Cafe Peura (located within the Fell-Lapland Nature Centre)
Cafe Peura (kahvilapeura.fi), opened in 2019 and therefore might not have made it into the guidebooks / blogs that you might have been reading about the area. Nevertheless, the chef / food is excellent and it is well worth a visit. In summer months, it may have a weekly menu but in the tourist months, there are both set lunches and a variety of cakes, waffles etc on offer, from c.11am - 6pm.
Location-wise, the nature and information centre is 2km from the centre of town, at the base of the ski tracks (downhill and cross country), the start of the hike to the top of Jyppyra, etc. The Fell-Lapland Nature Centre itself has two main opening times in the year depending on when it is high and low season. High season is between mid July and end-September and again in March and April. At these times, the Skierri is open from 9am to 5pm daily. Low season months are from May to mid July and again, from September until the end of February. At these times, the Skierri is open Monday to Friday, 9am – 4pm.
Post Office's Cafe (Erämaakota)
As with most places in Lapland, the Post Office does not serve only one function. In fact, it is also a flower shop, the main bakery for the region, a cafe, souvenir shop and petrol station! It is the building on the left hand side, half way between the junction to Norway and the village of Hetta, in the direction of the village. This petrol station is far cheaper than the one by the junction to Norway. A very useful additional service is that the post office has open free internet in its cafe.
The grill is open to 8 or 9pm most days and sells what you would imagine – fries, burgers, hot-dogs, beer, fizzy drinks etc. Even when most places in Hetta seem to take holidays, the grill tends to stay open so it is a dependable place for getting food.
Hotel Hetta, located on the shores of Lake Ounasjärvi, c. 1km from the centre of town in the direction of the ski slopes and nature centre, serves food daily when open (which is most of the year). Hotel Hetta has particularly good pizzas and, although there is no vegetarian food on the menu, they will make some from whatever produce is fresh on that day. In winter, it is a popular kareoke venue on a Friday night although the music is a strange mix between Finnish, French and English songs since the majority of its clients in winter are from France.
Hotel Jussantupa, directly opposite the supermarket, serves food daily, when open (which is most of the year) and has a bar and reception area which is open through the day. Most clients are locals.
2nd Petrol Station Cafe
As mentioned above, the post office is the main petrol station although there is a second at the junction to Norway (arguably one of the most expensive in Finland). Both have cafes and, on a positive note for the latter, the junction station contains various useful items that can't be found elsewhere in Hetta so outdoors people, fishermen etc may find things of interest here.
The second hand shop, in the wooden building beside the supermarket, (the old school). It is only open on weekdays, (from 10am - 5pm on Mondays and from 9am to 3pm on Tuesdays to Fridays).
There is both a straight fee shop and one in which people pay for tables and sell what they want for the price they indicate on the items. Between the two shops there is generally a good selection of women's clothes, warm winter jackets and various useful other items which seem to change frequently enough to make weekly visits worthwhile. The large box on the stairs at the main entrance is a 'free-for-all' box, from which you can take anything.
It also contains a community cafe within the centre where older folk often gather for a coffee and leave what they think is appropriate in renumeration in return.
Café Silja is here no more.
Cafe Silja is probably well referenced in blogs and guide-books produced in recent years since it was a popular cafe, known for its reindeer burgers, in the heart of Hetta. However, it closed in c. 2017 so the best option is now Cafe Peura, which opened in 2019.
Galdotieva is located near the Norwegian border, 27 kilometres from the village of Hetta towards Kautokeino, right along the snowmobile routes. Galdotieva offers accommodation and good location also for meetings and celebrations.
Rajabaari Neste Karesuavanto
As in Hetta, the petrol station on the Finnish side of Karesuvanto is multifunctional as a cafe, restaurant, pharmacy, parcel courier service, souvenir and practical outdoor shop. They also have a sauna and meeting rooms for rent, a small room in the main building which can be rented for a couple of hours by those driving long distances and an apartment which can be rented overnight. In Skibotn, the village as you hit the T-junction at the end of the long road to Norway from Kilpisjärvi, they also have a seaside cabin for rent. Tel. +358 16 522 182 Email: rajabaari.puranen[at]co.inet.fi
Ropin Pirtti provides both cabin accommodation and a cafe selling pretty good doughnuts and other home-made goods at Ropinsalmi, about 60 kilometres south of KilpisjärviI, en route to Karasuando.
The cluster of huts and cafe are located on the side of lake Naimakkajärvi and are in a really nice location to stop for either a quick break from driving or a relaxing overnight stop. They are open for the spring and summer season between April and mid September although they are generally closed for the last two weeks in May. You can also buy fishing permits, locally picked produce and souvenirs from here.
The cafe is open daily during the spring-summer season and homemade doughnuts as well as other sweet and sour bakery products, sweets and hot and cold drinks are produced daily. The products are mainly lactose free and we also have gluten free options. They can arrange dinner service for larger groups, but only by prior arrangement.
Retkeilykeskus (Kilpisjärvi Hiking Centre)
Retkeilykeskus's fully licenced restaurant seats 200 people. The most famous part of the restaurant is the traditional Siilastupa where the company was originally started in 1937. The restaurant serves to please the most demanding needs of the outdoors people, from early breakfast until the plentiful dinner at night. Many hikes and skiers also drop in for a coffee break to the café.
Vuontispirtti, situated in Ylikyrö village in the south-eastern corner of the Pallas-Ounas National Park, is a parish-owned hotel, camping and caravan site, restaurant, café and souvenir shop venue with guide services.