Welcome to the new and improved Lapland UK. The new location is bigger, brighter and quite frankly better than ever before.
The arrivals hall is the just the tip of the festive iceberg, offering a vibrant, excitable atmosphere, filled with fairy lights and an air of magic. You're immediately transported to the gateway of the lapland experience where the children receive their passport and we all receive our 'briefing' from the elves, as only those special chosen are invited to enter Santa's private quarters. Luckily that included us, much to our children's delight, so off we set!
As soon as the doors to the magical world are opened, we split into our two teams (huskies and reindeers) to explore all that Lapland UK has to offer. First of all, the most important job of all, helping Santa's elves to prepare the toys, ready for delivery on Christmas Eve. A shortage of puppets and teddy bears this year, meant the children were immediately put to work and of course they were all only to happy to help. The elves were full of fun and boundless energy and seemed to enjoy themselves just as much as the children!
Next it was off to make gingerbread with Mother Christmas, who afterwards delighted the children with her own reading of the classic tale, The gingerbread man. The children, thoroughly enjoyed loading their biscuits with icing and sweets and then devouring every last mouthful.
We then had an hour and a half to enjoy the wonders of the main square, which is a true delight! The skating rink, the focal point in the middle, is beautifully lit with the shops and restaurants scattered around the outside. Snow-covered trees and scattered with fairly lights, it transports you to another world. The addition of real huskies and reindeers which the children can touch only adds to the Lapland UK experience . Here you can buy your Jingles, the local currency in Lapland UK and you'll need it if you want to explore the gift shop, eat in the restaurant or visit the coffee bar and don't forget to write your letter to Father Christmas here too!
Now it's time to meet the big man in red. You meet outside Santa's Grotto, where you resister upon your arrival and wait for your name to be written on the board. One of Santa's helpers or an elf, then takes you up to meet Father Christmas. You're taken through snow-sprinkled winding paths which lead up to Santa's log cabin.
You're dropped off outside then you wait, only for a few minutes but the children are bursting with excitement, we knock on the door, it opens. The huge wooden door to Santa's cabin is opened and the big man is sitting there waiting.
Father Christmas is armed with our pre-registered information and he's on top form, the children are mesmerised and absolutely loving it, luckily they're both on his 'good list' this year and they're talking at ten to the dozen.
The cabin is delightfully decorated, warm and looks like the real thing. We pose for a quick picture with Father Christmas, which is taken by one of his elves, unfortunately you're not allowed to take your own pictures inside the cabin and the minimum price is £10 for one picture, but it's worth it.
It's an occasion the children will cherish for the next few years and since LaplandUK has moved venues, it's perfectly organised, totally believable and a throughly worth while experience.
Ticket prices for LaplandUK 2013 range from £45-£75* per person depending on the date and time of your visit and exclude SEE Tickets’ booking fee. Book your tickets here.