More and more people work remotely these days, they can pretty much get the job done in any place with a laptop and internet. Some of them even call themselves digital nomads. We are listing 10 reasons here why you should choose to come to HaparandaTornio as your next workation destination.
1. Double experience
Just like kinder eggs, you have all the joys and surprises at once when you come to HaparandaTornio. Here we celebrate the new year twice and the Kukkola Rapids is worth visiting from both sides. You can enjoy both Swedish and Finnish culture and many locals speak Swedish and Finnish fluently. For polyglots, here you get to practice both if you’re interested in learning new languages. But don’t worry, almost everyone speaks fairly good English since we have many tourists visiting us each year. You would definitely get by without any problem to ask for directions or get help in the shops.
2. Scenic Nature
We have noticed that many content creators move to Lapland to get away from big cities. They have made heaps of brilliant videos and photos about our beautiful landscape. In HaparandaTornio we have pristine sandy beaches on the island Seskarö or Sandskär, where Swedish Robinson and Finnish Survivor filmed. There’re many things to do in our picturesque archipelago. From paddling a kayak to joining a boat tour. Moreover, we also have a mighty Torne River where people fish and do whitewater rafting in summer and ice fish in winter.
3. Convenient Transport
You don’t really need a car to get around in HaparandaTornio. Here we have local buses connecting different parts of the city. We have services between the city and the rural areas as well.
HaparandaTornio plays an important role as a transport hub if you plan to visit other popular destinations in Lapland such as northern lights chasing in Abisko, Icebreaker cruise in Kemi or Kalix and Santa Claus Village in Rovaniemi. You will make the most out of your workation when you’re based in HaparandaTornio.
Have a look at our guide to travel from Stockholm here.
4. Restaurants and Grocery
In HaparandaTornio, there’re plenty of restaurants that serve either traditional Finnish/ Swedish food or modern Nordic cuisine. In addition, we also have a wide variety of exotic restaurants from Mexican, Indian, Japanese, Chinese, Thai to Vietnamese. Not to mention countless pizzerias and kebab kiosks around the city. Not a meat lover? That’s fine, most of the restaurants even have vegetarian or vegan choices on their menu.
If you’re going to stay longer in HaparandaTornio. You’re probably not going to eat out everyday. There are three major supermarkets Coop, ICA and K-Supermarket in the city center where you can do your grocery shopping. You will find things like taco shells and ramen noodles on the shelves, too. Besides, there are Asian and Middle Eastern grocery stores in case you need to get some specific items.
5. A Wide Range of Accommodation
For backpackers, we have a hostel in town. It’s close to everything, comfortable and convenient. While many digital nomads might choose Airbnb during their visit. It’s a great way to enjoy what HaparandaTornio has to offer if you plan to stay for a longer period of time. Maybe you’re looking for a place with a combination of comfy vibe and hotel service? Then service apartments at Hotel Olof is the perfect choice for you with a kitchen and a big working desk. Perhaps you’d like to stay in a traditional wooden cabin by the Torne River, Kukkolaforsen is the place to be. As we mentioned earlier, some digital creators move here because the house is way cheaper than in the big cities and it’s so close to nature. You might consider purchasing a property if you will stay more than only one month. Websites like Habita in Finland and Hemnet in Sweden will do the job for you.
6. Affordable Internet
This is the mostly important part for all the digital nomads. Both Finland and Sweden have a reliable internet speed. In fact, the mobile data in Finland is 4th cheapest among other EU countries. Today, roaming in the EU without additional charges is a common thing. That being said, you can pretty much work from anywhere with cell phone reception. In our shopping center Rajalla på Gränsen, there are DNA and Telia stores in case you need to buy a prepaid sim card.
Rajalla på Gränsen, Länsiranta 10, 95400 Tornio, Finland
7. Working Space
We don’t have any co-working space in HaparandaTornio at the moment, but we do have some cafes and two libraries with free wifi.
Konditoriet JoLa, Storgatan 73, 953 31 Haparanda, Sweden
Haparanda City Library, Packhusgatan 4, Haparanda, Sweden
Tornio City Library, Torikatu 2, 95400 Tornio, Finland
When you arrive in HaparandaTornio, don’t forget to visit Tornio River Valley Museum and Aine Art Museum. They stand right next to each other and this is the first stop to get to know the local history and culture of the Torne River Valley region.
Then we have the brewery Tornion Panimo that is situated in the Lappari Experience center. It has a long history dated back to 1873 and they made many popular beers.
Kukkola River Rapids is hands down a must while you’re around. You can fish on a wooden jetty in the middle of the river like the locals do in summer. Join a snowmobile safari or a northern light tour in winter. Oh and take a sauna all year round!!
Check out our Kukkola area guide here.
Tornio River Valley Museum, Torikatu 4, 95400 Tornio, Finland
Aine Art Museum, Torikatu 4, 95430 Tornio, Finland
9. Eventful Festivals
Are you planning to visit HaparandaTornio by now? There are some big events happening throughout the year that need to be taken into account.
On the last day of the year, locals and tourists rush into the square Victoriatorget where the border lies. We celebrate the New Year twice with fireworks and performances. In March, the ice fishing competition Tornion Suurpilkit is taking place in the frozen Torne River. When it comes to summer, we have Border Pride for the LGBT community and boundaryless love. To catch the tail end of summer, the annual music event Toranda Venetsialaiset which is literally the “end of summer celebration” you shouldn’t miss out. In fall, there’s a light festival called Piot-festivaali with art installations and light shows which is ideal for hanging out with friends and family.
For residents from Schengen countries, you are able to travel freely in the Schengen area which including Sweden and Finland. Due to the pandemic, there’re temporary restrictions might apply when crossing the border. Please check the information before you travel.
Overall, HaparandaTornio is a safe place for you to visit and it’s absolutely great to stay here for long if you like simple life and appreciate doing outdoor activities. Finally yet importantly, the weather here is beautiful most of the time but it can change rapidly. We suggest you read our recommendation of winter wear when you come visit us.