Napapiirin Saari-Tuvat is the budget alternative when you need cozy accommodation on the Arctic Circle in Rovaniemi. Ms. Paula Kokkonen welcomes us to the camping 7 km from the center of Rovaniemi. It is along road 81 destined for Kuusamo.
It is a small family company set by the river Kemijoki. It is in the countryside and has the customary rural friendly service. Even the moulting mallard ducks greeted us. They waddled up from the river and clucked on the stairs to our number 16 hut. A small heartbreak, we didn’t have any crumbs so they waddled back to the river.
The huts have a special form. Narrow at the base and wide where the roof starts. You see this type of construction in the fields along some of the roads in the north. In those cases, they were used to store hay.
The family set up the accommodation in 1972, and it is open most of the year. We are only closed for a period near the end of the year, Paula says. We have visitors from most of Europe; Many travelers from Germany and the Netherlands. In the late summer we have a lot of guests from France, Spain and Italy.
We settled down in one of the winter huts. All the huts were deep red. It had a great shower/WC, a fully equipped mini-kitchen, TV, a fireplace, and internet access included in the package. You are getting a lot on this budget. There was no sauna, but they had a couple of saunas in the common areas, including one by the river.
Just a little west of the camping is a noticeable 200 years old white building. To me it gelled with the huts, but the gut feeling was that it wasn’t a part of Napapiirin Saari-Tuvat. It is not part of our facilities, Paula says. This used to be farm land. They harvested grains and potatoes and the white building was the manor.
That makes the location a genuine Arctic cultural landscape.