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Sami culture



Until today Ankarede has been a traditional Sami meeting place and a popular tourist's spot. The meeting place near Blåsjön is especially known for its wooden chapel that was built in 1898 (you can get the key at the opposite café). The chapel hosts the annual Christmas market at the first weekend in December, and the midsummer festivities. At the solstice celebrations people hardly sleep, for they will be dancing, eating and talking for hours on stretch, and for the culminating end a lasso contest will be planned.

Ankarede doesn't only allow you to have a peek into Sami culture, but it is also an excellent starting point for hikes, cross country skiing, and snowmobile trips. If tours of several days are too long, it is still recommended to make the 3 kilometres walk to the Lejar waterfall. There are easy passable and well signed trails starting at the parking place. Tip: Pack your picknick basket - at the Lejar river there are two idyllic picknick places with fireplaces.



Since prehistoric times the area of Fatmomakke, situated at the foothills of the Mars mountains, 120 kilometres north-west of Vilhelmina, has been a meeting centre. Since the Stone and Iron Age trappers settled there. In the course of Christianisation of the country the first church was built in the place of the old Sami meeting centre in 1781. The simple shed, constructed on poles, became soon to small for the religious services.

Already ten years later a new church was built, and this one too could answer the needs only until 1881. Then, in three years time a new church was built - the one that today still stands in Fatomakke. A community of huts and wooden houses grew around the church, and thus, a place where Sami and settlers came together and exchanged cultures came into being.

Until today there are two church festivals a year at Fatomakke: the Spring celebration in early June, and the Autumn celebration in early September.

From the parking place in Fatomakke there are several hiking trails leading into the 86.000 hectare large Mars mountains nature reserve. With clear weather you will have a unique view over the south Lappland mountain region from the 1587 metre high summit of the Marsfjäll. Tips and hiking maps can be obtained at the kiosk in Fatomakke or at the Infopoint in Saxnäs and Klimpfjäll.

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