Practical Information

Arrival

By air
Transfers to and from the airport are included in most of the packages. Depending on the tour the meeting point is whether Kajaani, Kuusamo or Oulu airport, all operated from Helsinki by Finnair and Oulu also by Norwegian. Please check the joining point for the trip and transfer schedule from us. Please notice that we organize single-timed group transfers on arrival and departure.

By Train
The main railway routes to Kajaani are: Oulu-Kajaani from the west, Helsinki-Kuopio-Kajaani from the south. Travelling time from Helsinki to Kajaani during the day is from 5,5-7,5 hours. More information about the train connections at VR. If the joining point for the tour is Kuusamo you should continue by bus from Kajaani or Oulu as there are no trains.

By Bus
The good network of long-distance express bus services between the larger towns in Finland offer the easy way to travel. More information about the bus connections at Matkahuolto.

See the map of our operation area here.

Time zone

Time in Finland is 2 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). Daylight saving time (DST) begins across the EU on last Sunday of March when clocks are moved forward an hour and it ends on last Sunday of October when clocks are put back an hour.

Electricity

The electric current in Finland is 220 V (230 V), 50 Hz. A two-pin plug system, familiar throughout Europe, is used. Adapters are available in airport shops.

Currency

Finland’s currency is euro (€). Credit cards are also widely accepted everywhere. Please note that on most tours there’s no possibility for money change, not on arrival or during the week. However, most of our tours include all meals, activities etc. so you don’t necessarily need money during the tour. If you wish to buy some souvenirs, alcohol beverages etc. you’d better change money in advance in your home country or at the airport. During wilderness trekking tours the possibilities to spend money are few.

Food

Most of our tours include full board or half board. Vegetarian, gluten-free, lactose-free etc. meals can be served. In case of any dietary requirements please inform us in advance.

Tap water

In Finland the tap water is good quality and drinkable even from the tap in the hotel bathroom.

Health regulations

Finland is one of Europe's safest countries in terms of health and hygiene. No vaccinations or inoculations are required before arrival. Finnish pharmacies are well stocked with all the basic medicines, but note that some medicines that are available in stores and supermarkets in other countries - such as Aspirin and various ointments - are only available in pharmacies in Finland. Also please note that during our tours there’s no access to a pharmacy (in a case of emergency of course).

Travel insurance

Clients must take care of the travel insurance by themselves. We recommend applying for the European Health Insurance Card which is available free of charge for the citizens of EU/EEA and of Switzerland. The holders of the card are entitled to medical care while staying temporarily in an other EU/EEA country or in Switzerland (with same regulations and co-payments like the residents of the country). More information about the card is available here. Having this card helps a lot in the case of accident - without the card a client has to pay all the costs on spot and those can be from several hundred euros up to one thousand euros.

Visa

Tourists from most countries are not required an entry visa into Finland.

The website of Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs offers details of required travel documents by country, please see here.

As a rule, foreign nationals who require an entry visa are requested to apply for one from the diplomatic mission that represents Finland in their home country. Finnish missions abroad by country, please see here.

Source: Formin

Weather and seasons

We have four distinctly different seasons that transform the white winter wonderland to a green summer in just a few months. Temperatures can vary from +30C to -30C and day light hours have just as great variations!

Spring Mid-April to May - brown bears wake up, rapid turn towards summer
Summer June to August - Midnight Sun in June
Autumn September to October - bright colours of the nature in September (ruska)
Winter November to Mid-April - Long Russian border safaris in Feb-March

The day temperatures in January–March vary normally between -5 and -20°C. However it is possible that the temperature rises until some plus degrees or falls to below -30°C. In April the temperatures are usually between + 5 and -10°C at daytime and between 0 and -15°C at night time. If a night is very cold, the temperature normally rises quite rapidly in March/April as the sun rises up.

In December and January the days are short but get longer as the winter goes on. In the beginning of January there is only 6,5 hours of daylight (9 am–3.30 pm), in the beginning of February about 9 hours (8 am to 5 pm) and in the beginning of March about 12 hours (6.30 am–6.30 pm). In April there are already about 15 hours of day light (6 am–20.30 pm). The weather in these months can be sunny or cloudy and snow showers can also appear.

The weather can be windy as well. So as you see the weather conditions can vary a lot, but usually in winter in Finland the weather don’t change very rapidly. The depth of snow is normally about 50–100 cm during these months.

An average day temperature in summer (Jun–Aug) is about +20°C but it can be anything from +10°C to +30°C. At night and on rainy days the temperature can be even under +10°C. Rain showers are possible and sometimes it might even rain the whole day. Summer days are long in Finland, in June there is about 20–21 hours of daylight per day and in August about 17–18 hours.

