These Lands Are Our Children – Outdoor Etiquette For The Homeland Of The Sámi 

A drawn picture. Reindeer under the pine and next to it is the label of the Sámi region - the lands are our children.

The sustainable use of nature has been a prerequisite for the Sámi people and their traditional livelihoods. Nature and the land have always supported the Sámi. Fishing and hunting have traditionally not been carried out using methods and fishing periods that would have caused significant changes in fish or game stocks. The livelihoods related to land use form the material basis for the Sámi culture and identity and maintain the vitality of the Sámi Homeland, Sámi language, traditional knowledge, relationship with nature, communality of the Sámi culture and Sámi handicrafts. 

The Sámi are the only indigenous people in the European Union area. The status of the Sámi as an indigenous people was confirmed in the Constitution of Finland in 1995. In the Sámi worldview, people, nature and language are not seen as separate. The traditional Sámi settlement areas in Finland, Norway, Sweden and Russia are called the Sámi Homeland. 

The Sami region is marked on the map of Finland.

A total of ten Sámi languages are known, nine of which are still spoken in the areas of Finland, Sweden, Norway and Russia. Three of them are spoken in Finland: Inari Sámi, Skolt Sámi and Northern Sámi. 

Traditional Sámi livelihoods include reindeer husbandry, fishing, hunting, collection of natural products and Sámi handicrafts as well as their modern forms of practice. Traditional livelihoods are the foundation of the Sámi culture.

In Finland, legislation determines the Sámi Homeland, which is the area that includes the municipalities of Enontekiö, Inari and Utsjoki and the northern part of the municipality of Sodankylä in the Lapland reindeer herding co-operative. The management, use and protection of natural resources under the administration of Metsähallitus is harmonised with the Sámi Homeland in such a way that it ensures the conditions for preserving the Sámi culture. 

You are warmly welcome to the Sámi Homeland. We would like to share with you some pointers on how you can be considerate of the things that are important to the Sámi people when enjoying nature.

More Information