Saariselkä (Northern Sami: "Suoločielgi", literally "islandback") is a mountain area and a village in Finland. It is a popular tourist destination, providing activities such as skiing, hiking and a spa. It is located in Northern Lapland and belongs to the Inari municipality.

Saariselkä is partly in Urho Kekkonen National Park. Soil in Saariselkä is mostly 2 billion year-old granulite. The last ice age ceased 9500 years ago in Saariselkä.


Many couples have wanted to have literally a "white wedding" in Lapland in the winter when there is snow everywhere. A couple may come in the chapel in a sledge pulled by husky dogs or reindeer. Pyhän Olavin Kappeli (St. Olaf's Chapel) and a small wooden Tievakappeli (Tieva Chapel) near Hotel & Igloo Village Kakslauttanen in Saariselkä have been popular places for white weddings. Other possible venues include reindeer farms.

Magnetic hill

Part of the former Finnish highway 4 in Saariselkä is known nowadays as "Magnetic hill". During World War II the road from Rovaniemi to Petsamo ("Arctic Ocean's Highway") was extremely important to the Finnish. Petsamo and its harbour was the only open way to the ocean. The hills beside Kaunispää-fjeld are so steep that 1940's trucks could not easily climb them. Folks thought there was something magnetic force in the hill that squeezed all power out from the motors. After a remake of highway 4 that short partwas taken out of daily use and declared to be the road museum of Magnetic hill.

External links

* [ Official home page of Saariselkä (Finnish)]
* [ Official home page of Saariselkä (English)]
* [ Saariselkä travel guide on Wikitravel]
* [ Saariselkä webcam]

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