Finland’s Hidden Treasures: 5 Amazing Road Trip Destinations

Itching for a break from work and duties, maybe in some exotic location? Feeling the need to satisfy your wanderlust but can’t decide where to go? Or maybe just short on money yet hungry for travel? You are in luck, since we have found the perfect road trip route for you to explore during your summer vacation right here in the mythical land of Finland! Gather your friends and squeeze yourselves into a car for a journey into the heart of Finland, its scenery, culture, art and cuisine. Homeland travel can be just as fun and exciting as roaming around abroad, especially if you’ve never dared to venture outside Uusimaa. See our list of some of the best hidden treasures Finland has to offer and get ready to plan the best road trip of summer 2017!

Statue Park in Koitsanlahti, Parikkala

Created by artist Veikko Rönkkönen (1944-2010) this park is basically a huge garden that along a paved path showcases hundreds of eerie-looking statues in different positions. One part of the exhibition is called a “Yoga Park” in which the statues are bent in various yoga positions. Walking through the exhibition is a great way to admire not just the art but also the beautiful forest surrounding it. The park is open all year round and there is a suggested entrance fee of 2-5 euros, since the park receives no public funding. They also organize small workshops, such as statue sculpting and silkscreen printing. See their homepage for more information.

Hiukka Beach in Sotkamo

Hietaniemi and Yyteri are not the only beaches in Finland that are worth mentioning — Hiukka beach in Sotkamo is located on the shore of the beautiful lake of Sapsojärvi and it's surrounded by magnificent sand ridges that look almost like dunes. The sand on the beach is very fine and stretches far into the lake, which makes the beach shallow and hence family-friendly. Advertised as the “Riviera of Kainuu”, Hiukka also offers dressing rooms, showers and a beach guard. During summer season there is also a small cafe and courts for playing beach volley and tennis.

Värikallio Rock Paintings in Hossa National Park, Suomussalmi

There are surprisingly many places in Finland where the art of our ancient ancestors can still be seen in the form of rock paintings, but the Hossa National Park offers one of the best views on these almost 4000-year-old paintings. The walk from the parking lot is approximately 4 kilometers and while hiking, you can also admire the scenery of ridges and lake, sculpted by the ice age. The rock paintings are located on a large cliff and can be seen from a platform that stretches over the water. The site is open all year round and is free of charge. For more information on the paintings and other cool activities the national park has to offer, see their webpage.

Valamo Monastery, Heinävesi

This Orthodox monastery is not only a beautiful and peaceful destination, but offers also cultural experiences. Guests are allowed to participate in church services and take part in courses such as self-improvement or handicrafts, offered by the Valamo Folk High School. The surroundings of the monastery encourage guests to take refreshing walks in nature and the monastery’s restaurant and cafe make sure that delicious food is always available. But the best is yet to come, for the monastery even has its own vineyard! Wine made by the Valamo monks is up for purchase, and they make everything from white and red wine to dessert wines. There is no fee for guests to enter the grounds of the monastery and there is also accommodation options available.This destination is definitely worth a visit if not for the wine, then at least for the peaceful and relaxing environment.

Ostrich Safari in Nurmijärvi

Probably the most exotic of our suggested destinations, the ostrich farm Ketolan Tila offer so-called “ostrich safaris”, where guests ride on army wagons to meet the ostriches and apparently also to pet them. After the safari there is a cafe where you can taste for example sandwiches or ice cream made of ostrich eggs, and a shop that sells various ostrich-related products. For extra excitement, groups can reserve an observation tower for a peek at faraway planets and galaxies. As an experience going to an ostrich farm is certainly not only educational but most probably something you’ve never done before!