– photo by Visit Rovaniemi, the local tourist board of the Rovaniemi region in Lapland, Finland
Lapland is Finland’s northernmost province and makes up almost a third of the whole country. The area is sparsely populated and there are more reindeer in Lapland than people. The regional capital is Rovaniemi, the Official Hometown of Santa Claus. Rovaniemi’s most famous resident can be visited every day of the year in Santa Claus Village, an amusement park right on the Arctic Circle.
The village is now one of the most visited sites in Finland, receiving over 300,000 visitors each year and people visit even in winter when the temperatures are below freezing. For small children, visiting Santa and his reindeer is a magical experience, and it is a highly sought-after spot for adults to spend their Christmas holiday or honeymoon.
For hundreds of years, Lapland has shared folklore of early Santa-like figures. Inspired by the Norse god Odin, a figure known as the Yule Goat (which is what Santa is still called in Finland to this day) was said to deliver gifts on Midwinter’s night. Small creatures known as tonttu would also later become Santa’s elves.
Lapland is also one of the best places to view the Northern Lights, go on a reindeer sleigh ride or visit a reindeer farm, go dog sledding or play with the cute husky dogs.
Follow our blog for your daily dose of travel inspiration, information and tips. We try to publish atleast one article each day. Check this space for all the latest posts.