Gällivare (Váhtjer, in Sami), the last stop on the Inlandsbanan, and its northern twin, Malmberget, are surrounded by forest and dwarfed by the bald Dundret hill. The town has a strong Sami presence and, after Kiruna, Malmberget (Ore Mountain) is the second-largest iron-ore mine in Sweden. Like Kiruna, the area’s sustaining industry is simultaneously threatening the town with collapse, so buildings are gradually being shifted to sturdier ground.
The strong Sami presence in Gällivare is reflected in its monuments. The bronze statue in the park next to the church, by local sculptor Berto Marklund, is called Tre seitar (seite being a Sami god of nature); it symbolises the pre-Christian Sami religion. Just off Lasarettsgatan, on the way from the church to the train station, there is a granite statue of the Thinking Sami Man. The granite came from Dundret hill and the inscription reads: ‘Mine was the land in the past. Care for my people in the future.’