Apart from Lordi winning the Eurovision Song Contest in 2006, the Northern Lights and having lots of lakes, Finland is also home to Lapland, Father Christmas and many keen coffee drinkers. Finnish people have been said to love coffee more than any other nation, according to the site www.uta.fi, with the average person consuming three to four cups a day.
It might not seem like a country of coffee consumers but we’d like to think it makes sense, especially in the north where the sun doesn’t rise during the winter months.
As you already know, coffee beans keep us alert; they wake us up and a steaming hot brew can be the perfect antidote to a cold dark day. Finnish winters can often be tough – especially for tourists who aren’t used to minus 20 temperatures. It’s also significantly darker because the sun doesn’t rise which means many people who aren’t used to living in semi darkness can sometimes feel tired, disorientated or even depressed.
Coffee beans and a big bar of Fazer chocolate (the chocolate popular throughout Finland) would therefore seem like the ideal choice. In fact, it’s not uncommon to see people sat outside in the snow next to small fires overlooking frozen lakes despite temperatures being well below minus 10.
Over here, we’ll have our summer picnics, but we probably wouldn’t think about venturing outside to have a picnic in the snow. In Finland, however, it wouldn’t be unusual to spot people enjoying what can only be described as winter picnics with sausages cooked on open fires, hot flasks filled with steaming, freshly brewed coffee and traditional Finnish snacks.
So, why visit Finland? Apart from coffee beans, you can also visit Father Christmas at Finland’s Christmas Village in Rovaniemi (Lapland’s gateway town), immerse yourself in Finland’s sauna culture and marvel over some of the most spectacular countryside in the world.