Abandoned Bunkers of Salpalinja, Finland

In the early 1940s, tensions were high in Finland, as locals suspected that the Soviet Union, not satisfied with the territorial gains they had made during the Winter War (1939–1940), would plan another invasion.. As a result, in 1940, Finland began the construction of so-called Salpalinja (the “Salpa Line”), a system of more than 700 field fortifications made from concrete or excavated from rock along country’s eastern border. Stretching 1,200 kilometers from the Gulf of Finland in the south to modern-day Pechengsky, Russia, in the north, Salpalinja consisted of bunkers,…

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Hiljainen Kansa: the Silent People of Finland

An eerie art installation located in a barren field in the Finnish countryside recently went viral after someone accidentally stumbled upon it while searching something on Google Maps. With quarantine and isolation measures still in place in many countries around the world due coronavirus pandemic, people are spending a lot of time online looking for cool places to visit staying on their sofa. That’s exactly why some museums and libraries around the world have introduced virtual tours to visit their spaces also in quarantine. But not everyone is interested in…

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Mämmi: traditional Easter pudding from Finland, best served untraditionally.

Easter hasn’t always been about marshmallow chicks, chocolate bunnies, and, in Finland, delicious nougat-filled eggs. Already in ancient times Christians in Finland fasted before Easter and they couldn’t eat anything sweet. There were also few raw ingredients and nature was at its stingiest at that time. However there was grain and someone came up with the idea of malting it. Thus they malted huge trays of the grain during Lent, which led to the modern Easter treat called mämmi. At its most basic, mämmi is a cooked pudding made from…

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Mignon Chocolate Egg: the chocolates inside of real eggshells

If there’s one thing Europeans always get right, it’s their undeniably delicious array of chocolates, sweets and candy. Thus, it’s no surprise that Finland proves no exception. However, should you stumble upon a Mignon Chocolate Egg, you may find yourself wondering what Finnish hens eat! These real eggshells are filled with creamy nougat and are a strong local Easter tradition. But on the outside, they’re practically identical of a hard-boiled egg. Karl Fazer introduced the seasonal delight in 1896 using a recipe he brought from Germany, and his company in…

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The wonder of change of the seasons on the island of Kotisaari in Lapland

Lapland, especially the territory that belongs to the extreme north of Finland, evokes typically winter images: expanses of snow and reindeer herds, Santa Claus and his village, and then the magical Northern Lights and the long and icy arctic night. Jani Ylinampa is a nature photographer based in Rovaniemi, Finnish Lapland. He‘s a real master of capturing the dancing Northern Lights, breathtaking sunsets, beautiful forests, lakes and other wonders of nature, and he‘s been doing it for almost 15 years. The splendid nature of the country is an inexhaustible source…

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10 bizarre Easter traditions around Europe

As Christmas, Easter is one of the most important religious festivities for Christians and it’s the day when religious people celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Holy Week begins with Palm Sunday and culminates in the commemorations of Good Friday, Easter Saturday, Easter Sunday, and Easter Monday that this year is celebrated exactly today. Easter is very popular in many states of the globe and in some countries, especially Christian-Orthodox ones, it represents a more heartfelt feast than Christmas, unlike Christian-Catholic ones. For the ancients, this period represented instead…

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Scandinavians use blood to make dense, dark and savory Pancakes~

A balanced breakfast is a very important meal in just about all over the world, but not many of them require a blood sacrifice. There is a traditional dish that is exactly what it sounds like: a pancake made with a healthy helping of blood. And that’s true. Scandinavians use blood to make dark and savory flapjacks! During the icy Scandinavian winters, local cooks learned to make the most out of every animal they hunted, so, nothing was wasted. They boiled hooves into gelatin, fried hearts into nuggets, and baked…

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Finland: Salt Licorice Ice Cream.

Here we are: We are in Finland, where black licorice is intensified with a hit of salty, stinging ammonium chloride, and the resulting candy is a popular snack. So popular, that summertime in Finland means salt licorice ice cream. Salt licorice ice cream is sell in different forms like scoops, soft serve, and ice-cream bars. The candy company named Fazer makes their ice cream in the same shape as their typic salt licorice candy. The sweet, salty ice cream is a deep gray, it’s often covered in an dark black…

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