Rovaniemi, Finland

Santa Claus is Real, and he lives in Lapland, Finland.

When I was growing up, Santa Claus visited our home every Christmas. Now, you might say, he visited your house too, but did you actually see him? Where I grew up, Santa visited every Christmas Eve, right after dinner. He rang the doorbell, brought in a sack of gifts, and we got to sit on his lap, and had to play/sing a Christmas song. It was the same Santa every year. Now I know he was the soccer coach, and my mother originally found his Santa Claus ad in a local newspaper "Santa Claus for hire. Sober and has a car." Very typical in Finland where I grew up.

While it is common to rent a Santa for Christmas Eve, or Joulupukki as we say in Finnish, and while at some point of our lives, usually at tween or teen years, we figure this out, the magic if Santa Claus never really left my heart, and I think many other Finns feel the same way.

See, we have Lapland, the Northern part of Finland, where there is Korvatunturi, the REAL mountain where Santa's shop is. There is special kind of magic in Lapland, with the cold temperatures and snow, and well, it IS like a Christmas wonderland. Not to mention --- when you send a letter to Santa Claus, from anywhere in the world, in any language, using the normal postal service, they all end up in Santa's Official Post Office in Rovaniemi, Finland. This is where Santa receives a half a million letters from around the world each Christmas. No, really, all of the letters that are mailed to Santa Claus through regular postal service from around the world end up in this specific post office, and it is part of the official Finnish postal service, and the Finnish Post employs four full time postal employees in this location, just to handle Santa’s mail. What’s even more remarkable – every single letter is read by Santa and his postal helpers, and annually around 30,000 people are answered back. I guarantee all those who received a letter back, believe Santa is real. They also visit Lapland every year from around the world to see it themselves.

I, too, visited Rovaniemi, Finland, and visited Santa's post office and was even able to meet him. Let me tell you, Santa Claus is real, and your heart will be filled with Christmas spirit as long as you just believe it.

Santa Claus is Real, and he lives in Lapland, Finland.