Country guides Europe
Finland is a scenic country of lakes, islands, and forests, its pristine wilderness juxtaposed against ultramodern technology. With it extending well into the Arctic Circle, the sun never quite sets during summer, nor does it ever quite rise in the winter time.
This land of contrasts has plenty to delight and enchant visitors, from its forbidding castles and onion-domed Slavic churches to the reindeer herds of the indigenous Sami people of Lapland in the north.
Dine on reindeer steak, traverse the northern arctic home of Santa Claus, and ski or dog sled across virgin snow. After a trip out in the cold or one of the traditional folk festivals, let off some steam in a sauna. Invented by the Finnish, there are some two million saunas in the country.
The lively, modern capital city of Helsinki is packed with galleries, museums, and cafes, while beyond it lies vast swathes of countryside to explore in the clean clear air. Around 65 percent of the country is covered in forest and there are almost 40 national parks.
Despite its seemingly rugged environment, Finland is by no means a basic and simple country. In fact, it is regarded as being one of the most high-tech societies in the world and was the first country in the world to make internet access a legal right.