In a land rich in sauna history and tradition, public saunas used to be a staple in every neighbourhood of Helsinki. Now only a handful still exist.

ONE could say that sauna is to Finns as air is to the rest of us: indispensable. In fact, in a country of 5.5 million people, there is said to be nearly three million saunas on hand. Sauna is also the most recognised Finnish word to have been incorporated into the English language, originally used to describe the structure in which a sauna is held. It’s importance cannot be understated. As a cornerstone of Finnish life, sauna has provided warmth in a cold land and been a cultural domain for millennia.

As the Arctic freeze sets in, what could be more on people’s minds these days than getting away for a little while. And so, with Finns recently dubbed the number one travellers in the world, there are more options on offer than ever before to meet their needs.

Enter stage left: the Nordic Travel Fair MATKA. Arriving with a wave of inspiration, the largest event of the travel trade in Northern Europe presents a wide range of foreign and domestic destinations at Messukeskus, Expo and Convention Centre Helsinki until Sunday 18 January.

Hunting is so popular in Finland that it can be seen as part of the country’s cultural heritage. SixDegrees looks into the activity, the reasons behind its popularity, and whether it continues to attract new generations.

IT PROBABLY doesn’t come as a surprise to anyone that hunting is a common leisure time activity in Finland. The right conditions are clearly there, with vast wilderness and forests, and culture in which the countryside and nature tend to be appreciated – just look at the many people who regularly disappear to their summer cottages in the wilderness.

After 40-odd years of working for The Man, one would think that it’s about time to put your feet up for some well-deserved rest.

However a recent article in The Telegraph in Britain claimed that one in 20 men over 50 in the UK now counts themselves as part of a new class of the “unretired”. That’s right, no need to shuffle about the house in their jogging pants anymore – these men have had their fill of sleeping in and spending their days casually strolling around the golf course. Having tried retirement they simply decided it was not for them and simply went back to work.

WHILE it has been a phenomenon in other parts of the world for many years, the idea of blogging as a profession is still a relatively new thing here in Finland.

A recent article in Helsingin Sanomat profiled a number of young Finns who have made their mark on the industry, as it were. In fact, so deep is the mark they have carved, that professional bloggers can earn up to 6,000 euros per month.