1. Saunas are hands down the greatest thing to come out of Finland.
2. There are over 2 million saunas there.
And Finland’s population is just 5.3 million. So pretty much every Finnish household has a sauna.
3. Saunas are toasty warm.
Finns traditionally take a sauna - which is heated to between 80-110°C - in the evening, after washing.
5. Especially if you put a few drops of essential oils into the water before throwing it onto the kiuas.
Throwing water onto the hot stones above the sauna’s fire creates löyly, a type of steam that increases warmth and humidity.
6. There’s basically nothing more relaxing than lying back in a sauna after a long day’s work.
The heat of a sauna even relaxes muscles and soothes joint aches.
7. Plus, it improves your circulation and encourages your body to release endorphins.
8. But the best part of taking a sauna is popping out for a dip in the lake.
10. Of course, once you’ve had a dip, you’ll need to warm up again.
12. In Eastern Finland, sauna goers often beat their bodies with vihta, which are bunches of silver birch leaves.
This also relaxes muscles and has a soothing effect on itchy mosquito bites.