If someone told you to fly somewhere for just two days would you think about it for a second, weigh the options, ask a friend, ask your boyfriend, call your mom ..etc ? Or would you just say YES without even a thought? I’m the say Yes kind of person . I’ve always been a YES person . To be honest I think everything I have learned and experienced in my life, and probably 99% of what makes up my knowledge is from me being that . A YES I’LL DO IT person .
I got a call from Saga Furs who were on a journey to bring journalists and writers to experience Finnish culture and a stunning place called Lapland. I couldn’t say no . Finland is like this beautiful little diamond. It was only a 1 and half hour flight to Helsinki and then another 30 minute flight to Kittila . It was January , so it was around minus 13 to -18 degrees outside, a climate I thought would be very challenging . Little did I know , this place would fill me up with a pure of warmth I didn’t know I would feel .
We stayed in Lapland. It is Finland’s northmost region (This is fancy wording for it was cold as f*ck ). This is where people from around the world migrate to to see the spectacular Northern Lights. We stayed in this gorgeous lodge called Levi Spirit. Checkout the inside of this lodge. Does this look like a dream place to come with a big group of people or what ? I had the honor of staying here with the team from Saga Furs who were locals. They truly demonstrated what Finnish culture was about , these people have hearts of gold! They just radiate good energy and you can tell from just their eyes that wherever they have come to in life, they worked their ass off for it .
On Day 1 we went snow hiking . Whether this sounds appealing or exhausting to you , I’ll tell you one thing : nothing matters when you see the view. It is beauty in its very own definition . Even though it was the longest I couldn’t feel my toes, I couldn’t think of anything other than how lucky I felt being able to stand in that snow and witness the most incredible sunrise (which by the way happens at 11am !) .
On day 2 we ticked off something that was on my bucket list my entire life. You know those scenes from Game of thrones where people are on the back of sleds and hundreds of huskies galloping with passion and hurdling forward? Well I’m not sure if that scene exists because I don’t watch Game of Thrones . But I could imagine this would be something that happens in it lol. I think many parts of the show were filmed in Lapland actually . Anyway , before I get side tracked , it was like something from a medieval movie . The whole experience was astounding . Apparently this has been happening for centuries and without these dogs , Finnish people would have had no means of transportation back in the day .
I never knew much about husky sledding . I think at one point I used to think that it was inhumane . Probably because when you don’t know much about something , your human instinct will try and choose a thought for you to turn into an opinion so you can have “a stand” on that matter . But life is about learning , growing and educating to better our world and our minds .
Husky sledding dates back to hundreds of years ago . Not only was it the only means of transportation in cold areas like here but it still is for some people who live in isolated areas that reach up to minus 20 degrees . People had no other way to travel to hunt and find food to feed their families . Sometimes they had to travel up to 30 kms away and without these dogs it would have never been possible .
These dogs are beautiful souls who are well kept , deeply loved and treated like family within the humans they live around . They love running and excercise. So much so that they cry and yelp in eager excitement when they can’t run and serve their beloved owners . They’re affectionate , willing and strong beings that show nothing but unconditional love and loyalty to their humans . Their owners feed them a big meal three times a day . After they run they get snacks and get to take a resting break . As soon as they wake up they’re eager to run and work again.
I met the owners of these dogs here today and they were some of the kindest people . They were born here and have spent their entire life here . They’ve dedicated their life to these dogs . They know each of their pups , their personalities, their strength and weaknesses and their moods. They never force them to run if they seem uneager . They keep an eye on them and never let them fight . They don’t chain or tie them up when they’re not working and running the sleds . They roam openly and come for cuddles and kisses to whoever is passing by .
Then we went to the Game of thrones ice hotel which gave me so much fomo (FEAR of missing out ). Mainly because I already found it fascinating but then wondered how much more amused I would be by it if I had watched the show. Here’s an inside of what it looks like in there !
Lastly , the food . Finnish execution of any cuisine seemed impeccable. You can tell they have high standards. When we had sushi , it was great . When we had asian fusion at the airport it was GREAT . And when we tried Finnish food it was awesome. They make an incredible dish where they roast Salmon on a wooden plank by the fire and baste it with its own juices and some lemon juice to add to the taste . Delicious !
Have you been to Finland ? What did I miss and what do you recommend I do when I visit again soon ?
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