In 2021, Finland was named the happiest country in the world for the fourth time in a row by the United Nations Word Happiness Report. The credit certainly goes to the lifestyle of the Finns and the fact that Finland itself is covered by 90% of forests or water.
Finnish happiness is not as superficial as it may seem but must be sought in the roots and habits of life of a country and of a people accustomed to taking life as it comes and to appreciate every little thing of everyday life.
Visit Finland shared 4 of the many tips that could help increase “happiness hormones” if you happen to travel to this country surrounded by greenery and full of lakes.
1.Reconnect with nature
Finland is 75% covered by forests and this plays in favor of people’s health. Here you can walk through the woods, hike, camp, ride a bike and enjoy outdoor activities. In winter you can go cross-country skiing or try the new trend of walking with wool socks (wool sock running). It is no coincidence that Finns love to escape the city to relax in the midst of nature.
2.Looking for food is a state of mind
In summer and autumn, Finland is perfect for searching for berries, mushrooms, wild herbs and vegetables. While fishing is popular all year round, looking for some wild fruit can be a rewarding and therapeutic activity to be practiced at certain times. Finnish restaurants are also adapting to the rhythms of nature and are adding freshness and authenticity to their dishes.
3. The healing powers of water
Finland has 188,000 lakes which, for tourists, mean an infinite number of possibilities: canoeing, kayaking, boat trips and swimming when the season allows it. And if you want to try some Finnish tradition by throwing yourself into the frozen lake after a sauna, feel free. It seems to give energy and vitality.
The sauna is a beloved ritual of Finnish life that brings together and connects friends and family. In addition, Finnish sauna culture has been added to UNESCO’s Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, the first aspect of Finnish culture to enter the prestigious list. Finns believe that saunas are good for the mind and increase happiness. It can also be seen as a meditative space and a place to disconnect from the outside world. The best part of the sauna experience is what Finns affectionately call “post-sauna bliss,” the exhilarating feeling of having purified the mind and body.
Source and photos: Visit Finland