In terms of disabled access, holidays to Finland cannot be topped. This is a beautiful and forward-thinking country that has made many of its sites accessible.
Finland is one of our favourite holiday destinations at Can Be Done. It is a forward-thinking and progressive country, but it is also incredibly beautiful with a wild winter landscape. For those seeking a unique break with easy disabled access, holidays to Finland are an excellent option and we have some fantastic options for you to consider.
Accessibility and Inclusivity
Since the 1970’s, Finland has worked hard to establish itself as a forerunner in terms of equality and accessibility. In the last few years, many cities around the country have stepped up their efforts and made their cultural attractions, buildings and services highly accessible to everyone, regardless of disabilities or age. This is particularly noticeable in the great capital city of Helsinki, which is very easy to navigate and accommodating for wheelchair users. As such a key part of the country’s identity, you will also find that Finnish people tend to be very helpful and welcoming – which only adds to the country’s charm.
Cultural Accessible Highlights
Culture and tourism are the main areas which have been targeted to improve – this is especially good news for less mobile tourists, as I know that it can be daunting to visit unfamiliar countries when accessibility is an issue. Accessible entrances and exits, toilets, seating, signage and hearing induction loops are all common place in many of the key tourist destinations.
Even historic buildings have been adapted, including the famous Helsinki Cathedral which now features a wooden ramp on the other side of the church. 700-year-old Turku Castle is now also accessible thanks to a renovated entrance, lift and toilet. Previous clients have found these areas to be very easy and enjoyable.
If you are a music lover and partial to the occasional festival, then you may want to plan your trip around one of Finland’s lively music festivals. August’s popular Flow Festival in Helsinki has a site that has been planned with wheelchair users in mind, including a podium at the main stage so that you can get uninterrupted views of the big acts. Those assisting somebody in a wheelchair can get a free ticket to Flow, which is also possible at Turku’s Ruisock Festival in July.
The Great Outdoors
Finland is perhaps best known for its amazing Arctic backdrop, which might make you think that it is not a particularly ideal place for disabled travellers. You will be happily surprised, however, as many of the national parks and other outdoor areas have made an effort to be accommodating to all. Even in the great outdoors, you will find nature trails that have wide duckboards, ramps and railings in swimming areas, and huts and cottages that are wheelchair friendly. In terms of disabled access, holidays here can be simple and stress-free – particularly when compared to other destinations.
Even venturing deep into the Arctic does not pose too much of an issue in Finland. The wild wintery setting of Lapland has a vibrant and colourful capital called Rovaniemi, where there are many fun outdoor activities and cultural attractions. With a little assistance and prior notice, disabled travellers will be able to embark on snowmobiling excursions, reindeer safaris, and easily get around the lively and fun town centre. Ask us to integrate these excursions in your itinerary!
We have a portfolio of accessible hotels in Finland which will make your trip a relaxing and easy one when it comes to disabled access. Holidays here will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience and show you wild beauty like you have never seen before. Contact our team today on 020 8907 2400 to learn more about this unique, progressive and impressive country.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Philip Scott is the owner and founder of Can be Done, a fully licensed UK tour operator specialising in disabled acess holidays across the world for individuals and groups who are travelling with a handicap. With over 31 years’ experience organising long and short breaks for disabled travellers, Philip has built a reputation for helping his clients select hotels and accommodation that offer high standards of accessibility to ensure that those with special needs can experience truly relaxing and carefree holidays.
©2021 – Simon Andas and Lisa Jeeves