Today we introduce you nine interesting facts about Finland, the Arctic gem of Northern Europe. Some of these facts might be well-known, but some might be surprising. How many of these facts do you already know? Test your knowledge and be amazed!
1. The Possibility to Enjoy Everyman’s Rights
As mentioned in our previous blog post: “7 Really Good Reasons Why You Should Visit Finland”, this Northern country is home to over 187,000 lakes (Finland’s largest lake Saimaa is the 4th biggest in Europe) and also over 179,800 islands - which is, in fact, a world record! Some may think our breathtakingly beautiful nature is one of the reasons why Finland has been selected as the happiest country in the world, according to the United Nations. What’s even better, with our everyman’s rights, you have the opportunity to enjoy the incredible Finnish nature (of which 75% is covered of the forest), for example, setting up a tent even on privately owned lands and picking up fresh berries - the ones used in our delicious Taiga Chocolate!
2. One of the Best Education Systems in the World
Finland’s education system is renowned for being one of the best in the world. The education is free - even at the university level. This is due to higher taxes but offers an equal opportunity for everyone to reach towards their dream professions. Finnish students are also lucky to have the government support their finances throughout their studies.
3. A Small Population with Lots of Saunas!
Finland is the eighth-largest country in Europe; however, it also is the most sparsely populated. Finland’s population is only 5,3 million people, but there are over 2 million saunas for people to enjoy - even more than cars in the whole country! For Finns, it is reasonable to go to the sauna at least once a week with your family and/or friends. Did you know you can even find a sauna at Burger King in Helsinki?
4. Finns Consume the Most Coffee & Milk in the World
Finns consume the biggest amount of coffee in the world - about 12,2kg per person per year. But we guess you need your daily dose of caffeine to stay awake especially in those polar nights. We are also the greatest milk drinkers too, with about a litre consumption per person per day!
5. Land of the Midnight Sun & Polar Nights
Summer is the best time of the year in Finland, especially in Lapland, where the sun does not set for 73 days straight! Other parts of Finland also enjoy the late-night sun, but at the Arctic circle and above you’ll find an entire wonderland. However, in the winter, the sun will not rise for 51 days - this is known as the polar nights which may lead to phenomenons such as ‘kalsarikännit’, pants drunk, which means getting drunk at home in your underwear with no intention of going out).
6. Two Official Languages
In Finland, there are two official languages - Finnish, which is spoken by 89% of the population and Swedish, which is spoken by approximately 5%. Finnish is part of the Ugric language group and has no similarity to other Scandinavian languages, excluding some of the loan words. At the end of the summer, having a Kraftskiva (a crayfish party) is popular amongst especially the Finns who are native Swedish speakers.
7. Finnish Flag Symbolises...
Our snowy scenery and thousands of lakes are what the flag presents! Makes perfect sense, since Finland is located up North and we get to experience one of the most magical winters in the world. Did you know that the coldest temperature ever measured in Finland was -51,5 Celsius in 1999 in Kittilä! Another common perception of the Finnish flag is a snowy landscape with a flowing river. Have you ever thought of that?
8. Interesting Sports Facts about Finland
Would you have guessed that Finland has won the most gold medals in the Summer Olympics per capita? However, the sports where Finns truly can show their skills are, for example, swamp football, mobile throwing and wife carrying where the winner will receive their wife’s weight in beer. You heard us right! These are all among the most interesting Finnish sports! However, if none of these sound crazy enough, how about attending the world championships of air guitar or a rubber boot throwing contest? Only in Finland!
9. Interesting Finnish Innovations
Finland is home to many well-known innovations, for example, Nokia, Angry Birds, Linux, salmiakki, ice skating and the list continues. But most importantly, our enchanting Taiga Chocolate also comes from Finland - give it a try and be ready to be amazed by the incredible taste of carefully handcrafted Finnish chocolate!