Cool Runnings: The Best Things To Do And See In Finland

Heading north might seem counterintuitive at this time of year, but by going beyond your comfort zone, you can see a part of the world as you may never have before. Despite being located in one of the world’s most northern stretches, battered by a winter that seems to last for months and months, Finland has a whole lot going for it on the travel scene. Wild and rugged, the country tips off the edge of Europe, graced by a set of landscapes you simply won’t find anywhere else. Heading to Finland at this time of year can be a treasure trove of travel finds, giving you an insight into some the world’s wildest terrain.

If the cold doesn’t phase you, you can take the plunge and try heading out into Finland’s wildest stretches before you get acquainted with its towns and cities. Hunting the Northern Lights might well be on your agenda, and if so, you’re more than well catered for in Finland. If the idea of staying in your very own igloo appeals to your more adventurous sensibilities, the Aurora Domes at Harriniva are well equipped for even the chilliest stay out in the Finnish wilderness, making your sky gazing experience a whole lot more cozy.

Local delicacies are always up for grabs and if you’re in the country, you simply have to try some local cuisine. While there are any number of incredible dining spots dotted around, heading to somewhere that is one of a kind will make your experience all the more memorable. Restaurant Ylläskammi718 is located at a height of 2,300 feet, making it the highest restaurant in Finland. Decked out in wooden furnishings and warm rugs, the restaurant is the perfect place in which to take in the spectacular views of the national park below, giving you a taste of Finnish nature while reclining in comfort.

Adventure is high on the agenda in Finland, so if you’re an adrenaline junkie, you’re well catered for. Heading out on a cross country sports expedition is well within your reach, but you might want to choose to ramp things up a touch more. Lapland Ice Driving offers you the chance to hire out your very own rally car and speed it through a forest track in the north of the country. You can alternatively opt for co-piloting with a professional, seeing how it’s really done in the Finnish countryside.

While heading to a sauna might be a given on your trip to Finland, there are ways in which you can make your experience one of a kind. Heading to the world’s only sauna gondola is always a good idea, letting you take in incredible views as you warm up the Finnish way. Situated above the slopes of the Ylläs Ski Resort, the sauna gondola is the only way you should be relaxing, taking in the sights of the surrounding mountain ranges as you do.

The natural sights in Finland are unlike anywhere in the world, and getting up close and personal with them is a great way of seeing an alternative side to the country. If you have an adventurous streak, heading to Posio can give you a fantastic experience, introducing you first hand to the world of ice climbing. You can team up with a climbing group and try seeing the area from a different perspective. If frozen waterfalls sound a little too daunting, however, the area offers an incredible nearby hiking route, letting you take in the views from a different angle.

Multifaceted and brimming with life, Finland will show you an alternative side of traveling that you’re not likely to forget in a hurry. Heading out in the winter season can really make you fall in love with this time of year, showing all of the fruits that the country has to offer in the cold!

Hannah Lamarque
Hannah is a freelance writer and copy editor living in Europe. She writes about travel, art, design and culture and loves discovering hidden places in the cities that she visits.