(March 20, 2015) Rovaniemi
The first day we’ll go to Rovaniemi. We plan to go
to the city first to buy anything we could need for the rest of days.
We’ve booked a tour for this evening to go to the
top of a
hill and try to watch Northern lights because this is the new moon
marked at map are:
0- Santa Claus Village
1- Rovaniemi Airport
3- Koskitaku Street
Time for breakfast is 7:30 to 10 AM, but we’re
advised to be there before 9 AM to avoid the rush hour. We wake up with
the thought of going at 8 AM, but we arrive at 8:30 AM.
Our plan for this morning is taking a bus to
Rovaniemi and the one at 9:40 AM seems the right one (timetable here). We pay 14.40€ in the bus
for two return tickets and get out in the first stop within the city,
which driver points us as the one to go to Arktikum.
Arktikum is a museum about the history of the live
on this area around the North Pole and it is the main touristic
attraction in Rovaniemi. There are just a few of them, though.
Admission ticket is 12€ and we purchase two. It is like an
The exhibition is in the way of the Natural
History Museum of New York: with sort of dioramas showing animals or
persons on their daily lives of yore.
When we leave the permanent exhibition to go to
the temporary one we can see the solar eclipse announced for today has
already started. We can see it through the long glass dome particular
of this place and thought to watch the Northern lights when it is dark
The exhibition has a show displaying a video to
the ceiling simulating real Northern lights. We can get a better
knowledge of the nature of this region here.
We go out to walk to the main street for shopping
with the thought of watching the moment of the total eclipse from
there. The walk is short and the street itself too.
We get into a small shopping mall looking more for
warm than for goodies as the temperature outside if going down as the
sun is getting lower. When the sun is just a thin smile in the sky it
is snowing hard here.
We go to the supermarket to get all the food we’re
going to need, following what we planned yesterday. We’ve checked the
bus timetable and, as the one at 1 PM is too just, where doing our
things thinking on taking the next one at 2:15 PM.
When we are in the bus stop with our
bags we still must wait for 15 minutes, which are very long stopped out
here with the freezing wind.
We have our lunch and rest for the rest of the
afternoon in our room until the moment we’re going to be picked up for
the Northern lights tour.
We were told we’re going to be picked up at 8:25
PM and, when we appear at reception desk, just one minute before,
they’re already there. We leave Santa Claus Holiday Village with a
couple from Singapore to Rovaniemi and there four more guys are joining
the group. When it is completed we’re addressed to their store where we
can get the cloths we need. Then it is time to leave to the Finnish
woods and we can already see some activity in the sky, which is clear
one more time.
Once in their hut in the middle of the darkness of
the woods we only have to walk around 600 meters on the snow up to the
top of the hill. It is completely dark here and we can see a beautiful
sky full of stars and a low green line like the one from last night. It
is beautiful and the line is brighter some time. When we’ve spent a
while watching and taking pictures of the sky we’re called to the tipi
where a fire is ready and we can be warm and cook our own sausage. When
we are going to take our drinks, shouts are coming from outside to make
us go out.
If we thought we’ve already seen the Northern
lights we were wrong. What we have in the sky is so bright that in some
parts it is looking white. Then we can see how new lines are being
drawing leaving green and red tails. This is a wonderful spectacle and
we have time enough for taking pictures and lay on the snow looking the
dance of lights taking place above us. This is a fantastic end for a
day we get
the bed later than 2 AM.