inghams lapland holiday

Our trip to Lapland – Immelmökit Cabin Review

As you know we visited Lapland just before Christmas and had the most amazing time. I was going to tell you all about it in a blog post, but because I have so much to tell you all I thought I would spread it out over a couple of posts and starting with a Immelmökit Cabin review.

Immelökit Cabin Review

We flew from Manchester Airport into Kittilä airport Finland. It was a 3 hour flight that left Manchester just over an hour later than planned, because of the unexpected snow we had in the UK that day. Amazing isn’t it that the day we are flying to Lapland to see the snow, the UK are having the first lot of snow of the winter.

I had packed the children up with various items to keep them entertained. We played cards and read books then they watched films on their iPads. To be honest they were both surprisingly well behaved. We all loved being able to look out of the window and watch the world go by. As we travelled towards the Artic Circle the more and more snow we could see.

Immelmökit Cabin Review

Arriving at Kittilä airport we got off the plane to be met by the friendly Inghams ski reps. They asked our names and told us which bus we would be getting on, we were on bus 8 which hadn’t arrived yet, but that was perfect because we then had to wait for our luggage to arrive from the plane.

Once we collected out luggage we made our way to the buses. Again greeted by the Inghams ski reps checking our names and letting us know which stop we would be getting off at. They also issued out our information packs that had an itinerary of our pre-booked activities and a map of levi centre. We were staying in the Immelmökit cabins, which was the first stop only 20 minutes away from the airport.

Even stepping out of the airport and seeing all of the snow was really amazing. But cold! It was the first time the children had really seen proper snow. Even the Hubby and I couldn’t believe how much there was. On the journey to our cabin we were all mesmerised by the fabulous scenery and the snow. Woodlands just covered in snow, then seeing the ski slopes lit up with skiers already enjoying their self’s on the slopes.

Immelmökit Cabin Review

Immelmökit Cabin Map

When we arrived at Immelmökit we were greeted by a couple more of the very friendly Inghams reps, we were issued with our cabin number. Collecting our luggage from the bus we made our way to our cabin, we were stating in number 13. Although it took us about 15 minutes to get the children to come to the cabin, they just wanted to play in the snow. Just outside out cabin was a massive pile of snow so it they could climb up it and slide down …. amazing.

When we managed to get the children inside, we had a good look around and found that we had space for 8 people. Two twin bedrooms an open plan kitchen and sitting area, toilet, wet room and sauna on the ground floor. Then an mezzanine floor with 4 single beds and a very low ceiling. The stairs up to the mezzanine were really quite steep, it was fine for us but if you had younger children they would be a hazard. I believe they offer stair gates to help with this, we however didn’t need to worry about them but it’s worth asking.

The living area had a table with stools that we moved around for mini coffee tables as we needed them. A sofa big enough for three people or four children however it wasn’t the comfiest, but fine for what we needed. Plus two high back arm chairs, that were much more comfy.  There was also a TV which had a great selection of Finnish TV, I always love watching children’s TV in a different language it’s all part of the of travelling abroad. Also there was a few English speaking channels if you have time to sit and watch it. There is also an open fire, we loved putting it on in the evenings not that we needed the extra heat as the cabins are lovely and warm, but because its just lovely. It’s all part of the idilic vision of staying in a log cabin during the snowy winter months. There is a wood store that you have access to, so you are able to collect your wood to use on the fire.

The kitchen area was well equipped with just about everything you could want. We had taken with us, tea towels, washing up liquid a dish cloth and bin bags as I had read that they didn’t include any of those items and the local super market was a bulk buy style so we wouldn’t use it all during the week. However I was surprised to see that most of these items were already waiting for us. There was a cooker, toaster, kettle, coffee machine (don’t forget your own paper filters) and a large fridge with small freezer section. Like the log cabin there is also a cabin that houses a washing machine which you have access to. We didn’t use it however should you need to wash anything its there but just remember to take some wash powder with you.

The bathroom area was a wet room style with a separate toilet area. In the toilet there was also a drying cupboard, which was perfect for putting all of the snow suits, hat, gloves, scarfs and base layers at the end of the day. The drying cupboard was brilliant, even on the couple of afternoons we went back for a couple of hours the clothing was dried before heading back out again. There was also a hair dryer in the cupboard to use. The shower was powerful, it got nice and hot so great for warming up after a day outside. Just off the shower area was a sauna, it was quite easy to work. Switch it on for 30 minutes before you want use it and make sure you have the cooker extractor fan on at the same time. It’s nice and easy to use and a great way to relax when the children are in bed.

Walking into Levi

As the Immelmökit cabins are a beautiful 10 minute walk outside of the centre of Levi. Such a stunning walk into the centre, over the lake, and although a lot of the walk is up hill, it was easily managed by us all. There are also very few cars on the roads so it was really safe for the children (and us) to play outside on the sledges. The first thing the children spotted was a sledge each sat waiting for them on the cabin porch. Everyone takes a sledge with them, just tie them up outside the shop or restaurant and collect them after. The generally rule seems to be if it isn’t tied up then you can take it. We used our to pull the children to and from the centre plus put any food items we bought on to pull back to the the cabin.

The cabins are also located really near to the lake which is a great place to walk to for Northern Light spotting as it is away from the light pollution from the centre and the ski slopes. It’s a place the we saw lots of organised groups going to try and see the lights.

