I’m sure you’ve heard of the legendary North Pole before- the land of nothing but snow, ice, and Santa Claus. But did you know that the North Pole is actually two different points on earth? It’s true. There is the geographic North Pole, which is the northernmost point on the planet, then there is the magnetic north pole. The magnetic North Pole earns its name because of its literally magnetic nature, and its location is constantly changing. The geographic north pole, however, is a gorgeous wintery wonderland that you can actually visit. Just don’t forget your mittens.
Many do not associate the country of Finland with the term “the North Pole,” but in visiting the northern portion of Finland, you will see that they are quite the close to each other and the same in climate. Lapland, Finland stretches north all the way up to the northern Arctic Circle.
The capital of Finnish Lapland is a town by the name of Rovaniemi, the capital city. Rovaniemi’s location makes it unique, and allows it to offer many interesting activities to its visitors.
First, many people are surprised to learn that because the city is situated so far north, it actually experiences 8 different seasons rather than the normal 4. Each season has its own distinct temperature variations, natural phenomena and daylight hours. The 8 different seasons here are Christmas, Frosty Winter, Crusted Snow, Ice Break-up, Midnight Sun, Harvest, Colorful Autumn, and First Snowfall. Christmas is the most popular tourist season here, as thousands of people come to visit Santa Claus’ Village. June and July, when Deluxe Kosher Tours will be visiting Lapland, is during the Midnight Sun season. During this time, the days are very long (sometimes the sun doesn’t set at all) and the temperatures are mild. The lengthy, warm mild summer days attract many people out into
Rovaniemi’s terraces and street cafes.
Summertime is the perfect time for hiking, canoeing, and mountain biking in Lapland. You can visit a husky farm, and have the chance to feed reindeer right from your hand, too. Of course, there is nothing like participating in extreme sports in the Arctic Circle. The adventurous can participate in white water rafting, paintball, killer whale watching, king crab trapping, moose hunting, and fishing for the area’s famous “sea monster”- the wolf fish.
There are plenty of activities for families to do together in Lapland, too. Young children will enjoy visiting the Ranua Zoo, which is the world’s northernmost wildlife park. It offers the unusual opportunity to see many of the animals that live at the North Pole, such as polar bears. Over 50 different species of animals live here, and the summer is a great time to visit, since this is when you may be able to see many new bear cubs and other baby animals. Other great family attractions include Moominworld, a theme park based on the characters of the beloved Finnish author Tove Jansson, and Vaski Adventure Island, an adventure park that is designed to challenge kids intellectually.
Now I hope you’ve read enough to shatter some of your preconceived notions about the North Pole. There’s a lot more there than just snow and ice. Northern Finland is a beautiful place in both summer and winter, defined by its own unique seasons and fascinating attractions.