Santa Claus watches the Northern Lights over Mt. Korvatunturi in Savukoski, Finland
Photo by: Miikka Hämäläinen
A calm river in summer in Savukoski, Finland
Photo by: Visit Savukoski-Korvatunturi
Winter colors in Savukoski, Finland
Photo by: Visit Savukoski-Korvatunturi

Savukoski & Korvatunturi - Santa's Best Kept Secret

Mt. Korvatunturi is the location of Santa’s secret workshop.

There are 12 times as many reindeer in Savukoski as people!

The hundreds of wooden Santa Claus markers that adorn the trail to Mt. Korvatunturi were made by locals during a village festival.

You might not find any elves (Santa’s workshop under Mt. Korvatunturi is top-secret), but you’ll find plenty of reindeer, forests, stony fells and Arctic wilderness in Savukoski.

If you’re looking for an unforgettable Arctic experience, far from the lights and noise of towns and cities, then Savukoski and the mystical Korvatunturi are perfect for you. Savukoski has a population numbered in hundreds and is home to the country’s second largest national park, not to mention the secret workshop of Santa Claus. Explore some of Finland’s most stunning nature trails and breathe the world’s cleanest air.

Mt. Korvatunturi in summer in Savukoski, Finland
Photo by: Visit Savukoski-Korvatunturi
Reindeer walking in the street in Savukoski, Finland in winter
Photo by: Visit Savukoski-Korvatunturi
Enjoying an overlook in summer in Savukoski, Finland
Photo by: Visit Savukoski-Korvatunturi

ABOUT SAVUKOSKI & KORVATUNTURI

A tunturi is a fell, or a hill carved by Ice Age glaciers. There are fells all over Lapland, but there’s none quite so magical as Mt. Korvatunturi. Named for its fox ears-like appearance, Korvatunturi sits on the border between Finland and Russia. Known to children as the location of Santa’s secret workshop and to adults as an untouched winter playground, Korvatunturi is one of Savukoski’s most beautiful, mysterious and thrilling destinations.

Note: Traveling to Korvatunturi requires a special border zone permit. The permit is free, and multiple people can be added to a permit. There are many local businesses happy to arrange the trip and the permit for you.

The second largest national park in Finland is Urho Kekkonen (UKK) National Park. The park is, of course, massive, connecting the Arctic taiga forests that band central Lapland to the stunted trees and sparse landscapes of the lower tundra. Listing all the attractions of UKK would take days, so here’s a few highlights.

    • Kemihaara – Drive right up to the gates of UKK and begin your adventure on the multi-day hiking trail that leads toward Korvatunturi.
    • Nuortti Canyon – Nuortti is a perfect representation of what northern Lapland is. The river meanders through a winding canyon, green and alive in summer, frosted and magical in winter.
    • The Gorges – With names like Paradise, the Devil’s Gate, and Ugly Gorge, you know you’re in for a treat. UKK has many gorgeous gorges and uncanny canyons.
    • Historical homesteads – Life in northern Lapland has always been a balancing act, steadfast folk versus an inexorable environment.

If you’re a seasoned pro or a daring adventurer, you can tackle the wilderness of Savukoski by yourself. The hiking trails of summer become the cross-country tracks and snowshoe routes of winter. Of course, if you feel a bit daunted by the sheer size and isolation of Finland’s most remote areas, there are guides and guided tours. As UKK features some difficult terrain and cell service is poor in some places, guided tours are recommended for safety.

Reindeer in Savukoski outnumber the population by twelve to one. So you might not expect to see many people—and you would be right. But there are villages sprinkled throughout Savukoski, great for starting snowmobiling adventures or kayaking trips, visits with Mrs. Claus, or pit stops on your way deeper into northern wilderness. Of course, you can also let a pack of howling huskies or a rambling reindeer take you on a sledge ride through the winter wonderland.

THINGS TO DO IN SAVUKOSKI

Your Arctic adventure starts here! Journey to the heart of Santa’s home mountain. Trek through Finland’s 2nd largest national park. Hop on a snowmobile and ride for … well, forever! Immerse yourself in authentic Arctic wilderness; in Savukoski and Korvatunturi, there’s no limit to how far you can go.

PERFECT SAVUKOSKI SUMMERS

  • Kivitunturi Nature Trail
  • Fish Arctic rivers & lakes
  • Mountain biking
Hiking in summer in Savukoski, Finland
Photo by: Visit Savukoski-Korvatunturi
Biking in summer in Savukoski, Finland
Photo by: Visit Savukoski-Korvatunturi
Snowmobiling to Mt. Korvatunturi in winter in Savukoski, Finland
Photo by: Samperin Savotta
Santa Claus and his reindeer in Savukoski, Finland
Photo by: Visit Savukoski-Korvatunturi

SNOWFLAKES & SANTA CLAUS

  • Snowmobiling
  • Reindeer farm visit & ride
  • Ice fishing

PLAN YOUR STAY IN SAVUKOSKI

After a true Arctic adventure, it’s only natural to be hungry. Grab a bite at Savukoski’s cafes and restaurants, then head to the sauna for a relaxing evening. And when it comes time for bed, snuggle up in a Savukoski cabin or hotel room.

SWEET SAVUKOSKI DREAMS

  • Hotel Samperin-Savotta
  • Majavasokka Kairijoki
  • Tuppion Majat
Samperin Savotta, accommodation and service provider, in Savukoski, Finland
Photo by: Visit Savukoski-Korvatunturi
Berries plucked from the wilderness in Savukoski, Finland
Photo by: Lapland Material Bank | Terhi Tuovinen

DINING IN SAVUKOSKI

TRAVELING TO SAVUKOSKI & KORVATUNTURI

HOW TO GET HERE

The airports in Rovaniemi, Kittilä, Ivalo and Kuusamo are almost all the same distance from Savukoski (around 200km). You can book transfers from the airports to Savukoski through local service operators, or you can rent a car. From Kemijärvi train station, it’s only 1.25 hours via E63.

Map of Savukoski in Finnish Lapland

Looking for more Savukoski & Korvatunturi?

Whether you’re snowmobiling to the fox-eared Korvatunturi or hiking through true Arctic wilderness, Savukoski & Korvatunturi have the perfect adventure for you.

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