Saturday, March 02, 2019

Rovaniemi Part 2

Mon 11 Feb 2019

As soon as we arrived back at Rovaniemi from Lompolo village, about 2.5 hours away (200 km), we checked in into our apartment near at 12 noon. We had booked a one hour reindeer safari at Raitola, located near to Santa Claus village for EUR 119 per person at 2pm. Our airbnb Rovaniemi apartment cost RM540 (about EUR 116) for 2 nights and is located near to Ounasvaara forest.



living room

view of Ounasvaraa forest from our apartment

After having lunch at our apartment, we went to Raitola farm, about 15 minutes away. There was another big group with us, so this felt less private than Rami's huskies in Kittila. A note of caution - we thought we would be able to 'drive' the reindeer sled, just like the huskies sled; however at Raitola, the guides actually walked together and pulled the reindeer. A reindeer was assigned to each sled, with 2 adults sitting in each sled. So if you're looking for navigating a reindeer sled, try someplace else.

Raitola farm

guide pulling the reindeer

guide pulling the reindeer

Anyway, our guide seemed caring towards her reindeers and explained to us about herding reindeers in Finland. We were also given the chance to feed the reindeers with lichen (like algae) which they really loved. We were told that each reindeer behaved differently; some do not liked to be touched and some were okay. Our reindeer - Aloo (it sounded like that) was a sweet boy, so we could pat him. All the reindeer pulling sleds at the farm were males as the females were pregnant / taking care of the baby reindeers (calves).  Both male and female have antlers. However, the antlers are more important to the males as those with the biggest and most beautiful antlers win over the females.

our reindeer sled

Aloo let us pat him

feeding lichen

Raitola reindeer farm

We finished the reindeer walk after about 1 hour. We were told the distance was about 7km. We were then  ushered into a building with a fireplace and given berry juice and cinnamon buns where the guide told us about reindeer herding.

After the reindeer safari, we stopped by Santa Claus village again intending to buy souvenirs, but most of the shops were already closed at 4pm. So we made our way back to our apartment not before stopping at the supermarket to buy provisions for dinner today and tomorrow.

No luck tonight as there is no Northern lights show.



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