The Sami culture and lifestyle is being preserved in Indre Finnmark more than in any other part of “Sápmi” (i. e. Lapland) . The Finnmarksvidda plateau has the widest horizons in the north

Sami core area

Karasjok and Kautokeino make up the Sami core area, and 98 per cent of the population in the community of Maze speak the Sami language at home. Reindeer husbandry is the traditional trade – extremely traditional for some practioners – while performed in a modern version by the majority.

An encounter with Sami culture

Colourful Easter festivals, joik – the chanting song of the Sami people – and “bidos” or reindeer stew served in traditional Sami lavvu tents, as well as Sametinget – the Sami Parliament, snow scooters and innovative art; Sami culture today is very much about uniting traditions with modern life.

The Finnmarksvidda plateau

The landscape here is one of rolling hills, with low-lying ridges, lakes, rivers and marshes. Besides Karasjok, Kautokeino and Maze, there are only a few small settlements. During Norway’s winter, the lowest temperatures are often recorded up here, but a dry climate ensures regular views of the Northern Lights. During the summer, the temperature sometimes reaches tropical highs.

Five popular sights

  • Sápmi Park; Public centre for Sami culture
  • Juhls Silver Gallery in Kautokeino
  • The Sami Collections, national heritage museum in Karasjok
  • The Sami Parliament in Karasjok
  • The Pikefossen waterfall in the Kautokeinoelva River

Three popular summer activities

  • River boat trip on Altaelva River in Maze 
  • Fishing in remote lakes and rivers on the plateau 
  • Walking tours from mountain lodge to mountain lodge

Three popular winter activities

  • Enjoying “bidos” or reindeer stew in a Sami lavvu tent in Karasjok or Kautokeino 
  • Dog-sledding on the Finnmarksvidda plateau together with Engholms Husky
  • Reindeer and sled driving in Maze

Five surprises about Indre Finnmark

  • The Easter Festivals are pure manifestations of Sami culture 
  • Sami knives make for a fine souvenir you will have the rest of your life 
  • A series of mountain lodges are situated 30 kilometres apart on the Finnmarksvidda plateau 
  • The Kautokeino churches are Norway’s most visited churches 
  • One often finds gold in the Karasjokka River