When I was a child, my dad’s friend gave me a book called “Where Santa Claus lives”. I spent hours flipping through the pages, looking at pictures of Santa Claus and his elves. Visiting such a village, where I could meet Santa Claus and his helpers, sounded like a dream to me.
Needless to say that when I heard about the Santa Claus Village in Northern Finland, I knew that I had to go there. A village where it’s Christmas all year long? That sounds like a dream!
We visited in February, when the temperatures dropped to -20ºC and the ground was covered in a meter or more of snow. After taking an overnight train to Rovaniemi, we dropped off our luggage at our guesthouse and took the next bus to the Santa Claus Village. We saw reindeer, elves and, of course, met up with Santa Claus!
We couldn’t leave without talking to one of the elves. Elf Tiuku answered all of the questions we had about Santa Claus, his village and life up at the Arctic Circle. But read for yourself!
How long have you been working here?
About six months.
How many letters does Santa receive every year?
I don’t know, but it’s a lot. There’s a huge amount of them.
What does Santa actually do when he isn’t delivering presents?
Well, he’s here every day, so people can come to meet him here.
What do you like most about your job here?
It’s always Christmas.
What’s your favourite part of Santa Claus Village?
I like it here, in the Santa Claus office. I get to meet a lot of people from all around the world and that’s really cool.
What do you think visitors to the village should not miss besides the Santa Claus Office?
It’s not a big place, so I think you should do as much as you can. If you have the opportunity to visit all places, that would be good.
Do you have a favourite place in the village?
Not specifically. I love animals, so I like the reindeers and huskies. They are cute. But I like the place in general.
Are you from Rovaniemi? What do you like most about living so far north?
Yes, I am from Rovaniemi. I love winter. We have lots of snow and that’s a thing you don’t have all over the world. So that’s really cool.
And what is the biggest challenge of living so far north?
Also maybe the snow.
When tourists visit Rovaniemi, what would you recommend them to do besides coming here?
Of course, if you have the opportunity to come during winter, you can see the nature here. You’re lucky if you get to see the Northern Lights, that’s also something that you can’t do everywhere. So that’s one of the things that you should definitely do if you come here.
And in summer?
Well, we have the sun all the time, so that’s cool when you get to see the midnight sun. And also the nature is beautiful.
Thank you for the interview!
If you’re thinking about going to Lapland yourself, we highly recommend taking the train from Helsinki. The overnight train is very comfortable. You save money on accommodation and you arrive refreshed in the morning. We will publish a blog post about this night train soon. It will include everything you could have ever wanted to know about taking it, so watch our blog or subscribe.
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