Fancy a trip to Lapland, but don’t have a clue when to go, where to stay or what to pack? Fear not – we’ve picked the brains of our Lapland team to find out the most commonly asked questions when it comes to Lapland holidays.
The result? An A-Z of answers to frequently asked questions covering everything you need to know if you’re thinking of heading north. We’ve split it up into 4 sections to spread across the week. Today, we’re covering off the letters A to E…
Q: When is the best time to see the Northern Lights?
A: The Northern Lights – or Aurora Borealis to give them their proper name – are the result of atmospheric gases colliding with charged particles from the sun. You need a clear night sky to see them, so September to April – when the nights are longer – is the best time to go hunting. There’s said to be more solar activity around the equinoxes in September and March, but the clearer – and darker – skies are between December and February. Lapland is said to experience these dancing light shows around 200 times a year, so although sightings aren’t guaranteed, you’ve got a pretty good chance. Saariselka’s an ideal place to base yourself, as it’s the northernmost resort.
Q: Where is Lapland?
A: Lapland is up in the north of Finland, sandwiched between Russia, Sweden and Norway. It borders the Gulf of Bothnia, which is the most northerly finger of the Baltic Sea.
Q: Is Lapland a good choice for couples?
A: In a word, yes. Lapland is a great choice for a holiday with your other half – you’ve got skiing, sledging, snowmobiling and loads of other outdoor sports to try, not to mention romantic walks in the snow, candlelit dinners, cuddling up by roaring fires, sauna sessions for two… If you’re more of a city-break person, have a look at the Thomson Bare Essentials For Adults package – it gives you 3, 4 or 5 nights to explore the shops, bars and restaurants in lively Rovaniemi.
Q: How many hours of daylight can we expect?
A: Thanks to its extreme northern location – most of Lapland sits within the Arctic Circle – daylight hours are as varied as… well… night and day. In the height of summer, Lapland never truly gets dark – you’ll see the midnight sun instead. Around December, there are only 4-5 hours of daylight a day. Having said that, darkness hours aren’t all pitch-black – there’s a blue-ish polar light instead.
Q: What family activities can we do in Lapland?
A: There are loads of things for families to do in Lapland. Little ones can make Christmas decorations, attend Elf School, decorate cookies and stop by a Lappish storytelling session, while older kids will love sleigh rides, snowmobiling and snowshoeing. Everything’s set up so that mum and dad can join in, too. You can make the most of the white stuff with snowball fights, tobogganing and snowman building, and of course, meet Santa himself while you’re here. And depending on which hotel you stay in, you might also have things like indoor pools and kids’ parties.
Want to know where you can meet Santa in Lapland? Or what the best age is for kids? Take look at The A-Z of Lapland Holidays: F to M, tomorrow.
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Author: Laura Weeden
Published: November 25, 2013
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