15 km from the Rovaniemi city centre, lies this the official hometown of Santa! The world recognises Rovaniemi as the place where Santa Claus resides, Christmas is the theme year-around! And now that we are already into the last month of the year, there can’t be a more appropriate time to present before you the fairytale-like amusement park located on the Arctic Circle line in the Finnish Lapland. From its attractive adornment in the striking red Christmas theme to the music of soft Christmas carols playing in the village premises year-round, Santa Claus Village in Rovaniemi charms every visitor.
Winter is a different story altogether here in the Santa Claus Village! The Christmas mood, beautiful lights and decor – which is even prettified by the Arctic darkness that engulfs the region for most of the winters, the hues of Northern Lights around and arctic wildlife pulling the sledge everywhere make Santa Claus Village such picture-postcard location in winter. Reindeer Farm, Santa Claus Office, Arctic Circle Main Post Office, Martini Knife Store, some authentic souvenir shops, Santa Igloo, and a restaurant serving the popular Lappish delicacies, make for the major highlights of the village. Having said that, allow me to take you on a virtual tour of the most visited place in Lapland during winter.
Here are some of the coolest & most popular things to do in the Santa Claus Village in Rovaniemi!
1. Meet Santa Claus in his office
9 am to 7 pm is the window for anyone who plans to seek an audience with Santa. It’s one of its kind experience for everyone who is planning to see him in his office. Right from the vibrant and colourful grab of Santa to the entire Christmas theme of his office, it all looks straight out of some fancy fairytale. There are Santa’s elves to assist every tourist and click their photos and record their videos which can be purchased after paying for the digital/hard copy. It must be noted that carry own phone/camera is prohibited during the meeting with Santa Claus.
There are plenty of souvenirs shops in the arcade area around the Santa Claus office main building.
2. Cross the Arctic Circle Line
66°33′46.3″N is the latitude that marks the Arctic Circle, and it cuts right through the Santa Claus Village. Right in front of Santa Claus office, the Arctic Circle line can be seen marked through the properly marked columns.
In the Finnish tradition, it is believed that jumping cross the Arctic Circle line is auspicious and every tourist must do it once during their visit to Rovaniemi.
3. Watch Northern Lights from a Santa Glass Igloo
Rovaniemi is known for some of its fanciest stays in the world. The fact that Rovaniemi boasts of nature in abundance makes the stays amid it even more dreamy. Some of the lovely stays that visitors mostly book for accommodation in Rovaniemi are treehouse hotels, ice hotel, and the most popular one being glass igloo. The reason why glass igloo is a craze during winter in Rovaniemi is that its transparent roof offers uninterrupted views of the magical Northern Lights when it gets dark.
Santa’s Glass Igloos are perfectly located in the Santa Claus Village and they offer some of the fanciest stays in Rovaniemi. Getting a booking slot in winter months can be difficult. It is therefore advised to make bookings at least a month or two in advance.
4. Send a Christmas post-card to a relative from the Arctic Circle Main Post Office
Arctic Circle Main Post Office is another pretty and unique place in the Santa Claus Village located closest to the entrance of the village premises. The post office is nicely done up in Christmas theme year-round with elves attending to all the tourists visiting the place. There are plenty of postcards and envelopes that you can send to your near and dear ones with the coveted Arctic Circle seal & stamp on it.
The best gift from Santa Claus Village that you can send to anyone. It must be noted that there are two mailboxes inside the post office, one dispatches your mail immediately on the next day and the other one sends your greetings on the Christmas eve. Just be careful when you post your card. There are other interesting souvenirs inside the post office and is a great pull for every tourist.
5. Ride the reindeer sledge
Barely 100 meters from the main post office, there’s a Santa Claus reindeer farm inside the village premises. The adorable beauties of Arctic world await you there, and it is a treat to watch them meeting and greeting every tourist. Winter is the perfect time to enjoy the perfect reindeer sledge ride in the Arctic wilderness. Reindeer sledge ride is one of the most popular things to do in Rovaniemi in winter.
6. Ride the husky sledge
Not too far from the reindeer farm, there’s a husky farm inside the Santa Claus Village. It is such a satisfying place for all the dog lovers. With more than 200 Siberian Huskies out there, there can’t be a better place to be in Lapland. Winter is the time when all the huskies are prepared to do a lot of work which is a result of all the accumulated energy through summer and autumn. Now, they are ready to pull the sledge. As the huskies pull the tourists sitting on the sledge through the pristine Lappish forest, it makes for one of its kind experience.
7. Ride a snowmobile
Snowmobile ride is another fun activity to try in Lapland in winter. When you are in Santa Claus Village in Rovaniemi, you can certainly give it a try. In winter, the entire landscape of Rovaniemi turns so dreamy, and it’s the perfect time to indulge in some adventures that is unique only to the Arctic world. Riding a snowmobile through the stunning Lappish forest all draped in the snow is one such experience. Usually, a snowmobile ride lasts 1-2 hours. But it also depends on the tour that you have purchased.
8. Visit Elf’s Farmyard
Image courtesy: Visit Rovaniemi
A visit to the Elf’s Farmyard in Rovaniemi is another winter-specific activity that attracts plenty of tourists during a trip to Lapland in December-January. It’s a traditional atmosphere in the Santa Claus village where tourists get to experience all sort of traditional things related to Lapland and Sami culture. At Elf’s farmyard, you get to see reindeer, sheep, goat, rabbits, hens and a rooster. Tourists can also pet the animals, take a photo with them and also learn more about their everyday activities.
It’s an interesting and heart-warming experience altogether. Wintertime here is even better because the tourists get to witness the Cross-country skiing in Rovaniemi. At the farm, the tourists also have an opportunity to cross Arctic Circle by putting on the traditional Lappish wooden skis. Kota is also used by tourists to make a campfire and enjoy a barbecue.
Find more details about the tour of Santa Claus Village on our website here.
A trip to Santa Claus Village in Rovaniemi is the major highlight of every trip to Rovaniemi. Don’t miss this once-in-a-lifetime-excitement!