The Finns are very nature-conscious and environmentally aware people, accustomed to unrestricted right of public access to the wilderness and nature parks. As such, the Finnish people are also environmentally conscious travelers, and many hope that visitors to their country will treat it with the same green respect that the locals do.
Green Tourism of Finland
To facilitate a healthy, green tourism industry, Green Tourism of Finland was established. A network of ecotourism businesses dedicated to sustainable development practices, Green Tourism of Finland has business members in the accommodation, nutritional, programme, and outdoor activity sectors. Green Tourism of Finland offers information for both solo and group travelers, and is an excellent resource for nature and ecotourism ventures in Finland.
Since Finland is home to a beautiful, inviting landscape, Green Tourism Finland believes that travelers should use their network to take advantage of the spectacular outdoor opportunities, like hiking. Outdoors.fi is a great resource for all of Finland's hiking destinations, including updated information on trails and facilities. Outdoors.fi also provides extensive regional information, details on national hiking areas, protected areas, wilderness areas, and wilderness huts.
Additionally, Outdoors.fi has a good section on the historical and cultural elements of Finland that visitors are likely to encounter while engaging in ecotourism. These include Finland's National Landscapes - 27 treasures so-named to commemorate 75 years of Finnish independence in 1992. There are also plenty of pre-historic sites and artefacts, heritage farms and landscapes, the cultural heritage of the S?mi in Northern Lapland, old homesteads, farms, and cabins, and extensive reminders of Finland's rough war histories, specifically on the Borderland.
Green Tourism of Finland is associated with some other green Finnish initiatives, including NatureGate, a portal of nature and species found in Finland's vast landscapes. NatureGate has a unique plant identification tool for visitors and local enthusiasts alike, allowing site visitors to identify flowers, plants, trees, and shrubs they may not be familiar with.
In addition to floral, Finland is home to many fantastic fauna species, and NatureGate also has an extensive visual list of birds, including a number of arctic species not commonly seen elsewhere, and butterflies sporting some beautiful colourings and patterns. For the avid fishermen that enjoy fishing in Finland's many rivers and lakes, NatureGate has a fish identification tool too, including extensive details on size, appearance, colouring, and distribution and habitat. NatureGate also has a neat landscape identification map that may inspire travelers to visit certain locales based on beautiful photographs of regional landscapes.
Additionally, Green Tourism of Finland is associated with VisitFinland, the official tourism organisation of Finland. They are very focused on promoting the wonderful forests, islands, and lakes that offer endless opportunities for exploration and discovery. Finland's national parks are all about protecting nature, so you can be sure that there are some green travel initiatives involved in preserving the splendour of the country's 35 national parks.
VisitFinland also encourages travelers to embrace the mystical magic of the Northern Lights from northern Finland, where these legendary colours are visible up to 200 nights a year. Even better, make the experience more authentic by staying in snow accommodation, like an igloo or ice hotel. Many of these are eco-friendly and have a relatively low carbon footprint. They're also generally run by locals, so you get the satisfaction of authenticity, eco-friendliness, and benefitting the locals - doesn't get much better than that!
Finland is a beautiful country, with welcoming people and spectacular outdoor experiences. In a land such as this, that is so dedicated to environmental preservation and nature protection, it is important that visitors are consistent with sustainable initiatives and practice ecotourism while in Finland. This is why Green Tourism of Finland and its network of ecotourism businesses is a fantastic tool for visitors - it provides them with some great resources to ensure they enjoy the natural landscapes without hampering the Finns' dedication to protection and preservation.
Main Photo and Snow Photo Credit: VisitFinland