Finland Travel GuideEdit This The best resource for sights, hotels, restaurants, bars, what to do and see
The Arctic Circle is the faded line on the pavement. Nice staff at tourist shop. They loved my Boston Terrier dog, "Sparky" and had treats for him.
Chris McMahon 2004
With an area of 338,000 square kilometers, Finland is the seventh largest country in Europe, located between Sweden and Russia.The Gulf of Finland separates southern Finland from Estonia and in the north Norway isolates Finland from the Barents Sea. Boreal forest cover two-thirds of Finland, one third of the country lies north of the Arctic Circle. Post-glacial lakes are a dominant feature, if marshes and bogs are also counted water covers about 10% of the country. Most of the country is relatively flat with few hills, the highest point of Finland, Halti in Lapland, rises 1328m above sea level. Finnish flora is rich and varied during the warm period between late May and September. The most common mammals in the forests include elks, foxes, lynxes, lemmings and hedgehogs, but also brown bear exists. Reindeer is a very common sight in the northern Finland, Lapland. There are over 300 species of birds including black grouse, whooper cranes and birds of prey, such as ospreys. With climate, Finland is more favored than most areas in the same latitudes, like Alaska. The average temperature in Helsinki is -3.1 °C (26.4 °F) in January and +20.5 °C (68.9 °F) in July. The summer months from July to August are generally warm, the midnight sun does its thing, but the nights can be chilly, and during the winter you should always take warm clothing with you.
Finnish language is different from the Indo-European languages; it belongs to the Finno-Ugric group of languages together with Estonian and Hungarian. Language is not much of a problem in Finland, however, because most Finns know some foreign language and many of them speak several. English is the most widespread foreign language and Swedish has the special status of being the country's second official language, German, French and Russian are not uncommon at the bigger towns and tourist centers. The five million Finns themselves may appear reserved at first, but they'll show the friendly face soon after first contact, especially if you show interest in the local culture like sauna.
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