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When I first messaged my friend Kristina (the only Finn I’ve ever met) for recommendations on traveling to Finland to meet Santa Claus, I was pleased as punch to hear she not only knew all about Santa, but that she was actually working at Snowman World in Santa Claus Village. I nearly passed out from excitement waiting to tell Greg the news.
According to its website, Snowman World “can be recognized by its large igloos, wild slide made of snow and its spectacular lighting.” And it truly occupies some prime real estate at the Arctic Circle, just under a minute’s walk to Santa Claus’ Office.
We were lucky enough to be there for the grand opening and to witness the arrival of their three new snowmen- Flake, Frost, and Aurora- from the North Pole, and hear their story (in Finnish) of global warming and the imposing threat to Snowmankind. While their parents are busy at the North Pole storing away snowballs for a warmer climate, the three siblings spend their time at Snowman World helping people enjoy the arctic outdoors and try new things like sliding down the ice hills, ice skating and ice sculpting. There is also the aptly named groundskeeper, Snowman (who looks a lot like our Frosty), who helps take care of the guests and keep an eye on Snowman World.
In addition to tubing, snowboarding, and sleigh-go-round rides for the kids (and Greg), there’s an ice bar, ice restaurant, and the only fine dining establishment at the Arctic Circle- Ensilumi- for the adults. After tubing and souvenir shopping we were too late to have dinner there, but we did partake of some of their hot chocolate, which Greg described as “Seriously, the best hot chocolate I’ve ever had”. He was actually mad at himself for ever drinking hot chocolate from packets when something like that existed. The ice hotel and ice restaurant weren’t open yet, but we were free to explore the igloo that contained them. At first I
shuddered shivered at the thought of paying to sleep under ice, but being inside a giant igloo is a lot warmer than one would think, and one might even describe the rooms as “cozy”. Only one way to find out- go back when the rooms are completed and spend a night.
If you ever find yourself in Rovaniemi around Christmas (which we highly recommend), give Snowman World a try. Your kids will love you for it! Mine sure does.