The Finns are ardent hikers. Many hectares of hiking areas are administered by the forest administration – Metsähallitus – a business organization guided by the Finnish Ministry of the Environment.
One of some 20 recreational centers throughout Finland is situated in Hetta (Enontekiö): The Fell Lapland Nature Centre (Tunturi-Lapin luontokeskus). Starting at the center it is possible to make great hikes into the wilderness of Finnish Lapland. For instance, the Hetta – Pallas trail is 55 km long.
Ms. Satu Kotavuopio, the experienced manager in Enontekiö, can claim 26.000 visitors at the center annually. Most of them are from Finland, she says. However, there are people from abroad as well.
At the center it is possible to book cabins along the trails. Fishing licenses can be obtained. Guided tours can be booked.
When Angelo and I visited the center, professional outdoor guides made presentations on what type of gear to use. They offered insight on how to stay dry and warm in the fells. Cold wet feet are not cool, if you have no remedy outdoors.
At the center in Hetta there are several exhibitions:
- Northern nature
- The old days
- Saami culture and life
- Tourist history
- And even something for the children
Historically, many people from southern Finland love the north and recreational opportunities above the Arctic Circle. They travel north. A special popular time of the year is “Ruska”. In September, it is not unusual to find the Finns hiking in the colourful, mosquito free, arctic outdoors.
Is the mosquito really a problem for hikers in the arctic summer?
Serious on Hiking – Try Hetta/Enontekiö