A friendly reindeer checks out the royal visitors, who were spending a day with a Sami community above the Arctic Circle
Photo: © Rex
Click on photos for gallery
Prince Haakon, followed by his wife, experiences the local mode of travel. The Sami people are historically reindeer herders
Photo: © Rex
Haakon and Mette-Marit mark regional national day with the Sami
6 FEBRUARY 2009
If you're north of the Arctic Circle and the mercury is nudging minus 25 degrees it makes sense to follow the lead of the experts when it comes to staying warm, as Crown Prince Haakon and his wife Princess Mette-Marit found when they donned traditional costume on a visit to the northnmost part of Norway.
The couple were togged out in the skins and colourful wraps of the Sami, an indigenous people who inhabit an area stretching across northern Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia, when they joined a community at Kautokeino in Finnmark to mark Sami national day on February 6.
Well protected from the Arctic chill they were able to enjoy a dash across the snowy lansdscape in individual reindeer-pulled sledges before being invited into a lavvu. Temporary structures similar to the native American teepee, lavvu are used by the Sami to follow their reindeer herds across the treeless plains of northern Scandinavia.