There are a host of accommodation options in and around Rovaniemi but some of the more unusual ones include a log cabin buried in the snow-blanketed landscape or the Arctic SnowHotel. As the name suggests, everything here – in the restaurant and the rooms – is made from snow and ice. There’s a snow playground outside and the kids can pat the roaming reindeer. If sleeping on ice in a sleeping bag is not your idea of fun, you can opt for a warm room in the log building.
Flying is the quickest way to get from Helsinki to Rovaniemi, but if you’re not in a rush, try the overnight train that winds its way north. It is a 10-hour trip in small but comfortable sleeper cabins. One way may be enough for young ones, though.
Tour company 50 Degrees North runs a family-friendly Christmas tour with plenty of festive cheer and Finnish traditions far from the madding crowds. The six-night tour leaves 22 December and will have the kids doing everything from baking cookies to whooping with delight on a husky sleigh ride.
Spending Christmas in Finland is a novelty because of the weather alone – it gets cold in Lapland, often around -25 degrees in winter, so be prepared with balaclavas, gloves, and the warmest possible clothes from your wardrobe. The cold is worth it, though. Lapland will create magical winter memories for the whole family to treasure for years to come.