Summer? In Finland?!?

Sunset at 11pm in Rauhaniemi

When you think of Finland probably the first thing coming to your mind is the snow and the cold. But you will be surprised by how nice the Finnish summer is!

Yes, there is summer season in Finland! And it is probably the favorite season of most of the people living here. Everyone looks forward to the green landscapes, the warm weather, the parks full of flowers, and mainly the sun with the never-ending days. Besides, the city really comes to life with so many different events and activities to enjoy during the summer holidays.

My first summer in Tampere was quite an experience, I had no idea of what to expect because even if you ask the locals, they will tell you that summers are unpredictable. But having unpredictable weather is never an excuse to not have fun in this season. I once heard a friend saying that summer is not a season but a state of mind, and I loved that idea! Therefore, in this blog I would like to share with you some tips to be prepared for this time and make the most out of these days that seem to go by so fast. 

Green landscape of Litukanpuisto

Talking about the unpredictability of summers, I would like to make that point clear. Yes, summer is warmer, but you might also experience a lot of rainy and windy days and sometimes it even snows for a little while. Therefore, my first piece of advice is to always take a look at the weather forecast before planning any activities. But you cannot trust the weather forecast a hundred percent, the climate is so uncertain that even the prediction can vary a lot from one day to another or be mistaken. So always carry an umbrella or a raincoat and a jacket just to not be surprised by the rain in the middle of a hike.  

On the other hand, when the weather gets really warm it can reach even 30 degrees with a very bright sun shining. For those days I recommend you to always put some sunscreen not only to avoid sunburn but also to take care of your skin due to the UV light. Also, get yourself a pair of sunglasses, not only are they a very nice fashion item but you will need them with so much brightness.  Always carry a water bottle with you because you can feel dehydrated after walking for a while in the sun. If you plan to go to the forest or to the park, I also suggest carrying mosquito repellent. Fortunately, mosquitos in Finland do not carry dangerous diseases but still they can be quite annoying.  

During summer in Finland you get all of the sunlight that you missed during winter. Day by day the sunrise happens earlier and earlier while the sunset is later and later, so basically from mid May to the end of July you have sunlight the entire day because even after sunset it doesn’t really get that dark. That is why I recommend getting black out curtains for your home so that you can sleep better. In my case, I found it quite helpful to have a fan in my room because some days it gets really hot indoors. If you are planning to buy a fan, make up your mind quickly as they run out of stock very fast. You can also open your windows during nights, that is usually the coolest time of the day to air the house.   

Leaving aside those practical matters, my most important suggestion is to do a lot of outdoors activities. Finland is known as the country of a thousand lakes, and most of them are swimmable during summers. Swimming in lakes is my favorite summer activity! But you should also make some time in your schedule to plan a camping or hiking trip. There are so many national parks in Finland where you can find grilling and camping areas, besides some beautiful nature paths, most of the time around some lake. If you want to skip the hiking part, you can also organize a picnic with your friends in one of the many parks you will find nearby. You can also go berry picking at a local farm and make the most delicious and fresh berry pie.  

Doing some grilling in the camping area of Padasjoki

If you prefer to be a little bit away from nature you can also enjoy the summer terraces at many restaurants and cafes, it is always nice to enjoy your meal outdoors. Or if you have a favorite music genre, I am sure you will find the perfect music festival for you in some city in Finland. Usually, each city has its own music festival, each one of a different genre and they happen all summer round. But the biggest party of the summer is “Juhannus”, known in English as “Midsummer”. This party happens always on a Saturday and the Friday before is a holiday too, so a lot of venues organize big events to celebrate this special day happening near the summer solstice.  

There are so many activities to enjoy during the summer that I am sure I have forgotten some, but ask your friends, check social media and you will always find something fun to do. After a busy studying year, we all deserve to have some fun and take some rest from the routine by doing something different. Do not let a day of summer go by without you having fun! And the key to not let any surprise ruin your plans is to always be prepared for the unexpected. Hope you have a wonderful summer! 

– Andrea

About the author: Hello! I am Andrea Maybell Peña Echeverría. I came to Tampere in August 2021 from Guatemala to pursue my passion by studying my Master in Factory Automation and Robotics. Besides my love for robots and technology, I enjoy outdoor activities, being surrounded by nature, swimming, knitting, traveling, and taking pictures. Photo by: Halistya Zahra

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