#Travel Feb 13, 2017 11:44 GMT

With temperatures falling below -15 C, short days and thick layers of snow – does it sound crazy to spend winter holidays in Finland? Seven bloggers from all over the world tested Central Finland as a travel destination during the NBE Finland pre-tour in mid-January and now can answer this and other questions. So what surprised the bloggers the most on their winter adventure to the region?

‘You don’t really suffer from cold nor from dark,’ says In viaggio da sola from Italy. ‘Actually snow can be fun, if you experience it with iced lakes, forests and so many outdoor activities. And dark too, may be charming, for example, when walking down the forest with huskies, or while staying in a outdoor hot jacuzzi.’

For Xameliax from the UK, the trip made her enjoy the company of the Finnish people and the tastes of the Nordic cuisine.

During four days the bloggers had a programme full of fun winter activities and, of course, sauna. Husky riding and snowshoeing made it straight to the TOP 3 list of the favourite activities. For In viaggio da sola it was also Arctic swimming and sauna rituals.

“I enjoyed a lot sauna rituals. It’s a totally different concept of sauna as a ritual, which we don’t have in Italy. I loved the fact we were singing old songs in the sauna and it was actually quite relaxing after a long day in the snow. I also loved to drive a snow quad on these huge snow fields. It gives you a great sense of freedom and deep contact with nature all around you.”

As the title Central Finland bears, one would be not surprised that each day of the tour ended with a sauna. On their trip the bloggers tried all kinds of saunas – from traditional smoke saunas to tent saunas and lakeside saunas. Sauna preferences are very personal that is why each and every participant of the tour found own favourite. Which one? Here are the answers:

‘I liked the smoke sauna more, but what I really liked of having sauna in Finland is that it’s a gathering. In Italy we use it as an individual way to relax. In Finland it’s nice you can go there with your friends, chat and after have food and drinks,’ says Diana from Italy. Amelia from the UK also enjoyed the smoke sauna because of the traditions around it. While Luca from Italy liked the tent sauna because it such a new experience.

What remained the same for all was the fact that sauna could be much more than a simple steamy room. Sauna is a place for gathering, for relaxation, for healing and has even a spiritual meaning. If you want to have a different sauna experience, welcome to the Sauna Region to follow the footsteps of our bloggers.

Special thanks to all the sauna explorers on this trip:
In viaggio da sola and Luca Martinelli
Living by the sea
Fly with Maggie
Budget Traveller


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