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Keflavík International Airport is located around 50 km to the southwest of Reykjavik, in the nearby city of Keflavík. Getting to the airport from Reykjavik is easy, with buses operated by Airport Express, Flybus and Strætó BS. Alternatively, taxis are available to take you on the 42-minute journey.
Departing from Reykjavik with Finnair
- Check-in opens at the airport 2 hours before departure and closes 45 minutes before your flight sets off.
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The capital of Finnish Lapland, Rovaniemi is most famous for being the official home of Santa Claus. The city offers so much more, however; fly to Rovaniemi outside of the Christmas season and you’ll still find plenty to see and do. An urban oasis amid the Arctic wilderness, Rovaniemi is a place where culture, adventure activities, nature and fairy tales come together. Have a great trip with this Finnair travel guide to Rovaniemi.
SIGHTS IN ROVANIEMI
The city was rebuilt after World War II in the layout of reindeer antlers; stroll through the streets and see if you can work out whereabouts in the antlers you’re standing. Pilke Science Centre is a great place to learn more about the surrounding forests, while Korundi House of Culture features art, music and cultural events. Important landmarks include Jätkänkynttilä Bridge and the Lutheran church with its detailed fresco. The world-famous Santa Claus Village and Santa Park are musts for anyone wanting to experience a genuine festive season with snowy surroundings, elves and—needless to say—the real Santa Claus. The scope of nature-based activities is also incredible, including extremely popular husky, reindeer and snowmobile excursions in the winter and mountain biking, white-water rafting and jet skiing in the summer. The warmer months also offer the novel experience of swimming and sunbathing in the Arctic at the small sand beach alongside the Kemijoki River. To top it all off, you might also get to witness one of the two breath-taking natural phenomena: the Northern Lights and the Midnight Sun. The Northern Lights are visible on clear nights between August and April, and the Midnight Sun season lasts from June to July. Reserve your airline tickets to Rovaniemi to experience these natural wonders. As the biggest city in Lapland, Rovaniemi offers a plethora of restaurants, bars and nightclubs too.
ROVANIEMI WITH CHILDREN
In addition to meeting Santa Claus in the winter, here are a couple more reasons to fly to Rovaniemi with children.
Ranua Wildlife Park – Visit at all times of the year to watch Arctic creatures in habitats that closely resemble the wild. There are more than 50 animal species, including polar bears, reindeer, wolverines, otters, brown bears, birds and wolves.
Arktikum Museum & Science Centre – Learn more about life in the Arctic, the local culture and the area’s history.
THINGS TO SEE AND DO NEAR ROVANIEMI
Ounasvaara – A large forested hill on the outskirts of the city, the winters offer great snow sports while biking and hiking along the marked trails are popular in the summer months.
German Soldier Cemetery – Located in Norvajärvi, the stone block cemetery stands isolated in the surrounding rugged countryside.
Hiidenkirnut – Close to the island of Rautiosaari, these large glacier-created holes are also sometimes referred to as giant’s kettles or Devil’s churns.
SHOPPING IN ROVANIEMI
You’ll find a good selection of modern goods and traditional crafts when shopping in Rovaniemi. Warm clothing is also abundant. Several streets are pedestrianised, making your retail experience even more pleasurable.
Sampokeskus Shopping Centre – A large shopping centre in the heart of the city, featuring a mix of high-street and luxury brands.
Lordi’s Square – Various stores selling diverse items can be found in the streets around this area.
Lauri – A handicraft shop that sells traditional handmade items, you can also look inside the workshop to fully appreciate the skill and care that goes into every piece.
Your Piece of Finland – A souvenir shop with an extensive array of gifts and memorabilia.
FOOD AND DRINK
Savour these local delicacies after flying to Rovaniemi:
Reindeer stew – A hearty and filling traditional dish from Lapland.
Moose meat – Typically eaten with vegetables, this meat is found on many local menus.
Herring – The fish is usually served on rye bread as a starter.
Salmon – Fished from along Lapland’s coasts, locals are very proud of their tasty salmon. It may be grilled, smoked or turned into a pâté.
Bilberry tarts – Bilberry is the most common berry found in Lapland and locals make the most of the sweet fruit by making delicious tarts. Bilberry cakes and mousse are also popular.
TRANSPORT IN ROVANIEMI
Once you get off your flight to Rovaniemi, the small city centre is generally easy to navigate by foot. Do be aware that transportation methods to places farther afield may alter with the seasons.
By foot – Most major city attractions are within close proximity of each other, making walking a preferred way to explore the city.
Buses – Local buses operate to areas outside of the city. Services are not, however, so frequent over the weekends and during the summer months. Generally, most bus services in Rovaniemi run every hour during the daytime. There are limited night buses.
BEST TIME TO VISIT ROVANIEMI
Rovaniemi offers plenty of exciting experiences throughout the year.
Many people book their plane tickets to Rovaniemi for the winter months, when Lapland is carpeted in a thick blanket of snow, there are activities like husky sledging and cross-country skiing to enjoy, and you can meet Santa Claus. December and January are dark during most of the day and night, letting people experience the reality of the Polar Night. Winter is the best time to spot the magical Northern Lights, with March often providing the clearest sightings.
As the snow starts to thaw in spring, nature can be seen coming back to life.
The warmer summers have lots of daylight, with no darkness at all in some months. The Midnight Sun occurs between June and July and you can enjoy varied activities at any time. This is a great time for enjoying the area’s nature and an array of outdoor activities. Summers also see plenty of lively events.
Autumn brings the first glimpse of the Northern Lights, shades of red, brown and gold in the trees, colder temperatures and the first snowfall.
Spring and autumn are generally when you can find cheap flights to Rovaniemi.
FLIGHTS TO ROVANIEMI
Finnair is one of the main airlines with flights into Rovaniemi. Direct flights are available from Helsinki, with a flight time of 01h 15min. There are several flights each day. You can also transit through Helsinki Airport to reach Rovaniemi from various destinations across Finland and beyond.
Rovaniemi flights land at Rovaniemi Airport (RVN), from where you can take a train or taxi to reach the city centre.
Check out the airfare to Rovaniemi with Finnair for great deals, convenient check-in options and excellent in-flight services and hospitality.