What is Finland Famous for?

What is Finland Famous for?

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Most likely, the first thing that pops up in your head when thinking about Finland is the amount of snow that falls from the sky 80% of the time. But what if we told you that Finland is known for being the world’s leader in coffee drinking? Or that there are 187’888 lakes in all of Finland?

In this list, we will tell you a few reasons for Finland’s rise to fame in the touring world and perhaps convince you to treat yourself to a Scandinavian journey !

The surreal moviesque look of Finland is especially present during the wintertime which is what creates the festival-like atmosphere of Finnish winters.

Northern lights sightseeing in Finland is best between September and March, so plan your adventure ahead of time!

1. World’s Best Northern Light Shows

One thing that Finland is known for by everyone is that it has some of the best Northern Lights sightseeing spots in the world.

Seeing the magic of colored lights sparking up on a starry night is comparable to seeing one of the Seven Wonders of the World. On top of that is the surroundings that make the whole experience that much more precious.

finish northern lights

The Northern Light falls on the reflective layers of snow that cover gigantic mountains, which give them a unique appearance, highlighting even the smallest of imperfections and revealing their natural beauty. Lapland is the all-time favorite spot for all to enjoy a Northern Light show, however, you can also see them in the Kilpisjärvi region, which has the highest altitude of all places for seeing Northern Lights up close.

2. Winter wonderland

Extraordinary winters are undoubtedly the most famous thing that Finland is known for. Evergreen trees, street lights, and houses decorated with Christmas lights, the purest whitest snow always descending elegantly from above, the magnifique landscapes that range from snowy fields to snow-capped mountains peeking out in the distance. Pair this with the Santa Claus Village, a Christmas-themed amusement park situated in Rovaniemi, and you have yourself an ideal Christmas setting!

lapland santa claus

You will be pleasantly shocked by all the decorations used to make the park seem like a kid’s dream. Wooden-logged houses, orange-tinted windows, and lights arranged across the park all create a fairy-tale feeling in the air that doesn’t let go for a second. The most exciting part about this village is that you and your family can visit Santa Claus!

This activity is usually children’s favorite part of the whole tour to Lapland, and understandably so. This perfect winter wonderland adventure will guarantee you and your kids memories to remember for life.

Finland Winter:
During winter, the mean temperature stays below 0°C, but warm air may occasionally raise the daily high above 0°C. Winter begins in Lapland in mid-October, and in the rest of Finland in November, though not until December on the southwestern archipelago.

3. Finnish folklore

Finnish folklore is another thing that Finland is famous for. However, it is not simply a collection of bedtime stories. Finnish folklore teaches about concepts of good manners, how to be nice to each other, politeness, and even sauna etiquette!

The majority of the folklore is based around elves and the different types of them, with each type having its own duty to perform. Linnatonttu elves guard the castle in Turku, Kotitontuu elves live in houses and look after them while their owners are gone, and Metsätonttu elves focus on preserving peace in the forest area. Even though the stories themselves are difficult to believe in, the morals help establish the fundamental principles of Finnish culture.

finish folklore elves

4. Land of a thousand lakes

Yes, as you’ve read in the beginning, there are 178’888 lakes located, identified, and even named in all of Finland. Even by looking at a map of Finland and comparing it to other countries, you can see just how many lakes there are with a naked eye. See for yourself!

In winter, lakes take on the appearance of an ice skating rink that stretches for kilometers. As winter transitions into summer, lakes begin to regain their natural sky-blue color and harmonize with the surrounding luscious green forests. During that time, the lakes are accessible to visitors where you can begin your unwinding journey at one of the National parks.

finish lakes

Unspoiled forests, crystal-clear water, and the cleanest air in the entire world will make your time spent at the lakes very therapeutic.

What is Finnish Lakeland?
Among the four geographical regions that divide Finland, the Finnish lake district, or Finnish Lakeland as it is also known informally, is the largest of these landscape regions.

5. The country of sauna

Finnish sauna

For all the people who enjoy the thought of a hot shower on a cold day, this entry will be an exciting revelation.

Saunas, more particularly smoke saunas, are a fundamental part of Finnish culture and are a must-visit place for all newcomers. In those saunas, it is all about loyly, which is the vapor that results from water being poured on the scorching hot stones to organically increase the temperature in the room.

