canoe on the edge of a lake at Hossa National Park

As far as world traveling goes, the Nordic countries are always a safe bet to start with. And we say that in the most literal sense, as Finland was officially ranked the safest destination for travelers just this year. Now, the country has given you another good reason to go there, and it should be right up the alley of outdoor explorers.

A brand new national park is opening in Finland today, in honor of the country's 100 years of independence. Leaving the struggle for territory between Russia and Sweden well in the past, the new park will be Finland's 40th, and will be named Hossa National Park.

Covering 11,000 hectares of northeast Finland, the park will be on the border of the Suomussalmi, Kuusamo and Taivalkoski municipalities. Described as “a realm of primeval twilight forests with decaying trees lying on the ground and abundant growth of various species of lichen, providing it with a very special nature conservation value” we can only bet that the space will be magical. 

And while wandering around and taking in the sights may be enough for most of us, those looking for a little more action will be pleasantly surprised. Hossa National Park is perfect for fishing and canoeing, with the largest lake in Finland, Julma-Ölkky, taking up a good chunk of the landscape.

With the opening ceremony taking place tonight, visitors can expect to find meals, music, and midnight bike rides leading the festivities. After that, the adventures are all up to you.

Looking for more gorgeous spaces? Witness Norway by air.