Åre in Sweden – A Ski Holiday in Scandinavia to see the Northern Lights

by Scandinavian mum

Åre, named by Conde Naste as one of the world’s ten best ski-resorts, offers excellent snow and world class skiing. But what really sets Åre apart from other ski destinations is its quaint village nestled below the slopes; with a picturesque square surrounded by traditional wooden houses with hotels, shops and restaurants.

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A weekend escape to Winter and Norefjell, Norway

by Scandinavian mum

Winter Wonderland might be just a bit closer than what you think it is. Norefjell is a mountain area and ski resort, a beautiful piece of Scandinavia and one of its kind, situated just an hour outside the Norwegian capital. Family friendly, or perfect as a romantic getaway. Whatever you choose you are sure to experience a something rather special.

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Little Scandinavian goes on holiday -for the weekend!

by Scandinavian mum

Soon off on a mini break and it’s actually only me that’s going on holiday, with theScandinavianDad and the two Little Scandinavians staying at home in London, busy baking Christmas cookies and attending Christmas Fairs. I on the other hand will not be doing any cooking or fairs over the coming days as I’ll be traveling to a SPA hotel in Norway. It’s snowing as we speak and the ski lifts are planned opened on Saturday. Meanwhile I’m very happy to try out the SPA facilities, the fitness centre, the swimming pool, the climbing wall or just go for a mountain hike in completely unspoilt Scandinavian nature. Followed by gourmet dinner in the restaurant and perhaps a glass of red in front of the crackling fireplace? Both the Advent Calendar and the daily post will go ahead as usual. With wifi at the hotel, if you see me online on Facebook or Twitter, will you be so kind to ask me to log off!?

© Estatia Resort, Norefjell
Where: Quality Spa & Resort Norefjell, Boeseter, Noresund 3536, Norway. Special offer now 2 nights for 4 people, breakfast not incl. 2.580NOK (£286)
How to get there: London – Oslo Airport Gardermoen with Norwegian, SAS or British Airways. (Prices from £39 each way, my return ticket was £110 with Norwegian, booked a month ago.) It’s approx 1 1/2 hours by car or take the direct hotel bus from Oslo Airport Gardermoen to Quality Spa & Resort Norefjell.

Skiing with kids! The family ski holiday guide!

by Scandinavian mum

Planning a family ski holiday this winter? Here is our quick guide, on how to keep your children dry, warm and happy out in the snow by dressing in layers. And also a few general recommendations on how to get the most out of skiing with children.

How to dress your child in the cold Nordic winter climate
Layer 1 – thermal or wool underwear, long sleeved t shirt and leggings are the base layer worn next to the skin that regulates the body temperature.
Layer 2 – Wool or microfleece pants and top as extra insulation under an outer layer. We recommend roll neck top. We sometimes ad an extra wool jumper on top when the temperature drops below -10.
Layer 3 – Ski pants (salopettes) and ski jacket. This should be 2 or 3 layered water and wind resistant.

Helmet: Essential, many resorts won’t allow children in the slopes without a helmet.
Ski Goggles: for both skiing and sledging.
Snow Boots: Buy Goretex or wind and waterproof boots. Wear ski socks or thin wool socks inside.
Hat: Make sure the hat covers the ears. For younger children we recommend balaclava also to go underneath the ski helmet.
Buff: A tube of seamless microfibre material, is a multifunctional headwear that can cover the neck, face and head.
Gloves: Mittens instead of gloves as they are warmer. The mittens should cover the wrist and be wind and waterproof.
Ski socks: Provides support and are thin allowing space in the ski boot, for toes to move and keep warm.

Babies and toddlers should not go outside if colder than -10. Don’t apply any cold cream as it’s proven not to be any benefit. Use the buff instead over the face to protect tiny noses and chins. With only a few minus degrees or milder temperatures remove layer 2, as the active children can get too warm.
Please note that this information is based on our experience. And feel free to ask if any questions!

The pictures are from a ski trip to Trysil in Norway in 2008. This “winter wonderland” is located only 2,5 hrs drive from Oslo and it’s one of Norway’s largest and most popular ski resorts, offering 66 slopes in four areas. Stay in a hotel or like we did -a rented ski in ski out chalet. The resort is focusing especially on families offering creche, ski school, children’s slopes and lots of fun family activities throughout the winter.

Skiing with your children is a true joy. But we also do recommend ski school for the children to learn technique and safety in the slopes and to make new friends. Many resorts also have children’s creche in the slopes where they play both indoors and outdoors.

When skiing with children make sure you have a break now and then. To warm up, have some food and a hot drink and play a bit in the snow. It’s all about having fun together.

Warm children would like to stay out in the snow -all night if they would have been allowed to…

© Little Scandinavian