Kemi, Finland is located in the Gulf of Botnia on the coast of the Baltic Sea. This town is well known for Snow Castle, where you can enjoy a lot of activities by the sea. Kemi is a sparsely populated town with only 21758 residents.
And it has been the heart of services and trade of Sea Lapland, since its establishment by the Russian Emperor Alexander II in 1869, thanks to its vicinity to the deep-water harbor.
These days, huge cargo ships leave from that harbor. In the wintertime, these ships are escorted by giant icebreakers, which make their way across the frozen sea to the open waters towards the south. The sea is the main center of attraction in the town.
Most of the activities in Kemi take place around the sea. Kemi is easy to reach by all modes of transport. You can take direct flights from Helsinki, and it also has a rail connection. So, let’s talk about the best things to do in Kemi.
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Top 9 COOL Things to do in Kemi (Finland)
The former icebreaker used by the Finnish government, Sampo offers an amazing cruise tour on the Gulf of Bothnia. It is one of the best things to see in Kemi. It is the combination of ice, steel, and the sea, which is something you may not find anywhere else.
The four-hour cruise is available every year from December to April. The souvenir shops, tours, and café also open during summers. You can come and experience this cruise in the heart of vast Arctic sea scenery. The sight and sound of the huge slabs of ice breaking is a magnificent sight to behold.
At a point, the boat also stops so you can come out and walk on a sheet of ice. It is a unique and once-in-a-lifetime experience to see people in the heart of a frozen sea.
A bright red suit is provided when it stops so you can get in the freezing water. It is an incredible experience when you float with blocks of ice, such an unforgettable experience to cruise on Icebreaker Sampo, and this is one of the memorable things to do in Kemi. For sure you will enjoy this tourist attraction.
It is a Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Church, which belongs to the Diocese of Oulu. It is located centrally in Kemi, Northern Finland. This Gothic Revival church is a great attraction for Kemi sightseeing. The construction was finished in 1902 and was designed by Josef Stenback. It was renovated in the year 2003.
The spectacular interior, intricate designs, and amazing theme make Snowcastle one of the best places to visit in Kemi. It is built every year, and it always brings the new design made with the Baltic Sea waters and is located nearby the town center.
It also houses the world’s largest snow restaurant with the capacity to serve up to 200 guests. It also has a Snow Hotel and Snow Chapel, where couples from different parts of the world get here to get married. This is one of the best on the list of things to do in Kemi, this magical and amazing place is worth a visit.
Kemi Gemstone Gallery
You can find a great diversity of minerals and gemstones in its collection. A beautiful crown designed exclusively for the King of Finland is its main attraction around a century ago. Also, Finland commemorated 100 years of its independence recently.
You can see this crown only in this museum. Its collection also includes the most premium 647-diamond necklace owned by Marie Antoinette and Imperial State Crown’s replica of Great Britain.
There are more than 3000 stones on the ground floor from different parts of the world from over 60 countries. There are cut and polished stones, along with rough ones, such as jewels, gems, pearls, ivory, and amber.
The second floor of the gallery presents amazing replicas of well-known crown jewels and diamonds from different European royals.
Elamysvirta – Flow of Experience
Here, you will be offered different types of nature and outdoor activities and fishing tours based on your wishes. You can enjoy fishing tours on the creeks, rivers, falls, and lakes of Lapland. The Kemi travel guide is very professional and trained.
The Arctic Comics Center has operated for more than 30 years in Kemi. There is a vast permanent exhibition, which is unique in itself. It features a foreign and Finnish cartoonist. It has original drawings and over 40 3D cartoon statues. Along with it, they usually offer amazing short-time exhibitions for the whole family.
Snow castle may be one of those few things, which manage to depict a fairy-tale romance. Initially built by a UNICEF project in 1996, Lumilinna is like a winter highlight in Lapland and a well-known destination for a honeymoon, wedding, and overall marveling at the well-designed interior and ethereal light. The design is used to change every year, but it also includes a snow hotel, a chapel, a restaurant, and an ice bar.
Santa’s Seaside Office
The recent attraction in Kemi opened in the year 2017, is none other than Santa’s Seaside Office. It is a cluster of cute red timber buildings facing the waterfront. It houses a café, a gift shop, and santa himself (from Thursday to Saturday noon).
You may even write a letter to Santa and lock it in a bottle. It also has gingerbread decoration and elf sailor workshops. Prices here vary for separate activities.
If you are done visiting Kemi landmarks, it is time to taste some home-brewed beer at Panorama Café. Its lunch buffet is a true value for money, including wild mushroom soup, arctic char with potato bake, cranberry sauce with elk sausages and even more.
The serene views to the Bay of Bothnia from the terrace and dining room are the main reasons to go to Kemi’s town hall and its 13th floor.