In Helsinki it was already -9°C (16°F), but at this place all the way up north, it gets even colder. Yesterday it was a freezing -17°C (1.4°F), but today I got welcome by tropical temperatures of -13°C (8.6°F). The coming days, it seemed, I would be in desperate need for some sunburn lotion!
It was barely 2:30 pm in this arctic place when the sun had already packed its bags for today. Rather strange, a place with so little daylight. But at the same time, the darkness makes this place even more beautiful!
Santa Claus Village in Rovaniemi
From the snow-covered airport it is only ten minutes driving to one of the most popular tourist attractions of Rovaniemi: Santa Claus Village!
The small village turns all of your frowns upside down and gets you right into the Christmas spirit. With barking and howling huskies in the background mixed with non-stop Christmas jingles it seems almost impossible to get ready for the jolliest time of the year!
There are many souvenir shops and of course the one and only ‘Santa’s post office‘ where you can send notes and cards to all friends, family and other beloved ones.
For €7.50 you can even surprise your friends with a letter of Santa Claus himself!
Definitely take a look at the cosy post office, and perhaps even send a letter yourself. At the back of the building, you’ll find a large closet with all of the envelopes still to be sent by Santa Claus. Poor man! I can’t believe he isn’t absolutely stressed out by the sheer amount of letters that lay there! Fortunately, the merry Christmas elves are helping him out, and many of them can be seen scattered throughout the village.
Once you head back onto the thick, snow covered paths, you can enjoy the beautiful Christmas lights, or just look at the reindeer rink. A dozen reindeer or so are glad to take everyone onto their carriage for a short ride around Santa Claus Village. Behind the reindeer rink you can find a hidden hut which belongs to the witch doctor or shaman. Do you want to experience one of his or her performances? Then don’t forget to make a reservation in advance!
If you can not get enough of all the cute Arctic animals, I recommend you to go look at the huskies. To only see the critters you have to pay €10, to be pulled further by them on a husky sled you pay according to the miles they cover. Not cheap, but very nice to do!
Just off the main square of Santa village you will also find the snowmobile museum and right in front of that, you can rent them for an active adventure in the snow.
Santa Claus of Rovaniemi
A visit to Santa Claus Village is of course not complete without shaking hands with the one and only Santa Claus!
Behind a giant snowman (he seems friendly, so I don’t think you need to be scared.) you’ll find the building where you can finally meet this dear man. After you wandered around a rotating path of corridors, which reveals some of the secrets of Santa, you only need to walk up the stairs to get some private time with the most famous bearded guy in the world. Did you also notice that the steps get more red the closer you get to Santa Claus?
Behind the imposing door you can then finally meet the big man with his huge belly. Shake his hand, give him a hug or ask him if he wants to be your new sugar daddy… Uhm … Oh yeah! and then of course don’t forget to smile when pictures are taken.
Making your own pictures is -of course- not allowed, because Santa Claus Village, after all, is a kind of amusement park. If you ant to capture your encounter with Santa Claus? You pay between €30 and €40.
For €40 you get all the photos and a video of your meeting which will be sent to you online. Very expensive, but also don’t forget you’re in one of the most expensive countries in the world
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Hi, I'm Sam Van den Haute. The last three years I've been traveling the world almost constantly. Heading out for an adventure and visiting the most beautiful places are what I love to do! Let me inspire you with great stories, beautiful pictures and handy tips from my adventures and travels. On my facebook page and instagram account you'll get to see the latest updates and photos to inspire you for your next vacation.