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Finland hasn’t really drawn a significant portion of the world’s tourism market, due to its relative distance, and its closed–off persona. It still remains a rather enigmatic country, but once you visit, you will realize the small things that make Finland a unique place to visit. The country is rather relaxed and laid back, and the bitterly cold winters offer a wonderful opportunity for those who love winter sports. And of course – nobody knows how to drink better than the Finns, so you’re definitely going to have some fun at a Finnish party.
You can visit Finland any time of the year. Every specific season has something special to offer, which means the best time to visit Finland depends on what you want to do. Read on to find out more!
- Best Time to Visit Finland: June – August, November – March
- High Tourist Season: June – August
- All Seasons: April – May (spring), June – August (summer), August – October (fall), November – March (winter)
- The best time to visit Finland is during the summer months, when most of the places across the country will be open, and the weather will be the warmest it gets during the year.
- Winter can be incredibly cold in Finland, but it is also peak season for visitors seeking snow activities and a Northern Lights experience.
- Spring and fall are quite good, weather wise, but some parts of the country will shut down, or won’t be open post winter.
- If you want to visit the smaller cities and towns, the best time for you to visit is during the summer months.
Scandinavia has remained tragically undiscovered. Most people tend to shiver at the very sound of ‘Finland’, and rightfully so. The country is located quite far up north, and can get rather cold, even in the non–winter months. However, there are a lot of unique things for you to explore in the country, and it is the perfect off–beat adventure destination for those who want to do something new and different.
There isn’t really a bad season to visit Finland – you just have to find out what you want to do. Summer is when to visit Finland if you want to visit the smaller towns. Winter is the best time to visit for those interested in adventure sports, or winter adventures. Spring and fall have a lot of special things to offer, weather wise, but a lot of the smaller towns might be shut down. To find out what is on offer in every specific season, read on!
April to May – Spring / Good Season
Springtime is an exciting time to visit Finland. This is when the snow begins to thaw, and nature revives itself after the freezing winter. Be aware – there might be snow in Finland even during the spring, especially in the Lapland region. This is not the peak season – in fact, there will be a drop in the number of tourists in Finland following the winter sports season. Most of the accommodation in larger towns will be open for business, but some of the smaller towns might still be in stupor following the winter, so make sure you book your accommodation in advance, so as to not be blindsided!
- Avg. Temperature: 45 – 61° F / 7 – 16° C (in Helsinki)
- Rainfall: 44 – 86 mm
- Season: Spring
- Highlights: It would be best for you to stick to the bigger towns during these months. Helsinki will be rather stunning, with the snow just thawing, and the days beginning to stretch. You will also be able to enjoy the museums more freely, since there won’t be as many tourists within the city. Turku and its nightlife will be up and thriving during these months as well. On 1st May, Vappu celebrations spread across the country, celebrating the summer. The Black and White Theatre Festival also happens in May.
June to August – Summer / High Season
June to August is the peak season for tourism in Finland, and for good reason. This is when the Midnight Sun effect spreads all across the country, giving you over 20 hours of unrestrained sunlight for you to explore the country. This is also the warmest part of the year, so if you are not a fan of the cold, this is the best time to visit Finland. Beware the mosquitoes though. July and August see huge swarms of these critters, especially in the Lapland region. Make sure you carry plenty of bug repellent.Since this is the peak season for tourists, all the smaller towns will also be pretty active. There will be discounts in Helsinki, due to the high volume of tourists present, as well.
- Avg. Temperature: 65 – 69° F / 18 – 21° C (in Helsinki)
- Rainfall: 58 – 115 mm
- Season: Summer
- Highlights: Barring the mosquitos, this is one of the best times to visit Lapland, which would be incredibly cold in the other months. You should also explore the Sami culture of the region – as these reindeer herders have incredibly fascinating lives. The Organ Night, Aria Festival, Naantali Music Festival, Kivenlahti Rock Festival, Midnight Summer Festival, Sirkus Finlandia Festival, and Pori Jazz Festival all happen during the summer months, in June – July, so you will definitely have a lot of cultural happenings to look forward to.
September to October – Fall / Good Season
Fall in Finland is rather spectacular. The weather is stunning, and the beautiful autumn colors take over the landscape. The weather remains fairly warm till the end of September – it’s by October that the winter cold starts setting in. This is when to visit Finland if you love the fall colors, and are planning on spending your time in the bigger towns. This is the off–season so tours and attractions will start shutting down, especially in the smaller towns.
- Avg. Temperature: 45 – 60° F / 7 – 16° C (in Helsinki)
- Rainfall: 30 – 35 mm
- Season: Fall
- Highlights: This is when to visit Finland if you want to see the Northern Lights. However, beware– there is no guarantee that you will be able to see it. If there is any cloud coverage, you might not be able to see the lights. This is a good time to visit Lapland, and see the ruska–aika (or russeting), where the entire landscape becomes red and gold.
November to March – Winter / Good Season
Winters in Finland are bitterly cold. The weather in Finland can be some of the coldest in the entire world. And yet, although this is the low season in most of the country, it is a busy time of the year for Lapland and the ski-resorts. There will be plenty of snowfall, starting from November onwards. It becomes a heaven for snow sports enthusiasts, whether you are into skiing, snowboarding, or even dog sledding. Temperatures will definitely drop below freezing level for most of the year, and the daylight hours will also decrease – around December – January, you might only see 3 – 4 hours of sunlight every day. During this time of the year, Finland is thronged by tourists to see the Northern Lights and to experience a magical Christmas with Santa. While a lot of small towns might close for the season, the major stops can be very busy, so make your plans well in advance, and book all your accommodation before going.
- Avg. Temperature: 19 – 36° F / 7 – 2° C (in Helsinki)
- Rainfall: 25 – 132 mm
- Season: Winter
- Highlights: Rovaniemi and Levi are incredibly popular destinations during these months, as they are ski resorts with a lot of snowfall. December is a good time to see the Aurora Borealis as well, as the cloud coverage will be quite low. You can spend this time in a Finnish resort, relaxing in the stunning rural saunas, and drinking the local alcohol.