To Finland!


I popped over to the Visit Finland website recently, and discovered that they have a Finnish name generator. My Finnish name turns out to be Tapio Kontio, which means Ancient King of the Forest Bear. Which was nice. Try it yourself here, and let me know your Finnish name in the comments.

Anyway, I was on the Visit Finland website because I’ve recently been invited to visit Finland for the first time. I always get so excited about heading to a new country. It’s the little things that get me – the different shops on the high streets, the different cultural attitudes to asking the way to the toilet, and all those signs I can’t even begin to pronounce (assuming I can read them!).

I am delighted to be going to Finland for a week for this trip. Hopefully it won’t be the last – we’re planning to go there this January as well – but for this trip I’m heading over on my own to experience something summery.

taivaanplagiaatio_4093 by Antti Pietikäinen

This trip is also going to be a great opportunity to try out my new bag – the Osprey Soujourn 60L - that Osprey Europe kindly sent me recently to road test. It’ll be coming with me on a few trips this summer and autumn, and I’ll tell you what I think of it towards the end of the year. 

In the meantime, the nice people at Visit Finland have put together a really exciting, action-packed schedule for me, so I can experience the best of Finland’s outdoors.

I’m going to be:

  • Taking a cycling tour through Helsinki with Bike Tours Helsinki
  • Going kayaking at midnight through Helsinki with Natura Viva
  • Hiking in Nuuksio National Park with Haltia (already I can’t pronounce things!)
  • Exploring the Kimito islands, including kayaking the island archipelago
  • Relaxing with a spa (or two!), courtesy of Kasnäs Archipelago Spa
  • Taking a tour of the Viking Centre at Rosala Island
  • Climbing the 252 steps of the Bengtskär lighthouse for a rather spectacular view
  • Taking a RIB safari (my recent investment in a GoPro is all starting to make sense now!)
  • Taking a cycling tour on the island of Hanko to visit the local farms
  • And more… phew!

In between all of these activities I’ll be trying out local foods, meeting fun people, and probably spending a fair amount of time in a spa. I’m not sure I’ll be introducing myself as Tapio Kontio, but we’ll see.

Swans at sunset Finland

I am looking forward to sharing everything with you on this blog in the coming weeks, with tips and ideas on how you can do the above yourself, plus my thoughts on which adventures are really worth doing.

Naturally, I’ll do my best to get some great photos as I go as well of course, so you know what to expect!

I’ll also be sharing a pile of photos in real time – mostly on my Instagram stream – as I adventure around. If you’re not already following along, you can find me on Instagram as @lozula. I’m looking forward to reporting back on Finland!

My trip to Finland is in partnership with the Visit Finland folks, who are working with a number of the above local businesses to give me an adventure worth sharing with you. I hope to do just that! In the meantime, let me know how you get on with your Finnish name!

- Images sourced with permission from Visit Finland media bank and credited where credit was available. I’ve not been to Finland yet to have any photos :(.

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