Playing in the snow in Helsinki! Coming from warm climates, this is the thing I get most excited about when visiting countries with snow – winter activities. My top pick – Snowmobiling!
Winter Activities in Helsinki
My top pick and perhaps my favorite morning during my stay in Helsinki was going on a Snowmobile Safari with Burn Out City Events. Just 30 minutes outside of the Helsinki City Center, I arrived at the Sipoo archipelago. Burn Out City Events quickly suited me up with everything I needed to stay warm (Face Cover, Snow Suit, Boots, Helmet, 2 layers of gloves) and we walked out to the Snowmobiles just as the sun was rising. What a view!
I had hurt my wrist, so I requested to go out on the same snowmobile with my guide, Kenny, and had a wonderful time as we explored the frozen lake on the snowmobile safari. Kenny gave me an excellent tour pointing out summer houses & saunas and giving me the history on them. There were so many people out on a Thursday enjoying the outdoors – snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, ice fishing and also impromptu hockey rinks setup on the frozen lake.
We stopped to talk to several of the residents and then headed to their secret spot in the forest where a fire was quickly built. We enjoyed roasting some sausages and drinking a warm berry drink for a true Finnish experience that will long be remembered.
Memorable views, memorable Finnish hospitality and a memorable experience. Burn Out City Events also provides summer activities to experience the beautiful Finnish archipelago and again, just 30 minutes outside of Helsinki.
While zooming around on the archipelago, we came across several folks ice fishing. They take a long cork screw like contraption and drill the ice, and then start fishing. I tried my hand at drilling the hole – it takes work!
In the center of town, right next to the train station is the Ice Park. With short 6-7 hours of daylight, the skating rink provides a great late afternoon/early evening activity in the lighted outside rink.
I think you can’t go to Finland without seeing a hockey game beloved by the Helsinki residents as part of their winter activities. I saw hockey rinks everywhere from frozen soccer fields to make-shift rinks in the archipelago.
I was excited to experience a Jokerit hockey game at Hartwall Arena vs the Russian team Metallurg. The game had a lot of action, the fan were fanatical chanting for their home team, and thankfully Jokerit won.
It is interesting to think that most Northern countries fanatical about hockey are also know for being some of the least aggressive and “nice” outside of sports. My theory: they leave it out on the ice. In what other sport can you check someone into the boards or give a pay-back check to the opposing team to settle that score on the ice. And if you are really bad, then you go to a time-out box to cool-off. Makes sense to me – leave it on the ice.
One last winter activity to enjoy in Helsinki – sliding down the Lutheran Church steps. These little kids ran up the steps and slid down on their well-padded bums. Catching each step along the way, you could hear their little vibrating giggles – uh uh uh uh uh!
BlueSkyTraveler was welcomed as a guest of Visit Helsinki, however all opinions are my own.
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