CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR IN LAPLAND

The midwinter-time in northern Lapland is something everybody should experience. As well as there, around mid-summer, are six weeks when the sun doesn't set, "The Midnight-Sun", there are six weeks in the winter when the sun doesn't rise, "Kaamos". At noon there are some hours of "dawn", but there is never any real darkness. With all the pure snow and the cleanest air in Europe, the moon, the stars and the mysterious Northern light lightens the nature. Temperatures down to -30 C or -40 C are not unusual. To Your surprise You will notice that it is possible to be out-doors in those temperatures. A normal wintersday will have about -20 C.

New Year with the Malmström family at Rajamaa is something very special. Far away from the worries and cares of Your everyday, and without any hysterical celebration we await the turn or really the turns of the Year... Here we celebrate the New Year twice the same evening!!!! Rajamaa is situated on an island in the river Muonio, a river that forms the border that unites Sweden with Finland. As Finland is one hour ahead, we can celebrate New Year twice.

Newyears Eve traditionally starts with pre- parations outside. Everyone participates, guests and family members. The two strokes of twelve we celebrate on the little island of Kipparisaari, that lies exactly on the border. In the evening we meet in the restaurant for a Silvestersupé. As we enjoy the food the first, the finnish New Year is getting closer. We put on our warmest clothes and walk along the path, enlighted by ice-candles, over the ice to the island. There a log-fire is awating us and perhaps a cup of hot wine. The border is marked with lanterns that create a band of lights in the night. When the time comes we can drink a toast for the New Year twice and stand with "one leg in each year". Something You only can do at Rajamaa.