As a child, did you ever dream of jetting off to the Arctic Circle to meet Santa Claus? Millions of children would love to get the chance to take a trip to the North Pole but it’s also a great option for adults too.
With Finland, rather than the North Pole, home to Santa’s grotto there is plenty to see and do on Lapland holidays once you’re all grown up.
1. Searching for treasure
Did you know that the river valleys in Lapland actually contain gold? First discovered in the mid-1800s, Lapland was briefly the cause of a gold-rush.
If you’re lucky, once the rivers have thawed you might be able to get your hands on a nugget of your own. If you’re there in summer, the Finnish Open Goldpanning competition takes place in July at the Tankavaara Gold Village.
2. Seeing the northern lights
The Aurora Borealis, or northern lights as they’re more commonly known, are a spectacular phenomenon that causes flashes of green and blue light in the sky. Only found up north, legend would have you believe that the lights are caused by the tail of an arctic fox.
3. Exploring the culture
The Finnish Lapland might have a reputation for being home to nothing other than forests and Santa’s grotto, but Rovaniemi is a rather busy city. The town was destroyed in World War II but has been redesigned by architect, Alvar Aalto.
The Korundi House of Culture hosts exhibitions from local artists and the Lapland Chamber Orchestra.
4. Meeting a reindeer
Rudolph is perhaps one of the most famous reindeers in the world and in Lapland you’ll have plenty of opportunity to get up close and personal with these magnificent animals. Sleigh rides are a popular option with all ages and a great way to get in the Christmas spirit.
5. Taking a sauna
You might be more accustomed to the idea of a Swedish sauna but Finland is also home to saunas (pronounced “sow-na”) and they’re much hotter than those found in neighbouring Sweden. There’s even something of a rivalry between the two.
The sauna is embedded into the local culture, with one in every Finnish household. What better way to end your day in this cold paradise?
Santa might be Lapland’s most famous resident but there’s a lot more on offer from this spectacular region. These are just the top five reasons to visit, but there’s plenty more, including snowsports and fishing so why not discover what’s on offer yourself?
All Images © and used with permission from Cosmos Holidays