Various Lapp villages are strewn throughout the north of Finland, Norway, and Sweden. One of the best of the lot is the admission-free Lappstaden near the center of Arvidsjaur. More than 100 traditional houses have been moved to this site to create a Sami village as it might have appeared in the olden days. The 17th-century Sami Church Village here is the oldest and best preserved in the north of Sweden. And the huts you will see are still used during the great Sami festival on the last weekend in August, when Lapps from the surrounding area flock to Arvidsjaur for the celebration. For 30SEK ($6/£3), guided tours are offered daily at 5pm from June 19 to August 20 (summers are very short here).
The Glommerstrask Historical Museum, also near the town center (tel. 0960/202-91), used to be an old farming estate back in the 1700s, believe it or not. (How any brave soul attempted farming here with only a few weeks of warm weather is a mystery.) The museum's collection of about a dozen buildings preserves the old way of life and has served to protect the fast-fading heritage of the town's locals. As you wander through it, you can see many artifacts from the early colonization of the Lapp region, including a little schoolroom that dates from the 1840s. There is also a smithy and an on-site retail shop for handicrafts made by the Lapps themselves. If you have time for only one look at Sami culture, make it Lappstaden. But this other village has a certain appeal if you can spare the time. It charges 20SEK ($4/£2) for admission and is open from June 14 to August 13 Monday to Friday 10am to 4:30pm.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.