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Finland travel guide

Finland is the down-to-earth sibling of the Nordic countries. It has a natural purity with idyllic scenery, beautiful architecture and most of all warm hearted people, making it an exceptionally rewarding place to visit.

Stretching from the Baltic Sea to the Arctic Circle, Finland boasts calm lakes, glorious national parks and picturesque wooden villages.

Lapland in the north is home to Santa, as well as over 230,000 reindeer. For the wildlife fanatics there’s plenty more besides: see freshwater seals in the lakes at Linnansaoi National Park, and trek the Bear’s Ring in Oulanka National Park.

If you’re lucky you might catch a glimpse of an elk or wolf as well (probably not together, though!)

In the far North, the lights of the Aurora Borealis can be seen in the Spring and Autumn.

Explore the cycling routes around the Åland islands, or in July, go to Sonkajäri for the nation’s strangest sport, wife carrying (it hosts the world championships!)

In Finland’s capital city of Helsinki, mix contemporary art museums with browsing the stalls of Hakaneimi market, and let your worries melt away in the sauna.

Wanderlust recommends

  1. Visit the far north for the Ultimate Arctic Adventure
  2. Take a wilderness weekend in Finland
  3. Camp out in a log cabin
  4. Visit the seals of Linnansaoi National Park
  5. Embrace contemporary art at Helsinki’s Museum of Contemporary Art
  6. Meet Father Christmas and his reindeer in Lapland
  7. Explore Finland’s Åland islands by bike

Wanderlust tips

If you want to see more wildlife than what Helsinki Zoo has to offer, Finland’s countryside has plenty: wolves, bears, elks, lynx and beavers are just a few.

But most animals are extremely shy, and many are limited in number, so you won’t have much luck without a guide. Hire someone at a national park to find the most elusive.

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