The Nordic countries have long been known for their stunning scenery, beautifully snowy winters and wide open spaces full of incredible wildlife. The most eastern of the Nordic countries is Finland, and even though it is a wonderful destination for those that like the outdoors, it is often overlooked when compared to its other Nordic cousins and it is high time for that to change! Forget the better traversed routes to Stockholm and Copenhagen and choose the Finnish sauna over the Icelandic spa, and you will not be disappointed.

For practical travel reasons, Finland is also a great holiday destination; unlike the other Nordic countries which use their individual crowns as their currency, Finland uses the euro which is undeniably handy. In addition to this, Finland is at the spot where east meets west and offers some of the shortest flights in Europe to Asia (from their incredibly plush Helsinki airport!) meaning that for worldwide travellers it is also at a well-placed junction. With loads of airline companies operating to and from Finland, you can also get a good deal on your flights and on package hotel deals – for example check out an Expedia coupon. Still not convinced that Finland is the destination for you? Read on to find out a little bit more about this fascinating country.

Nestled between Sweden and Russia with a border with Norway in the north and a sea border with Estonia in the south, Finland was part of the Swedish Empire for around 700 years, then a Grand Duchy of Russia before gaining its independence in 2017. December 6th 2017 marks the centenary of Finnish independence and is set to be a huge party making this year a great year to check out Finland. The capital of Helsinki in the south is also the largest city and offers a huge host of things to see and do. From neo-classical Finnish architecture (check out the main railway station for a great example) to the UNESCO World Heritage site of Suomenlinna, do take the time to see a little of this lovely city on the Baltic Sea.

Out-with its clean and trendy cities, Finland is of course known for its incredible nature. The most heavily forested country in the whole of Europe (around 75% of the entire land area), with one third in the land mass also in the Arctic Circle, if nature is your thing, Finland can provide year round. With fauna that includes elk, the brown bear, lynxes, the world’s rarest seal and wolves to name just a few, visiting Finland is seeing Europe’s wildlife at its best.

Even during the dark and cold winter months, Finns love to be outside whether it is skating, ice hockey, cross-country skiing, snowboarding or ice fishing, and aside from taking in an ice hockey match which is of course the most popular sport, be brave and go ice swimming which is accompanied by a traditional sauna which is one of the most stereotypical winter activities you can do.

No matter what the time of year whether it’s the summer months with incredibly long days or the arctic winter, Finland always has to plenty to offer the visitor.