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help/info required for 2014 trip

Crewe, United...
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help/info required for 2014 trip

Hi

I no this has probably been asked many times, but need some help for a possible trip next year. its both mine and my girlfriends 30th birthdays next year (Jan & April) and thinking of going to Lapland in the hope to see the northern lights

I've done some research, and found a few decent looking tours, but unsure on if they are any good or anybody has used them before and if they are value for money

laplandholidays.com/safaris/search-the-north…

laplandholidays.com/safaris/search-the-north…

both come in at around £1000/pp for 1 week.

I've seen that ingams and a few other uk tour operators also do tours, but not really interested in going skiing. More interested in the wilderness etc.

Would like to have gone to Kilpisjarvi but seems the tours are a lot more expensive and a bit more tricky to get to.

If anybody can help or give a little advice or alternatives, it would be much appreciated

Thanks

Matt

Finland
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for Helsinki, Finland
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1. Re: help/info required for 2014 trip

Do not let the word skiing bother you. The resorts suit for non-skiers as well. But, yes, we are talking about resorts. If you are looking for the absolute wilderness, then group tours may not be the best option. DIY has been discussed here extensively.

Crewe, United...
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2. Re: help/info required for 2014 trip

Yeah I totally understand about the skiing. I'm not out off or anything by it. Just thinking of the added costs for it all on top of the trip itself

Can do the self catering option in the cabin for £300 less so is whether its worth it and just buy a lot of food in to cook ourselves

I'll have a look at the DIY options as well. Would just mean booking separate flights from Manchester to Helsinki and then to kittila. I would like to stay in a nice log cabin though and 1 night either in igloo or snow hotel hence why I looked at them tours

Thanks for the reply

Arsy, France
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3. Re: help/info required for 2014 trip

I would suggest that you look at where you want to stay and what you want to do first - it really doesnt matter who you go with for the week as some will just give you the bare bones (flight, transfers and accommodation) and others will give you the whole package

what month were you thinking of going in too?

what is your budget and also, have you looked at crystalski as they offer lapland experience which looks good

Crewe, United...
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498 posts
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4. Re: help/info required for 2014 trip

lookin at either end of jan or feb next year, possibly march at a push. i've read that the northern lights are better for jan-feb, but i no nothing is ever certain and would try to plan it when there isnt a full moon as i no this can affect the visual effect of them.

would like to go on snowmobile and husky safari's and like i already said, would like to stay in a log cabin more than anything and 1 night in either igloo or snow hotel

i looked at yllas or saariselka and both seem a good base point. Budget is around £1000 pp for the week, but that includes the half board package. for £300 less we could easily get enough food for 1 week and cook it at the cabin for a lot lot less money.

i guess ill see what prices the cabins are to hire through normal hotel type websites and see what rough prices the flights usually are. then add on the safari's and igloo/snow hotel for 1 night and see how the deals work out against that.

ill have a look at crystalski. just wasnt sure which operators are good and reliable as never really looked into anything like this before

Finland
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5. Re: help/info required for 2014 trip

January and March are the best for the lights, but only marginally. Clouds are going to be the major concern regardless. Staying a week you'll have a fair chance to see them, but do not pin your hopes on it!

It seems you have already done a lot of background work. I cannot comment on the tour operators or packages, but Ylläs is one of my personal favs. Saaga is a nice hotel, but have you noticed that Ylläs has two 'sides' i.e. there are two villages on the opposite sides of the fell. On the other side Äkäslompolo has a bit more things but is still fairly quiet and scattered. You said you like wilderness... if you pick a cabin in a good location you will have that all around you. You do not need to go all the way to Kilpisjärvi, it is not an easy place to reach in the winter as you have found out.

Enjoy planning!

Crewe, United...
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6. Re: help/info required for 2014 trip

thanks yuke

yeah i've read about the 2 sides of the fell

the main thing i would like is the cabin. its just whether the snow hotel or glass igloo are worth an overnight stay, as ive read the snow hotel can be a bit hectic and only allowed in your rooms at 10pm due to other people having tours around it, and also each room is completely open at the doorway, and people have said it isnt worth the overnight stay for the money.

i do like the look of the glass igloo though, so ill maybe have a look for cabins around saariselka

ultimately its going to come down to my budget so ill have to see what i can find out

Arsy, France
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7. Re: help/info required for 2014 trip

you need to keep clear of the feb half term as the prices go crazy

i would suggest saariselka, the igloos are up there and its a lovely village/small town - whilst I love yllas, having two sides to it and ending up in the saaga side for a week when not skiing could be a drag as it really is based around the ski slope

the joy with saariselka is that there is everything you need in a lovely town, it also has the wonderful taboggon run which is great fun

there are some lovely cabins in saariselka, look at saariselka.fi if you fancy doing it yourself - the cabins that inghams do are basic but lovely, the position is magical and are my favs out of the 5 cabins we have stayed in

I would say, do a sudo booking with inghams for a week in saariselka, add on the trips you want and see what the price it - you have to put in names and birthdays but just make them up just so you can see how much you are looking at - I found inghams to be the best value, especially for the husky and snowmobile trips

Crewe, United...
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8. Re: help/info required for 2014 trip

thanks for that info, much appreiated

ill check everything out and see what happens, been checking the igloo reviews and aint much better than the snow hotel really for the price you pay

Waterford, Ireland
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9. Re: help/info required for 2014 trip

Been to Yllas past December and stayed in Saaga Hotel, absolutely loved every minute of it. Booked with Lapland Holidays.com but it was actually Inghams was our tour operator through them. It was the Northern Lights/Snow Hotel tour. Found them great. We asked for room facing the slopes when booking , which we got. Yllas is beautiful for a nice quiet relaxed holiday. We done Husky, Reindeer and Snowmobile safaris, all part of the package. As was the Snow Hotel. That was for an overnight. Well worth going to see but staying overnight I was'nt impressed with. I like my comforts! We also went pony trekking at an animal farm which we booked ourselves, cheap and a short taxi drive away. We did'nt see Northern Lights which did'nt bother us, it would have been a bonus. There are no cabins near the Yllas Saaga Hotel, you would be in the other part of the village for them. One of our group found it a bit far to walk to hotel from cabin as they were having meals in their hotel.We were thinking of cabins first but really glad we did'nt. It was lovely to sit around the reception in the hotel by night and get to meet others also and chat.

Our hotel meals were very good, loads to eat for breakfast and also for dinner each evening. Self service so you eat as much as you need. We only took something very small to eat during day as we were'nt hungry after large breakfast. The Saaga Hotel just beside the ski slopes so really picturesque. You can hop on a bus to Akaslompolo or get taxi. Not much there either.

Would definitely love to go back to Yllas again. It was fantastic.

glasgow
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10. Re: help/info required for 2014 trip

We are off to Saariselka this Sun on the exact type of trip suggested by Poe. We usually travel independently so taking a package seemed weird but its only just flight, transfer and accommodation with all the hassle removed. Will do a trip report if that's helpful, we are staying in the log cabins and doing a few activities too. Interested to see if it feels like a package holiday or not!