Got a good sleep then another awesome breakfast at Santa’s Village – no, I didn’t have the waffles 😛
Quick Facebook call to my Mum during breakfast – and a berating for lack of photos. Sheesh, be patient, you can wait ’til we’re home…or until we’re somewhere with a net connection that lets us do photo uploads at quicker than 50kb a second! 😛 Did a quick shop of a few things – t-shirts, teaspoons, the regular tourist swag!
Back to the cabin to pack up a bit then a trip to Santa’s Post Office for some exceedingly cool souvenirs – stamps, coins, first edition post marks 🙂 Then it was time to check out – which was really sad as this was the nicest place we’ve stayed, our favourite so far. The lady we dealt with, who we believe is one of the owners, was just amazing – she was really lovely. She gave us a parting gift too – some special tea! Really looking forward to trying it!
Then it was off to Kakslauttanen – and the glass igloo!
Trip there was uneventful – weather was good and we saw our first taste of sunlight since we’d been in Finland. Arrived a tad earlier than we planned – about 2:30. Front door to reception locked, but maps to the igloos and keys pinned to the noticeboard ready for us to take. Very trusting!
Parked the car (after realising we wouldn’t be able to get the car over the exceptionally tiny foot bridge leading to the igloos :-P) and grabbed only what we’d need for the night. The walk there was quite beautiful – everything was still covered in snow.
Got to the igloo – it was cozy and warm, enough room for the beds, some luggage and a small toilet & hand basin.
Dumped our stuff, put our devices on charge (as you do!) and then trekked back to reception…which had changed its “Open at 3:30pm” sign to “Open at 5pm”….nooooooo. The owner was there though and let us in out of the cold. Booked in for dinner (set three course meal) and paid the final 20 Euro we owed for the room. Was then time for a wander into town.
Tiny, TINY town. Their supermarket was a restaurant, department store, chemist, newsagent, laundromat, TAB and general store all rolled into one. Never seen anything like it. Grabbed supplies (chocolate!!!) and then back to the igloo until dinner.
Dinner was lovely – blue cheese salad for starter, with some kind of delicious fish for main and pancakes with lingonberry for desert. Also tried a berry cocktail – was super sweet but really nice!
9pm trudge to the igloo in the dark to see if we could spot some northern lights. I made it to 10pm, Alex was up until nearly 12. Even with the clear sky it was sadly not to be.
Up early again the following morning for pack up and checkout. Breakfast first at about 8:15 then on the road by 8:45 heading back to Rovaniemi on our way through to Umea!
Drive back to Rovaniemi was nearly uneventful, except for a) the reindeer who walked out onto the road that we actually got photos of (while on a Skype call to Alex’s Mum!) b) the convoy of about 15 Finnish army trucks heading north and c) the two fresh car wrecks on the side of the road, providing a warning that the roads can be deadly.
Stopped in at the fuel station opposite Santa Claus Village and filled up – also grabbed some travel snacks (huzzah, more candy!)…then quick stop across the road at Santa’s Village for a few more souvenirs 😛
Back on the road now with 500km to go until Umea 🙂 Next update, we’ll probably be in Trondheim – Norway, wooooooo!