Escorted tours to Finland
Language: Finnish and Swedish
Time Zone: EET/GMT+2
Tipping: Tips are not generally expected in Finland even in restaurants service charges are always included.
Finland - an Introduction
The less-touristy Nordic realm of Finland is known as a 'land of a thousand lakes', with a spotless natural environment and elongated summer days that are sometimes two months long.
While less visited than its other Scandinavian counterparts, there are a handful of Finland escorted tours allowing visitors the chance to explore the best of this remote but beautiful country. Tours to Finland are sometimes incorporated as part of a longer cruise in addition to nearby destinations like Denmark and Sweden, with a port of call almost guaranteed in smart capital Helsinki.
On a traditional touring holiday, crossing the Arctic Circle to Rovaniemi in Finnish Lapland beckons, otherwise known as the 'Official Hometown of Santa Claus in Lapland', where you can meet the man himself. Elsewhere, a trip to Karasjok allows visitors to learn about the Sami people and culture through a series of outdoor activities and craft studios.
All escorted tours to Finland will include return flights from the UK or return coach travel with ferry crossings, plus transfers, accommodation with some meals, the services of a tour manager, porterage and a full touring itinerary.
Things to do
Here are just a few places to visit on an escorted tour to the endearing Nordic realm of Finland:
Famed for being the capital city of Finland, Helsinki is a popular destination for tourists due to its metropolitan feel. The city offers visitors lots to see and do, highlights of which include Esplanade Park, a promenade for tourists to explore and residents to relax in. It also plays host to various events throughout the year. The Cathedral in Helsinki is a beautiful 19th Century structure which attracts thousands of visitors each year. For something a little more wild, why not take a trip to the Zoo which is home to around 200 different species. Another landmark is Senate Square - here you'll find the city's oldest building, Sederholm House.
In one of the most northerly points in Finland lies the home of Father Christmas. It is hardly surprising that each Christmas this destination comes into its own as snow covers the houses and trees and Lapland is turned into the ultimate Winter wonderland. However, this amazing destination wouldn't be what it is today if it wasn't for the residents that call Lapland home, the Sami people. Having lived in the area for hundreds of years their way of life today is both surprising and endearing.
Thinking of travelling to Belgium? Check out the average temperatures for when you plan to visit courtesy of BBC Weather
Tips & Advice
Travelling on an escorted tour means that you'll be in the safest hands when it comes to holidaying in unfamiliar lands. However, to help you have an enjoyable holiday in the Finland, take a look at these useful tips and advice provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO):
Health and Travel Insurance
It is recommended that you check with your GP before travelling to Finland to check whether you need to have any vaccinations or other preventative measures.
Prior to visiting Finland you should apply for a European Health Insurance Card. They are not a substitute for travel insurance, however they will entitle you to state provided medical care should it become necessary whilst you are away. Any treatment given is on the same terms as Finnish nationals. The EHIC will not cover the cost of a medical repatriation or on-going/non-urgent treatment and so it is advised that you also have adequate travel insurance and access to additional funds. Most tours offer the chance to purchase one-trip travel insurance at the time of booking.
Should you need to contact the emergency services when in Finland, dial 112 and ask for an ambulance. If you do get referred on to a medical facility for treatment you should always advise your insurance company immediately.
Crime levels in Finland are low. Tourists do attract pick-pockets in crowded areas so it is advised to take precautions and keep all belongings secure.
Local Laws and Customs
Like in the UK, drug offences are taken extremely seriously and possession and trafficking can result in a prison sentence. Khat the narcotic is illegal in Finland.
For stays lasting up to three months your passport must be valid for the proposed length of your stay. You will not need an additional period of validity beyond this.
ETD (UK Emergency Travel Documents) are accepted for entry and exit from Finland, in addition to airside transit.
Visas aren't required to enter into Finland. British Nationals can stay for up to three months, after that you must contact the local police to register your right to stay in Finland.
Any other nationality looking to visit Finland must contact the local embassy to check visa requirements.
For further information about Finland you can visit their tourist board website at visitfinland.com