Finland: Land of the Midnight Sun

I recently found myself in Tampere, Finland for the annual Finland International Improvisation Festival.

Most people know that Finland is up in the north of Europe. Waaaaay up. (If you didn’t know till now, I hope you were never a Geography major.)

Now, here’s a fun fact (that hopefully many of you know, or at least comprehend). The further north you go, the longer the day is during the summer, or the longer the night is during the winter. Especially when it comes to Finland, a quarter of its territory lies north of the Arctic Circle and at the country’s northernmost point the sun does not set at all for 60 days during summer.

Although we were not that high up north, Helsinki doesn’t quite ignore this situation.

night day times in helsinki

While in Tampere, every night at the improv shows, we’d go for drinks. Coz that’s what you do in Finland. And when leaving the bar at 3:00am, we’d gaze at the midnight sun. Coz that’s what you do in Finland.

midnight_sun_finland

This photo was taken at 2:30am in downtown Tampere, Finland.

There are people who love the sun, there are others who love the darkness. Personally, I am more a fan of nighttime. However, regardless of preference, surely it must be hell to have zero darkness for months on end. Or even worse, the other way around, not having any sunlight for two or three months straight! You don’t know if it’s morning or evening. Your internal clock goes out of whack. You can’t decide whether you should have a bowl of cereal, or a bowl of pop corn!

Having said all that, Finland is definitely a place worth visiting. And lets face it. Having an after-midnight dip in a lake under a golden-blue twilight sun is an experience worth having! Welcome to the land of the midnight sun!

Things I learnt:

  • One in two apartments in Finland have a private sauna room!

M.

3 Responses

  1. Dee says:

    It is pretty eerie! Oddly enough, I just came back from Whitehorse, Yukon which is nearly the same latitude. Around 4am from a tent in the middle of the mountains, it looks like twilight. Here is to bathing in icy glacier rivers at 3am and avoiding grizzlies! 🙂

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