Last April Jonny from Off the Map Travel was invited to visit the small town of Kilpisjärvi in Northern Finland to see if it might be an ‘Off the Map’ destination in the future.

April is a great time to visit the Arctic as the sun is usually out, the days are long and the scenery is at its best. Jonny enjoyed his time in Northern Finland and was told that it was a great place to view the aurora borealis (an important thing for us as a specialist northern lights company!) but as the days are too long at the end of April it is hard for him to experience this. Jonny came away from the trip with some great memories of this little Finnish community. As the Summer went by Jonny continued to reminisce about his time in Kilpisjärvi and continued to bug me to arrange a trip there myself over the winter to see if I loved it as much as him!

So on a recent trip to Sweden I decided to take a short diversion and visit the place where Norway, Sweden and Finland all meet and I am pleased to say I fell in love with it just as much as Jonny had a year ago and Off the Map are looking forward to offering this destination to our customers for next season.

Kilpisjärvi is small but perfectly formed with a couple of accommodation and restaurant options so there is something to suit everyone. I enjoyed my stay in the beautiful chalets at Tundrea with their stunning views over the lake and mountains, fully equipped kitchen, warm saunas and access to a fantastic cosy restaurant and bar!

countries meet

The very first night I got to see how and why this area gets to say it is one of the best places to view the Northern Lights. There are no words to explain this amazing natural phenomenon but it is something everyone should experience in their lifetime.
One of the main reasons Jonny loved the area so much was that it gave you the ability to do something that all true ‘travellers’ love to do – stand on a border point! This is no normal border between 2 countries though, this is the border of all 3 of the Scandinavian hubs – Norway, Sweden and Finland! After a sled ride across the beautiful frozen lake, stopping to watch some ice fishing and a journey through the trees I must admit it was quite a thrill to stand on the border of 3 of my favourite countries in the world! And although it was beautifully sunny it was around minus 30 so that is why I was so wrapped up!

The very first night I got to see how and why this area gets to say it is one of the best places to view the Northern Lights. There are no words to explain this amazing natural phenomenon but it is something everyone should experience in their lifetime.
One of the main reasons Jonny loved the area so much was that it gave you the ability to do something that all true ‘travellers’ love to do – stand on a border point! This is no normal border between 2 countries though, this is the border of all 3 of the Scandinavian hubs – Norway, Sweden and Finland! After a sled ride across the beautiful frozen lake, stopping to watch some ice fishing and a journey through the trees I must admit it was quite a thrill to stand on the border of 3 of my favourite countries in the world! And although it was beautifully sunny it was around minus 30 so that is why I was so wrapped up!

After another delicious dinner at the restaurant including of course reindeer and local fish as well as the strange Finnish pudding of cooked cheese in a vanilla sauce with berries (it does grow on you over time but it does take time!) it was time to head out into the darkness in search of the aurora again. Unfortunately after a beautifully clear day the weather had turned quickly and we were now experience a howling snowstorm! That is the thing with being in the Arctic mountains though…..the weather can change in an instant. However there is nothing better in this situation than warming up in a traditional Finnish sauna. There was even a hole in the lake if you wanted to do it ‘properly’ but I have experienced that before and so felt no need to have another go.

I was so impressed with the accommodation, activities, scenery, food and people in Kilpisjärvi and now, like Jonny, have bored all my friends with tales of how wonderful a place this special corner of Finland is. I cannot wait to share this enthusiasm with our customers in the future.

This destination will soon be added to our website as a stand alone trip but also as part of our new and exclusive Grand Aurora 10 night tour through the three countries. Start you adventure today and contact us now!