Enjoy clean water straight from the tap. The tap water is fresh and clean, so bring your own bottle and stay hydrated. Torne River, the national river that caresses Övertorneå is clean and safe enough to swim in, but be careful of the water current. Remember that you always swim at your own risk.
The northern lights are a natural phenomenon, occurring when particles from the sun hits the atmosphere. The more active the sun is, the higher the chances of seeing the aurora. The northern lights happen year-round, but is only visible when the sky is dark and clear. Since the summers in Övertorneå are too bright (midnight sun), the northern lights can’t be seen. The northern lights season begins in early September and ends in the middle of April. Fall is a great time to experience them, thanks to dark evenings with no snow on the ground that reflects light. Head out on a northern lights safari with others or find your own secluded spot, away from light pollution.
what to wear
Pack according to season and always bring layers. For summer and fall, bring lighter clothes and a wind-proofed jacket for colder days. The winter season requires a base layer with long johns and a long sleeved top in a wool or mixed material that breathes. As a middle layer, a fleece set is a good choice, and the outer jacket and pants should be padded, wind and water-proofed. Gloves and a hat is needed. And you can never bring too many wool socks!
The Arctic Circle is an abstract latitude that embraces the Arctic region in the northernmost parts of the Earth. In the village Juoksengi, north of Övertorneå, you can jump across it and view the Arctic Circle monument.
You can buy groceries from ICA Supermarket or Coop Konsum in Övertorneå. The gas station OKQ8 also got some smaller grocery items. They accept cards and cash in SEK or EUR. There is also a grocery store called Handlar’n in Juoksengi, as well as an ICA Nära in Pello, both in the northern parts of Övertorneå.
Fill up your tank at OKQ8, the gas station in Övertorneå. Here you can fuel your car with petrol, diesel and ethanol. You can use your card in the automatic gas pumps 24/7, and pay with card or cash at the counter when the station is manned. There is also a possibility to DIY wash your car, get repairs and spare parts, as well as get snacks, coffee or something to eat.
At the moment there is no charging station for electric vehicles in Övertorneå.
Alcoholic beverages with more than 3,5% alcohol content are sold at Systembolaget. You need to be 20 years or older to purchase alcohol from Systembolaget. Systembolaget is located close to ICA Supermarket in Övertorneå and is open Mon-Sat, closed on Sundays. Please check their website for opening hours. You can purchase alcohol at restaurants and bars when you are 18 years old, as well as beverages with 3,5% alcohol content or lower in grocery stores.
The pharmacy is located in central Övertorneå and you find most pharmaceutical products as well as prescribed medication here. The pharmacy is not open on Sundays. The grocery stores have a few pharmaceutical products for your most basic needs, located by the cashier.
You can withdraw cash from the ATM outside Sparbanken Nord in central Övertorneå. ICA Supermarket also got an ATM for withdrawals.
The center of Övertorneå got a few shops that sells clothes, paint, flowers and home decoration to name a few. You can also find a café and an optician in the area. Please check our See and Do section for information about shops where you can buy artisanal food and handicrafts.
Midsummer is a traditional Swedish holiday, and Midsummer’s Eve is always the third Friday in June. It occurs around the summer solstice and is a celebration of summer. Wear flowers in your hair and enjoy the bright night!
Mosquitos in Sweden are not dangerous, but annoying enough. They usually appear in the middle of June and buzz around until August. How much there are differs from year to year, depending on weather. It also differs from each location. They usually like shadowy places, near calm waters. Protect yourself with mosquito spray that you can buy from the grocery stores. There are also spray that you can buy for your dog, check with the pharmacy or local hunting shop.
From the middle of May until late July, the days are never-ending. The sun never sets in June and is called the midnight sun when it pours its golden light over the landscape. Since the nights are so bright, it’s not unusual to sleep less.
The polar night occurs in December when the sun doesn’t rise above the horizon. This occurs around the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year. In Övertorneå it is experienced as a twilight, so it’s not pitch black all the time..
At the end of April until the first weeks of May, you got the chance to experience when the ice drifts. When the weather gets warmer, the ice in Torne River starts to crack into huge chunks and is pushed forward by the strong current. Some years it is really dramatic with ice that’s pushed up on the river bank, other years it’s more calm. There is never a set date when this happens, so the locals usually participate in a lottery where they guess the date and time of the ice drift.
Övertorneå was the first municipality in Sweden to be an eco-certified municipality back in 1983. Today, the municipality got a sustainability group that works with both environmental, socio-economic and financial sustainability, continuing the sustainability development. You can contribute to shop local, keep the nature and streets clean of litter and recycle. There is a recycling station in central Övertorneå for plastic, paper, glass and tin metal and you can recycle your PET bottles in the machines at ICA Supermarket or Coop Konsum.