Reviews Scandinavia


A Cosy Cottage by the River

Finland first captured our hearts when we visited Santa Claus Holiday Village back in the winter of 2016.  Since then we’ve longed to return to this beautiful wintry wonderland to see more of Finnish Lapland’s natural beauty.  In winter the lakes freeze and pine trees bend and sag under the load of heavy snow.  Just as we fell in love with Italy a few years ago, we are now falling for Finland.  So, why did we choose A Cosy Cottage by the River for our first holiday of 2019?  After a couple of days in Ruka for the girls to ski, and for a few excursions with Rukapalvelu Safarihouse; we simply wanted a secluded cottage in a quiet location to chill out and take time to ourselves.  And A Cosy Cottage by the River is exactly that…secluded and quiet!

A Cosy Cottage by the River

Built in 1987 this riverside property had a full refurbishment in 2015 and it has been catapulted into the 21st century.  As with all Finnish homes, you’ll find lots of wood, primarily pine and lark.  A Cosy Cottage by the River is exactly as described; it’s cosy, it’s a cottage and it’s just 20 metres from the River Raudanjoki.  In a great location with spectacular views, 20 seems to be the magic number.

  • Santa Claus Holiday Village and Santa Claus Village – 20 km (20 mins drive)
  • Ounasvaara Ski Resort – 20 km (20 mins drive)
  • Rovaniemi Town Centre – 20 km (20 mins drive)
  • Petrol station, supermarket and takeaway (kebabs, pizzas, burgers) – 17 km (17 mins drive)

As the location is isolated, a car is required to get to the cottage.  There’s no public transport to the property (nearest bust stop 2 km away).



Check in at A Cosy Cottage by the River is from 16:00, check out is before 12:00 (noon).  Turning off the main road onto a very long lane which is shadowed by pine trees.  Outside the accommodation we were warmly greeted by our host Samuli and his beautiful (and well trained) Scottish Setter dogs.  Samuli introduced himself and then gave us a full rundown of entering the property (locks, keypad).  Once inside, a guided tour of the property and an explanation of the working of the tv, chromecast, wifi password etc…very thorough and detailed.  Lily-Belle and Matilda were very disappointed as they hoped the pups would be allowed to stay!



A small porch with hanging space for coats, plus a tall heater-dryer.  Plenty of space for shoes (shoes must not be worn in the house).

Dining Room

Open plan lounge-diner.  A glass topped dining table and 6 chairs in the dining area.  Lamps and candle holders create the mood lighting.


In the lounge a comfy sofa, chair and pouffe, and a glass fronted fire.  In the corner a small heater and a rocking chair with warm throws.  Tech: TV, DVD, CD, Chromecast and WiFi throughout.


Just off from the lounge is the small but adequately fitted kitchen.  Of course there’s the usual kitchen utensils and appliances such as a microwave, fridge-freezer, toaster, coffee machine etc.  We were on our holidays so didn’t frequent this area too much (if you get what I mean…takeaways).

Bedroom 1

Large double bed with bedside cabinets and lamps.  Large wardrobe with plenty of coat hangers and hanging space.

Bedroom 2

A little smaller than bedroom 1.  Double bed with a chair and bedside lamps, hanging rail but no wardrobe.


As you’d expect; a toilet with a wash hand basin.  There’s also a washing machine with cleaning products stored (mop, brush etc).


Shower room (almost like a wet room) with a door which leads directly to the rear of the property which is where the hot tub is located.


As with a lot of Finnish properties, a fantastic indoor sauna (electric).


Sleeping Loft area with small sleeping room (mattress on the floor?) and sofas that we assume pulled out into beds.  Low pitched ceilings so be careful not to crack your head.  Daddy found out the hard way!

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Hot tub (a firm favourite with The Callaghan Posse), bbq hut, sauna hut, a large decked area and a very well-stocked woodshed.  Great in Winter but I’d imagine this property would come into its own in the Spring, Summer and Autumn with romantic riverside walks and treks through the forests.  But for us, Winter wins every time!


