WHY VISIT LAPLAND?
Lapland is a region that encompasses the northernmost parts of Sweden and Finland. What you'll find here is a destination for all ages, with exciting excursions and adventures.
Owing to its location above the Arctic Circle, Lapland is best known for its magical winter landscapes and northern lights viewing. If you can think of a winter outdoor activity, you can probably find it here, including reindeer and dog sledding, snowmobiling, ice fishing and snowshoeing.
Lapland is home to some of Scandinavia’s most unique attractions, like the Santa Claus Village, the original ICEHOTEL and the Sampo icebreaker ship. There are also plenty of opportunities to experience the culture and traditions of the Sami, the native people of Lapland.
View all Lapland holiday packages
Discover more useful planning and trip information in our Lapland Travel Guide
DESTINATIONS IN LAPLAND
There are countless small towns and villages in Lapland that are worth a visit, depending on what you want to see and do. These are the top destinations:
Kiruna, the northernmost city in Sweden, is surrounded by striking landscapes, ranging from rivers and crystal-clear lakes to ancient boreal forests and snow-capped mountains. The most famous attractions here are the original ICEHOTEL and the Aurora Sky Station in nearby Abisko National Park.
Check out Lapland tours in Kiruna.
Situated next to the Arctic Circle line, Rovaniemi is considered the capital of Finnish Lapland. This town is best known as the hometown of Santa Claus, whom you could visit at any time of the year at the Santa Claus Village.
View all Lapland tours to Rovaniemi.
HOW TO GET TO LAPLAND
Depending on where you're flying from, you may notice that there aren't any direct flights to Lapland from your local airport. Instead, you should fly via the capital city of the country you intend to visit: Stockholm for Swedish Lapland or Helsinki for Finnish Lapland.
Both Stockholm-Arlanda Airport in Sweden and Helsinki-Vantaa Airport in Finland are served by several international and regional airlines.
Many of the local domestic carriers in Sweden and Finland have partnerships with international airlines, so it is possible to purchase your airfare to Lapland in just one booking. These airlines usually operate their routes from the capital cities to the tour destinations in Lapland.
- See more details about flights to Lapland:
The land connections between destinations in Lapland are generally poor. That said, there are some well-linked towns that you could combine during your visit:
Kiruna - Abisko: Connected by train (www.sj.se)
Rovaniemi - Kemi: Connected by train (www.vr.fi)
As far as language is concerned, if you speak English, you should not encounter any problems getting around in Lapland. Most people in Scandinavia, especially in popular destinations, can speak English. Even Santa Claus is multilingual!
Browse all classic holiday packages in Lapland
Or discover Lapland ice and snow hotel tours
WHEN TO VISIT & WEATHER
The winter season, December to March, is an ideal time for a winter holiday in Lapland. At that time of year both snow conditions and northern lights displays are at their best. This is also during this season that you could visit and stay at one of the famous ice and snow hotels and try a snowmobile excursion or husky tour.
Christmas and New Year’s are popular times to visit, with festive spirit filling the atmosphere. If you're looking for a quieter time, February and March may be better suited to you.
The Lapland region has a subarctic to continental climate characterised by mild summers and cold, snowy winters.
During the peak travel season, December to February, the region experiences an average temperature range of about -16 °C (3 °F) to 3 °C (37 °F) depending on location. On occasion, it can get as low as - 30 °C (-22 °F) or colder with wind chill.
Thankfully, the dry, crisp air has a moderating effect on the temperatures.
The amount and duration of snowfall also varies by location, but the average number of days with snow cover is around 175 to 225 days per year between mid-October and mid-May.
Learn more about visiting Lapland in December, January, February or March
Or browse all winter holiday packages in Lapland and northern lights tours
What should you pack for your tour to Lapland? Make sure you come prepared for the Lapland winter. Read our useful packing guide for insider tips if you're unfamiliar with how to dress for Arctic conditions.
See more information about climate, daylight and time zones in Lapland.
TOP THINGS TO SEE AND DO
There are countless things to do and see in Lapland, including these most popular highlights:
- Food & Culture
- Visit a reindeer farm and learn about the daily lives and history of the Sami people
- Enjoy traditional slow food such as souvas made from reindeer meat and locally caught Arctic char
- Activities & Day Tours
- Take a guided tour or spend the night at one of the fabulous ice or snow hotels
- See the northern lights, perhaps with a visit to the Aurora Sky Station in Abisko
- Go on a thrilling dogsled tour
- Drive a snowmobile through the snowy wilderness
- Learn how to drive a reindeer sleigh
- Visit Santa Claus Village and meet the "man in red"
- Explore the great outdoors by cross-country skiing or snowshoe walking
- Try your luck at ice fishing
Nordic Visitor itineraries are designed to be flexible, allowing you to add your choice of optional activities and day tours. To guarantee availability for the activities you want to do, we recommend you book in advance. Your dedicated travel consultant will be able to advise you.
Discover tours of Lapland with snowmobiling or dog sledding
An average stay in Lapland is usually 4 days. This is a short getaway that can also be easily extended with extra nights and optional activities. But don't let that restrict you, pick what interests you the most and Nordic Visitor can tailor your dream trip.
To help you make the most of your time in Lapland, see these helpful winter itinerary suggestions with themes to match.
3–4 days: Stay in Kiruna and enjoy daily excursions. This includes a northern lights safari by snowmobile, a dog sledding tour, a visit to a reindeer farm and maybe even an overnight stay at the magical ICEHOTEL.
Look up Lapland 3-day itineraries or 4-day Lapland tours.
Ice hotels / Romance / Northern lights / Snowmobile / Active / Partially guided
5–7 days: Start in Kiruna before heading off to the Aurora Sky Station in Abisko National Park. You'll enjoy a snowmobile safari, a dog sledding tour, a visit to a reindeer farm and an overnight at the ICEHOTEL. Abisko is the ideal place for aurora hunting far from the city lights.
View Lapland 5-day itineraries or 6-day Lapland tours.
Northern lights / Snowmobile / Active / Partially guided / Ice hotels / Romance
7+ days: Combine your stay in Lapland with some extra days in Stockholm and visit famous attractions like the Royal Palace, the Vasa Ship Museum and City Hall.
Contact our Swedish travel consultant to tailor a longer itinerary for you.
3–4 days: Stay in Rovaniemi. Visit the famous Santa Claus Village, where you can meet the jolly elves in person. Then enjoy thrilling activities like a husky tour, a reindeer sleigh ride, and a snowmobile safari in search of the northern lights.
View Lapland 3-day itineraries or 4-day Lapland tours
Active / Christmas / Santa Claus Village / Dog sledding / Romance / Northern lights / Ice hotels / Snowmobile / Partially guided
5+ days: Combine your stay in Lapland with a few days in Helsinki. In the Finnish capital, you could visit popular attractions like Senate Square, Uspenski Cathedral, the Parliament building and the Olympic Stadium.
Contact our travel consultants to tailor a longer itinerary for you.
Need more help with your Lapland itinerary? Get in touch to start planning your holiday.