Read here more about seasons in Finland.

Weather forecast

Mosquitoes

During the summer, mosquitoes are a nuisance in the countryside, especially in the north of Finland. The worst mosquito period is usually from 20th June until end of July. However, the situation varies each year so it is hard to say how it will be. During our hiking tours we are mostly in dry pine forests where mosquitoes are not a big problem. You can protect yourself from mosquito bites by using mosquito repellent (guide has repellent) and we recommend you to wear long sleeves and trousers and a hat or a scarf – this protects both from the mosquitoes and the sun.

In cities and towns there are almost no mosquitoes.

Clothing

Winter
If you are planning a winter visit, be prepared for low temperatures! The lower the temperature is, the more carefully you must dress up for the outdoor activity. Special attention must be paid to the nose, cheeks, ears, chin, toes and fingers that most easily get frostbitten.

In cold conditions layered clothing is relevant since the clothing must at the same time transfer moisture, provide warmth and protect from the wind. During the exercise it’s easier to keep your body warm but during breaks you’ll get cold easily. Layered clothing gives the opportunity to adjust the heat easily.

Our recommendations:
Base layer:
Choose wool, synthetic (polypropylene, polyester) or silk clothes. Skin-tight base-layer provides comfort by removing the moisture and keeping the skin dry. Cotton is not ideal as base-layer because it retains moisture and will make you colder.

Midlayer: Mid-layer provides warmth. Use several layers if necessary. Fleece and woollen shirts/jackets and pants are ideal. Mid-layer clothing makes it possible to adjust the heat according to the weather and rate of physical activity.

Outer garment: Choose clothes according to the planned activity.
Husky sledding, ice-fishing and other “colder activities”: Wear insulated and wind-proof coat and trousers (or overall). Clothes don’t need to be waterproof.
Cross-country skiing and snowshoeing: Breathable and wind-proof cross-country skiing jacket and pants or similar are the best option. Insulated winter jackets and pants are usually too warm making you sweat (if you soak in your own sweat, you get cold easily once you stop). A ski waistcoat could be useful as well (easy to dress/take off).

Head: Wear a windproof beanie or knitted hat that protects ears as well. Remember to protect your face too, especially if it’s extremely cold or windy. A balaclava is useful.

Hands: Mittens are warmer than gloves. Thin, woollen gloves can be used under mittens or you can put another pair of big mittens over the others if necessary. For the cross-country skiing insulated skiing gloves or mittens are the best. For the extra warmth wear thin merino wool gloves under them.

Feet:
Shoes: Wear well-insulated boots and pick a larger size of shoes to fit extra socks. Rubber non-slip soles will keep you on your feet. Insulated shoe covers are good to be used over skiing boots on cold weather.
Socks: Socks of wool mixtures are the best choice to keep your feet dry (wet socks -> cold feet). Put knitted woollen socks over the other socks. Cotton sports socks are not a good option for cold conditions.

Spare clothes for the lunch break outdoors:
It is essential to have extra clothes in your rucksack to be worn during a picnic outdoors.
*If you rent an overall from us, you could have a fleece shirt / pullover to be used under the overall. An extra pair of mittens is useful too.
*If you are wearing a sport jacket (skiing and snowshoeing tours), you should have a warm extra jacket for the breaks (down / soft shell etc).

!!! We have mittens, balaclavas and woollen socks to borrow. Winter overalls and winter shoes are available for rent.


Summer
For summer outdoor activity tours you should remember that the weather conditions can be variable. Be prepared also for cool weather and rain! Gore-tex® clothes are not essential as it's not usually very cold and the route is not very windy, it is however necessary to carry some kind of waterproof jacket and trousers. Good hiking boots with leg are essential, preferably with Gore-tex® or similar. Jogging/training shoes are not sufficient as there will be some soft and wet sections.
You will also need a small rucksack for carrying lunch, rain clothes, water bottle, mosquito repellent etc.

You find the detailed gear list for each tour in the trip dossier that can be requested from us.

Sauna

The traditional Finnish sauna is available almost daily on our tours. 
Finnish people traditionally do not go in mixed groups or wearing swimming suits.
Sauna is thought to be a holy place where both body and soul are washed.

Internet

Wi-Fi is available in most accommodation places but not at wilderness cabins.

Tipping

Tipping is not compulsory in Finland but if you feel that your guide did a great job for your, then it’s up to you if you decide to tip him/her and say thanks on that way.

Links

Information on the area - Wild Taiga
Hossa National Park
Visit Finland