When I plan a holiday to a new country or city, I always research the most active and outdoorsy activities you can do. With a trip to Helsinki with the bestie in the diary, it was time to get researching. After a quick google and to my surprise, I discovered that Nuuskio National Park was only a 30 minutes drive from Helsinki and was a winter wonderland for outdoor fun.
As we had no idea to where to go and how to hike in the snow, we booked a one day excursion with Feel the Nature tour company. The Finnish Nataional parks in winter are absolutely magic, peaceful and a great way to explore what Finland has to offer. Here’s what you should know if you want to do the same:
WHAT TO EXPECT
During your winter safari you can expect copious amounts of forest, frozen lakes (that you can walk on), wooden cottages and fishing holes in the lake. It was pretty cold (we went in Mid March) so just be prepared as you are outside hiking for about 4 hours. Group sizes are 2 – 8 so it’s nice and intimate.
HOW DIFFICULT IS THE HIKE
Other than the uneven terrain when you are climbing up the mountain, the difficulty is suitable for every level. Depending on the level of the group, you can be walking for up to 4 hours during the hike. We covered 6km during our hike which was very enjoyable. Don’t forget, walking through snow and ice is more taxing on the body then walking on flat ground.
WHAT TIME OF YEAR
Feel the Nature offers the winter hiking trip from October through to April (or until the snow melts).
WHAT TO WEAR
You want to be warm, but also comfortable as you will be hiking and climbing throughout the day. Think lots of layers that you can take off as you start to warm up. A waterproof jacket, hiking boots, warm gloves and a hat is a must. It’s also good to bring an extra layer while you sit down for lunch. My hands were freezing though so make sure you have proper outdoor gloves (like ski gloves). You can also hire hiking boots for 5 euros, if you don’t have room in your suitcase.
WHAT TO BRING
You don’t need to bring a lot on the trip as a light lunch is served half way through your hike and snowshoes and walking sticks are provided. You can bring a small backpack with some water, a camera and a pack of tissues.
WHAT IS FOR LUNCH
Once you reach the halfway spot, your guide serve you the most delicious Finnish berry tea that was collected from the forest as well as a traditional Karelian pie “karjalanpiirakka” and a cinnamon roll called a “korvapuusti.” It was enough to satisfy me, but if you have a large appetite, I would bring some snacks too (or have a large breakfast).
WHAT IS INCLUDED
Transfers to and from the Nuuksio National Park, a knowledgeable guide and lunch is included in your day trip. Snowshoes and walking sticks are also included if weather permits on the day. The tour company will pick you up in downtown Helsinki at 10am of your selected date. You will then
HOW TO BOOK + HOW MUCH
You can book online on the Feel the Nature website and the full day hiking trip cost 75euros per person. Go alone or take a buddy.
The hiking trip to Nuuksio National Park was hands down the highlight of our weekend trip to Helsinki. Mikka our guide was knowledgeable, funny and new the forest like the back of his hand.
Now I’m ready to take a trip back in the Summer!
If you haven’t already watched my travel vlog from the trip, check it out below. Don’t forget to leave a thumbs up or a comment if you liked it.