Finland is known as a Baltic country and it was one of the first countries in the Eurozone to adopt the new euro currency on the 1st January 1999. A three year period then went by before the currency moved from its virtual state to officially being used in coins and banknotes.
What coins and notes are available for this currency?
Finland has the same coins and notes that are used in other Eurozone countries that use the euro. The only difference comes in the design of the national sides of the coins, which is different depending on which country you go to.
There are seven banknotes in use at present, and the smallest is the €5 note. Aside from this you will see the €10, €20, €50, €100, €200 and €500 banknotes. As far as coins are concerned, there are lots of these available as well. There are two coins in euro denominations – the one and two euro coins – as well as several marked in cents (for euro cents). These are the one, two, five, ten, 20 and 50 cent coins. In reality you may not see the one and two cent coins used in Finland though as they don’t tend to use them. In fact if you spot these coins and they have the Finland country side on them, hang onto them as they may be worth something!
From past to present – the history of the Finland euro
As mentioned previously, Finland was one of the first group of countries to adopt the new currency when it first officially came into being in 1999. Before this the country used the Finnish markka for a long period of time, ever since 1860. This was a considerable period of history to say goodbye to before the country welcomed in the new currency.
How to get hold of Finland euros
Euros for a trip to Finland are just as easy to get hold of as euros for use in any other country that uses them. While Finland has its own country side to the coins you can in practice use any euros in Finland as they are legal tender in any country that has the euro as its chosen currency.
You should take some euros into the country with you as it is always good to have some cash to fall back on. Seek out a bureau de change that offers the best exchange rates with your own currency. You can also get more euros once you arrive in Finland. There are lots of cash points in cities and towns across the country, giving you plenty of opportunities to withdraw cash in the local currency.
You can also use credit or debit cards to pay for purchases as they are widely accepted throughout the country. American Express is also quite popular but as always do check before you use a particular card – it saves embarrassment. One thing you might be embarrassed about if you are not up with the times is trying to use cheques. They are not used at all really in the country, although of course you can use traveller’s cheques to exchange for euros if you wish.
How to find out the latest exchange rate between your home currency and the Finland euro
This is easy to do since the euro is a very popular currency and one of the most widely used in the world. Whenever you use an online currency converter you will typically find the euro is near the top of the list of currencies you can choose from. While most converters list the majority of currencies alphabetically, the most popular ones are usually at the top. This means you can easily find the euro – just remember to select your own currency as the one to start from.
Finland is a great country to visit but it is worth finding out a little more about it prior to travelling there. If you need any official information on the topic you can get it from the Embassy of Finland website at http://www.finemb.org.uk.
Travelling safely with Finland euros
The vast majority of people who visit Finland have a wonderful time and experience no problems when they are there. However it makes sense to know as much as you can about the specific area you are planning to visit. Most areas don’t have high crime levels at all, but there is some troublesome pickpocketing that goes on in and around the tourist areas. Keep everything safe and remember that a money belt can be useful for safety.
Where to spend your euros in Finland – and what to spend them on
Finland is a tall fairly thin country in northern Europe. It shares a border to the north with Norway, to the west with Sweden and to the east with Russia. Its southern reaches border the Gulf of Finland, and across the other side of the Gulf is Estonia.
So where should you go if you are planning to travel to Finland? Well, there are many places you could choose from but perhaps one of the most famous areas – and one that will be familiar to many – is Helsinki. This is positioned on the southern coastline of the country and is the capital. There are many great sights to take in here and if you are keen to go shopping you shouldn’t miss out on the Kamppi Centre. Helsinki Cathedral is an impressive white building, symmetrical in its shape from the front that sits atop a set of wide steps. Elsewhere there is the Market Square and also a majestic structure called Suomenlinna. This is a fortress which sits on the coast nearby and it is well worth a closer look.
But what of the rest of Finland? Where else could you go while you are in the country? Well we can’t write a piece about Finland without mentioning Lapland. Lapland is in the northern part of the country and this is of course where Father Christmas lives with his helpers as he prepares to make and deliver all those gifts to the children of the world on Christmas Eve. There is plenty to see and do here but you can enjoy a visit to see the man himself if you wish. If you visit the area in the summer you can expect plenty of daylight to help you enjoy the most of the area. This is where the midnight sun is a reality and not just a strange idea!
A colder country such as Finland is not without its winter sports possibilities either. If you go to Kemi you can even stay in an ice hotel if you wish. Levi is one of the best places to visit if you prefer the idea of skiing, as this is a resort set up to provide good downhill runs for those who have experience. The northern reaches of the country are best for skiing, whether of the cross country variety or downhill.
Another great activity you simply must do when in Finland is to go north to see the famous Aurora Borealis. You can see some amazing displays put on for you by nature if you stay in this region, and it is a once in a lifetime experience not to be missed. As you can see, Finland has a lot of natural sights and attractions to delve into and enjoy as well as providing cities such as Helsinki to see.
Delving into the past is another great activity you can do here. There is no better place to do this than in Rauma. This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and you will enjoy looking back into the past here and marvelling at the architecture, much of which makes good use of wood. This is also a town that is famous for its lace, so make sure to buy some while you are there.
As you can see there are many destinations in Finland that you can happily spend your euros in. Whether you invest in some tasty meals, great accommodation or simply some souvenirs to take back home with you, this is one country that has plenty to offer.
It is usually best to consider the kind of holiday you want to enjoy before you head to Finland. For example some people would go purely for the skiing possibilities, while others would take their children to see Father Christmas. You may want a city break in Helsinki. The choice is yours and you are sure to have a great time.
Whatever you end up doing in Finland, the must-see Aurora Borealis is definitely one of those experiences you cannot return home without seeing. Make sure you fit this into your trip and you will be able to look back on your stay in Finland with some great memories to remember it by. It has a lot to offer and if you are willing and able to discover it you will be delighted by what you find.