Rovaniemi: Visiting Santa Claus in Summer!

Finland Summer Santa Claus

Rovaniemi: Visiting Santa Claus in Summer!

Have you ever wondered what Lapland is like in the summer? What does Santa get up to?

We visited the real Santa Claus in Rovaniemi, Finland, slap-bang in the middle of summer and I can confirm that summer in Lapland is pretty darn warm. T-shirt weather!

There’s no snow and the reindeer are off grazing in the forest: you’ll probably pass them on the road to Rovaniemi!

And Santa? Well, he’s working!

You can visit Santa Claus every single day of the year at Santa Claus Village – eight kilometres outside of Rovaniemi and it is completely free! 

A magical thing happens as you enter the passage to Santa Claus, you cross over the actual Arctic Circle ‘line’ and a sensation of childhood nostalgia and excitement washes over you. How many times as a child did you stand in line waiting to see the man in red?

This feels the same, this, after all, is the real thing. This is Lapland, and this is Santa Claus; Father Christmas; Papa Noël; Joulupukki (Finnish Santa: lit. Christmas Goat!); whatever you know him as! 

Rovaniemi is officially the home of Santa Claus!

And you get those butterflies in your stomach again!

Inside Santa Claus’ main post office everything is jolly festive, elves busy themselves posting your letters out to the world and in one corner there is a dresser filled with mail. 

If you send a letter to Santa Claus, addressed to Lapland, this is where it comes to! And the elves reply to every single one of them, on behalf of Santa because he’s a very busy man!

It’s a real post office, you can do all your regular post office things here, but they may have Christmas stamps on them, even in June.

You get to have a little chat with Santa Claus, he asks if you have been good – but of course he knows that already.

Maybe attempting to speak Finnish to him, was in hindsight not the best idea because – cringe – your entire interaction with Santa is recorded, and broadcast live out to the world via the web, and more cringe-worthy perhaps: the official gift shop too!

The gift shop where you can then purchase the video, and photos, for a festive sum. Yes, it’s a wee bit pricy, but if you want that awesome Santa/Joulupukki photo to plaster all over social media, then you are going to need to part with a handful of euros. Which, as you can see, we did.

And the video too, but I am never going to share that with you.

I die a little bit more every time I watch it back!

But he’s the kindly, warm, lovely man you expect him to be: he humoured me. What a guy!


Santa Claus Village is at Napapiiri (Arctic Circle), 8 km outside of Rovaniemi, on the road north to Ivalo. You can get there by public bus from Rovaniemi or there is plenty of free parking if you have a car or camper van/motorhome. 

You can check the opening times and transport information at the Santa Claus Village website.

There are lots of souvenir and gift shops, and restaurants dotted around Santa Claus village, you can even get your passport stamped for a few euro cents in one of the gift shops. A Finnish passport stamp? Hell yeah! Of course I got my passport stamped!

Visiting Santa here might seem like the cheesiest touristy thing you can possibly do, but I urge you to do it. Whatever your age, it really is magical and fun, whatever you believe!

And if you have children, what are you waiting for?!

Pin it for later:

Rovaniemi Finland Santa Claus Summer

Try these posts:

Glögi / Glögg: The Most Delicious Mulled Wine Of All Winter drinks don’t get more festive than glögg / glögi.

50 Ways Finland Made Me Smile This Summer 8 weeks, one incredible summer.

Beautiful Frozen Helsinki Returning to Helsinki at -25º, incredible!

Why Mürren Is A Fairytale Winter Wonderland: Like finding yourself on top of a Christmas cake, so perfect!

Finding Christmas in Northern Europe From Germany to Finland, and everything festive in-between!

We visited Santa Claus Village entirely under our own steam, I have not been asked to write this post, nor have I been compensated for it. 

By Rachel A Davis   Follow on Bloglovin

Have you been to see the ‘real’ Santa?

4 Responses

  1. This is so cool Rachel! I would so like to meet Father Christmas, and no matter the weather or season, it would be worth every penny!
    Nice stuff! 😀

  2. Cynthia says:

    Houska Joulua! What fun to visit Rovaneimi – some day I’ll make it there in the winter for the northern lights and that wonderful ice hotel