The idea of taking a break from the daily routine and going on a family holiday usually involves plenty of sun, sea and sand. However, just as much fun can be had in a wintery destination, such as Saariselkä. This small village in northern Lapland provides visitors with some stunning scenery and plenty of enjoyable pursuits.
Where is Saariselkä, Finland?
Located in the Urho Kekkonen national park, Saariselkä doesn’t feature much more than a supermarket, a few hotels as well as the odd shop or restaurant. But this is what makes this compact resort, which is located some 250 km north of the Arctic Circle, perfect for those interested in a pretty, pleasing and peaceful retreat.
As soon as you arrive, you’ll be in awe of the incredible wilderness that surrounds Saariselkä, as the snow-capped trees and unspoilt sky appears endless. The extensive forest awaits adventurous explorers, while the airspace above provides the opportunity to witness a particular natural phenomenon.
Things to do in Saariselkä
Find gold – One of the main reasons why people came to Saariselkä was because of the Finnish gold rush. The first claim here was staked in 1871, but over 100 years later it is still possible to discover more about this fascinating period of time and maybe even find a nugget for yourself at the Tankavaara Gold Village.
Try cross-country skiing – This area of Finland is quite flat, so the opportunities for a bit of downhill are somewhat scarce. However, Saariselkä is the ideal location to try cross-country skiing instead, which allows you to explore the assorted and alluring terrain. What’s more, it can be quite a demanding workout and is bound to warm you up too.
See the Northern Lights – Thanks to Saariselkä’s geographical position, there is a very good chance you’ll be able to see Aurora Borealis, the natural light display that makes fluorescent green, yellow and even red streaks appear in the night sky. For the best chance of seeing it, come here between December and March.
Go for a snowmobile ride – Guided tours on the back of a snowmobile enable you to see this remarkable region in more detail. There may also be the opportunity to go ice-fishing on a frozen lake and enjoy a traditional lunch consisting of reindeer!
With numerous things to see and do in Saariselkä, family holidays to Lapland have never been such an enticing- if a little chilly- option for families.