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International dialling code: +358

Driving on the right

Ambulance 112

Border Crossing(s)

Entry: Vallolansaari to Haparanda Sweden. The internal borders of Schengen countries can be crossed anywhere, provided that you are not carrying goods that must be declared. Therefore you can cross the border from Finland to Sweden or Norway anywhere you wish.

Problems encountered: NA

Approximate time to clear:​ Drive through border but spot checks possible

Exit: Karigasniemi to Norway. 

The internal borders of Schengen countries can be crossed anywhere, provided that you are not carrying goods that must be declared. Therefore you can cross the border from Finland to Sweden or Norway anywhere you wish. 

Problems encountered: NA

Approximate time to clear:​ Drive through border but spot checks possible. 

Documentation

 

Passport: You must have at least 6 months left on an adult or child passport to travel to most countries in Europe (not including Ireland).

VISA's: 

  • You can travel to countries in the Schengen area for up to 90 days in any 180-day period without a visa. This applies if you travel as a tourist, to visit family or friends, to attend business meetings, cultural or sports events, or for short-term studies or training

  • If you are travelling to Finland and other Schengen countries without a visa, make sure your whole visit is within the 90-day limit. Visits to Schengen countries within the previous 180 days before you travel count towards your 90 days

  • To stay longer, to work or study, for business or for other reasons, you will need to meet the Finnish government’s entry requirements. Check with the Finnish Embassy what type of visa and/or work permit you may need

  • If you stay in Finland with a residence permit or long-stay visa, this does not count towards your 90-day visa-free limit.

You may also need to: 

  • Show a return or onward ticket

  • Show you have enough money for your stay. (Likely to be deemed to be €80 per person per day). 

Driving Licence: UK Driving Licence is accepted. 

Insurance: Appropriate insurance is required.

Financial capacity: After Brexit, on arrival in the Schengen area you may be asked to confirm that you have sufficient funds available for the duration of your stay. 

EHIC: Apply for a UK Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) or European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). 

Foods: You cannot take meat, milk or products containing them into EU countries. 

Logistics

Roads: Roads in Finland are generally in a good condition and empty. Traffic density is typically light with few traffic jams. Elks usually move in the evening twilight or in the morning. 

  • Driving in Finland during the winter months can be hazardous. Icy road conditions are common. Winter/snow tyres (either studded or non-studded) are a legal requirement from 1 December to 28 February. It’s usually necessary to use winter tyres beyond these dates as roads remain icy well into April. 

  • Drinking and driving is a serious offence and you can expect a lengthy prison sentence. The drink drive limit in Finland is 50 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood.

  • In Lapland, reindeer walk on the roads. They are not jumpy like other deer but drive carefully past them. Default speed limits are 50kph in cities and 80kph elsewhere. There are fines for speeding. 

  • The annual death rate due to driving in Finland is higher than the UK. Take care when driving. 

 

Arctic Travel: Large numbers of British nationals travel successfully and safely in and around the Arctic each year. The Arctic is, however, a vast region, comprising the northerly areas of Canada, Finland, Greenland (Denmark), Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden and Alaska (United States). In addition to reading the specific travel advice for each of these countries, prospective visitors to the Arctic should also consider carefully the potential remoteness of certain destinations from search and rescue, evacuation and medical facilities. Independent travellers are particularly advised to develop contingency arrangements for emergency back-up.

Consular assistance and support to British nationals in the Arctic will be affected by the capacity of national and local authorities. You should make sure you have adequate travel insurance and accessible funds to cover the cost of any medical treatment or potential repatriation.

 

Traffic: See Via Michelin or various applications including Wase.

Fuel: Petrol stations with free and decent toilets. Most places have a good variety of food and even a grocery store but availability in the north of the country is limited. Plan to refuel in the bigger cities / towns. There are some unmanned petrol stations - payment is by credit card.or cash.  Locations of a popular petrol station chain can be found on the map or here: 

Water: Camp sites and some garages / petrol stations.

Food: Most campsites have small shops for the basics. Supermarkets in larger towns and cities. 

Winter Tyres: Winter tyres are compulsory in Finland from the first of December to the end of February, but may be used until April 20 if necessary. Winter tyres without studs - known as “friction tyres” in Finland - may be used throughout the year. Consider carefully the potential remoteness of certain destinations from search and rescue, evacuation and medical facilities. Independent travellers are particularly advised to develop contingency arrangements for emergency back-up.

Vehicle / trailer repairs: <<Recommended places. Contact details if known>>

Bottle Gas or Refills: The situation regarding bottled gas is unclear. Propane is used because of the cold. Availability may only be in major cities but could be hard to find. Use of petrol stoves or 'Trangia' type stoves is widely reported. Diesel stoves may work but themay be difficult to light in the cold of the north. 

 

LPG: In addition to cooking gas for those with tanks, LPG is also used to power vehicles. Details of LPG gas stations and connectors can be found on the website myLPG.eu. LPG is not widely available in Finland. You should top up before entering the country. Most campsites provide a free kitchen with cooking facilities if you get stuck. If visiting for an extended period consider using a diesel cooker. 

Gas adapter: NA. No (or at least very little) gas in Finland.

Currency: The currency of Finland is the Euro.

