Play one round of golf at the Green Zone Golf Course and you get to do it in two countries. The course and the surrounding towns were built on the delta of the River Tornio which also marked the border between Sweden and Finland. The original settlement was the nearby town of Tornio. It was in Finland but was largely settled by Swedish speaking merchants. When Sweden ceded Finland to Russia in 1809, many of the Swedish speaking residents migrated across the border to Sweden and created the new town of Haparanda. The two towns have always remained friendly and now promote themselves as a single, border-spanning economic zone. The golf course symbolizes the borderless ambitions of the two cities.
Despite all the friendly relations between the two towns, Sweden and Finland actually lie in two different time zones. This makes for some strange experiences. Residents often celebrate New Year’s Eve twice the same night. And on at least one border-straddling hole on the golf course, your ball will land an hour after you hit it.