Autumn in Finland: Top 10 Things to do, Expect, and Visit!

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Thinking about taking a stunning holiday? Here’s a general guide on how to experience autumn in Finland – from what to expect to things to do.

Most tourists fly to Finland during winter and summer , but nobody can discount how beautiful the Land of a Thousand Lakes is when the warm season is slowly drifting away. Get ready to enjoy the yellow, red, and brown colors of autumn in Finland , with a few helpful tips on what to see and do during this period.

After living in Finland for over a decade and witnessing numerous season changes, autumn in Finland has to be one of my favorite transitions! Besides its giving beauty as the days pass and nature slowly changes its color from summer green to the perfect shades of yellow and orange, nothing beats walking the same esplanade every day as the cooler wind brush through your cheeks.

Of course, this also means we are welcoming the fact that summer in Finland is officially over and we have to brace ourselves for another season of cold and snow-covered roofs.

So, what to do during autumn in Finland ? I’ve compiled some of the fantastic things you can expect prior to your visit to the handful of things you must not miss!

Follow me on Instagram , where you’ll see more personal tips about living in Finland from a local resident chef and content creator 🍃🍃🍃

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Table of Contents

When to visit and what to expect

Period and temperature.

Autumn in Finland is the second most favorite season of locals because of the breathtaking leaf colors or “Ruska” and the desirable daytime temperatures. 

Usually, autumn in Finland starts in late September to early October , depending on location, and ends around November just before snow starts to fall. The temperature ranges between 2 and 15 degrees celsius (35°F-59°F) , so tourists can skip bringing their thick parkas and travel light during their trip.

Season of leaf-peeping

As the bright, sunny days bid goodbye, it leaves a jaw-dropping autumn leaf color all around Finland’s forests and wilderness. It’s a time of peace and serenity, perfect for local and foreign travelers to roam around in its picturesque surroundings and go on a private foliage tour.

The changing of the leaf colors is a natural phenomenon, and it’s hard to miss when traveling in the northern part of Finland during autumn. The Finnish Lapland is one of the most prime destinations for leaf-peeping, inviting enthusiasts around the world to flock into the northern landscapes and marvel at its beauty.

beautiful view from Öjberget in Sundom, Vaasa during Finland autumn

Berry and mushroom sprout

When going on a hike, it’s normal to see berries and mushrooms sprouting everywhere. Finland’s forests are abundant with edible mushrooms like chanterelles and brown porcini, as well as nourishing and power-boosting berries like blueberries, lingonberries, and bear berries.

A lot of people going on a hike can pick as much as they want because there are more than enough superfoods for everyone. In fact, it’s everyone’s right to be able to pick almost anything their hearts desire in Finland’s forests .

The aurora starts to appear

Just before winter kicks in, the aurora starts to show up during autumn.

While most people believe that the northern lights shine the brightest when it’s dark and cold during winter, autumn is probably the best season to watch it dance above the sky. The planet’s orientation towards the sun maximizes the chances of solar flares interacting with the Earth’s magnetic field, therefore creating the most spectacular natural phenomenon.

TOP DESTINATIONS TO SPOT AURORA BOREALIST NORTHERN LIGHTS HOLIDAY FINLAND

How to dress and what to bring

Depending on where you are from, your tolerance to cold can depend on that! I’m from the Philippines so when I first came here during autumn, I was shocked at how cold it was. I think the temperature then was something like 15°C (59°F).

So, I suggest bringing some extra layers !

Light warm jacket

I’ve compiled some of the best light jackets for the ladies in this post and I personally have an autumn/spring jacket that is light but warm! I also have a windproof hardshell jacket which I use for rainy days or when I go for a short hike or walk. It is not warm on its own but if it gets chilly I add a light-down jacket (which folds into a tiny cube) or warm fleece.

If you’re visiting around the autumn season then it is best to think smart about what to bring because the weather can be unstable. There can be days when it is summer hot, wet and rainy, or sunny but cold! So, layering is indeed your best friend.

My tip is to bring a windproof and waterproof light jacket which you can layer under!

Light down jacket or fleece (or both!)

I personally use both of my down and fleece jackets on a daily. I layer them under my windproof and waterproof hardshell light jacket. Depending on what is the temperature outside, I could alternate or use both at the same time. They keep me warm if the weather is on the cold side and I could easily remove layers when the weather gets warmer.

Here’s my post about the top fleece jackets on the market right now.

Fleece Jacket for Travel

Warm hat (beanie)

Always keep the head warm! Autumn is anyways beanie weather so bring your cute and warm hats with you.

It is always a good idea to bring a warm light scarf with you to keep the neck warm especially if you plan to visit the forest. You can always use it as an extra warm layer!

Warm gloves

It can get chilly in the evenings and if you plan to stroll for long period, it is always a good idea to bring gloves with you to protect your hands from the cold wind.

Warm socks/woolen socks

I personally am a sucker for warm socks . I always have woolen socks on whenever the season gets colder in Finland and it helps to keep my always cold feet warm!

Rainboots or waterproof shoes/boots

Since it is normally rainy around autumn in Finland and it is very important to keep our feet snug, warm, and dry cos who wants to roam around with wet feet?

I have both rain boots, waterproof boots, and my hiking shoes which are also water-resistant. I, however, mainly use my boots for daily use like if I’m heading to town or going to work. I almost never use my rain boots and when heading to the forest, I always use my hiking boots mainly because they have a better grip which is ideal when hiking or walking in a wet forest.

how to say hello in finnish

Long sleeves/clothes to layer

When visiting Finland in autumn, it is best to bring some extra warm but light clothing to layer. As I mentioned above, the weather can get really unstable from one day to another so it’s best to dress according to that day’s temperature. Plus, when it gets warm, you can always remove layers and when it gets colder, add more!

Yep, it is rainy in Finland during autumn quite a bit so best to bring a small portable umbrella with you! You never know when you’ll need it.

Where to go? Top locations during autumn in Finland!

Riisitunturi national park.

The greatest hiking spots are in Finland’s National Parks , including the Riisitunturi National Park in Posio, Lapland . The national park has perfect trails that are suitable for family visits as well as longer treks for experienced hikers. 

Several bird watchers and leaf peepers find their way to Riisitunturi National Park to experience staying overnight, visit its cafes and restaurants or just marvel at the colorful fell and hill landscapes. While it’s a tourist-favorite spot during winter, it also promises breathtaking views of surrounding parks and l akes during autumn.

Töölönlahti Bay

Helsinki is not without its scenic parks, too. Those who happen to be in the city can go to Töölönlahti Bay to see the foliage that boasts of maple trees and birds singing everywhere. It’s a true oasis in Helsinki city center, delighting every local and tourist alike with the capital’s best attractions and crisp, fresh air during the fall season.

It’s best visited during summer when there are so many activities to do, but the spectacle continues on to autumn when the bay reflects the trees’ rustic-colored leaves.

Keskuspuisto (Helsinki’s Central Park)

Of course, Helsinki’s Central Park should be part of the list. City-goers should definitely experience autumn in Finland right at the capital’s central Park itself: Keskuspuisto. 

Travelers can stroll along with its 10-kilometer-long forested space, from Laakso to its northern border in Haltiala. Most locals visit Central Park for outdoor activities like horseback riding and picnic, but merely sitting still on its benches could make time fly without realizing it. 

Helsinki Cathedral

Nuuksio National Park

A perfect day trip and day hike from Helsinki ! Nuuksio national park is about an hour bus ride from Helsinki city center which makes it a popular place amongst tourists and Helsinki locals. It offers easy short to long hikes to your liking! On top of that, during autumn in Finland, you’ll witness some of the grandest views during your walk or hike. It is also the perfect place to take autumn-themed photos.

What to do? Finland autumn checklist!

Berry-picking.

Seventy-seven percent of Finland is covered by forests, making it an essential part of the Finnish lifestyle, culture, and history. Locals and tourists are free to spend their time getting to know the forests and pick wild berries and mushrooms as they please. 

First-timers can seek help from locals on where to find the best superfoods for free, but most people flock to Saana Fell – the second highest fell in the country – to find richly colored bilberries (Mustikka), cloudberries (Lakka), and lingonberries (Puolukka). Others go to the tranquil forests of the Nuksio National Park to taste all kinds of berries and mushrooms, as well as enjoy some cool, fresh air.

Here’s my full list of amazing traditional dishes in Finland you can check out!

berry picking during autumn in Finland

Hunt the northern lights

When hunting the aurora borealis, northern Finland is the place to be. There’s a higher chance of seeing the northern lights during autumn and spring , and the temperature outdoors is cozy enough to wait for its arrival.

Travelers should go to Lapland for good northern lights show. They could even visit Santa’s hometown in Rovaniemi to feel the warmth and magic of Christmas even when it’s not December . There are tons of activities to do up north – kids and adults can trek, hike or even go on a husky safari, although they won’t be able to ride a sled.

Some tourists also stay in a cabin to relax and enjoy some quiet time while waiting for the aurora to appear in the night sky.

Since it’s the season of fresh autumn leaves, people take advantage of the great climate to hike or trek. While it’s a tourist-favorite activity all year round, autumn has a special place in the hearts of anyone who have a knack for exploring the wild and getting lost in the woods. 

In eastern Lapland , people gather to follow the trails in the Tuntsa wilderness area that offers great views of Lapland’s open landscapes.

Also, the Pallas-Yllästunturi National Park in the northwestern part of Lapland has several falls that attract hikers, mountain bikers, and nature lovers . The most beautiful scene will be found at the top of Sarkitunturi fell, and it only takes an hour to get there.

Hiking in Vaasa during Finland autumn

Indulge in an authentic Finnish sauna

No one has ever left Finland – no matter what season! – without experiencing its authentic Finnish sauna . The country defined its sauna experience values – authenticity, multiple senses, presence, relaxation, cleanliness, and well-being) to give everyone only the best services.

When it’s about relaxing the mind and body, tourists can enjoy a pampering hot steam in so many ways – inside a cabin, atop a gondola lift in Yllas, inside a floating summer house in Jalo Lautta, and while riding a Ferris wheel at the SkySauna in Helsinki.

RELATED READ: What is Finland Famous For? 30 things Finland is known for!

Go for mushroom picking!

If you’re staying in Finland for a while and get a chance to roam around its forests for hikes then also remember that Finland has an “everyman’s right” policy where you’re free to forage edible forest goodies – mushroom included!

Around autumn in Finland, expect to find trumpet chantarelles, ceps, and yellow chantarelles – these are at least the easiest mushrooms to distinguish!

If you’re not sure how these, or any mushrooms in general, look like then it is best you do not pick anything for safety measures. There are tons of poisonous mushrooms in the Finnish forest so it is best to be wary of what you pick.

Alternatively, you can buy the mushrooms mentioned above from shops or market squares!

Kick start your Finland visit by practicing how to say hello .

mushroom picking during autumn in Finland

Do you need help planning your trip to Finland? Here are my top tips!

  • The Best Finland Travel Guide  – My Finland overview, you’ll find everything you’d need to know about Finland.
  • When is the best time to visit Finland for northern lights  
  • When is the best time to visit Finland – Monthly breakdown
  • BEST Places to Visit in Finland  and  Best Cities in Finland  – Cities, and towns you must not miss!
  • Things to do in Finland ,  Finland Holidays to Experience ,  Tourist Attractions in Finland  – Touristy stuff, but still worth reading! Finland, in general, offers pretty cool experiences regardless of how “hyped” it is.
  • If you’re staying in Helsinki, you can book your  hotel stay in Helsinki  or  near Helsinki airport .
  • Cities to visit during a short visit:   Helsinki ,  Porvoo ,  Tampere ,  Turku ,  Ålands , Hanko , and  Vaasa .
  • When to visit?  Summer ,  Autumn ,  Spring , and  Winter  – Decide when to come and then base your activities on that!
  • How to dress for winter in Finland  – Always dress according to the weather. It will make your experience much better!
  • Top tips and important info:   Supermarkets in Finland ,  Budgeting tips for Finland ,  Tipping in Finland ,  What to wear in Sauna ,  Sauna etiquette ,  Public Saunas in Helsinki
  • Finnish culture introductions:   How to say hello ,  Finnish food and cuisine ,  Facts about Finland ,  Finnish Breakfast Guide , Finnish drinks

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Thinking about taking a stunning holiday? Here’s a general guide on how to experience autumn in Finland – from what to expect to things to do.

Evan Kristine a.k.a Pretty Wild World is a professional blogger with over 10 years of experience in content creation. Originally from the Philippines, she's been living in Finland for 15+ years working as a chef and entrepreneur in Tampere, Finland.

She's an expert in Finland travel and explores the country often sharing her insights and tips in this blog and social medias. She also splits her free time either going for weekend getaways in Europe on her holidays or exploring different home decor ideas for her future house in the lush Finnish forest.

This blog curates the best of travel, interior design, minimalist fashion, DIY wedding hacks, and a bit of beauty. Its a safe space for everyone who have various interests!

Evan Kristine is also the food blogger behind at The Kitchen Abroad and on her free time, she enjoys decorating her 75m2 apartment and shares her experience over at Solía Avenue .

A true master of her own life and despite her busy schedule juggling life as a chef, blogger, and entrepreneur, she still finds time to read 50+ books a year and indulge in several hobbies like hiking, working out, yoga, and painting.

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  1. Why Autumn is the Best Time to Visit Lapland, Finland

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  2. Why Autumn is the Best Time to Visit Lapland, Finland

    visit finland autumn foliage

  3. Ruska

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  4. The best of autumn colours in Finnish Lapland

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  5. Autumn in Finland: an alternative fall foliage tour

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  6. Autumn in Finland

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COMMENTS

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