We will be in Ruka for New Year - any tips re entertainment/whether it is necessary to book meals etc. would be gratefully received.
Did you enjoy it ???? we were there too - stayed at Ruka Suites - FAB - will go again - didnt want to come home yesterday....
Yes we were in Ruka Suites too, block D. This was our 2nd visit and we loved it again. I'd like to go again next year but I'll wait to see what the exchange rate is like - already toying with the idea of taking the kids out of school for a couple of days next December!
We were Block C - what a coincidence !!
Its our 3rd time skiing and we did more on our first day in Ruka than the other two holidays put together.
We probably passed you in the corridor !
Checked the prices to go last Sunday and it would have been a quarter of the price we paid for new year, doesn't it annoy you !!!!
If you go next year drop us a line on trip advisor.
Interesting that you thought Ruka was better than Yllas and Levi - in what way? Was it the number of slopes? It's just that other people who post on the Finland forum seem to rave about Yllas and Levi. We have considered going to one of the other resorts for a change, but I'm afraid of being disappointed if they don't match up to Ruka.
Our first time we went to Yllas we were ski virgins so didnt book skiing/trips till we got to resort. Arrived on xmas eve and dropped off in the woodland complete darkness in a logcabin - decided to venture out to find Akas hotel where the welcome meeting was at 8.30 the following day (xmas day !) took 1 hour to find it and 2 hours to get back to cabin as got completely lost - no torch or map and kids cold and crying...no one warned us. Got in at 2am.
Next day got to the meeting only to find no room in meeting room so had to stand in corridoor with about 20 angry people so didnt hear any of talks - then queued for 3 hrs to book skiing lessons and trips only to find dearer than booking in England. Rushed to get 11.30am bus to take us on 20 minute trip to slopes/hire shop at bottom of slope (we had not opened any presants or had breakast still) only to queue 2 more hours to get fitted with ski gear and get passes, by then really fed up. Got bus (crammed) back to hotel then to find way back to cabin again......xmas day was a disaster...log cabins too far from bus stop only to find on last day nearer bus stop 10 mins walk away !!! we could not get our bearings as went out at 8.30am for 10am lessons and back at 3-4 ish in the dark. Never saw our log cabin in the daylight. !
Slopes too far away,no storage/lockers, had to leave snow boots in ski base resturant in a corner with everyone elses... push n shove to get on bus to/from slope
Only a handful of resturants around but 1 hour walk from us, 1 supermarket again 1 hr walk, no night life.
We only skiied blue, no doubt if we went again might be different but too quiet there. Inghams reps were unhelpful - very young.
Levi - again log cabin 40 min walk to bottom of slope, all storage lockers at hire shop full so had to carry everything back and forth. Ski school didnt venture us out so didnt really get far so cant quote on the skiing up the mountain.
Only 3/4/ places to eat (cafes/bars) didnt have any night life although we use to be so tired after lugging 4 lots of kit back to cabin we use to stay in.
Hope this hasnt bored you but Ruka to me was far far better - no doubt there will be better places to go and Levi and Yllas might suit you but we wont go back again.
Maybe in Yllas a hire car would be the answer.
Levi - every hotel seemed a good walk away and the holiday brocures nwvwe tell you the real distances....
Thanks for that - think we'll stick to Ruka. Know what you mean about welcome meeting/initial ski/boot hire. It was a rush in Ruka last year to get to welcome meeting/sit through it cos reps wouldn't give out the pre-booked vouchers till the end/ get kitted out in time for 10.00am ski lesson. But the reps (Crystal) seem to have listened to comments re the above as this year it was a lot better organised - they gave out the vouchers at the start of the welcome meeting which we didn't bother to stay for - so we went straight to the hire shop and beat the rush. Anyway as it turned out, the first lesson was arranged for 11am. Although I'm not a very good skier - only blue runs for me, husband and kids persuaded me to get the chairlift up in the mornings and ski down what we called the Ski Bistro run to avoid using the ski bus. We did the reverse in the evenings too. Shame the local bus company couldn't put on an extra bus at really busy times - that would be my only suggestion for improvement. Just hope Ruka doesn't get too busy when Ruka Village is ready.
Sorry to bother you again,Jocelyn, but how did Ruka compare to Levi and Yllas from the point of view of scenery - was it just as picturesque? Are the other places as built up as Ruka? Is Ruka more or less commercialized? Do Levi and Yllas seem more like the "real" Lapland? Or is there no difference?
Scenery wise Ylläs is a more "Lappish" place with virtually no trees on the fell.
Levi has grown a lot recently with new hotels and Levi Plaza square being opened. Levi centre and Ruka pedestrian village are rather similar by their initial idea (a compact village centre with hotels, cafes and restaurants within walking distance).
Yllas was very very quiet and un commercialised but told that it will expand over the net 10 years. But going for the christmas period would be no different than going new year. It was nice to see the log cabins all lit up and candles out side and we did call it magical but nothing to do at all. Food expensive £10 a glass of wine. Meal for 4 - burger and chips £70 - not really any different to prices in Levi and Ruka.
Levi bigger town than Ruka but can walk round the gift shops in half hour (about 4 of them in all). Apart from eating in a hotel we only found about 4 place suitable to eat with the kids. Building work going on to be built up more though.
Scenery in Yllas was beautiful round the cabins and the vast lake was a lovely view - people skating, sledding, skidooing on it and a lot of cross country routes. Cant say from the mountain because only went up 1/3rd of the way on one side.
Levi again only really viewed town area but did take a bus ride round the other side and went up a gondola which is where they should have held some olymics the Nov before but not enough snow so it was cancelled. View from top lovely but probably same as top of Ruka fell.
We have skidooed at all 3 resorts and found thats the way to experience the sights. Best to go out in the daylight though as the night rides are pointless really - never seen the Northern Lights either.
I looked at the Levi and Yllas ski runs today and realized that if we had have been more outgoing we could have done a lot more like we did in Ruka.
Did you go up the chair lift opposite Ruka Suites and down blues to Ski Bistro and then come back via blues to Suites or did you bus back every time ??
Some friends of ours broke down on the H cable car for 1.5 hrs and had to be hoisted off by the firemen and warmed up before they could leave. It was on the local news in Ruka - glad that wasnt me. We had gone round to return home that day (Fri) and saw it closed and we all went up to the top of the fell to come down a red run in front of Ruka Suites and I bottled it - kids came down and I was going to bus but then noticed the closed cable car and tbars had reopened (the same day they broke down) so went that way back - my hubby was mad with me for not trying but I would have froze with fear if I did try to go down it. The slope was the one which we climbed up on new years eve and stood watching the candle display - I had to come down on my bum then....
Bye for now
Thanks for the info re Levi and Yllas. Still think we'll go for Ruka again for next year (cash permitting!)
I only went back to Ruka Suites on the ski bus on one night - the night the chair lift broke. Also glad we weren't on it when it broke as we had used it a lot. Husband and children got the 6 person chairlift up and went down the red run but I refused to try the red run and got on the bus at 5.00. Just after I got on, my husband rang me to say the TBar had reopened, but it was too late.
Oh also had to get the bus back on Sat night as had given skis/boots back to hire shop.
My favourite slopes were the Maston slopes which the ski instructor took us on (I had beginners lessons again). Did you go on these? they were virtually deserted. To get to them you went on the tbar to the left of the 6 person lift and then skied across the blue slope, through the trees to 2 wide blue runs with a button lift. Had a lesson on New Year's Day but was the only member of my group to make it - the rest were hungover so I basically had a private lesson.