Wild and beautiful, civilized and friendly. Ever since Eric Idle sang that it was ‘The country where I want to be”, Finland has held a place in the hearts of Monty Python fans. Finland is an amazing country to visit for many reasons. Here are seven of the best ones.
The Northern Lights
The most spectacular light show on Earth, the Aurora Borealis can be clearly seen from Finland. Never forgotten, this unearthly display of charged particles reacting with solar winds lights up the sky in greens, pinks, reds and other colours, all in amazing patterns unique to each occurrence. The Northern Lights appear regularly in Finland, though they cannot be predicted. The most common months to see them are April-September.
Christmas in Finland
The Christmas season in Finland is a magical time, with a wealth of traditions that appeal to the nostalgia of visitors. Helsinki hosts the Santa Lucia Festival, which predates Christmas, being based on a pagan fertility celebration all mixed up with celebrating the life of a Christian saint. The St. Thomas Christmas Market is a wonder to behold, with its lovely Christmas lights and stalls selling all the gifts, food and drinks you could possibly want for the festive season. Best of all, the Santa Claus village is open all year round, with the chance to meet St. Nick himself, as well as his reindeer and helpers.
[Photo courtesy of Waldo93/pixabay.com]
Finland is a land of opposites. It has gorgeous hot summers with an average 23 degrees Celsius, perfect for making the most of the stunning scenery and walks, followed by a lovely sauna. Winters are crisp and snowy in the north, with winter sports aplenty. The temperature regularly reaches -20 degrees. Above the Arctic Circle there’s a night called ‘the polar night’ when the sun doesn’t rise at all and the opposite is true, of course, in the summer. Whatever type of holiday you’re looking for, from sunbathing to hiking or skiing or snuggling up with a hot chocolate in front of an open fire, Finland can supply it.
Outdoors all year round
This variation in the weather with four distinct seasons makes it an ideal holiday spot all year round. Check out the latest cruise offers from cruise.co.uk for some ideas. In the summer there are nature trails, saunas, hiking, cycling and any other kind of outdoor activity you fancy. In the winter there is skiing, dog sleigh rides, snowshoeing and snowboarding amongst other activities. There is never a reason to sit indoors, unless you want to!
[Photo courtesy of jackmac34/pixabay.com]
Finland has some fascinating wildlife due to its seasonal climate and geographic position. You can see much of it on nature trails, from fish to birds of prey. In the vast forests you can hire a guide to seek out that which interests you the most, or you can choose to sit comfortably in a specially set up hide to see if some of the country’s more timid inhabitants might make an appearance. Brown bears, wolves and elk roam freely, alongside 248 species of bird and many others.
You should always try new foods if you can and in Finland the sheer variety of meats and fish available means there’s certain to be several that you discover you love, unexpectedly sometimes! Finland serves up reindeer, horse and other meats that are more commonly found outside the UK and they’re delicious!
Finland is English speaking, so although you’re surrounded by a fascinating and very different culture you’ll have no problems getting across your needs, asking for directions or ordering another mulled wine.