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Please share your top tips for Lapland

(17 Posts)
TheHouseofMirth Sun 18-Nov-12 22:04:31

We're off to Lapland for 3 nights just before Christmas and I'm starting to worry about how cold it might be! The company we are travelling with provides gloves, boots and polar suits ( I assume by that they mean suitable for wear at the north pole and not that we will resemble large white bears...)

I am planing on taking: Sock liners, thermal socks, glove liners and wool gloves (to wear under the gloves the company provides), thermal base layers and then fleece lined jogging bottoms and fleece tops. I'm also planning to buy some of those disposable hand warmer sachets.

My main questions are: for the children will cheap base layers work as well as expensive ones (they are unlikely to be worn again)? Will any warm hat (which covers the ears work? Balaclavas or gaiters? Any recommendations for face cream?

All advice gratefully received!

mimbleandlittlemy Tue 20-Nov-12 15:36:33

Those polar suits are very effective but I really recommend getting silk liners for gloves (wool is a bit bulky/sweaty), and good M&S thermals for both you and the dcs. Rather than jogging bottoms, brushed cotton trousers (like thick pj bottoms) with thermals under are the absolute best. You don't want to end up really bulky under the suits. If you are going to get lots of fleece make sure it's the sort that wicks moisture away otherwise you sweat in the suit then get cold really, really fast. Because the polar suits are so good you do sweat, even though you might not believe this possible in the cold!!

Thick ski socks with ordinary socks under are good and I found the fleece neck tubes they sell in ski shops are much better than scarves as you tuck them in your suit, pull them up over your face and with your hat over your ears you are fine - and again they aren't bulky.

It got down to -37 when we were there a few years ago and my ds wore thermals, cotton trousers, all-in-one ski suit, waterproof gloves (not wool as they get wet so fast), neck tube, hat (and looked adorable!!). Teenagers we were with found they were fine in salapettes and thermals, adults wore thermal suits. The one thing I would add though is the cold is so dry that it sometimes didn't feel as cold as it does in England on a dank January day if that makes any sense.

sailorsgal Wed 21-Nov-12 18:47:28

I loved those hand warmers! Just lots of layers really. We bought thermals and yes cheap ones. We did take our own boots too even though we were provided with some just in case they get wet you have a change. We didn't use face cream at all.

VonHerrBurton Tue 27-Nov-12 14:07:55

We used Bepanthen cream on ds's face - just walking from our accomodation to the shop on our first trip gave him painful, dry, red cheeks - we asked for help in the pharmacy and that's what they recommended. Use it everywhere we go now - hot or cold, it's magic stuff!

With that in mind, keep a neck warmer/gaiter pulled up over face, in fact, cover as much of the face as possible. Sounds obvious but ears need to be covered at all times as well. The suits we saw were navy blue and to be honest, the fit didn't look great - I think it's small/med/larg/xl and they looked a bit draughty so I would get proper thermals and underlayers from skishops or online, we didn't wear them so can't be sure, they may be fine, just layer up as much as poss. Decent snowboots are a must.

It's wonderful and we've been 5 times but we skied so have our own stuff. The temp really does vary, it's been -28, and -2 in the same week. Please don't underestimate the cold, if you're doing all the husky dog/santa's house type activities, the kids will be sitting around at times outside, especially on the dog sledding and once they're uncomfortably cold, there's nothing you can do about it, so try to avoid at all costs!

It's amazing, like no place on earth. You will love it.

VonHerrBurton Tue 27-Nov-12 14:09:11

Sorry, just read mimble's post - obviously more experience of the polar suits than me! They sound perfect.

sunnyday123 Tue 27-Nov-12 18:01:18

Hi we are going too on the 16th! Where are you going? We are going to saariselka for 4 days. I have bought the following

Thermal underwear
Long sleeve tops
Fleece tops and bottoms (local experts on trip advisor recommend primark fleece pj bottoms as no one sees them under the suits!)
Gloves - magic, fleece and ski each
Hand warmers
Thermal and ski socks
Snoods for all of us plus balaclavas for kids
2 hats each in case one gets wet!
We had ski goggles but got cheap eBay ones for the kids to keep wind out their face on excursions etc

I also picked up cheap fleece blankets £3 each in primark to keep the kids warm around town in their sledges!

