Local life in Rovaniemi

The lively city centre of Rovaniemi is great for shopping, eating out and enjoying a night away in one of its many hotels. Three shopping centres along with many specialised shops and boutiques cater for all needs; from fashion and shoes to sports equipment, or classic Finnish design brands. With restaurants from across the culinary world, there is something for everyone's taste buds. Rovaniemi has many accomodation options to suit your needs, ranging from budget hostels to high end boutique hotels to a cosy cottage in the wilderness or even an apartment in the city.

Rovaniemi can cater for all your needs to make your stay here in the Arctic an amazing experience.

Restaurants and bars

Although Rovaniemi is a small city, there is still a great variety of restaurants and dining options for you to enjoy. You can find: Finnish, Japanese, Chinese, Indian, Thai, American, French, Italian or Mexican cuisine, with dining options such as street food vendors, cafés or fine dining Restaurants.
Rovaniemi has many different bars for those who would like to enjoy a drink, including; a piano bar; a brewery bar offering local ales and lagers; cocktail and wine bars; and several nightclubs.


There are three shopping malls in Rovaniemi (Revontuli, Rinne and Sampo), many food stores, and one 24/7 mini supermarket called Sale directly in the city centre. 

Souvenir shops and Finnish designer stores Marimekko, Iittala and Marttiini are located in the city centre as well as Santa Claus Village.


With Rovaniemi being a popular tourist destination this means there are many options of hotels and accommodation to select from. There are various choices in the busy heart of town and also in the wilderness of the surrounding area, ranging from luxury to very basic. The oldest hotel is Scandic Pohjanhovi; a very traditional, well-respected hotel that was built in 1947. With new hotels popping up every year, there is something for everyone. The most recent trend is glass igloos (igloo-shaped private cottages with transparent ceilings to view the Northern Lights), and cabins made of natural materials with one glass wall that ensures both privacy and unity with nature. 

A lovely example are the Panorama Huts located at the Arctic Circle Wilderness Lodge.


Rovaniemi does have a local public bus network, although being a small city the service does not run very frequently. It is best to check from Linkkari to view bus routes and timetables. As an example: bus number 8 connects city center, airport, Santa Park and Santa Claus Village. The bus leaves approximately once every hour and the schedule will depend on the season. There is also an airport bus for transfers from the city centre. It costs 7€/person/way. Take a look at airport bus for the times and pick up locations.
Rovaniemi's taxi options for you include Santa Line and Original Taxi.

Rovaniemi is situated in Finnish Lapland, right on the Arctic Circle. Despite the northern location, getting here is easy – Rovaniemi is well connected to the rest of the world via various means of transport. From abroad, the easiest way to get to Rovaniemi is by plane, either via Helsinki or direct. Inside Finland, Rovaniemi can be reached by plane, train, coach or car.

Flight connections
Daily flights between Rovaniemi and Helsinki are operated by Finnair and Norwegian throughout the year. During the winter season, November - March, EasyJet and Norwegian operate direct flights from London Gatwick to Rovaniemi.

Train connections
Finnish railroads are operated by state company VR.
Rovaniemi is easy to reach by rail from many Finnish towns, with several trains running to and from Helsinki every day and a night train every evening. Trains run year round, despite the harsh weather at times.

Coach connections
The coach services operated by Matkahuolto and Onnibus cover most of Finland’s road network and provide a well-priced option for getting to Rovaniemi.

Road connections
Rovaniemi is easy to get to by car from all directions although distances can be long. If you plan on travelling around Lapland by car, be sure to allocate enough time for the long distances and changing weather conditions, particularly in the winter. Note that during the winter period of snow and ice it is compulsory to have winter studded tires on your car.
Up-to-date information on road conditions is published by the Finnish Transport Agency.