Finland is a Nordic country in Northern Europe famous for its surreal natural beauty and unique culture. Finland is one of the world’s happiest countries, where the citizens enjoy a high standard of living and a peaceful life. Many interesting facts about Finland are highlighted below.
10. There Are More Than 3 Million Saunas In Finland
The Finnish sauna is an integral part of the culture in Finland. There are over 3 million saunas for the country's 5 million inhabitants. A sauna in Finland is a place to relax and socialize with family and friends. For Finns, a sauna is a necessity, and in the past most Finnish women gave birth in a sauna.
9. The Finns Absolutely Love to Drink Milk
The Finns absolutely love milk and dairy products. The annual milk consumption per person in Finland is a whopping 34.34 gallons, making Finland the world's highest milk consuming nation. The Finns consume milk in both its liquid form, such as sour milk or curd milk, and as other dairy products like ice-cream, cheese, and yogurt.
8. The Wife-Carrying Race Originated in Finland
Wife-carrying, also known in Finland as eukonkanto, is a competition in which men have to carry their female teammate (traditionally their wives) and race against other competitors through a special obstacle track and the one who finishes first is declared the winner. The sport was first introduced in Sonkajärvi, Finland. Today, Sonkajärvi serves as the venue for the Wife Carrying World Championships. The winner receives a prize of beer worth the weight of his wife.
7. Finland Is the Only Home of the Endangered Saimaa Ringed Seal
A highly threatened seal species, the Saimaa ringed seal is found in Lake Saimaa, Finland. Only about 380 individuals of the species live in the lake today. The seals began inhabiting the lake when land rose and cut off the lake from the sea after the last ice age. For about 9,500 years, this species of seal evolved separately and is one of the few freshwater seal species living today.
6. The Longest Palindromic Word Comes From the Finnish Language
A palindrome is a phrase or word that reads the same forwards or backward. The longest known palindromic word is the 19-lettered saippuakivikauppias, which in Finnish means a lye (caustic soda) dealer.
5. The Finns Drink More Coffee Than Any One Else
Just like milk, the Finns are addicted to coffee, which is clearly evident from the fact that Finland ranks number one on the list of the world's top 10 coffee consuming nations. The Finns consume an impressive 12 kg of coffee per person annually. Coffee is not only an everyday drink in the country, but is also a celebratory drink that is consumed on special occasions, feasts, and post-church luncheons.
4. Finland Celebrates a ‘Day for Failure’
Finland celebrates failure on the 13th of October each year. The first such day was held in 2010 by Finnish university students. It soon became very popular and attracted big names in Finnish society. Today, many famous politicians, artists, media personalities, and others support the Day for Failure and share their own stories of failure and how they overcame the problems. The day is celebrated to allow people to open up about their problems in life and gather encouragement from society and others who have suffered similar fates but still managed to persevere.
3. The World’s Second Longest Tunnel Is Located in Finland
The Päijänne Water Tunnel is a 120 km long tunnel in Southern Finland. The tunnel supplies fresh water to millions of Finns living in the region. The tunnel is the world’s second longest tunnel, after the Delaware Aqueduct in the United States.
2. Finland Is Europe’s Prison-Break Capital
While Finland is praised for its progressive “open-prison” system, it also suffers from drawbacks of the system. In Finland, prisoners are allowed to circulate in the surrounding community during the daytime. They can study, work, or shop like other free individuals. Such a system is considered to be cost-effective, and is also believed to lower reoffending rates. However, the system also makes it easy for prisoners to escape. Finland’s prisoners have an escape rate of 1,084 per 10,000 inmates, which is the highest in Europe.
1. Finland Has One of the World’s Most Powerful Passports
Individuals with a Finnish passport can access 175 countries around the world without a visa. It is the world’sthird most powerful passport, after those of Germany and Singapore.