I'm taking hot water bottles for them too

TheHouseofMirth Thu 29-Nov-12 00:36:37

Thanks for the tips.

sunnyday123 we're going to Yllas on 20th December with Magic of Lapland. When do you get back?

So far I have:

Merino & synthetic thermal base layers
Various fleece tops
Fleece lined jogging bottoms for everyone except DS2 who has some rather lovely red fleece trousers from Gap
Silk glove liners and fleece gloves (company provides thermal ski type gloves/mittens)
Silk sock liners, wool socks and thermal socks
Gaitors and balaclavas

Need to get hats, hand and foot warmers. Hadn't considered goggles. Do you think they'll be necessary?

sunnyday123 Thu 29-Nov-12 07:10:34

No from what I've read you don't need to buy goggles specially, we had adult ones anyway so got kids eBay ones. There is a 1.5 toboggan run in saariselka which the kids want to go on and as my youngest is a bit whiney I got them just in case they didn't like the snow hitting their face! On activities, doubt you need them as the helmets have a face guard thingy!

We go 16-19th - so excited!!!!! It's already -18!!!!! Have you been on trip advisor lapland forum as loads of info and threads active there?

I got hand and foot warmers (little hotties) on eBay - only £5 for 10 pairs delivered! Tomas is fab for hats and fairly cheap too for good stuff.

Have fun!

sunnyday123 Thu 29-Nov-12 07:11:06

Tomas- should be Tkmaxx

sailorsgal Thu 29-Nov-12 20:11:33

We went to Yllas in December last year. I wish we could go again. Where are you staying?

TheHouseofMirth Thu 29-Nov-12 21:53:24

We're staying at the Yllas Saaga Hotel. Probably not the most picturesque accomodation but we chose it for very practical reasons. Where did you stay sailorgirl, and what did you do whilst you were there?

sailorsgal Fri 30-Nov-12 10:01:27

We stayed at the Snow Elf hotel which was fairly basic but had a pool and was in a very picturesque setting. It was also surrounded by a cross country skiing track which I wanted to try. The food wasn't particulary very good but we didn't go without. The rooms were very warm and cosy to come back to after been out most of the day. We did the taster sessions (Thomson) and then booked the reindeer farm/ride, husky ride afternoon, and we had a afternoon visiting Father Christmas in a very remote setting. We made cookies and toasted marshmallows over a fire and again there were reindeer rides. Ds 6 had a ski lesson one morning, which the main slopes are very close to your hotel.

I've been thinking about it a lot this week as we were preparing to go this time last year. It was fab!

TheHouseofMirth Fri 30-Nov-12 14:26:22

Thanks Sailorgal. The food's the main reason we booked our hotel - we have a little kitchen in our suite so can knock something up if we tire of reindeer stew!

We have a husky safari on the afternoon that we arrive and the next day is reindeer ride, snow shoeing and tobogganing and then various crafty bits before visiting Father Christmas. This sounds very similar to yours - was it good?

We have the next day free and as we have never tried skiing we thought we'd have a go. Is it easy to arrange? Any ideas of cost?

sailorsgal Fri 30-Nov-12 17:18:54

We had reception at the hotel phone and book ds his lesson. It was very quiet as the season was just starting and only a few runs were open. I would sort it out as soon as you get there if you want lessons. For cross country I walked into my local ski wear shop and the owner took me out for a lesson for much less than I was quoted at ski school. I will ask dh how much we paid for ds.

We absolutely loved the whole thing. Found the huskey ride a bit scarey as the light was fading fast and those dogs have a mind of their own. Boy did they go fast. grin

TheHouseofMirth Fri 30-Nov-12 20:12:22

Thanks sailorsgal (are you?)

Last question: were you cold?

sailorsgal Fri 30-Nov-12 20:36:04

Yes married to a sailor! grin

I didn't feel too cold at all but it was only -10!!

TheHouseofMirth Fri 30-Nov-12 21:13:21

That's much more romantic than being married to a computer programmer!

It was +3 here today and it felt terribly cold. I'm wondering how I'll cope!

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