this but it is far too incriminating for me to share.
On Christmas Day, slightly hung over from last night, we got on a coach at 11am to go to Santa Parks. When we got there, we were driven in a snowmobile to our first port of call which was a husky ride, pulled by husky dogs. After that we warmed ourselves up with some hot berry juice from the elves in the woods and were taken further into the snowy forest, pulled by Reindeer. We then walked through the forest to the venue where we checked our snow suits and outside clothing in to the cloakroom and headed inside to meet Santa!
The queue to meet Santa was LOOONG! It took over two hours for my niece to make her way down to see him, which didn’t leave much time to do anything else before we had to get on the coach to go home. We had a walk around though and to be honest they weren’t missing much. It was packed with screaming children and there wasn’t enough room to move around. I paid four euros for a small bottle of Coke (which shows where Santa is making all his money to make these toys) and lunch (for sixteen euros) consisted of dried chicken nuggets, chips and salad (not quite what I was expecting for Christmas Day).
That evening, back at our hotel, there was a gala dinner, hosted by our reps Red Nose Ryan and Mince Pie Mary. I had to sit next to another family and was stuck having to spend my Christmas evening talking to strangers (which is my personal idea of hell). They weren’t even nice human beings but I smiled my way through trying to maintain the Christmas spirit!
The next morning we headed back to the UK after having a very memorable Christmas experience in Lapland! I probably wouldn’t go again but it was everything I dreamt it would be and felt like being in a Christmas film so definitely worth the money for a one off trip!
Three nights staying at Christmas Cottages in Rovaniemi cost just over a thousand pounds per person (with children a couple of hundred cheaper). This was for half board (breakfast and dinner) and a day out at Santa Parks with taster sessions of Husky Rides, Reindeer Rides and Snow Mobiling.
FOLLOW WEST END WILMA