I’ve only visited Helsinki, so maybe it’s like judging a book by its cover or having a crush on someone you’ve only talked to briefly, but I really and truly loved Finland. For some right and some wrong reasons.
The reasons: the pride the Finnish people take in being multilingual; its closeness to Russia, Sweden, Estonia, and the Arctic; the big market on the docks; fresh fish; finding a 10 Euro note in a parking lot with no one around to ask if they’d dropped it; the rain-like shower head, nice rooms, and sauna in the hostel; the freshness of the air; the fabulous contemporary art museum, Kiasma; the northern-ness; the really, really long days in the summer; the exhibition of coats (below) and various other human artifacts; the contrast to the hostel I stayed at in Tallinn; putting down my guard and letting the rain fall on my face — there was no avoiding getting wet, and eyebrows and eyelashes serve a purpose in these situations.
How cool is it that in this map from Strange Maps it says that Colorado (my state) has approximately the same GNP as Finland? It’s almost like I live there. Only without many of those reasons for liking Finland. Anyway…
If you were almost 26 with a good job and some money saved, would you save for a few more years to a.) buy a house, or b.) buy a round-the-world ticket and take a 6-month to 1-year trip?
Just discovered this site: wikitravel.org. I am in love with the social web.