Rovaniemi is the capital of Lapland situated right on the Arctic Circle, which makes the town a gateway to the Arctic.
Enter the Arctic in Rovaniemi
The region north of the Arctic Circle is simply called the Arctic. In the Arctic, there are bigger cities than Rovaniemi, but none in direct proximity to the Arctic Circle. In Rovaniemi, the Arctic Circle runs through Santa Claus Village, located eight kilometres north of the city centre, where it is clearly marked.
What is the Arctic Circle?
The Arctic Circle is a circle of latitude that runs 66°33′45.9″ north of the Equator. It marks the southernmost latitude where the sun can stay continuously below or above the horizon for 24 hours – these phenomena are known as the Midnight Sun in the summer and the Polar Night (“Kaamos”) in the winter.
Many consider the Arctic Circle the border of hurry and stress, meaning they don’t exist north of the line. Exploring only a few kilometres north certainly strengthens the myth – the Arctic Circle Hiking Area serves as a great example of the soothing natural beauty of the Arctic.
Where to cross the Arctic Circle in Rovaniemi
It is almost impossible not to cross the Arctic Circle in Rovaniemi. Most do it in Santa Claus Village, where it is marked and even a certificate confirming the feat can be acquired. A variety of activity tours in Rovaniemi cross the Arctic Circle at some point, meaning doing it on a snowmobile, a husky sled or in a reindeer sleigh is commonplace.
How to cross the Arctic Circle in Rovaniemi
In general, crossing the Arctic Circle can be done in any way you choose – walk, jump, roll, cycle, drive… the possibilities are endless! Ceremonial crossings can be arranged on request, which is recommended especially for groups. Chances are you’ve even been in the Arctic airspace before landing at Rovaniemi Airport!
Do it underground
As far as we know, Rovaniemi is the only place in the world where you can cross the Arctic Circle underground. In SantaPark, Santa’s home grotto, the Arctic can be entered 50 metres below the surface of the earth – now there’s something you don’t do every day! Yes, certificates that prove the unique event actually took place are available.