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Log Cabin Holidays in Lapland: What to Know Before You Go

… This post is brought to you by Artisan Travel …

When I think about Lapland I think of snow, reindeer and a certain jolly fellow who keeps naughty and nice lists. Throw in beautiful scenery, northern lights, and both husky sled rides and reindeer sleigh rides and the holiday magic gets even better.

Lapland is still a travel dream for me, but when I dream that winter wonderland dream it never includes a hotel room. Instead the fantasy involves a cute cabin where it’s toasty and warm by the fireplace and I’m drinking something hot, and possibly spiced, as I snuggle in and watch the snow fall outside.

Lapland Log Cabin holiday in Harriniva, Image credit Antti Pietikainen

Lapland Log Cabin holiday in Harriniva, Image credit Antti Pietikainen

But as much as I love the idea of being in my own little snow covered bubble, I’m also quite partial to some of the conveniences that come with hotels and thought what a shame it was that we couldn’t have the best of both worlds.

How wrong I was.

I now know that there are some lovely log cabin holidays in Lapland where you can feel like you’re in your own little world in your cosy cabin one minute, and be in a hotel restaurant a few minutes later connecting with friends and family on the Wi-Fi.

But while some cabins are sprinkled around hotel buildings and share the facilities, you can also stay in some that are individually owned and so feel even more remote.

It’s fair to say Lapland is a choose your own adventure and cabin style type of place.

What are log cabins in Lapland like?

Big or small, simple or modern, log cabins in Lapland come in different sizes and styles.

You could choose to stay in a small traditional log-built cabin for two, or a large one that sleeps seven and has a huge kitchen and dining area to entertain even more.

Inside a cosy Lapland log cabin, image credit Antti Pietikainen

Inside a cosy Lapland log cabin, image credit Antti Pietikainen

Some will have modern interiors and bathrooms, others will have no bathroom at all.

That’s right, some Lapland log cabins that you can stay in have no showers, although you can get a good steam clean in the sauna, and the toilets are outside in the cold.

And forget the Wi-Fi password, these cabins don’t even have electricity.

I actually think that sounds like fun for a night. As in one. Which is why these wilderness cabins are best experienced as a single night in a package involving more nights with more creature comforts.

One of the best, not to mention easiest, ways to find the right sort of cabin for you is to talk to experts like the team at Artisan Travel who have been organising holidays in Lapland for more than 15 years.

They can explain exactly what your options are in a particular area and what you can expect when you walk through your cabin door.

And they’ve also been working with local operators and tour guides for years so you don’t have to worry about finding the best person to take you on a night safari to watch the northern lights, or to teach you how to snowshoe or go ice fishing.

What About Food in the Log Cabins?

If you’re organising your own trip then it’s best to check what facilities you have to cook with and to get some tips on where you’ll find the nearest market to buy ingredients.

But if you’re letting the Artisan Travel guys do the hard work for you, then there’s no need to worry about self-catering. Meals take place in nearby restaurants so there’s no cooking or cleaning involved.

Lapland Log Cabin holiday in Harriniva, Image credit Antti Pietikainen

Lapland Log Cabin holiday in Harriniva, Image credit Antti Pietikainen

Of course there’s nothing wrong with stocking up on local snacks and drinks to have back in the cabin, but there are no ‘should we try cooking reindeer meatballs for the first time tonight?’ conversations to be had.

Where To Stay in a Log Cabin in Lapland

While Santa and Mrs Claus are still keeping their location under wraps, there are some beautiful and remote parts of Lapland to explore, log cabin style.

Utsjoki is the northernmost part of Lapland where Finland meets Norway. It’s the only municipality with a Sami majority and as part of Wild Lapland it’s also where reindeer outnumber people.

Here you can stay in cabins that are part of a modern hotel run by a Sami family, snowshoe hike in the Sacred Valley, visit a reindeer farm and go on husky safaris.

Jeris is in the heart of Lapland with cabins on the edge of Lake Jerisjärvi. Decide which of the reindeer are most likely to be named Dancer and Prancer as you go on a three kilometre reindeer sleigh ride through the forest, and take part in a Northern Lights workshop so you’ll appreciate nature’s light show all the more.

Wilderness log cabin in Lapland, image credit Antti Pietikainen

Wilderness log cabin in Lapland, image credit Antti Pietikainen

Jeris is also nice and close to the Torassieppi Winter Village, which is where you can see traditional snow igloos, dine in an ice restaurant and find out how much you can warm up by drinking a hot, drink in a bar made of ice.

Then there’s Luosto. Luosto is also found in central Lapland, and is also where you can be whisked through the snow on a husky sled or a reindeer sleigh. But if you’re like me and love your crystals, then this is the place for you.

Luosto is also home to Europe’s only active Amethyst mine.

The Lampivaara Amethyst Mine is open right through winter, except for the 24th of December, and because there are no open roads with all that snow they have a special purple ‘snow train.’ The Amethyst Pendolino is more a heated wagon being pulled by a snow machine than a train, but it gets you up that hill to the mine where you can dig for your own amethyst.

Finding my own amethyst in the ground in mythical Lapland? If Santa’s getting into to the granting wishes game, that’s what I want for Christmas.

This post has been brought to you by Artisan Travel, who not only know where to find great log cabins in Lapland, but also organise flights, transfers, guided activities, meals and even cold weather clothing. Your luggage will thank you.

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