Last weekend was the opening weekend of Lapland UK for 2016. We decided to visit as N is now of the age to appreciate all of the activities there. In the lead up to our visit N received a lovely letter in the post complete with a seal (I’m a sucker for seals on letters), N was given his letter and read it with very little reaction until he got to the end where he looked up with masses of excitement in his eyes. In the FAQ’s they say your tickets will arrive in the package with your letter, they didn’t instead it was a printout of your email confirmation that served as our tickets. I would have liked to have proper tickets to complete the experience.
The Day Arrives
After parking up the car and swapping shoes for boots, we wandered following signs for the Enchanted Forest. Oddly as we got to the entrance there was a strong smell of pine, I’m not sure if that was a coincidence or that was a purposeful addition. At the check-in desk they greet N, which he’s very surprised about. We were put in the Reindeer group and given an Elf Passport. On the back of the passport was a time, I wrongly assumed that was the end time of our experience, it’s actually the time for you to start heading to Father Christmas.
Not to give too much away, there is a lot of story and build up to the day. I loved the fact you are walking through forests and when you go through the doors into ‘Lapland’ there is suddenly snow. There are so many lovely touches to this experience, the children walk through small doors into buildings while the adults go through bigger doors.
In the toy factory the children build two toys to help the elves, N loved building the wooden toy as it was like building a 3D puzzle and the fact at each section you get a stamp in your elf passport.
My favourite place was Mother Christmas’ kitchen, I thought it was lovely that all of the children were told a story about gingerbread and asked to leave gingerbread out for Father Christmas and then went off to decorate their own gingerbread men. To then be read a story by Mother Christmas.
After Mother Christmas you are free to explore the village, you are given about 90 minutes before your time to head to Father Christmas. We took a look around the shops, and sent another letter to Father Christmas (thanking him for inviting him to Lapland) before heading to the ice rink. Surprisingly N loved being on the ice and has asked to be taken ice skating again. The village is beautiful in the dark with all of the lights on, I’m very glad we got the time we did as we arrived while it was still light but saw the village in the dark.
When our time came to start our way to Father Christmas, we went down the path and came across real reindeers. There is also another shop to buy reindeer food (for Christmas Eve) and golden bells for the special elves in your life.
When you visit Father Christmas, he mentions all of the things that you have been asked questions about during your booking. Its great as you can see in their eyes that they really don’t understand how he knows so much about their lives. Father Christmas is holding in his hands the Good List which after searching for a few seconds but I’m sure felt like a lifetime to N happily pointed out N’s name. Father Christmas then asked if it was ok to give N an early Christmas present and handed over a beautiful Husky. Which hasn’t left N’s side since he received it.
Overall, I loved the experience. There were a few negatives for me I would have liked to have real tickets just to complete the experience and I would have liked to have got a small gift from Father Christmas, some of us adults are still children at heart too. So really my negatives are tiny in comparison to how much we all enjoyed the day, N has spoken to anyone who will listen to him about his day at Lapland.