Sauna. This captures very nicely the mood of sauna time on an summer evening in Finland.

Sauna. This captures very nicely the mood of sauna time on an summer evening in Finland.

Lingon berry picking in Finland. I was so lucky to spend a few days in summer in Finland two year ago visiting my sister. We spent a few days berry picking in the forest and staying in a family wooden cottage, near a sauna and a lake...of course :)

Lingon berry picking in Finland. I was so lucky to spend a few days in summer in Finland two year ago visiting my sister. We spent a few days berry picking in the forest and staying in a family wooden cottage, near a sauna and a lake...of course :)

this one looks more authentic to me and bigger!

this one looks more authentic to me and bigger!

Photo: River Sauna, Valldal, Norway. Photography: Jensen & Skodvin Architects

Photo: River Sauna, Valldal, Norway. Photography: Jensen & Skodvin Architects

In the 17th century, Queen Kristina of Sweden declared Christmas peace in Estonia, and every year the Present repeats the official declaration. This same declaration used to be common across Nordic countries. And in Finland, too, one can find the president’s message of peace broadcast on television every Christmas Eve. But perhaps a more striking custom the two regions share: On Christmas Eve, it’s customary to enjoy a cleansing visit to the steam sauna.

In the 17th century, Queen Kristina of Sweden declared Christmas peace in Estonia, and every year the Present repeats the official declaration. This same declaration used to be common across Nordic countries. And in Finland, too, one can find the president’s message of peace broadcast on television every Christmas Eve. But perhaps a more striking custom the two regions share: On Christmas Eve, it’s customary to enjoy a cleansing visit to the steam sauna.

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