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12 tell-tale signs you learned to drink in Finland

Finns are world-renowned for their fondness for drink. The Finnish people also have a very distinctive way of getting hammered, which often involves copious amounts of alcohol drunk very quickly. Consequently, learning to drink like a Finn can be a challenging venture (which is helped by a liver with supernatural healing powers). Apparently, being able to down 62 beers and 10 shots of kossu makes it all worthwhile, though.

So, to help you on your way to a Viking level liquor holding skills (or just to marvel at the drinking customs of the Finns, your choice), we have compiled this list of the key elements of Finnish drinking culture.

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An open letter to Stephen King – We need to talk about Perse

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It’s an absolute delight for a Finn, whenever we are mentioned anywhere. Much like in that old Monty Python sketch, where the town Wains Cotting is mentioned on the telly. For a Finn, the movie Die Hard comes to mind. Also King Ralph, where…ahem, the Royal Family of Finland actually gets some screen time. Or how about the Monty Python song “Finland”, in which Michael Palin pours his heart out about snacking lunch and watching TV in Finland. Stuff like this makes one´s heart burst with pride, so you can only imagine the thrill of reading Stephen King´s Duma Key in its original language.




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Picture of Finnish forest

Ghastly picnic destinations: 5 places in Finland let down by their names

Picture of Finnish forest

All around the world, our forefathers in charge of naming places have on occasion let their morbid sense of humour flourish (or alternatively the job just really gets to you after a while, go figure).

Finland, of course, is no exception. Hell and murder appear to have been especially attractive and marketable concepts in ye olde days, examining the naming of certain places.

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Jani Ylinampa's photo of northern lights over a small river in Lapland, Finland

Lapland safari guide Jani Ylinampa’s Northern Lights photos are out of this world

Jani Ylinampa's photo of northern lights over a small river in Lapland, Finland
Jani Ylinampa works as a safari guide in Lapland. But on the side, he’s a photographer who’s developed quite the following on social media, in part thanks to his stunning shots of northern lights. We saw it fitting to feature Jani’s work and ask him a couple of question on his work and lifestyle.

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7 ways to make a Finn happy

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As a rule, Finns are sincere, humble, trustworthy and funny. However, one thing that can be difficult for visitors to know is what makes them happy, being that they often exude a Spock-like calm in all situations. With this in mind, I’ve put together a handy guide, gained from 13 years experience, of seven sure-fire ways to put a spring in any Finn’s step.

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Young man jumping into icy lake, like it was summer. Photo in Asikkala, Finland.

The impossible contrast: Young photographer drops summer-like scenes into freezing Finnish winter

Young man stuck with rowboat in snow on icy lake, Asikkala, Finland.

At the time of writing, it’s rather cold, around -20°C, here in Helsinki. To make this a bit less insufferable, let’s enjoy some summery pictures. Almost.

Sixteen-year-old, award-winning photographer Markus Watkins has just published a very timely set of summer activities set in freezing cold Asikkala. We asked some questions about his set, which he named The Impossible Contrast.

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Aurea borealis over cottages in Lapland, Finland

Arctic #nofilter: 15 Instagram snapshots that show why Lapland’s the crown jewel of the North

Aurea borealis over cottages in Lapland, Finland

Free pro tip: too much Instagram at bedtime will mess with your sleep. On the other hand, if you open Instagram first thing after your alarm rings in the morning, your phone’s screen will help you wake up. Put simply, Instagram can be a fantastic infusion of beauty into your day when you need it the most.

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Burning street car in Helsinki during USSR air raids, 1944.

Photos of bombed, WWII Helsinki mashed up with prosperous modernity

Burning street car in Helsinki during USSR air raids, 1944.

During WWII, Finland was twice involved in military confrontation with the Soviet union. For the capital, Helsinki, the most intense air raids and bombings occurred in February 1944, a campaign which is usually referred to as The Great Raids Against Helsinki. These amazing photographs, created by the Finnish Defence Forces Combat Camera unit, mash up haunting photos of wartime destruction with modern pics from a couple years back, in nice black and white plus colour images.

The USSR was under the impression its bombing campaigns were more successful and expected Helsinki to be pretty much gone by the end of the war. The Soviets didn’t learn of the relatively limited damage until after the war when Allied Control Commissioner Andrei Zhdanov visited Helsinki.

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