When sledging through a winter wonderland of sculptured, snowy-white birch trees, and frozen, glistening lakes, you could easily imagine yourself in a different world. This is Finnish Lapland, where elegant villas and roaring open fires await you after a perishing day outside. Finland is a country of contrasts, from the cold high north to the sparkling coastal areas in the south; the dark winter to the midnight sun. This well-organised Nordic country is verdant in summer, covered with deep forests accented with beautiful lakes and charming towns. Travellers seeking privacy can escape to the Aland archipelago consisting of 6,500 islands, or the southernmost inhabited island of Uto, that drifts in the Baltic Sea. In addition to nature’s replenishment and the welcome of the charismatic Sami people, Finland has a wealth of artistic offerings. Design lovers may indulge themselves exploring Helsinki, its distinctive and charming capital, peppered with cutting-edge shops, studios, art galleries, and a thriving restaurant and bar scene.