2016 was a record-setting year for the tourism sector in Finnish Lapland. More visitors, especially from Asia and the UK, boosted tourism in Finland’s far north by more than 10% last year.
Last year, there were about 2.6 million overnight stays by visitors in Lapland. Stays by visitors from abroad were up by 18% while stays by Finns rose by over 9%.
The biggest boost to the tourism sector came from the growth in visitors from Asian countries. Overnight stays by Asian tourists shot up by close to 50%. Stays by Chinese tourists doubled from 2015 levels.
A traditional Christmas season destination for British visitors, Finnish Lapland registered a 24% increase in stays by tourists from the UK. In contrast, the number of overnight stays by Russian tourists fell by almost a quarter.
The Christmas season in general was good for the tourism sector, 20% up from the previous year.
According to figures from Statistics Finland, the average overnight stay in Lapland costs 130 euros, as compared to an average 100 elsewhere in the country.
Related stories from around the North:
Canada: The environmental and social impacts of Arctic tourism, Eye on the Arctic
Finland: Arctic Finland looks for boost from Chinese tourists, Yle News
Greenland: Blog – Greenland pioneers Arctic tourism & mining, Cryopolitics
Iceland: 10% of Iceland’s workforce employed in tourism, The Independent Barents Observer
Norway: Norwegian transport company launches new vessel for Arctic tourism, The Independent Barents Observer
Russia: Russian tourism on Svalbard up 500%, The Independent Barents Observer
United States: Alaska cultural tourism comes with challenges, Alaska Dispatch News