Renting a cottage in Finland throughout the year
Updated: Aug 6
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If there's one thing that makes Finland worth-visiting, it's the spectacular nature. Aside from the popular sauna experience, a holiday in the country would also be amazing with a stay in a cottage. And by cottage, this could refer to a place that's a little bit secluded in a forest, or perhaps near a beach. But there are also cottages located in the heart of the city.
There are many choices for cottages, cabins, or villas to rent all over Finland, suiting all your preferences; simple or modern, romantic or elegant, near lakes or riversides, in the middle of the forests. Some are quite small and some are big enough for holidays with big families and children. They can be located in city centers, in Helsinki or other regions, or close to popular activity centers such as waterparks, amusement parks, or sport centers such as ski resorts.
Decide what you want to see and to do
The cottages are open all throughout the year. Decide whether you have to have the holidays during summer, or maybe in autumn to experience ruska. You can also visit during the wintertime for Christmas and New Year when there are various activities and winter sports and you can experience the hunt for aurora borealis and perhaps a trip to Lapland. Once you've decided when you're going to visit, it's easier to plan and choose the cottage according to your wishes, location, and the purpose of your trip.
Search for the suitable cottage
Aside from finding the cottage that suits the dates of your holiday trip, look for an area where you'd be spending most of your time. Check if it's affordable enough, and make sure it matches the special needs you might have such as the number of beds in the house, including cots or extra beds for kids and babies, the distance from the closest city or from the food stores, etc.
Look at the photos and videos from the ads and locate them on the map to check for possible places to go to within the area. Plan ahead and research in advance, since some cottages get booked quite fast, especially in peak season, or during the weekends. Some book several months beforehand to get the best value of holiday cottages and the best option that matches their interests, and take advantage of some possible discounts and special offers.
Once the search is over and you've found a suitable cottage, it 's time to book it, usually by email or online booking. After booking, you'll receive the booking confirmation via email which contains important information such as the payment (e.g. when and how to pay the deposit and the remaining balance), check-in time and location, how and where to pick the key (if from a reception or from the landlord), a more detailed description of the cottage, list of services, facilities and equipment, the address and how to get there, how to contact the landlord for any question or request, etc. Always save the booking confirmation and keep in handy anytime.
Preparation and Packing
While waiting for your holiday, prepare for the trip and pack all the necessary, especially warm clothes even in summer because the weather could easily change. You also need to prepare yourself for rainy weather and bring a pair of boots, raincoats, good hiking shoes, hats, etc.
Depending on the time of your holiday and the location, you need different items to pack; for example if it is going to be in hot summer and in the middle of thick Finnish forest, you need to have suitable creams/sprays bought from pharmacy for the mosquito or bee bites, or for example use of some protective and effective methods of preventing mosquitoes to come inside the cottage. Or if it is winter, get informed about the usual temperature of the area and to have all essential warm outdoor clothes suitable for that temperature, e.g. in Lapland with very low temperatures.
Leaving the cottage
There's usually a cleaning service option that you can purchase in advance, or you could organize well in time, otherwise, prepare to do it on your own. Returning the key should be also followed according to the instructions provided by the owner of the cottage. If you've enjoyed your stay, it would be a nice idea to leave some notes describing your experience and what you felt during your stay; how you liked the cottage, how to improve it to better for next guests, or what you did in your holiday time. Sometimes, there's a guest notebook kept in the house for such things, where people express their thoughts in writing or in simple drawings. If you're not the type to go for the traditional feedback, there's always, of course, an option to leave the feedback online, usually in the platform or app that you used to book it.