No visit to Finland is complete without spending a few days in Helsinki. Visit the 19th-century Helsinki Cathedral, built from 1830-1852 in honour of Tsar Nicholas I of Russia who was then also the Grand Duke of Finland. Not to be overlooked is the Lutheran Temppeliaukio Church, built directly into a rock. For winter lovers, Lapland offers a variety of activities, including a visit to the Santa Claus Village, an amusement park in Rovaniemi. Go skiing in Finland on the slopes of Levi and relish outstanding views of the Northern Lights. The Samiland Exhibition in Kittila introduces you to the culture of the indigenous Sami people, whilst north west is the Pallas-Yllastunturi Park boasting Arctic fells and the remnants of the Linkupalo Volcano. Rent a car in Finland and head to the southwestern town of Turku, considered the oldest in the country. Visit the Sibelius Museum, Turku Park, Turku Cathedral, and the Turku Art Museum. Browse through the offerings of the weekday market at the city square.
Explore Helsinki, where cutting edge technology coexists with history. It is home to the 18th-century Suomenlinna sea island fortress, a nature area protected by defensive walls and historic artillery. Walk to the King’s Gate drawbridge, visit the Suomenlinna Museum, or explore the submarine Vesikko. Another major attraction that you shouldn't miss if you rent a car in Finland is a trip to the trendy Fashion Design District in Helsinki. Choose from over 200 boutiques, museums, workshops, cafes, and galleries. Start at the Design Museum for a fascinating history of Finnish design. Fall in love with the creative designs of Artek or Juha Nenonen. Also check out the Eira and Kallio neighbourhoods for their classic and bohemian art scene. Finland is also well-known for its winter activities. It’s a great opportunity to ride a reindeer or a husky sleigh if you’re visiting during the colder months. Bring the entire family for a day of fun at the slopes and other snow pursuits. Visit Santa at the Santa Claus Village. After a fun day outside, chill out at a sauna. Finland boasts of over 3 million saunas and roughly 188,000 lakes. Sweat it out a bit, then do some ice swimming in a nearby lake or roll in the snow to cool yourself down.
Finland is comprised mostly of flatlands and 70% of it is covered by thick woods and forests. Archipelagos, coastal lowlands, central lake plateaus, and uplands form its topography. In the south, there are many clear lakes that form part of the beautiful landscape, while to the north of the Arctic Circle, hills and low mountains are found. The dominant type of vegetation is taiga forest. Finland’s cuisine is a combination of traditional Finnish food and modern gastronomic cuisine, with fish and meat featured prominently in many of its dishes. One of the most popular Finnish foods is grillimakkara, grilled sausages seasoned with mustard and eaten with beer. Kids grow up eating this popular snack. Silli ja uudet perunat are new potatoes made with herring and bathed in chanterelle sauce. Reindeer meat with mashed potatoes is consumed throughout the year, while rapu (crayfish) is served during elaborate parties to celebrate crayfish season which runs from the middle of July to early fall. The Finns have also sumptuous pasties such as karjalanpiirakka, a pie filled with potatoes, carrots, or rice, and korvapuusti, a type of cinnamon bun.
|Language||Finnish and Swedish|
If you're taking a flight to Finland, you will land at the Helsinki-Vantaa Airport served by major air carriers within and outside of Europe. There is a direct train from Saint Petersburg, Russia. You can also reach Finland by ferry from Sweden, Germany, and Estonia. To rent a car in Finland, you’ll need a valid driver’s licence. Licences issued in the EU or EEA countries, as well as interim driving licences delivered in Nordic countries, are accepted. The minimum age to drive is 18 years old. Finns drive on the right side of the road and overtake on the left. The speed limit in built-up areas is 50km/h and outside of these zones, 80km/h. On motorways, the maximum speed is 120km/h. It is compulsory to use headlights at all times. Police enforce traffic laws and conduct random breathalyser tests with blood alcohol levels of 0.5 as the limit. If you’re driving in Finland during winter, your car must be fitted with winter tyres from December to the end of February.