Health

 

At least 8 weeks before your trip, check the latest country-specific health advice from the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC) on the TravelHealthPro website. The legal status and regulation of some medicines prescribed or purchased in the UK can be different in other countries. If you’re travelling with prescription or over-the-counter medicine, read this guidance from NaTHNaC on best practice when travelling with medicines. For further information on the legal status of a specific medicine, you’ll need to contact the embassy, high commission or consulate of the country or territory you’re travelling to.

As a rule, organs, tissues and cells may be removed in Finland for the treatment of another person if it can be assumed that the deceased wouldn’t have objected to the measure when alive.

Pets

 

If you are travelling with a pet, you should contact the destination country's embassy or veterinary authorities. For further information contact the Finnish Food Safety Authority: www.evira.fi.

 

Advice received from the Finnish Food Safety Authority post Brexit regarding the Non-commercial movement of dogs, cats and ferrets from EU countries to Finland is as follows: 

" The European Commission has provided us with the following information concerning the UK and Northern Ireland pet passports after Brexit.

 

UK pet passports:

  • Starting from the 1st of January 2021 (after Brexit), the validity of the UK pet passports is dependent on which country the owner’s address is marked as in the pet passport.

    • If the owner’s address is marked as Great Britain (UK), then the passport is no longer valid.

    • If the owner’s address is marked as any EU-country or Northern Ireland, then the passport is still valid.

  • We strongly recommend getting EU pet passports for pets living in other EU-countries, who currently have UK pet passports. Brexit has brought a lot of changes in the EU and guidelines concerning the pet passports are difficult. We cannot guarantee easy travel for pets with UK pet passports, even if the pet owner’s address is marked as another EU-country.

 

Northern Ireland pet passports:

  • Pet passports issued in Northern Ireland are still valid even after Brexit.

  • Owner’s of pets living in the EU with Northern Ireland pet passports can ask the Northern Irish authorities or the veterinarian who originally issued the pet passport for a sticker that separates the Northern Ireland pet passport from other UK pet passports.

    • At a later date, Northern Ireland will be getting a completely new pet passport model so the sticker is only a temporary solution to separate the Northern Ireland pet passport from other UK pet passports.

 

We recommend you get your dogs French EU pet passports so it will be easy for them to travel through multiple countries next year."

We will investigate the practicalities of obtaining an EU Pet Passport further - see France. 

Places to stay 

 

Name / Point of contact / Email / Tel No / Website

Price per night

Hotels

 

Campsites  

 

Thankfully, there are plenty of Campsites throughout Finland. The average price per night is €24.15.

  • Camping.fi

  • CampingKey Europe. Used in 25 countries and across 3000 campsites. Discounts of around 10% at campsites. Cost €16 per annum.

  • Finnish Camping Association. 

 

Wild camping 

 

Has very liberal public access laws. You are allowed to wild camp, so long as you are a suitable distance from homes or cabins. In the province of Aland, the right to wild camp is not necessarily recognized. Note that
there may be some restrictions in protected areas. These are some of
the most highly recommended and beautiful places for camping
throughout Finland. You are allowed to wild camp, so long as you are a
suitable distance from homes or cabins. In the province of Aland, the
right to wild camp is not necessarily recognized.

 

Note that there may be some restrictions in protected areas.

Things to do and places to see

  

  • Wolf Conservation. Polarised opinions. Protection of rural
    communities and a threat to livelihoods. Compensation schemes.

  • Metshallitus Parks & Wildlife Finland. Rovaneimi

  • Influencers

  • Sara Weslin. Skolt Sami language Broadcaster (YLE Sapmi). (Top
    100 women influencers.)  

  • Stefan Gofferje. A nature film maker in Finland. 
     

  • NGOs

    • Association of Cultural Heritage Education in Finland

    • VAMLAS Supporting Foundation for Children and Youth with
      Disabilities

  • Peat carbon sinks. Water quality issues, acidic releases killing fish. 

  • Industrialisation / mining, wind farms. Loss of winter grazing areas
    for Sami people.

  • Luontoliitto. A Finish NGO
     

  • Tourism & Research

    • Tornio - Border crossing

    • Rovaniemi

      • Santa Park Rovaniemi 

      • Rovaniemi Snowmobile Safari to Reindeer Farm and Santa Claus Village

      • Lapland Husky Safari from Saariselkä

      • Sami Reindeer husbandry and climate change impacts. Farm visit.

      • Sami childen education

      • Sami healthcare

      • Water quality. Plastics?

      • Lapland culture

      • Gold panning

      • Sami handicraft classes

      • Candle making

      • Antler decorating

      • Yoga and Husky therapy

      • Magic of the forest and log sauna

      • Biking

      • Hiking trails

    • Palojoensuu​

      • The Struv Arc​

      • Halti

      • Pihtsuskongas Waterfall

      • Sotkajarvi Bird Watching Tower

      • Minnan Talli Reindeer Farm

      • Hetta Huskies

      • Fell Lapland Visitors Centre

      •  The Pahtajarvi Trail. The gorge lake of Pahtajärvi is the highlight of this hiking trail. The gorge is less than 100 meters wide but it is over 1 kilometer long and 25 meters deep. The other interesting natural sight is Hiekkatievat, a beautiful ridge with sand dunes.

    • Karasjok

      • Sami Diggi - Sami Parliament​

      • Sami Centre for Comtemporary Art

      • Sami Museum

      • Turgleder. Expeditions 

    • Russenes​​

    • Karigasniemi - Border Crossing to Norway​​
       

  • Companies

    • TBC

Any other suggestions / Information

<<What went well. Safety / Security issues. Horror stories etc>>

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