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Finland

Background

Finland

Finland was a province and then a grand duchy under Sweden from the 12th to the 19th centuries, and an autonomous grand duchy of Russia after 1809. It won its complete independence in 1917. During World War II, it was able to successfully defend its freedom and resist invasions by the Soviet Union - albeit with some loss of territory. In the subsequent half century, the Finns made a remarkable transformation from a farm/forest economy to a diversified modern industrial economy; per capita income is now among the highest in Western Europe. A member of the European Union since 1995, Finland was the only Nordic state to join the euro system at its initiation in January 1999. In the 21st century, the key features of Finland's modern welfare state are a high standard of education, equality promotion, and national social security system; currently challenged by an aging population and the fluctuations of an export-driven economy.

About

Finland (Finnish: Suomi, Swedish: Finland) is in Northern Europe and has borders with Russia to the east, Norway to the north, and Sweden to the west. The country is a thoroughly modern welfare state with well-planned and comfortable small towns and cities, but still offers vast areas of unspoiled nature. Finland has approximately 188,000 lakes (about 10% of the country) and a similar number of islands. In the northernmost part of the country the Northern Lights can be seen in the winter and midnight sun in the summer. Finns also claim the mythical mountain of Korvatunturi as the home of Santa Claus, and a burgeoning tourist industry in Lapland caters to Santa fans. Despite living in one of the most technologically developed countries in the world, the Finns love to head to their summer cottages in the warmer months to enjoy all manner of relaxing pastimes including sauna, swimming, fishing and barbecuing.

Read more about Finland in our Finland travel guide »

Featured journals from

Finland

Featured hotels in

Finland

FinlandCrowne Plaza Helsinki 

Mannerheimintie 50
Helsinki 00260
Finland

Price (US$): $150 - $262 / night

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Location. Crowne Plaza Helsinki is a business friendly hotel located in Helsinki's Bortre Tolo neighborhood, close to Finnish National Opera, Finlandia Hall, and Parliament Building. Additional points of interest include Presidential Palace and National Museum. Hotel Features. Crowne Plaza Helsinki's restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. A bar/lounge is open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. Recreational amenities include an indoor pool, a health club, a sauna,… more »

FinlandHotel Haven 

Unioninkatu 17
Helsinki 00130
Finland

Price (US$): $207 - $2288 / night

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Location. Located in central Helsinki, Hotel Haven is within walking distance of Kauppahalli, Presidential Palace, and Senate Square. Nearby points of interest also include Helsinki Cathedral and Uspenski Cathedral. Hotel Features. Dining options at Hotel Haven include 3 restaurants. A bar/lounge is open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel serves a complimentary breakfast in the restaurant. Recreational amenities include a 24 hour fitness facility and… more »

FinlandNaantali Spa Hotel 

Matkailijantie 2
Naantali 21100
Finland

Price (US$): $219 - $271 / night

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Location. Naantali Spa Hotel is located on the beach in Naantali, close to Moominworld. Another point of interest is Turkuhalli. Hotel Features. Dining options at Naantali Spa Hotel include a restaurant and a coffee shop/café. A poolside bar and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available during limited hours. The hotel serves a complimentary buffet breakfast. Recreational amenities include an outdoor pool, an indoor pool, a health club, a spa tub, and a sauna. The… more »

FinlandHotel Kamp 

Pohjoisesplanadi 29
Helsinki 00100
Finland

Price (US$): $239 - $320 / night

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Location. Hotel Kamp is a business friendly hotel located in Helsinki, close to Esplanadi, Helsinki City Hall, and Presidential Palace. Additional points of interest include Parliament Building and Kauppatori Market Square. Hotel Features. Dining options at Hotel Kamp include a restaurant and a coffee shop/café. A bar/lounge is open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. Recreational amenities include a health club, a sauna, and a steam room. The property's full service… more »

FinlandGLO Hotel Helsinki Airport 

Helsinki-Vantaa Airport Service
floor T2
Vantaa 01530
Finland

Price (US$): $190 - $218 / night

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Location. Located in Vantaa, GLO Hotel Helsinki Airport is near the airport and close to Finnish Aviation Museum, Jumbo Shopping Center, and Flamingo Entertainment Centre. Additional area points of interest include Heureka Finnish Science Centre. Hotel Features. Recreational amenities include a sauna. Complimentary wireless Internet access is available in public areas. A bar/lounge is open for drinks. The hotel serves breakfast each morning (surcharges apply). Guestrooms. Air conditioned… more »

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Finland

Full name
Republic of Finland
Capital
Helsinki
Location

Northern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia, and Gulf of Finland, between Sweden and Russia

Geographic coordinates

64 00 N, 26 00 E

Area comparative

slightly smaller than Montana

Border countries

Norway 727 km, Sweden 614 km, Russia 1,313 km

Coastline

1,250 km

Climate

cold temperate; potentially subarctic but comparatively mild because of moderating influence of the North Atlantic Current, Baltic Sea, and more than 60,000 lakes

Terrain

mostly low, flat to rolling plains interspersed with lakes and low hills

Lowest point

Baltic Sea 0 m

Highest point

Haltiatunturi 1,328 m

Natural resources

timber, iron ore, copper, lead, zinc, chromite, nickel, gold, silver, limestone

Population

5,255,068 (July 2010 est.)

Ethnic groups

Finn 93.4%, Swede 5.6%, Russian 0.5%, Estonian 0.3%, Roma (Gypsy) 0.1%, Sami 0.1% (2006)

Religions

Lutheran Church of Finland 82.5%, Orthodox Church 1.1%, other Christian 1.1%, other 0.1%, none 15.1% (2006)

Languages

Finnish 91.2% (official), Swedish 5.5% (official), other 3.3% (small Sami- and Russian-speaking minorities) (2007)

Government type

republic

Independence

6 December 1917 (from Russia)

National holiday

Independence Day, 6 December (1917)

Chief of state

President Tarja HALONEN (since 1 March 2000)

Head of government

Prime Minister Mari KIVINIEMI (since 22 June 2010); Deputy Prime Minister Jyrki KATAINEN (since 19 April 2007)

Internet country code

.fi; note - Aland Islands assigned .ax

Internet users

4.393 million (2009)

Airports

148 (2010)

Ports and terminals

Helsinki, Kotka, Naantali, Porvoo, Raahe, Rauma

Other countries in the region