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Dadventurer does Santa's Village, Lapland, on a Budget

A couple of grand each for a 4 day holiday - are you flippin' kidding me?! That seems to have been the going rate to go see Santa in Lapland but does it really have to be?


Visiting the Santa village in Rovaniemi, Lapland had been on our bucket list for ever - way before we had children! We finally managed to do it, at peak "believer" age for our kids; Isla, 7 and Finley, 5. It was truly amazing! When we've looked into it before the package costs have been up to £10 000 ($18 000 Aussie). We found that by avoiding the heavily advertised package holidays on the first 16 pages on a Google search we could save heaps! We booked flights and accomodation (right in the santa village!) separately and we crossed our fingers that there'd be no massive surprise costs when we arrived.


Check out the (hastily editted!) video below to see some of the highlights of the trip.



Flights

Easyjet fly from Manchester, UK, to Rovaniemi (5 mins taxi ride from the santa village) every week on a Tuesday and Saturday. We picked the cheapest available option during the festive timeframe we were interested in which turned out to be during the last week of November - perfect to get the festive feels started! Flights cost us less than £500 ($900 Aussie) for our family of 4. On other weekends, flights were up to £900 ($1620 Aussie). There were comparible priced flights from other UK airports.


We're not sure why this weekend was so reasonable, options both before and after were heaps more expensive. We found out on arrival that this weekend was actually the grand opening of the winter season, complete with festival and concert introducing some special guests (Spoiler alert: Santa, Mrs Clause and a bunch of elves!).


Mumventurer Tip: Laura (mumventurer, wife, and travel planner!) sets price alerts on google flights to let us know when they drop below a certain price... Very useful when you're planning plenty in advance. And Google flights lets you compare all dates at once if you've got the flexibility built in to your travel.


Accommodation

We were happy to get some accommodation in the nearest city, Rovaniemi, where there's plenty of options for a sensible price and there's some really cool alternatives with potential Aurora Borealis viewing windows and all that if you have too many dollars weighing down your wallet. But when we had a proper look, the cabins in the Santa's Village itself were a really good price, just less than £350 ($630 Aussie) for the family, Thursday through to Saturday. Including Brekkie, loan sledges and built in sauna, so we bloody booked that one, and it was ace!


Extras

That dynamite flight and accom bundle left plenty of room in the budget to do a few things we may never again have the chance to do living in the tropical North of Australia! Huskies, reindeers, snowmobiles, weird lappish food, Santa. Pretty much it, right? While there we did almost everything we wanted to and, though expensive, we never really broke the bank and even with all the extras thrown in - didn't get near to those crazy package prices we'd seen before.


Here's a run down of some of the extras with a rough price guide to give you an idea of what to expect for a family of 4:

Free Plastic sledge hire

£25 ($45 Aussie) Reindeer feeding

£50 ($190 Aussie) Walking reindeers (like, on a leash)

£30 ($55 Aussie) Reindeer sleigh ride

£25 ($45 Aussie) Fire cooked salmon meal for the family in the cool teepee

£300 ($550 Aussie) Husky sled ride (couple of hours at night trying to get a glimpse or the Aurora Borealis)

£50 ($90 Aussie) Husky Park

£60 ($100 Aussie) Meal for the family in one of the fancier restaurants

£15 ($25 Aussie) Snowmobile Ride (kids only as there hadnt been enough snow yet for the big ones)

Free Santa visit

£20 ($35 Aussie) Gift from Santa (nice selection of soft toy, pen, wearable antlers, etc)

£30 ($50 Aussie) Downoaded photos (&video) of our santa visit

£4 ($7 Aussie) Sending Postcards internationally with the cool arctic circle post mark


The whole trip, including a little souvenir shopping, cost us less than £2000 ($3600 Aussie) & its worth noting that you could leave out some of the trips or extras you're not too fussed about and still have a great time. We loved just exploring the village on sledges and checking out the playgrounds, sledding hills and incredible snowy scenery! I would strongly recommend booking your own flights and accomodation for your Santa village trip - the whole experience was super simple so we found no reason to regret ducking those crazy expensive tours!



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