How long is the nightless night? Where can I hide from the mosquitoes? Ask anything, we will answer!

General

Can the Northern Lights be seen in Sodankylä?

Yes. Sodankylä is well above the Arctic Circle, meaning the Northern Lights are often seen here at the dark time of year. There is also barely any light pollution in Sodankylä to block views of the Northern Lights. To see the Northern Lights you need a clear evening or night sky as well as a little luck. 

Naturally, in the summer, the Northern Lights cannot be seen, as the sun shines too brightly, including at night. The midnight sun is also an unbelievable sight!

Read more about the Northern Lights here.

Where can I see reindeer?

In effect, reindeer move about freely all over Sodankylä, although people try to keep them out of the villages. Thus, you may see a reindeer at any time when driving or hiking. They usually avoid people and do not approach them. If you want to make sure you see reindeer and meet them up-close, you should contact the Jaakkola reindeer farm and arrange a farm visit, or go to the Kopara reindeer park. Both are in the Luosto area.

Read more about the reindeer of Sodankylä here.

How long does the midnight sun last and what does it look like?

The midnight sun at the latitude of Sodankylä lasts about 1.5 months. It starts at the end of May and ends in the middle of July. During the time of the midnight sun the sun shines brightly, even at night, if there are no clouds in the sky. The light of the night-time sun is warm and very special: it can’t be described in words – you have to experience it for yourself!

Read more about the midnight sun here.

At which shelter in Sodankylä can you brew the best open-fire coffee?

There are several shelters, cabins and fireplaces all over Sodankylä where you can brew your own coffee in a metal kettle over an open fire. In our opinion the best coffee break is enjoyed in the peace of nature, either by the water or on the slope of a fell. For that reason we recommend, at a minimum, the shelters of Luosto, such as the Tikkalaavu or the very easily reached cabin on Lake Ahvenlampi, as well as the fireplaces of the shores of Lake Sompiojärvi in the summer. The shelter on Paavo’s Path also awaits you in an easily accessible place on a beautiful river bank. In the wild fells you can brew your coffee at the shelter near the top of the Oratunturi fell. 

In the town centre, the Pappilanniemi cabin on the banks of the River Kitinen offer a place to brew some coffee over an open fire. The yard has a woodshed and swings for children.

Events

Why should I visit the Midnight Sun film festival?

The Midnight Sun Film Festival is, by its nature, one of the most personal festivals in the world. The feeling at this festival held under the midnight sun in the middle of Lapland is down-to-earth: everyone, from the audience to film directors and actors, relaxes and enjoys the festival together. The event can be seen and heard everywhere in the town centre of Sodankylä, and in between watching films and eating and drinking you can take a dip on the sandy beach. Come and enjoy the films under the sun of Sodankylä without stress! 

Where can I stay when the events are on?

During the film festival, in particular, it is worth booking accommodation well in advance – preferably the previous year. The town centre offers hotel, cabin, apartment and camping accommodation.

Services

Which restaurants serve food from Lapland?

In the centre of Sodankylä the Hotelli Sodankylä is one place that serves local food à la carte. The hotel’s restaurant serves northern fish, and, of course, reindeer served in many ways.

In northern Sodankylä, the Wanha Waskoolimies restaurant in Tankavaara, as well as several restaurants in Luosto in southern Sodankylä, have reindeer, at least, on the menu.

Can I go on a snowmobile, reindeer, husky or Northern Lights safari in Sodankylä?

Yes. Safaris of various kinds are organised in Luosto and Tankavaara, so you can experience the magic of Lapland in both southern and northern Sodankylä.

 

Transportation

How do I get to Sodankylä, Luosto or Vuotso?

Sodankylä is to the north of Rovaniemi on the road leading to Nuorgam.

The easiest way to get to Sodankylä on public transport is by bus. You can travel by bus from Rovaniemi to Luosto, the centre of Sodankylä, Tankavaara and Vuotso. You can also take a bus from Ivalo to Vuotso and Sodankylä.

Can I fly to Sodankylä?

No, but a combination of plane and bus works well.

The closest airports to Sodankylä are Kittilä (90 km), Rovaniemi (124 km) and Ivalo (155 km). There are numerous bus departures from Ivalo and Rovaniemi to Sodankylä, making arriving in Sodankylä by public transport easy. Even reaching the northern parts of Sodankylä and Luosto is easy by bus from the airport.

Where can I learn about the Saami culture and way of life?

Vuotso, in northern Sodankylä, is Finland’s southernmost Saami village. In Vuotso and its surrounding areas, including the separate village of Purnumukka, you can see and experience all the smells of reindeer herding, for example, which is still an extremely important occupation for the Saami. In Vuotso you can hear the Saami language spoken, for example in the village shop.

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