Russians ready for Lapland Christmas
Santa Claus' hometown will get more visitors from Moscow, St. Petersburg and Murmansk this season.
With December, the peak-season for tourism to Rovaniemi in northern Finland starts. Some 100 charter flights will land Santa Claus airport over the coming weeks before Christmas. 130.000 bed-nights are already booked.
- The majority of visitors come from UK, Russia, France and Japan, says Sanna Kortelainen, managing director of Rovaniemi Tourist & Marketing Ltd. to BarentsObserver.
There is however a small decline of British travellers this Christmas. That is compensated with a substantial increase in visitors from Russia. The Russians have their Christmas season later the Western Europe, with a 10 days vacation period in the beginning of January.
- The majority of Russians are coming from Moscow, St. Petersburg and Murmansk. This year has been the best ever with Russian visitors, says Sanna Kortelainen. More than 10.000 bed-nights with Russians are so far counted for in the hotel-statistics in Rovaniemi. And that was before the Christmas and New Year season started.
Rovaniemi tourism and shopping malls have had joint-marketing campaigns in Murmansk this autumn and as BarentsObserver has reported earlier, the number of visas issued to Finland in Murmansk have skyrocketed over the last year.