I would highly recommend staying at the Immelmökit cabins, yes they are basic but they have anything you could want from cabin in Lapland. We will be going again and I cannot wait.

My top tips for making sure you are Lapland ready

When we first booked Lapland almost a year ago I read a lot about going to Finnish Lapland. Knowing that the temperatures would be colder than we had ever experienced. So making sure we knew what to take with us was essential. I have put together a my top tips for making sure you are Lapland ready.

How to dress

Layers, get those layers on. The temperatures can drop to -30 so you will need a base layer, a mid layer and an outer layer. I have bought us all thermal base layers, and in fact most of these came from Aldi during their ski week at the start of the year. Fleece tops for the mid layer and then included within the holiday package I added in our the snowsuits.

We made sure that the winter coats we bought were suitable for the snowy weather, for us to wear on the flights. I have bought the children snow boots, me and the hubby will be wearing our walking boots with an extra pair of socks to travel in. I also added snow boots to our holiday package when we booked it, so we will all be able to change into them when we arrive.

Socks, I have opted for ski socks for us all. Buying them from various places but Bridgedale kindly sent us some socks to take with us. They are alpine thermal ski socks, perfect for keeping your feet warm.

Cabin wear

All the reviews I read on the cabins we are staying in, and they all say they are really warm, so making sure you have light weight clothing with you. We are planning to just take our pj’s and onesies with us to wear in the cabin. Along with a couple of pairs of jeans and tops just encase we need them.

Accessories

So, not only do you need the basic hat, scarfs and gloves that you would use at home during the winter months. You will also need ski gloves, we have decided to for a light pair of wool gloves then a pair of ski mittens to go over the top for that extra layer to keep your hands nice and toasty warm. It also means that you are easily able to take off your mittens to do up your coat or pick something up while you are still keeping that of warmth on your hands. You will also need neck snoods or neck gaiters to help keep covered as much as possible and protected from the cold.

Believe it or not you will need sun glasses and sun lotion. Although it will be cold up on the mountains it can be sunny so stay safe and take some with you. Coola Sun Care kindly send us some items to take away to help keep us all sun safe while away. We might still buy the children some last minute ski googles to with us, but at the moment I have got their sun glasses ready to take.

We will be taking hand warmers and torches as they only have around 5 hours of day light during the winter months.

As I wear glasses and on occasion contact lenses, I was worried about my glasses either steaming up, freezing and me not being able to see. I then started to worry that my contact lenses would freeze to my eyes…. yeah I know crazy right! Well after doing a bit of research I found that using my contact lenses would be the best option.

Having read that the cabins wifi is very unreliable, we have just bought a little EE wifi puck to take with us. Although we are going to be out and about as much as possible, if the TV is not very child friendly, we will be able to watch things on their iPads if we need to. Plus I am able to do a bit of work if needed.

Food and Drink

From the people I have spoken to have said how expensive it is to eat out in Finland. As we do not have any food included within our trip, we plan to eat out quite a bit. However in Finland you are able to take food items with you in your suitcase. So we plan to take some basics with us, breakfast cereals, tea, coffee, snacks for the children just enough to keep us going and have something in the cabin.

I have read about the supermarkets selling items in bulk like dishwasher tablets or wash power, so I shall make sure we pack a few bits for just encase we need them.

Apparently the pizza’s in Levi are amazing, so that is one thing we will be trying out. Followed by some other local dishes, my Hubby is much more adventurous with foods than I am, so I am sure he will be trying whatever local items he can.

Flying to Finnland

Before we head away on 07:20 flight from Manchester airport we will be staying over at The Clayton hotel that also has secure parking. We shall travel up to Manchester the day before and enjoy a nice meal in the hotel before heading to bed early…. not sure I will be able to sleep I am just to excited. Plus we still haven’t told the children yet, so they are going to be so exited when we tell them, well I hope they will be.

On the flights, I shall be taking my beautiful Mia Tui flight bag, packed with all the essentials. Tickets, passports, snacks for the children, a book for me, wet wipes, a scarf and probably a range of other items I will not need but include anyway. Oh and make up… I shall be needing that.

I shall pack the children up an activity kit each, so they have some new bits to read and play with on the flights. My son will have a new book, a word search book, a magazine, also a drawing pad and pens. My daughter will have a colouring book, pens, a magazine, a book for us to read to her. They will both have a packet of sweets and we will be taking their headphones and iPads. All inside their own backpack, so they don’t fail out, along with a new blanket each and travel pillows. On the last flight we went on back in May we they both got a bit cold and would have benefited from travel pillows, so I thought I would get them one each.

My Hubby will also take a his back pack, again with a book, his reading glasses, snacks, and he will have everyones hat, scarfs and gloves.

Technology

Of course no holiday is complete without taking my camera and tripod. I will be taking an extra battery for my DSLR camera. I have read that with the temperatures getting down so low that the batteries do not last very long, so we shall be taking an extra one out and about with us at all times. Our iPhones batteries are also not expected to last very well, so I will also be taking my power banks with us. I just can’t bare the thought to missing out on some fabulous images. I shall also be taking my mac book so I can upload the photographs each night. The tripod will be coming with us for nights out in search of the Northern Lights.

I am so excited about going on this trip, it has been planned for the last year and will be a magical trip for our family.

If you can think of anything we will need for our magical trip to Lapland, please let me know.