Despite Finland being a very cold country from an Indian traveller’s perspective, they have managed to attract almost
and this is steadily growing and will cross 1 lac Indian travellers in the next couple of years.
|Location / Language
Finland is a country in Northern Europe bordering the Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia, and Gulf of Finland, between Norway to the north, Sweden to the northwest, and Russia to the east. Finland is a Nordic country and is situated in the geographical region of Fennoscandia. The entire country covers an area of 3.38 lac sq km and has a population of around 5.6 million. The capital and largest city is Helsinki. Other major cities are Espoo, Vantaa, Tampere, Oulu and Turku.
Finnish is a Finnic language spoken by the majority of the population in Finland and by ethnic Finns outside Finland. Finnish is one of the two official languages of Finland, the other being Swedish.
|Visa Requirements / Currency (please note these procedures/ exchange rates can changed from time to time…please get an update from the embassy prior to travel)
As India is not part of the Schengen Area, if one is an Indian passport holder you will need to apply for the appropriate type of Schengen Finnish Visa for travelling to the country. To be eligible for a Schengen Visa for Finland one will mainly need their current passport, along with certain documents, to be submitted with the Visa application form.
Currency : Euro (EUR)
Conversion: Rs.1 INR = 0.013 EUR
1 EUR = Rs. 78.04 INR
|Top 10 Tourist Attractions in Finland
- Suomenlinna Fortress - One of the world's largest sea fortresses, the 18th-century fort were built in 1847 by the Swedes (Finland was Swedish territory then) to scare off the Russians, is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Among the attractions are the 250-ton Vesikko submarine, used by the Finnish Navy from 1936 until the end of World War II.
- The Norther Lights – Finland is perhaps the top country in the world for seeing these blazing curtains of light drape across the sky. Although, at times, the lights can be seen even in the southern most regions of the nation, the best place to see them is in the region close to or north of the Arctic Circle. Here, between September and March, visitors are almost guaranteed a show if the sky is clear. A wide range of hotels in the north cater specifically to people wanting to see the lights. Also, the Finnish Meteorological Institute allows you to sign up for free Northern Lights email alerts.
- Helsinki Churches - Three of the top places to visit in Helsinki are churches, the Uspensky Orthodox Cathedral with its 13 green-topped spires ending in gold cupolas and its interior glowing with gold, icons, crosses, altars, and intricately decorated arches. The 19th-century Lutheran Cathedral with its tall green dome and broad steps and the Temppeliaukio Church (Rock Church), an architectural experiment, carved into solid rock.
- The Senate Square – An example of Neoclassical architecture, there are five buildings that dominate the Senate square - the Government Palace, the Helsinki Cathedral, the National Library of Helsinki, Sederholm Houe (Helsinki’s oldest building) and the University of Helsinki’s main building which make this square the most visited.
- Kauppatori (Market Square) - Helsinki's harbour is an integral part of the city and it's also a popular gathering point, with an open-air market of local farmers, craftsmen, food producers, and fishermen, who sell directly from their boats. The historic 1889 market hall shelters more food vendors.
- Rovaniemi (Gateway to the Arctic ) - Rovaniemi is in the center of a vast natural area of rushing rivers for canoeing, swimming, or fishing, with trails alongside them for hiking and cycling and the city is best known (ask any Finnish child) as the home of Santa Claus. In the winter, this region is a paradise for skiers and others who love snow and ice sports, including ride across frozen lakes, a dogsled safari.
- Turku – It is today the most traditional medieval town in Finland, where one can find examples of Art Nouveau and modern architecture, and the river is a focal point for the city, lined with historic boats, some of which have been converted into restaurants.
- Lake Saimaa – Known as the "lake of a thousand islands", it covers an area of some 1,300 sq km — excluding its numerous islands. The whole lake system is drained by the river Vuoksi, and flows into Lake Ladoga in Russia, with the the hilly shores of the lake almost entirely covered with coniferous forest and some birch forest. It houses the city of Savonlinna.
- Tampere – It lies between two lakes, Näsijärvi and Pyhäjärvi, which are linked by the Tammerkoski, a stretch of rapids nearly a kilometre long. Along with its industry, Tampere is known for its active cultural life with an open-air theatre and frequent jazz music festivals.
