Finland - Tourism, travel, and recreation

Finland offers natural beauty and tranquility in forest cottages and on the tens of thousands of islands that dot the 60,000 lakes and the Baltic Sea. Winter offers cultural events and cross-country skiing; winter festivals feature sled and skating competitions, ice castles, and crafts. Finland is the original home of the sauna, a national tradition. Popular sports include skiing, running, rowing, and wrestling. Scandinavian nationals require no passports, and visa requirements have been dropped for visitors from the United States, OECD, Commonwealth, and many other countries.

In 2000 there were 3,789,000 visitor arrivals and tourism receipts totaled $1.3 billion. That year there were 54,855 rooms and 117,322 beds in hotels and other facilities with an occupancy rate of 49%.

In 2002 the US government estimated the daily cost of staying in Helsinki at $239. Elsewhere in Finland, daily expenses were estimated at $161 per day.

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