Tornio or Torneå in Swedish is a municipality in Lapland, Finland.
The municipality has a population of 22,198 (2003) and covers an area of 1,227.09 km² of which 43.85 km² is water.
The population density is 18.8 inhabitants per km².
It borders to the Swedish municipality of Haparanda.
The municipality is unilingually Finnish.
The delta of the Tornio river has been inhabited since the end of the last ice age, and there are currently (1995) 16 group-dwelling places (boplatsvallar) known in the area, similar to those found in Voullerim (ca 6000-5000 BC).
The Swedish part of the region is not far from the currently (2004) known oldest stationare dwelling place found in Scandinavia.
The theory that this region was unhabited and "colonised" from Viking Age onward is nowadays abandoned.
Until the 19th century, individuals speaking Kemi Sami inhabited the area, that's a Finnish-like language although categorised as part of the Eastern Sami group.
Tornio was named after the river Tornio; (North Sami) Duortnosjávri, presumably from (Finnish) Tornionjärvi, tornio, "spear".
Torneå(se: "Torne river") got its town charter from the King of Sweden in 1621 and was officially founded on the island of Suensaari (fi: "Wolf Island", probably named after one of the main landowners of the past).
The charter was in recognition of Tornio being the hub of all trade in Lapland throughout the 16th century.
It was the largest merchant town in the North at the time and for some years ranked as the richest town in the Swedish realm.
Despite the lively trade with Lapland and overseas, the number of inhabitants in the town remained stable at little over 500 persons for hundreds of years.
During the 18th century Tornio was visited by several expeditions from Central Europe who came to discover the Arctic.
The most notable expedition (1736-1737) was led by a member of the Academie Française, Pierre Louis Moreau de Maupertuis, who came to do measurements along the Tornio river so as to prove that the earth is flattened towards the poles.
For a more information about Tornio see Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
This page was retrieved and condensed from (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tornio) December 2005
All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License (see Copyrights for details).
Sarolta and I visited Finland during our trip around Europe on our Eurail Pass.
We arrived by Ferry from Stockholm.
After a couple of days sightseeing in Helsinki we took a train to the top of Finland in the Arctic Circle, where we crossed over, through Sweden to Norway.
A terrific experience. very enjoyable.
Hui Chin and I arrived to Helsinki in good style and well refreshed on the Silja Line ferry from Stockholm.
The ferry was much like a luxury cruiser with many shops, entertainment and facilities onboard, like saunas, swimming pools, bars, duty free shops, etc.
Our cabin was comfortable with shower and toilet inside and the 10 hour journey was uninterrupted and enjoyable, since neither of us have been on a ferry or cruiser of this class before. Mind you they charged for it, as it was only partly subsidised by our Eurail Pass, if at all, considering how much we had to pay for it.
A great experience though.
As for Helsinki, well Helsinki checked out alright too.
We came back with many memories and souvenirs.
You can click on these photos for an enlargement.
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