Finland is rumored to be the dwelling place of Santa Claus in the northern region of Finland known as Korvatunturi, and thus Christmas in Finland is celebrated in a slightly different manner compared to the rest of the world’s celebrations. It is a significant holiday for the Finnish people and individuals who visit Finland during the Christmas season have a truly unforgettable time and experience.
Christmas Customs in Finland
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Customs are an integral part of the Christmas festivities in Finland, and they differ slightly from those in other countries. The initial Sunday of December, also known as the First Advent in Finland, marks the commencement of Christmas in Finland. The 13th of December is designated as St. Lucia Day, and this is when individuals in Finland engage in shopping, commence exchanging cards, and adorn the Christmas tree. However, traditionally, the Christmas tree is still purchased and decorated on Christmas Eve. On this day, people celebrate by lighting numerous candles, and the eldest daughter wears a robe and crown made of candles while serving her parents cookies, buns, coffee, or mulled wine.
Christmas Eve signifies the establishment of the “Christmas peace,” a tradition that has been observed in Finland since the 13th century and lasts for 12 days. Everyone strives to be free on Christmas Eve, attending mass, going to the sauna, and some families even visiting cemeteries to light candles on the graves of their departed loved ones. Following the Christmas dinner, Christmas gifts are distributed.
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The day after Christmas, known as St. Stephen’s Day or Boxing Day, is a time for family visits, and it is customary to engage in horseback riding or sleigh riding since St. Stephen was the patron saint of horses. Christmas in Finland continues for another 13 days after Christmas, hence why it is referred to as the Christmas season. The traditions of Finland Christmas have persevered since the 13th century, even though other parts of the world have lost or altered some of their traditions.
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Finnish Christmas Food Dishes
Throughout the Christmas season a variety of food is prepared and served which encompass diverse traditional foods. On 13th of December, St Lucia Day the eldest child offers cookies, buns, coffee, and Golgi or Muller wine, which is a customary warm Finnish beverage, to their parents. Individuals consume Golgi during the entire Christmas season and it is highly popular. On Christmas eve, people consume rice porridge for breakfast or lunch and the individual who discovers an almond in their porridge is considered to be bestowed with good fortune.
Sweets and pastries also constitute an important component of Finnish Christmas food as individuals bake food items like the renowned star shaped pastries and adorned gingerbread which are also hung on spruce trees. The Christmas dinner is one of the more significant aspects of Christmas and in Finland the most beloved and emblematic Christmas dinner is oven baked ham alongside casseroles.
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Optimal Time To Visit
If you wish to encounter Christmas in Finland then the prime time to travel would be during the months of November to January, in order to truly experience the festive spirit of Christmas and have ample time to engage in activities such as skiing, snowboarding, ice fishing, and more.
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How To Reach?
You can arrive in Finland by air and the ideal destination to pass through would be Helsinki, the capital city of Finland. You can reach various parts of Finland such as Kemi, Lapland, and even Rovaniemi, which is famously known as the official birthplace of Santa Claus, through air travel, train, or even bus.
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Where To Lodge In Finland At Christmas?
There exist numerous lodgings and accommodations in Finland. If you wish to discover where to stay in Finland at Christmas, you can make a reservation at a hotel in Lapland or Rovaniemi. If you desire to experience staying in a glass igloo, then booking a glass igloo lodge will ensure a distinctive and unparalleled experience. One fine example is the Arctic Treehouse Hotel, which is a glass igloo hotel situated 2 km away from the Santa Claus Village. Another option is the Apukka Resort, which is also a cabin stylized in the form of an igloo and is slightly more economical compared to other similar igloo-style hotels. Hotel Hullu Poro, located on Rakkavaarantie, is a comfortable and reasonably priced accommodation choice as well.
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Activities To Engage In During Christmas In Finland
There are numerous endeavors to enjoy during the Christmas season in Finland. The snow-covered landscapes create the perfect backdrop for activities like skiing, snowboarding, ice skating, and fishing. One can also partake in the festive ambiance by exploring the Christmas markets and Aleksanterinkatu, which is known as Christmas street. For a unique experience, visit the Korkeasaari Zoo and witness the animals amidst the snowy surroundings. Additionally, in Helsinki, there is a Winter Circus that is known to leave spectators in awe with its marvelous performances.
After a fatiguing day you can unwind in the steam room and during December 26th, one can witness the taverns, bars, and eateries coming alive. One of the primary attractions during Christmas is the Santa Clause Village in Rovaniemi which is said to be the abode of Santa Claus and this theme park is worth visiting during the Christmas season. You can stay for New Year as well, in Finland, and you might also catch a glimpse of the Aurora Borealis during the months of January to April if you are fortunate.
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Christmas in Finland 2023 tours are available for booking right now and if you desire to experience a snowy Christmas in Finland then it is best to book yourself a Finland Christmas tour which will allow you to have that experience. Christmas in Finland is truly enchanting, so book your trip now to experience this enchantment!
Frequently Asked Questions About Christmas In Finland
How do they observe Christmas in Finland?
Traditions on Christmas Eve in Finland encompass going to a Christmas mass if you are Catholic and a visit to a Finnish steam room.
What is Santa Claus known as in Finland?
Santa Claus, known as Joulupukki in Finnish, generally visits most houses on Christmas Eve to bestow gifts.
What is Christmas like in Finland?
In Finnish Happy/Merry Christmas is ‘Hyvää joulua’.
How does Finland adorn for Christmas?
The Christmas tree is adorned with candles, lights, glass balls, and ribbons.
What does traditional Christmas decorations in Finland comprise?
Illuminating paper stars is quite popular in Finland. Amongst the decorations, the customary Nordic Billy goat made of straw is highly utilized.
What do they consume in Finland for Christmas?
Oven-baked ham, root vegetable casseroles, mixed beetroot salad, liver casserole and pâtés, meat aspics, gravlax or smoked salmon, fish roe
How cold is it in Finland in December?
In northern Finland, winter temperatures often drop as low as -30°C or even down to -50°C.
What are some customs in Finland?
The Finnish Christmas, Joulu, follows customs of Christmas trees and the Advent calendars. Holidays commence on December 23.
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