As some of you may know last week I took myself on a trip back to Tampere in Finland, after living there for a year I often find myself dreaming of being back there in the snow, eating a vast array of sweet treats or hopping on a husky ride. Now that I'm no longer a student it's so hard to get time off to do anything, so when I booked a week off work I knew what I had to do...
It's always a no brainer to fly with Ryanair as they offer direct flights to Tampere and the return flights cost me £50 making my coach to the airport more, madness! Tampere is about 2 hours from Helsinki, I do love Helsinki and the shops but Tampere feels much more homely and there is so many places that I know of that you can explore. When we arrived there was about 3 inches thick of ice everywhere so it was basically a skating rink, the day before a lot of snow had melted and turned to slush which then freezed so as you can imagine it was sooo dangerous! Luckily the next day it snowed a lot...
We stayed in a place called the Holiday Club Tampere where we had stayed before as it is only a minute walk from my old student accommodation. The views from the room are just spectacular and it was so nice waking up to this every morning.
On our first day we headed down to a place called Pyynikki, from where we were staying it probably took about an hour to walk down but the place is totally worth it and it is a huge attraction for the locals on a Sunday. Pyynikki has a tower which you can go to the top and drink in the breathtaking views that the city has to offer, unfortunately the very top was shut off probably due to the weather but I've done it so many times before so it was not a problem, however if there had been no munkkis left it would have been a different story! Above is a picture of a munkki which do look pretty similar to a normal English dougnut, its a specialty in Tampere and they are famous nationwide. These sweet sugared doughnuts are also flavoured with aniseed, they are basically known as a sweet bread in Finland. If you ever get a chance to visit, go get a munkii!
We ate our munkkis inside with the view of the falling snow, why cant every Sunday be this perfect?!
It was time to walk our munkkis off through the forest and head down to the lake...
Tampere is probably the only place I have ever visited which can offer you perfect tranquility, some places there may just only be yourself and you could probably drop a needle and hear the sound. It is the perfect place to go for some relaxation, the lakes were frozen when we visited but as there had not been much snow they were just a skating rink, I only ever walked on the lakes when there were other people on them too, I didn't much fancy falling into them!
After a day of munkki eating, walking and shopping we headed down to lake Nasijarvi and to look at the Rauhaniemi sauna which was a few minutes walk from where we were staying. I went to the sauna and lake many times during the summer that I lived there, but there is no chance in hell I would contemplate doing this when its around -10! For the Finns it is a normal way of life and it's meant to be a great thing for your body to go from the two extremes. I don't want to get undressed in a warm room in this weather let alone getting into an ice cold lake brr. It always looks spectacular at this time of the year though, again it's so peaceful. When the sauna is closed anyway...
It was a total whiteout on the Monday, no sun and it pretty much snowed non stop.
Walking is one of the best things to do in Tampere as there are soo many scenic walks to do, you just need to know where you're going. This walk is just next to the lake and you follow it round the whole way, Monday mornings don't get better than this!
It was just like Narnia..
In love with my beaut AmeliaJaneLondon bobble hat.
I never wanted to leave!
We walked so far that we headed onto the cross country ski track, they make it look so easy but it definitely isn't after I demonstrated this in Lapland. I saw more of the floor than anything else!
I wish I could say I made this snowman, but I didn't..
Alternative snowman, I cant work out if this is a dog or a moomin, who knows!
The cutest little house I ever did see, is it too much to want to live somewhere perfect and snowy like this?!
In the afternoon we headed to my favourite indoor food market.
Finland is my kind of country, they have national days dedicated to a cake including this one! Amazing huh?!
No where does cakes like Finland..
In the evening we took ourselves off the beaten track and went to a truly Finnish little cafe set up in the cutest little hut...
A deliciously warm hot chocolate was needed to defrost!
On our last morning we headed down to the lake again for one last look around, we even walked on the lake a bit but I was far too worried despite there being many ice fishers and a snowmobile on the ice. It was also -10 and my hands were in agony from taking my gloves off to take pictures oww!
Snow much fun!
It was time to wave goodbye to my old student accommodation again, so many good memories in that place!
Yet another fab trip to my beautiful Tampere, it was nice to start the year of with a revisit. It's back to work for me now but I can look back on my great memories from last week and know it wont be long until I head back again!
Until next time Finland...
Would you like to visit Finland? Have you been to Finland before?