Get to know the Sami country
The Clean Nature
The Sámi are the indigenous peoples of the Arctic Area of the Nordic countries. Reindeer husbandry and fishing have always been important livelihoods of the Sámi, who are closely bound to nature, and for whom nature is important.
Sápmi, the Sámi Country, includes areas of Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia. Sápmi starts at the middle of Norway and includes the eastern regions of the Kola Peninsula. The natural landscape varies greatly in this area.
The variations in the landscape may surprise anyone visiting the Sámi Country. If one compares the seashore areas to the nearby mountainous areas, the weather and environment may be completely different. For this reason, among many others, the Sámi Country is an interesting tourist destination for us all.
The advance of spring may differ greatly even between two localities, although the distance between them may not be that large. While a mountainous area may be having full winter conditions, twenty kilometres away there may be an area in which spring has made full progress.
The sea breeze, the humming of the wind and the singing of the birds from spring to late autumn is worth experiencing. If one bears to stop, stay still and listen to what nature has to
The Special North
The Sámi Country is special any time of the year. Many come in the winter to see and experience the northern lights (Aurora Borealis) and in the summer to witness the midnight sun. "Kaamos" time, when the sun does not rise above the horizon, is also a natural phenomenon which is worth experiencing.
In the summer months, depending on the place, from May to July, one can experience the midnight sun. The sun shines around the clock, making it difficult to tell whether it is night or day. The sun, shining non-stop, regardless of what time it is, is an unforgettable experience.
The difference between the midnight sun and "Kaamos" time in the Sámi country is amazing, and worth remembering.
It is possible to take a ride in a reindeer sled under the Northern Lights, or to take a hike in the mountains in the light of the midnight sun. It is also possible to ski, both in the winter in the daytime or in the summer midnight sun, if desired. Possibilities for activities are abundant and varying.
The Sámis have traditionally divided the year into eight seasons, depending on the changes in nature during the year. These seasons are winter, late winter, spring, late spring, summer, late summer, autumn and late autumn. Each season offers many different possibilities for activities.
Late-winter (March - April)
Late winter is a great time to get to know the Sámi Country. The clean snow, fresh air and the sunshine tempt one to spend time in the beautiful nature or to watch the colourful people and costumes in the annual Sámi events.
Spring (May - June)
Nature awakens from the long winter and from beneath the snow. The snow melts, the reindeer calve, and can roam to the pastures on the shores.
One can combine a canoe trip and skiing. Up in the mountains it is possible to ski way into June.
The "nightless night" begins in June, when the sun does not set beneath the horizon at all. The mountain lakes melt only around Midsummer. The weather starts getting warmer, bringing a fresh breeze of the surrounding nature. The meadows begin to green.
Summer (July - August)
The summer really begins only around Midsummer, when the leaves and the grass have grown to their maximum capacity. The "nightless night" ends halfway through July, depending on the place.
This is a favourable time for salmon fishing. It is also possible to hike in the mountains or the forests or go on a canoe ride.
The first chilly nights bring us into late summer. The nights begin to get dark as the sun sets behind the sea. We start seeing less of our summer friends, the mosquitoes.
Autumn (September - October)
With the first frosty nights, we enter the autumn. Nature begins to prepare itself for the winter. Before this, it puts on a costume of multicolour foliage. This is when the leaves take their beautifully vivid shades of autumn.
The leaves fall from the trees and nature begins to await the arrival of snow. At the same time, the days become shorter and the weather becomes colder. There are subzero temperatures during the day as well. "Kaamos" time starts in November. Kaamos is the time when the sun does not appear until mid-January.
Winter (December - April)
Nature shows off its beauty at night with the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis) or during the day, with clouds shining like pearls. The weather is cold, but in January, the sun comes up again and the days begin to get longer.
Traditional Sámi handicraft (Sámi "duodji") are wood, bone, horn and leather crafts as well as bead embroidery and embroidery with tin thread, weaving and textiles. These articles are made both as objects of use as well as for sale. The men`s and women`s different costumes show the cultural variations of the different regions. The costume worn by a Sámi connects him/her to a particular region. When buying souvenirs, we recommend favouring original Sámi handicrafts.