- Hämeenlinna Town – The town began near a castle, the 13th-century Tavastehus Castle with it’s distinctive red-brick fortifications. Apart from the castle, don’t miss the Aulanko Nature Reserve which is the first National Urban Park in Finland. The town houses the Sibelius Museum, Sibelius Park, with its uniquely outstanding Sibelius Monument and the nearby Hämeenlinna Historical Museum.
|Things You Must Do in Finland
- Rock Climbing - Finland is among the top places in the world to go for rock climbing. Places like Repovesi National Park, Korouoma Canyon are incredible rock climbing spots. Make sure to wear comfortable shoes.
- Take a Stroll in Lemmenjoki National Park – To experience the Arctic wilderness experience will love this tract of boreal forest is the largest park in Finland covering more than 2,589 square kilometers. For the trekker, there are hundreds of kilometers of marked trails, as well as free and open wilderness huts and more sophisticated rental huts with sauna and campfire places.
- Visit The Linnanmäki Amusement Park with the kids - This aptly called as the happiest neighbourhood in Helsinki because of its famous amusement park with the widest selections of fun rides and attractions in the Nordic countries. There are 43 different rides in the park apart from kiosks, restaurants, arcades and outdoor stage where performances are held every summer.
- Don’t Miss the Finish Saunas – They are a necessity rather than a luxury and one must enjoy a sauna especially the smoke sauna where wood is burned and is one of the oldest types of sauna. Wood stove saunas are common outside city areas whereas electric saunas are common in houses.
- Book a seat on the Icebreaker Cruise - This three-hour long cruise breaks through frozen water and ice and tours visitors around the Bothnian sea. Visitors are offered a guided tour of the vessel, and are shown movies about icebreakers and a chance to walk on the frozen sea ice.
- Sledding & Skiing – With so much snow around, sledding and skiing are the regular activities one must do. One can either go kick-sledding, or dog sledding which is more relaxing where one sits on a sled and have a pack of husky dogs pull the sled along.
|Food on the Plate
Finnish cuisine is notable for generally combining traditional country fare and haute cuisine with contemporary continental style cooking. Fish and meat play a prominent role in traditional Finnish dishes in some parts of the country, while the dishes elsewhere have traditionally included various vegetables and mushrooms. Finnish foods often use wholemeal products and berries. Milk and its derivatives like buttermilk are common.
One must sample the following popular and tasty Finnish dishes:
- Leipajuusto – Also known as "squeaky cheese", this dish is traditionally made from cows "beestings," which is essentially colostrum. The milk is curdled and placed in a round dish to set and is then baked, flambeed or grilled to give it golden brown markings.
- Makaronilaatikko - This Finnish baked macaron with minced meat could easily be comparable to the American mac and cheese – only this dish doesn’t have cheese, but instead, it has minced meat and full-fat milk.
- Kaalilaatikko is a cabbage casserole, a traditional Finnish meal usually eaten during the fall of the year. It contains ground meat, cabbage, and red berry jam and is baked in the oven.
- Lohikeitto is a soup made with salmon, potatoes, and leaks, and sometimes milk is added to give it a more creamy texture.
- Vispipuur is a dessert porridge made from wheat semolina and lingonberries. The semolina and berries are cooked together with a sweetener and then left to cool. Once cooled, the mixture is whipped until it has the consistency of a mousse.
|Travel Insurance India for Finnish Visa
Since Finland is a country which is part of the Schengen countries in Europe, it is mandatory for Indian tourist to purchase travel medical insurance for applying for Finnish visa.
India Travel insurance for Finland is relatively cheaper when compared to destinations in Americas, and most insurance companies offer a specific Schengen Insurance Plan. One must ensure that the minimum Accident & Sickness (A&S) sum insured for a Schengen plan must be €30,000 (around $50,000), and a visa to visit any Schengen country will not be provided without this minimum coverage.
The insured must purchase an “Excluding Americas” Plan, if they are travelling to other destinations that don’t include only Schengen countries.
Illustration for 15 days international travel health insurance to Finland.
You can also choose “Excluding Plans” with Sum Insureds as high as $500,000 as well. These premiums are across different plans and different benefits.. please log in to www.eindiainsurance.com to compare and buy the best overseas mediclaim for Indians travelling to the Finland.
|Sum Insured($USD or €Euro) / Premium in Rs. INR
||Insured Age 33
||Insured Age 63
|Schengen - €30,000
|Schengen - €50,000
|Excluding - $50,000