Although there are a vast amount of activities and things to see in Finland, I came on Erasmus with the intention of visiting a range of nearby countries to help broaden my horizons. Thanks to the ferry companies such as Viking Line and Silja Lane, it is extremely easy to travel to countries such as Sweden, Estonia and Russia. Recently I travelled to Stockholm, Sweden and was surprised to learn about the close links between Finland and Sweden. For example, in Finland, Swedish is one of the two national languages of Finland, the other being Finnish. Here in Stockholm, I had the opportunity to visit “Gamla Stann” or “Old town” which was full of old architecture and tourist hot spots.
Gamla Stann/ Old town in Stockholm
As well as travelling to other countries, there are also plenty of cities and towns to visit. Thanks to the “Omnibus” service here in Finland, you can travel to towns such as Tampere and Naantali for very cheap prices. Here you can learn a lot about Finnish culture and history. For example, in Naantali you can visit lots of old landmarks. It also has “Moominworld”, a theme park based on the popular Finnish children’s books by Tove Jansson. When I visited Tampere I also visited a “spy museum” which was a lot of fun, as well as being educational! We even got to use a lie detector which was hilarious. You can also visit Helsinki within the space of two hours which has a lot of perks to it including shopping, as long as you are careful with your money! Of course, being the capital city, it is also home to many beautiful buildings and architecture, for example with the Cathedral.
I would definitely recommend coming to Finland not only for the beautiful landscapes and cities but also because of the useful links it has to other European countries!
By Rachel Cunningham