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How to survive the summer in Wild Taiga, Finland



Have you decided to travel to Finland in the summertime? Congratulations for a great decision! You are going to be stunned by the beauty of our green landscapes and lakes. But how should you practically prepare for your visit? Below you will find some tips:


1. What to wear during summer in Finland?

In Finland the summers are different from each year. Sometimes it gets really warm + 30°C in the daytime. Some other years it’s +15°C and raining, although lately this kind of summers has been a bit more rare. You should pack with you a lot of t-shirts, pair of shorts and pair of long pants.

For shoes some sneakers and sandals can be a good choice. You can consider also hiking shoes but most of the paths in Wild Taiga are good to go with just waterproof sneakers.

For the evenings you should have a light jacket with you. If you get easily cold, you can have a jacket with thin lining.

2. How to deal with the mosquitoes?

Finland’s summer is like a paradise, but there is one bad side – the mosquitoes. Finnish mosquitoes don’t carry any malaria so don’t stress about that. They are just really annoying, and their bites itches a lot. You can find mosquito repellent from grocery stores and pharmacies. Usually they work pretty well, but there is one even better way to protect yourself – clothing. Wear light colored and loose clothes. A hat with a bug net is a lifesaver.

Did you already get a bite? The first ones itches the most, so don’t worry, it will get easier. You can relieve the itch by using herbal lotion or resin lotion. You can buy them from souvenir shops and pharmacies. Some old folks says that putting your own spit on the bite should help.

3. The nightless night

Who wouldn’t love the beauty of the nightless night? The golden moment last hours and you get to watch our lake-filled landscapes with amazing colors. You might experience some sleeping problems, though, if your room doesn’t have black out curtains. A sleeping mask is highly recommended. On the other hand you might feel like you don’t need as much sleep as at home – the light really gives energy!

The photographers loves the nightless night. Go to photograph a bear during the golden light or go for a hiking tour.

“After the evening concerts, I would speed up to my room, grab my large camera and lenses and rush back to the lake to capture those enchanted moments when the vanishing daylight turns into sunrise. I promised myself to limit my photographic adventures until midnight – rehearsal or lesson is soon at 8:30 in the morning – but couldn’t leave the place. The light bewitched me… sunset became sunrise… this very moment of now will never return, just like in a live performance.”

Hagai Shaham about the nights during the Kuhmo Chamber Music festival

 Photo by Emanuel Parent

Photo: George Turner / Visit Finland

4. Enjoy the lakes!

There is a reason why we Finnish people love our lakes so much. It feels refreshing to go for a swim in between the sauna rounds. You can enjoy the nature in a sustainable way by going for paddling excursion. Fishing is a really popular hobby here, so go and try to catch your own!

Some people feel scared to swim in Finnish lakes, because the water is often darker than seawater and when you go deeper you might not see the bottom. There are not any dangerous fish or other creatures living in our lakes so you shouldn’t worry about anything like that.

You should although keep these two things in mind: Do not jump head first into dark water that you haven’t checked first for any submerged driftwoods. Do not also swim too far from the shore.

5. Go for a hike and enjoy the everyman’s rights

If you are planning a trip to Finland, you have definitely heard about Everyman’s rights. Just keep in mind that with those rights comes also responsibilities. The biggest one is about making a fire in the wilderness:

You cannot make a campfire anywhere you want, just on designated spots. Before making a fire, you need to check if the forest fire warning is on. During this warning you are not allowed to make an open fire because you could cause great damage and even get charged with an offense if your fire gets out of control. During the warning you can cook with a gas stove or pack with foods that won’t need any cooking.

If you are planning to go to a hiking area or a national park, you should see the rules of the area from Nationalparks.fi. See also their Outdoor etiquette. You can find some self-guided hiking routes here.

This guide is based on the most common questions asked by the travelers. I hope you found it helpful! If you have still questions in mind, you can contact tourist infos in the area:

Visit Suomussalmi
Visit Kuhmo
Petola visitor center
Hossa visitor center

We warmly welcome you to visit Finland and Wild Taiga during the summertime!

Kerttu Komulainen
Project worker in Wild Taiga

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Wild Taiga summer