It is believed that each sauna has its own character and a distinctive loyly, which results from different types of wood being used to craft the sauna or even the location in which the sauna is. With a nation of 5.3 million people, there are 3.3 saunas found anywhere in Finland, from office buildings to deep underground mine shafts.

Finnish Sauna Etiquette

  • Undress
  • Take a shower
  • Feel free to throw water on the hot stones
  • Take a shower/go swimming to cool off

6. Ice hockey

Ice hockey

Among the most successful national ice hockey teams in the world, Finland's Leijonat / Lejonen ("The Lions" in Finnish and Swedish), belongs to the Finnish Ice Hockey Association. Finland was the first national ice hockey team to win the 1994 Winter Olympics.

It was at the 1939 Ice Hockey World Championships in Switzerland that Finland made its debut in an elite ice hockey competition.

Aside from that, Finland is a member of the so-called "Big Six", that is, a group of six of the strongest nations in men's ice hockey, including Canada, the United States, the Czech Republic, Russia, and Sweden.

Finnish Ice Hockey:
Since 1992, Finland has won 2 gold, 8 silver, and 3 bronze medals in the World Championships. A testament to the strength of the Finnish ice hockey team is the fact that the top professional league in Finland, the SM-liiga, is ranked as the second strongest in Europe.

7. Mämmi

Mämmi looks like a pudding, and it is one of the most popular desserts eaten during Easter in Finland. It is made from rye flour, malt powder, dark molasses, salt, and orange zest as well as water. To serve and eat it, it is mixed with milk or kerma.

Mämmi is different from other Finnish foods in its consistency, somewhere between porridge and pudding. In fact, it is similar in texture to rye bread, which is considered to be an important part of the Finnish culture. Christians served this near-black substance cold to neighbors and friends during Lent.

Modern bakers like to garnish the minimalist treat with sweet aromatics, including molasses, raisins, and orange rind, and smother it in cream and powdered sugar.

baking ingredients

7. National Sleepy Head Day

In Finland, there is a national holiday known as Sleepy Head Day which is celebrated on July 27 every year.

There is a legend related to this holiday that the Seven Sleepers of Ephesus were sleeping, but rather than a religious feast, it is more of an informal celebration of the legendary event.

This tradition of Sleepy Head Day can be traced back to the Middle Ages, when it was believed that any member of the household who slept too long on this day would be lazy and unproductive all the rest of the year.

sleepy head day

8. Sámi People

Sami is the name given to the indigenous population of Sami living in Lapland, as well as adjacent regions of northern Norway, Sweden, and Finland. These people speak the endangered Sami languages and travel primarily within Sápmi.

As an indigenous people, the Sámi have a rich cultural heritage and cultural expressions. This includes their language, their art, their traditional knowledge, their traditional livelihoods, and other cultural traditions and manifestations.

Sami people

The traditional Sámi livelihoods are fishing, gathering, handicrafts, hunting and reindeer herding, and the modern ways of practicing them.

Sámi Fact:
Sámi numbers are unknown, but estimates range from 50,000 to 200,000. Sámi Peoples Day is celebrated every 6 February. They wear traditional clothes, eat traditional food and fly the Sámi flag.

9. Finnish Licorice

The people of Finland have a serious taste in sweet things. Salmiakki is the salty licorice native to Finland, and some of the best chocolate you will ever taste!

In short, salmiakki is black licorice, spiced with an ammonium chloride - not the same stuff used in cleaning solutions, of course, but a salt that is characteristic of the candy and gives it its pungent taste.

Finnish expats living overseas frequently ask their relatives for bags of salmiakki, which they are unable to find abroad.


Finland is a truly magical place with an established history and long-lasting traditions that citizens respect and take pride in. Altogether, these things form the Finnish mentality that consists of having a relaxed attitude to life, being polite to one another, and never forgetting to live life to the fullest.

So start thinking about what you want to see in Finland and start planning your next journey today!

Salmiakki Ingredients

  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1/4 cup of brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup of salted water
  • 1/4 cup of light corn syrup
  • 1 tablespoon of black food colouring
  • 1/4 teaspoon of anise extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt