The climate of Finland
has a predominantly subarctic climate. The majority of the country has a subarctic climate (Köppen climate classification Dfc), with cool summers. The southern coast experiences a humid continental climate (Köppen Dfb), with mild summers. The extreme northwest tip has few regions that fall under the tundra influence (Köppen ET). Finland is a Nordic country in Northern Europe. Finland shares land borders with Russia in the east, Norway in the north, and Sweden in the west. The Gulf of Bothnia lies to the west, the Gulf of Finland to the south, and the Baltic Sea in the southwest. The country's location in the extreme northern latitudes and proximity to major water bodies mainly influence the climate.
Finland lies between the high latitudes of 60°N and 70°N, entirely in the taiga belt. The Arctic Circle passes through the Finnish region of Lapland. The landscape is mostly flat with few hills and mountains. Halti, between the border of Finland and Norway in the extreme north, with an altitude of 1324 meters, is the highest point in Finland. The Finnish Lakeland area has thousands of lakes, while numerous islands dot the Archipelago Sea region in the southwest. Saimaa is the largest lake in Finland, with an area of 1700 square miles. Ridges of sand and gravel run from the northwest to the southeast. Coniferous taiga forests of pine, birch, and spruce cover the landscape along with fens. Wetlands occupy poorly drained areas. The drainage divides of Suomenselka and Maanselka rise high in the west and are colder than areas at similar latitudes.
The best time to visit Finland
The best time to visit Finland
is from June
in the summer. Warm temperatures, usually in the range of 17.8°C (64°F) to 22.2°C (72°F), are comfortable for outdoor activities. A few days register in the hot zone of 27.8°C (82°F) to 32.2°C (90°F). Lapland occasionally has cold nights. June is cooler and drier than July
, and temperatures begin to decline in the second half of August. Summer has long days and experiences the popular white nights in the south and midnight sun in the north. The least cloudy days occur in the warm season, although the sunshine is moderate.
The worst time to visit Finland
The worst time to visit Finland
is generally from November
, including the icy winter. The days are short, and the sunlight is poor. Christmas is mostly white, and the northern regions do not see the sun for days together. Tourists experience the Aurora Borealis or the northern lights during the peak of the cold season in the north. The south is frigid from December
. Snow lovers like March, which sees an improvement in daylight amid plenty of snow on the ground. Snowfall is abundant in all regions and highest in the north.
Spring Weather in Finland
The Finnish spring season is relatively short and chilly, starting when the snow melts by the end of April
. As the ice and snow thaw, the landscape becomes prone to floods, making travel slightly challenging. Despite these conditions, spring marks the transition from the harsh cold of the winter to the more temperate summer. The temperatures during this period gradually increase, and the days become longer, signalling the onset of the much-anticipated summer.
Summer Weather in Finland
Summers in Finland
are warm yet short everywhere except on the southern coast, where they are slightly longer. During this period, the sun does not set for 73 days in the extreme north, a phenomenon known as the "midnight sun." Temperatures usually range from 20°C (68°F) to 30°C (86°F) throughout most of the country, though nights in Lapland can remain below 10°C (50°F). This brief summer season witnesses a rapid growth in vegetation.
Autumn Weather in Finland
Autumn in Finland
is characterized by cold and wet conditions, especially in September
. It is a transitional period from the warm summer to the long winter. The temperatures start to fall, and the rainfall increases, adding a chill to the air. Despite this, the season brings an array of colours to the Finnish landscape, making it a visual treat for those who appreciate nature's beauty.
Winter Weather in Finland
Winter is the longest season in Finland
, lasting from October
in the extreme north. During this period, polar nights last for 51 days north of the Arctic Circle, when the sun does not rise above the horizon. Temperatures can plummet below -20°C (-4°F), particularly in the northern and eastern regions. The coldest recorded temperature is -51.5°C (-60.7°F), set in Kittila, Lapland, on January
28, 1999. Lakes regularly freeze over, and occasionally, even the seas solidify at the peak of winter. Despite the harsh conditions, winter in Finland has its charm, with snow covering the landscape and offering a magical white scenery.
Weather in January
is typically the coldest month in Finland
, marking the peak of the harsh winter season. During this month, temperatures can fall as low as -50°C (-58°F) in the northernmost region of Lapland, as recorded in Kittila. In the less extreme areas, January temperatures commonly dip below -20°C (-4°F). Weather in January »
Weather in February
continues to sustain the grip of winter. However, this month marks a slight deviation from the harsh temperatures of January
, with the mercury showing a mild upward trend. The average temperatures typically range from -22°C (-7.6°F) in the north to -5°C (23°F) in the southern parts of the country. In cities like Helsinki and Turku on the southern coast, the climate is tempered by the influence of the Baltic Sea, making the winter slightly milder than in the northern and eastern regions. Weather in February »
Weather in March
is the transitional period from winter to spring. As the month progresses, the weather starts to show signs of warming, but winter still holds its sway, especially in the northern and eastern regions of the country. Weather in March »
Weather in April
, the grip of winter finally starts to loosen over Finland
, making way for the arrival of spring. This month sees a significant increase in temperatures, ranging from -5°C (23°F) in the northern parts to 10°C (50°F) in the south. Weather in April »
Weather in May
fully embraces the spring season, and the weather becomes more conducive to outdoor activities. This month experiences a substantial rise in temperatures, varying from 5°C (41°F) in the northern parts to a more comfortable 15°C (59°F) in the south. As spring unfolds, cities like Helsinki and Turku along the southern coast witness warmer days, often exceeding 15°C (59°F). Weather in May »
Weather in June
heralds the arrival of summer in Finland
, with temperatures soaring and the days lengthening. Average temperatures during this month generally range from a comfortable 10°C (50°F) in the northernmost parts of the country to a warm 20°C (68°F) in the southern regions. In coastal cities like Helsinki and Turku, the climate becomes notably mild, and the influence of the Gulf Stream and North Atlantic Drift brings warmth and stability to the weather. Weather in June »
Weather in July
is the warmest month of the year in Finland
, with temperatures often reaching their annual peak. During this month, the northern parts of the country see temperatures ranging from 15°C (59°F) to 20°C (68°F), while in the south, temperatures can reach up to 25°C (77°F). Weather in July »
Weather in August
is a transition month in Finland
, marking the end of the warm summer season and the gradual onset of autumn. Temperatures during August range from 10°C (50°F) in the northernmost regions to 20°C (68°F) in the southern parts of the country, experiencing a subtle drop compared to July
. In the southern coastal cities of Helsinki and Turku, temperatures remain relatively warm due to the moderating effects of the Gulf Stream and North Atlantic Drift. Weather in August »
Weather in September
heralds the arrival of autumn, with a noticeable drop in temperatures and shorter daylight hours. Temperatures during this month typically range from 5°C (41°F) in the northern regions to 15°C (59°F) in the south, marking a significant departure from the warmth of the summer months. Cities in the south, such as Helsinki and Turku, experience a milder climate due to the moderating influence of the Gulf Stream and North Atlantic Drift. Weather in September »
Weather in October
marks the beginning of the long winter season in Finland
, with temperatures plunging further and daylight hours becoming significantly shorter. In the northern parts of the country, temperatures hover between 0°C (32°F) to 5°C (41°F), while in the southern regions, they range from 5°C (41°F) to 10°C (50°F). In the southern coastal cities of Helsinki and Turku, the influence of the Gulf Stream and North Atlantic Drift results in somewhat milder weather conditions compared to the rest of the country. Weather in October »
Weather in November
is a quintessential winter month, characterized by falling temperatures, increasing snowfall, and a significant reduction in daylight hours. Average temperatures usually vary from -5°C (23°F) in the north to 3°C (37.4°F) in the southern regions, underscoring the onset of the severe Finnish winter. While the southern cities of Helsinki and Turku benefit from the moderating effects of the Gulf Stream and North Atlantic Drift, they too succumb to the winter chill during November. Weather in November »
Weather in December
ushers in the heart of the Finnish winter, with freezing temperatures, heavy snowfall, and minimal daylight. Temperatures across the country typically range from -10°C (14°F) in the north to 0°C (32°F) in the south. Weather in December »