SeasonTheme Spring
SeasonTheme The Arctic char: the desired delicacy of the local lakes
It’s soon time to fish for the best fish of our high-lying lakes. The Arctic char with its blazing red sides is a catch everyone wants to have when ice-fishing on the lakes of the fell area. It’s the catch that many visitors to Lapland come for.
SeasonTheme Reindeer fur shoes
First, there was the reindeer, the cold spell, and a flash of human insight. Reindeer fur shoes are traditional Sámi winter boots that are still worn today. They represent the epitome of product development and design, and they are made completely by hand from pieces of leg skin.
SeasonTheme During the polar night
The dark season almost sneaks its way to the northernmost Lapland. Our feeling of how long the dark period seems to be depends on when the snow comes. This year, the mantle of snow was here early, lighting up the darkest season of the year. Snow reflects light, but the days are still dusky and we are, in practice, living between two darknesses.
SeasonTheme Siida in the tide of sustainable development
We live in the Arctic, an area with vulnerable natural conditions and ecosystems. Plastics and especially powderlike microplastics are a topical issue right now: they threaten our oceans and river systems and their organisms, and they rain on us. In this newsletter, we want to tell about the green choices that Siida and Metsähallitus have made in order to decrease the use of plastic and to enhance pro-environmental routines.
SeasonTheme Aili and the Dolls
The Inari Sámi artisan and doll-maker Aili Mattus was born into the family of Nuoran-Juhani (Juhani Saijets) and his wife Anna in 1887. When an adult, Aili married Nili-Heikki (Nili-Heikkâ, or Heikki Mattus), a son of the neighbouring homestead, and the couple got three sons. The family lived in Niliniemi (Njollânjaargâ) on Lake Inari, and people started to call Aili “Nili-Aili” after the point of land and her husband.
SeasonTheme Take care when hiking in nature preserves
There are many conservation areas in Finland that are suitable for hiking. These include national parks, hiking areas, wilderness areas and other protected areas. In most of them, you can hike on the basis of “everyman’s rights”, but, in some areas, moving can be restricted in order to protect the animals and plants of the region. Nature preserves are a good example of such areas. Northern Lapland has one nature preserve: the Kevo Strict Nature Reserve in Utsjoki.
SeasonTheme Celebrating Nature in Lapland
The large national parks of Lapland – Lemmenjoki, Kevo and Sompio – have their 60th anniversary this year. It seems trivial to talk about age in the case of age-old nature, but the jubilee year is important for these parks. Sixty years ago a law was passed to guarantee the preservation of native nature for future generations in these areas. The parks present Lappish nature in its most original state for us.
SeasonTheme People’s Wilderness Areas 25 Years Old
There are many areas with wild natural conditions in Finland. The 12 wilderness areas established by law are situated in Lapland. The Wilderness Area Act came into force in 1991, so the Finnish wilderness areas have their 25th anniversary this year.
SeasonTheme Wild Reindeer Hunting
The wild reindeer was the most important catch and source of food for the inhabitants of Lapland in ancient times. Today, we see traces of their ancient hunt in the form of trapping pit systems that have been preserved; almost 400 of these have been identified in the Sámi Area. One pit system may consist of dozens or even hundreds of pits.
SeasonTheme Northern Lights Theatre
Every year, something unique is built right behind the Siida Building, in our open-air museum: the snow theatre. This Northern Lights Theatre provides the visitors to Siida and those attending the indigenous film festival Skábmagovat with an unbelievable experience, as they watch films outdoors, in the cold and under aurora borealis and the starry sky.
SeasonTheme Sámi Christmas
The mid-winter festive season, Christmas, brought a break in the long and dark polar night in the Sámi region. Traditionally, Christmas has been the greatest religious holiday of the year, and people have prepared for it carefully. In the old days, the house and the yard were cleaned especially well for Christmas Eve. You also needed to chop firewood and carry in water for three days, as you were not supposed to work from Christmas Eve to Boxing Day. Christmas was also a time of rare delights, and therefore people saved their most delicious fish and reindeer meat and milk (that was made into cheese) for the festive season.
SeasonTheme Reindeer skin for boots
In early winter, during the period of reindeer separations and slaughter, people also get ready for making handicrafts.
SeasonTheme Surviving the Winter
The change of seasons from summer to autumn and then winter causes some buzzing in nature. In the Arctic, winter is the longest season, and a severe one, too; therefore, only real survivors live through the winter here. For the animals and plants of the north, getting ready for the winter is a routine – a condition of life – that is set off by the shortening of the day.
SeasonTheme Mushrooms
The crops of the autumn, mushrooms, appear in August–September in the forests of Northern Lapland, too. Diligent mushroom pickers have roamed the woods ever since summer began, looking for false morels, but there is still plenty to pick, thanks to our rainy summer and early autumn.
SeasonTheme Getting Bark for Crafting
Summer is the time to do preparations for the many winter chores by getting raw-materials. One of the tasks of the early summer is to get bark. The dried bark of a tree is needed for making reindeer leather. Bark-tanned reindeerskin is the most important material in traditional Sámi handicraft, duodji. Bark is also needed in treating the fur of reindeer’s legs so that this skin can be used for reindeer fur boots, for example. The bark is boiled in water, and the skin to be tanned is immersed in or rubbed with the resulting tanning liquor. The tanning with its different phases takes a few weeks in all.
SeasonTheme Kaapin Jouni
We don’t know who the first residents of the Lemmenjoki National Park were, though they left many traces in the park. But one man living on the River Lemmenjoki became one of Lapland’s most famous men.
SeasonTheme Root-Sewn Boat
The Skolt Sámi, the smallest Sámi group in Finland, have traditionally had fishing and reindeer herding as their sources of livelihood. They used to follow an annual migration pattern that was largely determined by the fishing conditions of the different areas. The Skolt Sámi handicraft tradition is closely linked with livelihood – as with other Sámi groups, too; the boat that has been made by using roots for sewing the boat is an example of this.
SeasonTheme Inari Reindeer Championships Race
The Inari Reindeer Championships Race is almost here. The race is arranged for the 63rd time, and will take place on the ice of Lake Inari on the last weekend of this month, 27–29 March 2015. During the weekend, there will be competitions in several categories and in throwing the Sámi lasso. The weekend will culminate in the 2-kilometre race for the reindeer championship. The Reindeer Race has become one of the main events and meeting places in Inari in the late winter.
SeasonTheme Sallivaara Round-Up Site
The Sallivaara round-up site, situated in the south-east corner of the Lemmenjoki National Park, used to be an important area for the local reindeer herders. After a great deal of repair work, it is now a historical sight that introduces visitors to the traditions of reindeer herding.



Sámi Museum
Phone +358 (0)400 898 212

Nature Centre, Metsähallitus
Phone +358 (0)206 39 7740