Family on a train

Visit Finland in Winter

Best activities and destinations for winter holiday

Winter in Finland

Winter in Finland is magical with snowy landscapes, northern lights and cold temperatures. Finns spend their winter holidays enjoying the season when the schools are out for one week between weeks 8 and 10. This page will give you tips to plan a memorable winter holiday in Finland.

Winter holiday weeks by location
What a better way to travel than carbon-neutrally on a train. We can take you to the holiday destination of your dreams.
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Things to do in Finland in winter

The winter in Finland is arctic, exotic and magical. There are plenty of things to do in Finland in winter that you can conveniently get to by train or train and bus! We have gathered some of them for you here.

Winter swimming

Winter swimming is a popular bucket list activity for tourists but also a local pastime. Enjoy a dip in the ice and bathe in a sauna for example in the modern Löyly, Opens in a new tab in central Helsinki, Rauhaniemen kansankylpylä, Opens in a new tab in Tampere and Kiilopää, Opens in a new tab in Saariselkä or try the smoke saunas in Kuusijärvi, Opens in a new tab in Vantaa.

Woman winter swimming
Ice skating

Ice skating on lakes is one of the all time favorites for spending a day outdoors. Some municipalities make excursion skating tracks for this purpose. Check out for example Tuusulanjärvi, Opens in a new tab in Järvenpää or Jyväsjärvi in Jyväskylä. You can reach both cities by train.

Family activities

Why not take the whole family out sledding in the park? Any small hill for this will do as long as kids are supervised by their parents. Another fun way to spend the day with kids is dog sledding, available for example in Vuokatti, Opens in a new tab (Bus from Kajaani train station) or Jämsä with McAhon Safarit, Opens in a new tab.

Practical tips for visiting Finland

Winter season in Finland

Lapland: Mid-October to early May

South of Finland: November- early December to early April

Daylight hours

The period in which the sun does not rise is called the polar night. The polar night lasts for as long as 51 days in the northernmost part of Finland. In the south, the shortest day of the year is 5-6 hours long.


Average temperature in Finland in winter:

Helsinki: -6c

Rovaniemi: -13c

Oulu: -10c

Temperatures get below -30c too. Pack some merino wooled clothes with you and wear layers!

Ski holiday in Finland

Whether you are into cross-country or downhill skiing, Finland has plenty of options for you to choose from for your best ski holiday in Finland.

Downhill skiing in Finland

Have a look at our tips for an active winter holiday and head to Lapland for the best ski hills to do downhill or snowboarding. Many ski-resorts also have an extensive cross-country skiing network. The ski resorts are generally easy to get to by train or train and bus.

Some of the best ski resorts in Finland:

If you are short on time and can’t make it to Lapland and have to stay south, check out:

By train to ski resorts

Travelling to Lapland is comfortable by train and smooth connections! Search for a journey to your destination and enjoy a night train journey to Rovaniemi, Kolari or Kemijärvi. From the train station, you can continue your journey.

Learn about travel to North

Best places to visit in Finland

Among the great winter destinations in Finland, the train takes you to several other places worth seeing.


Tampere, Opens in a new tab, just a one and a half hours train ride from Helsinki, is a hip place to be with a cool restaurant and café scene. It’s the sauna capital of the world and hosts some very good museums:


Turku was the capital of Finland until 1812. Some interesting places to visit include:

You can get to Kupittaa, the sation currently serving Turku, from Helsinki in just under 2 hours.

List of tips for the night train

We have compiled a list of practical tips for a night train journey, containing the best tips for an easy journey.

Read our tips for the night train

Travelling by train with your family for winter holiday

Services for families

A train trip is an exciting adventure for the family and the most comfortable way of travelling with children. Children can play and there is no need for toilet or meal breaks.

More about services for families

Continue your journey with a rental car

Why not hire a car through us in case the train does not take you directly to your destination? Make use of your time on the train yet still enjoy the freedom of having your own wheels at your destination.

Grab the wheel of the rental car

Meteorologist's tips to see the Northern Lights

Many go to Lapland for the Northern Lights specifically. Meteorologist Markus Mäntykannas gave us a few tips for spotting the Northern Lights.

Read the article

Enjoy audio books and e-books

Entertainment for the journey

We are offering our customers a 60-day trial period to the Nextory audio book and e-book service with a catalogue of thousands of stories. You can read and listen books with your phone or tablet.

Santa Claus Express

Take your crew up north on Santa's own train! The Santa Claus Express is the fun and comfortable way to get to northern parts of Finland.

Winter holiday weeks 2024

In the table you can find the 2024 winter holiday weeks of basic education in the region capitals of mainland Finland.

CityWinter holiday week
week 8, Feb 19–23 2024
week 8, Feb 19–23 2024
week 8, Feb 19–23 2024
week 9, Feb 26–Mar 1 2024
week 10, Mar 4–8 2024
week 9, Feb 26–Mar 1 2024
week 10, Mar 4–8 2024
week 9, Feb 26–Mar 1 2024
week 9, Feb 26–Mar 1 2024
week 10, Mar 4–8 2024
week 9, Feb 26–Mar 1 2024
week 9, Feb 26–Mar 1 2024
week 9, Feb 26–Mar 1 2024
week 10, Mar 4–8 2024
week 8, Feb 19–23 2024
week 10, Mar 4–8 2024
week 9, Feb 26–Mar 1 2024
week 9, Feb 26–Mar 1 2024
week 8, Feb 19–23 2024
week 9, Feb 26–Mar 1 2024