Ringed by the Arctic Circle and bordered by Norway, Finland and the Baltic Sea, Swedish Lapland extends across the top quarter of Sweden. Frequently referred to as "Europe's Alaska", this unique region is characterized by great swathes of pine, spruce and fir, berrycarpeted tundra, whitewater rivers teeming with salmon, and rustic lakeside villages.
Photography credits: Staffan Widstrand
Cicci Anderson is the owner of Sörbyn Lodge, one of the accommodations we offer in the middle of Swedish nature. Cicci was born in the small village of Niemisel, where she grew up in a small farm with nature just on the doorstep. Being aware of nature and all it has to offer, was part of her childhood and although she moved from the village at a young age, she returned almost 30 years later; back to her roots and back to nature.
Since childhood, Cicci has had and felt a special connection to animals and nature, which inspired her to choose a nature oriented profession.
Throughout her life, Cicci has worked with different projects, local development and local economy. With all the experience she has gained in life, she was prepared to end up in Sörbyn and open Sörbyn Lodge. Meeting new people and see them enjoy what the Lodge has to offer, from doing “nothing” in nature to having a nice dinner or an exciting activity, is what she likes the most about her profession.
When she is in nature, she enjoys many things. For her, it is all about natural energy. Something happens in the brain when you hear the birds, see the hare jumping around to find a mate, the confused young moose that has just been “kicked out of its mother's nest”, the fragrancy of humus and the wind.
“Now that I’m writing this, it is early spring and the wild animals and plant life are about to wake up - it’s fantastic!”
There is a lot that visitors can learn in this area. There is plenty to tell and show - about the effects from the work they are doing to restore the river back to its natural state, before the logging industry altered the river in order to transport timber. Also, there is an abundance of bird species, including: woodpeckers, grouse, and predator birds like eagles, owls and buzzards.
“The returns of the whooper swan in late winter signals the advent of spring, and the assembly of black-throated divers on Lake Vitträsket let us know when autumn is approaching”.
The countryside in the Råne River Valley is special. It is the kingdom of the big-growth forest, with untouched waters and vast wetlands. There is a vital and robust fauna, represented among other species by elk, reindeer, otters, beavers, bear and lynx.
Nowadays, it is possible to find ways of conducting tourism that helps maintain biodiversity and protect areas from exploitation, while simultaneously giving the rural areas an opportunity to develop the local economy. Sustainable tourism is responsible travel that contributes to the protection of natural environments and to the well-being of locals.
There have already been positive changes in nature, you can now see how fishing in the river has developed. The amount of fish has increased. And more interesting conservation projects have been started just because they have seen the good result of previously completed restoration projects.
Cicci grew up on a small farm in Niemisel, in the Rane River Valley – where a very natural approach to wildlife and nature was common practice.
Being aware of nature and all it has to offer was part of her childhood and although she moved from the village at a young age, she returned almost 30 years later; back to her roots and back to nature.
Focusing on community development from within, Cicci is the face of Sorbyn Lodge and is well respected in the area.
My “red line” through life has been local development and to get people involved and believe in their ideas.
So now I´m really happy to be part of creating and building up something sustainable as Sorbyn Lodge and also cooperate with the Rewilding initiative which matches perfectly, a unique experience to show the people who visit the area.
"That Nature is perfect - it provides relaxation, peace of mind and opens the contact with the wise part in every human being.”