As well as exploring the lovely pine forests or roaming the snow-covered land, there’s plenty to keep little ones occupied.  At the property there’s plastic sleds and fantastic kick sleds to avail of in the winter.  Lily-Belle and Matilda had hours of fun going up and down the long lane on them.  In winter the frozen river makes a great playground and is the perfect vantage point for Seeing the Northern Lights.  Of course there’s the superb hot tub for those wishing to relax and admire the frozen landscape.  The hot tub was relatively quick to fill (60-90 minutes), and took a little over 5 hours to heat (it’s winter and it’s -28°C).  There’s also board games and books.  As our stay was only for 2 nights we didn’t use the indoor/outdoor sauna or the bbq hut…but we will next time!



Although the property is only 67 m2, what it lacks in size it more than makes up for in ‘character and charm’.  Floors throughout are all wooden (painted) for ease of cleaning.  All in all the property is surprisingly spacious, spotlessly clean and more than adequate for 6 people…fresh, modern and very homely.  It’s seriously very difficult not to fall in love with A Cosy Cottage by the River.  And the sunsets and sunrises are out of this world!


Before snow could settle on your head, yes we would….in fact, we’ve already booked to return in 2020.  The beautiful modern cosy cottage is set in a stunning location.  Being in close proximity to Rovaniemi and Santa Claus Holiday village, makes A Cosy Cottage by the River the perfect base camp.  Outside hot tub, kick-sleds, a secluded and peaceful location…did we mention a hot tub.  Book this fantastic AirBnB property and you won’t be disappointed.

With a very special THANK YOU to:

  • Anna and Samuli – for your exceptional warmth and kindness.

We are very grateful to you for your warm welcome and for allowing The Callaghan Posse to stay in your beautiful Cosy Cottage by the River.  Looking forward to returning in 2020.

The cottage was really modern and beautiful and located right beside a frozen river.  The hot tub took quite long to heat up but was definitely worth the wait.  The plastic sleds and kick-sleds were so much fun and I really enjoyed using them.  I would definitively return to this cottage.

The snow was really deep and I had lots of fun on the kick-sleds with Lily-Belle.  We saw the Northern Lights which was really good.  The hot tub was too hot so Daddy put in snow to cool it down which was funny.

Travel Itinerary

AirBnB:  visit Airbnb and search for A COZY COTTAGE BY THE RIVER – NOTE: cozy with a Z
Location:  just 20 mins from Santa Claus Holiday Village
Pricing:  we paid £115 per night (from €110 to €130 per night, price depends on season)
Price Includes:  entire cottage (sleeps 6), all linen/towels, use of hot tub, sauna, bbq, sleds and kick-sleds.
Date(s) of visit:  6th March – 8th March 2019 (3 days / 2 nights)

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A Cosy Cottage by the River in Rovaniemi








Information, currency and prices are correct at the time of publishing.

Views, opinions and experiences are that of The Callaghan Posse and are correct at the time of publication.
Photos, unless credited, are taken by The Callaghan Posse for use and distribution by Around The World In 18 Years.
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  • Reply
    Invisibly Me
    13th May 2019 at 17:38

    What an utterly incredible, idyllic place. And so sweet to be greeted by those beautiful Scottish Setter dogs (that alone would make my day!) You have lovely photos 🙂

    • Reply
      Around The World In 18 Years
      13th May 2019 at 21:39

      Hi Carol, ‘idyllic’ and ‘incredible’ A Cosy Cottage is definitely that and more. Our girls wanted to bring the lovely setters home, they had a lovely temperament (the dogs, not the girls lol). Having a mad Cocker Spaniel already is plenty enough, and I’m fairly certain Samuli wouldn’t have parted with them for all the tea in China. Thank you for the photo compliment, very much appreciated. Have you ever been to Finland? 🌏 ✈️ ❤️

  • Reply
    9th April 2019 at 01:03

    Lovely to be close to nature and spend time with family.

    • Reply
      Around The World In 18 Years
      14th April 2019 at 18:50

      Thank you. Indeed it is. We’re just back from a cruise on the River Thames and the natural beauty of the countryside and abudance of wildlife really made us appreciate the beauty of the world. 🌏 ✈️ ❤️

  • Reply
    4th April 2019 at 14:37

    Oh wow this cottage sounds and looks insane!! I’m very jealous and this and your last post makes me want to visit Finland so much more now! Thank you for sharing 🙂

    • Reply
      Around The World In 18 Years
      4th April 2019 at 15:32

      Hi Millie, thanks so much. That’s what we want from our blog posts, for people to want to visit the places we write about for themselves. You really must put Finland on your list, especially for winter travel as that’s when it looks magical. 🌏✈️❄️😘

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