100 years of independence – what do you know about Finland?
|Karelian house, Bomba, Nurmes. Photos: Sirpa Pääkkönen|
Next year Finland will celebrate its 100th birthday. Finland got independence 6th December 1917. From late 12th century Finland was an integral part of Sweden. In 1809 Finland was incorporated into the Russia Empire as the autonomous Grand Duchy of Finland. Following the 1917 Russian revolution Finland declared itself independent.
So we’ll get a big celebration next year. What do foreigners usually know about Finland? We have thousands of lakes. In Lapland the sun will shine all night long in the summer, but in wintertime the darkness covers the country. If you are lucky you can see northern lights and they are amazing. Reindeer you’ll meet very likely and the Santa Clause in Lapland. That’s why children from all over the world love to travel to Lapland.
You can also learn something about Finland by looking statistics from The Statistics Center of Finland, Statistics Finland.
Let’s see what we can find out. Finland’s population is 5.5 million, 2.7 million men and 2.8 million women. Wage and salary earners we have about two million.
We have 765 libraries, 182 newspapers and 311 cinema halls. About marital status the statistics tell that 48 percent of Finns are single and 38.3 percent married.
Finnish people travel quite much. Tourists we get about 5.5 million, tells the statistic number of overnight stays by foreigners at accommodation establishment last year. Most of the tourists were Russians, 23.5 percent of all. The second in tourism rates was Sweden, the third Germany and the fourth United Kingdom. United States was the seventh, the number of overnight stays by Americans was 202 000 last year.
What to see and experience in Finland: of course the pure nature, especially in the summer. After admiring the nature go to sauna to feel the hot bath, then go swimming into the lake. Finns love to stay in the cottage.
In the culture we have the great heritage of our wonderful visual artists: Akseli Gallen-Kallela, Hugo Simberg and Helene Schjerfbeck for example. Don’t miss The National Museum Ateneum and the contemporary art museums Kiasma and Emma, if you’ll visit Helsinki, the capital of Finland. And visit the Helsinki Music Center if you enjoy classical music.
What to eat? Most of Finnish people recommend Karelian pasty, made from a thin rye crust with a filling of rice. Best pasties you’ll get of course from Karelia. Go to Koli in Northern Karelia and enjoy the Finnish National landscape. The same landscape was also admired by Jean Sibelius, the most famous Finnish composer.
|Finnish castling, an island in Helsinki.|
|River Kyrö, Ylistaro.|
|Traditional house in Mathildedal|
|Hard winter in Helsinki|