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Incentives in Finland: Water activities

Credits: Mikko Nikkinen

Finland’s many waterways offer the perfect setting for incentive travel.

Sailing. Cruising. Swimming. SUP. Finns do it all and more – and your guests can, too. With its proximity to the Baltic Sea, 188,000 lakes and the world’s largest archipelago, Finland is the perfect place for water activities.
Credits: Mikko Nikkinen

Sailing

An old sailing ship bringing visitors to a pier in a small island.

There’s no shortage of pristine waterways in Finland. After all, this is the land of a thousand lakes and the home of the world’s largest archipelago! Finland has the biggest fleet of old sailing ships for passenger use. Whether your guests want to cruise the country’s largest lake or learn the secrets of sailing, Finland offers plenty of unique locations to hoist those sails and catch the breeze.

A large sailboat with both sails hoisted cruises over the sea. Other sailboats can be seen behind it.
Sailing is a wonderful way to see a new side of Finland.
Credits: Visit Lahti

Kayaking and canoeing

Kayaking and canoeing are both fun activities, and Finland has plenty of places to try them. From half day trips to longer trips with overnight stays in nature, guided kayaking trips can be tailored to the group’s needs.

A person in a red jacket paddles a yellow kayak away from the camera. In the right foreground, the front of another yellow kayak is visible.
Kayaks, canoes, rowboats and SUPs can take you to unforgettable places.
Credits: Mikko Nikkinen

River rafting

Put teamwork to the test with an exciting day of river rafting. Rafting season runs from spring to autumn, but many consider April and May – when all the snow and ice in the north melt and flow south – the best time to hop aboard a raft. While the Tornio and Muonio rivers are best for expert rafters, Ruunaa rapids are the classic ride, and the Kitka River is perfect for beginners.

A group of people raft in a Finnish river.
Put teamwork to the test and bond with your colleagues on an exciting river-rafting excursion.
Credits: : Mikko Nikkinen
A person in a red jacket and yellow helmet looks into the camera while standing beside a raft full of people. In the right background, another raft of people can be seen heading into the water.
Finland offers river-rafting for all levels - including first-timers.
Credits:: Harri Tarvainen

RIB safari touring

Rigid inflatable boats, or RIBs, are lightweight, aerodynamic vessels that are virtually unsinkable. And in Finland, RIB safaris are a popular and exciting way to ride the waves. The best part? These boats give travellers a unique opportunity to sightsee and fulfill their need for speed.

People ride a RIB at the sea.
Cruising in the archipelagos of Espoo, Helsinki and Turku is especially fun on a RIB.

Lighthouse trips

While many of Finland’s 50,000-plus islands are far-flung and uninhabited, they’re all charming in their own way, and many are also equipped with unique and interesting working lighthouses. Here are six lighthouse islands to visit. To get there, simply hop on a RIB, ferry or boat.

A long line of people traverses the dunes to reach Sälskär lighthouse.
Enjoy a mix of peace and quiet alongside extraordinary culinary experiences and culture events on Finland's lighthouse islands.

Standup paddleboarding

SUP is all the rage these days, and this full-body workout is a great way to explore Finland’s many waterways. From cruising the rugged coastline to paddling around a lake to floating near the city centre, there are tons of places to paddleboard in and around Finland.

A woman standing on a SUP looks at the camera as she floats on a lake.
From Helsinki to Oulu, Finland offers tons of places to try standup paddleboarding.
Credits: : Mikko Huotari
Three standup paddleboarders float in a line across a lake at sunset.
SUP is a popular way to get a full body workout and explore Finland's waters.
Credits:: Julia Kivelä

Floating

Floating is a surreal experience. In the winter, guests jump into a large hole in the ice in a warm, insulated floating suit and let the cold water cradle them. In the summer, they’ll go with the flow as the current gently carries them downstream.  While it might sound anti-climactic, peace and relaxation are the endgame of floating.

A group of people in red wetsuits swim in the Gulf of Bothnia as a crowd watches from the Sampo icebreaker.
A guided tour of the icebreaker, Sampo, is one way to get in the water.
Credits: Icebreaker Sampo

Private cruising

Why not treat your group to a private sightseeing cruise around the stunning archipelago? Or how about an intimate sunset sail in Lakeland? Whether you’re booking an incentive for a couple people or a couple hundred, Finland offers plenty of ways to hop aboard a boat and chart a unique course.

A sauna ferry in the shores of the city of Oulu in Finland
Credits: : Juho Kuva
A boat floats through a city harbor on a sunny day.
Take a guided tour or charter a boat to explore Finland's many waterways.
Credits:: Julia Kivelä

Sauna and swimming

A shirtless man sits on a wooden chair outside a steaming sauna made of ice at nighttime.
No visit to a Finnish sauna is complete without a chilly dip in a pool, lake, river or sea.
Credits: Laura Vanzo / Visit Tampere

Sauna is essentially the Finnish national pastime – especially when coupled with a post-bathe swim. In fact, Finland’s love of sauna recently made the UNESCO World Heritage list of Intangible Culture. Interested in booking one for your guests? You’re in luck: Finland has 3 million saunas to choose from. We recommend completing the experience with a chilly dip in a lake, sea or pool.

A woman in a blue towel sits on a dock staring out at a lake. A bundle of birch branches and a pot of water sit to the right of her.
There's no scene more Finnish than a cottage by a lake - preferably with its own private sauna.
Credits: Julia Kivelä