Levi, Lapland – how to make the most of your time there?

Trip to Lapland is always an amazing experience. For some it is childhood dreams-come-true (you finally will meet Santa Claus) for the others it is adventurous trip to unknown Arctic Circle. I want to share what my friends and I did besides the obvious – skiing, husky safari and snowmobiles – to have amazing memories.

Learn about Sami culture

Samiculture

Sami, also known as Lapps or Lapplanders are indigenous people living in arctic area. The museum of Sami culture is situated up the hill, right next to the ski lift and you enter it from hotel’s lobby. Entrance costs 8 EUR for students (remember to bring your uni student card) and off you go to the atmosphere-rich hall with dim lights and tribal music. You will learn there origins and customs of the Sami people. What also caught my attention was display of beautifully photographed Finnish nature.

 

 

Meet the reindeer

What I did not mention earlier, is that by the entrance to the museum you can buy a bag of moss. Why would you? Well, at the back of display hall there is exit to the reindeer pen where you can pet and feed them. As long as you wish!

poro

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eat the reindeer

Reindeer meat is red and lean. It tastes very much like beef, but with touch of wild. It is one of these unique to the area foods: tasting reindeer in Lapland – it will not get any more genuine. You can go for single packed reindeer snacks, traditional roasted reindeer with mash potatoes and lingonberry or something less traditional as a reindeer pizza.

pizza

snack

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Text and photos: Adrianna Pakula

 

 

Finnish culture – the food

Are you a foodie? Fantastic! In Finland you will find quite a variety of foods that you will not encounter anywhere else. I will describe few of my favourites that you can actually take home with you (well, if your flight is short enough)and give some tips how to prepare or present them.

Karjalanpiirakka – Karelian Pasty

karjalanpiirakkaFancy-shaped rye pastry with rice filling is sold in all supermarkets. It is cheap and quite frankly… plain in taste. Traditionally you eat them hot, with egg butter (munavoi – boiled eggs mixed with butter). In my opinion this combination is quite bland – I dare you to pop them in the oven and serve with honey.

 

Fazer chocolate

suklaamignon

Karl Fazer founded the company in 1891 and since then chocolate in blue wrapper has been sold. It is delicious and comes in tens of different flavours including popcorn, peppermint and liqorice (Fazer also produces Dumle – very famous soft caramels in chocolate). What is unusual about Fazer’s products? You may find it in shops around Easter Mignons – nougat in real eggshell – very sweet, very extraordinary.

Everything liquorish

Everything.

lakritsi

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Liquorish is one thing, but Nordic people had taken it to the next level creating Salmiakki – ammonium chloride flavoured liquorice that will sting your tongue. Finnish tastebuds are accustomed to that black, intense in taste, candy. You will find everything containing liquorish and even if you do not like it – you should try it.

Mämmi

mämmi

 

 

 

 

 

How about black porridge? Mämmi is a traditional dish served during Easter. It is pudding-porridge kind of thing, in taste quite similar to slightly sour, wet rye bread. It is made of water, rye flour, and powdered malted rye, seasoned with dark molasses, salt, and dried powdered Seville orange zest. The way to serve it is with milk or cream and sugar.

Text and photos: Adrianna Pakula