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The Northern Lights Route

My Story Project is all about the landscape, the culture, the people, the visitors and the companies LIVING UNDER THE NORTHERN LIGHT – in the Arctic North.

The actual route, The Northern Lights Route (NLR), is a joint Nordic tourist route between Bothnia Bay and Norwegian Sea, covering Finland, Sweden and Norway. However, the cultural and historical stories of this region are far too little used in tourism.The landscape along the route is very rich and varied as our common cultural heritage is.

Since august 2017, the Our Stories project has collected and been inspired by tales told by local people and visitors along The Northern Lights Route. The route connects not only three neighbouring countries, but six distinct languages: Finnish, Swedish, Norwegian, Meänkieli, Kven and Sami.

The story collection ended in published stories in three categories describing our common culture:
NORTHERN – meaning our northern lifestyle and northern identity;
LIGHTS – highlighting the way the light changes during the year, which according to Sami tradition has eight seasons, not four;
ROUTE – leaving home and coming back.

Films, audio interviews, written stories and art stories to enjoy at STORIES

The total length of the NLR is over 600 km. The route goes from Tornio-Haparanda, via Kilpisjärvi to Tromsø in Norway, along both sides of the Tornio River.

The NLR extends from the Gulf of Bothnia to the Arctic Ocean. This area is thousands of years old, an ancient cultural environment, full of stories and the landscape is very beautiful. For many, the NLR is still quite unknown, even though it was named as an official tourist road in Finland in 2002.

Elina Söderström, landscape architect, musician and tourism entrepreneur from Studio E-City, made an analysis of the landscape of the Northern Lights Route during Our Stories project. This analyses contributes to making this unique cultural area better known to general public.

Read Elina’s descriptions of Tornio River Valley, forests and marshes and The Atlantic Ocean HERE


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Design & code: Gnist / Illustrations: Anna Koi