MAGIC OF THE FINNISH SAUNA
Relax in a sauna by the lake and enjoy Arctic wild food
The gentle heat of a traditional Finnish sauna brings pleasure, peace, and relaxation and has many healing effects. With us, you will get in touch with the spirit of the Finnish sauna and learn about ancient sauna traditions. Enjoy the friendly heat of our wood-heated sauna and refresh in the cooling waters of the lake – in the wintertime, you can even try ice-swimming. After sauna enjoy 3-course menu of wild Arctic food prepared by the open fire.
Location: Paratiisintie 115, Otalampi (Vihti), less than 30km from Helsinki center and the airport.
Duration: 5 hours
Shared Sauna with 3-course Dinner
Online: Every Sunday at 16.30-20.30, book your visit here.
Price: 190€/person, minimum charge 2 persons
– Cottage with wood-heated sauna by the lake
– Towels and shampoos
– Guidance to Finnish sauna traditions
– Welcome drink with snack and 3-course menu; wild mushroom soup, salmon prepared on the fire, carrots with wild herbs, green salad, pancakes with blueberry jam, coffee and tea
Wood-heated hot water tub next to sauna by the lake for 8 persons 240€.
Magic of the Woods–walking trip.
Sauna is an essential part of the way of living in Finland. There is sauna for every two Finnish people, almost 3 million saunas Finland. There are saunas at homes, in apartments, at summer cottages, in hotel rooms and on boats, Finnish embassies abroad have their own saunas and there is sauna also in the Parliament house in Helsinki.
Sauna can be a private, personal area of relaxation and solitude, or it can be a relaxing environment for socializing with family and friends. Sauna provides a pampering retreat, where we can relax and restore body and soul.
HEALTH EFFECTS OF SAUNA
For centuries, sauna has been a place for physical and spiritual cleansing. Sauna not only feels good, it is good for your whole body. Sauna has many health effects; it relaxes the body’s muscles, improves circulation and increases the production of endorphins in the brain. These endorphins are the body’s own feel good-hormons, which relieve stress and improve well being. Sauna makes also good for your skin due to the deep cleansing it provides from a deep sweat.
OLD SAUNA TRADITIONS
First saunas in Finland were smoke-saunas, where the traditional customs and beliefs related to sauna were passed from generation to generation. For the ancient Finns, sauna was a sacred place where both body and soul were cleansed. Sauna was an important part of the human life cycle, it was a place for giving birth, washing the dead, healing diseases and raising young girls’ erotic power, lempi. As with all places of importance in the old time, the sauna was guarded by a guardian spirit, who looked after that people acted respectfully and calmly in the sauna. When people were ready in sauna, water was poured on the stones for the spirit to enjoy the sauna.
The ancient Finns had many sauna rituals. They believed that steam which is created by throwing water over the hot stones, löyly, connects our mikrokosmos to makrokosmos; the world of spirits and dead. The practice of whisking with birch twigs, vihta or vasta, signified a transition to a new phase in life; brides before the wedding, women during childbirth, the child during name-giving, people after the death. The work of healing was usually performed in sauna with a special whisk made from nine different trees. Whisking was started from the head and continued to the feet in order to drive the disease out of the body. Healing sauna was heated as secretly as possible, so that no envious or malevolent person should get wind of it and injure the operation, and with the wood that was from a tree strucked by the lightning. In the Kalevala, the national epic of Finland, it is written how the Väinämöinen, a hero and a great shaman, warded off threatening diseases by warming up the sauna, casting the water on the stove and inviting the god with incantations to join him. This song or incantation, is written in Kalevala metre, as all the other songs of Kalevala.
He got the sauna heated, and the stones steaming
with wood that was clean, with faggots brought by water;
he took water in hiding, he brought bath-whisks underhand
he warmed the ready bath-whisks, the hundred-leaved he softened;
then he stirred up mead-sweet steam, honey-sweet steam he wafted
up through the hot stones the burning boulders.
He says with this word, he spoke with this speech:
“Come now into the steam, God, sky-father, into the warm
to bring about health and to make for peace;
wipe away the holy sparks and holy ills put out
beat down wicked steam and bad steam send away,
so it will not scald your sons, spoil those you have made!
What water I fling upon those hot stones, may it change into honey
trickle into mead; may a honeyed river run, a pool of mead splash
up through the mossy hearth, up through the mossy sauna!”