Finland - Easter on the Artic Circle - Birdwatching

As the lengthening days of Spring signal the approach of Summer to the Arctic tundra, we headed far north for a long week-end to Finland.  The thought of spending Easter on the Arctic Circle was exciting and we hoped to see lots of owls and many other birds.  Unfortunately, we saw an awful lot of snow and and very little else.  

Normally, we put together our own itineraries for trips.  This time though, we were short on time to plan and we travelled on a small group trip organised by Naturetrek. 

My blog will always give you an honest account.  This was my first birdwatching holiday and it will definitely be my last.  It was so bad, it was actually funny though, so read more and enjoy a laugh with me!

 

Owl
Finland Itinerary

Best time to visit Finland

If you want to see lots of birds, don’t go in early April!  Finland is without doubt a beautiful country and I would like to go back one day on a holiday with a focus other than birdwatching just to prove to myself what I missed on this trip.

My Packing List

My trip would probably have been more fun if I had had a really powerful pair of binoculars and a massive telephoto lens.  With my tiny par of travel binoculars and an ordinary SLR camera, it was really quite difficult to spot birds from a distance.

If you do venture this far North in early Spring, definitely make sure you take all the warm gear you can lay your hands on.  For a birdwatching trip, you definitely needed thermal undies, snow boots, a down jacket, warm hat, gloves and several pairs of warm socks.  There was an awful lot of standing around in deep snow waiting for something to happen!

Help - I am on the wrong holiday!

Flora and Fauna

If I was a more experienced birdwatcher and if I had had better equipment with me, it might have been possible to see more birds than I did, but the list below just about sums it up:

  • Pygmy owl
  • Northern Hawk Owl
  • Tengelman’s Owl
  • Red grouse
  • Siberian jays
  • Whooper Swans
  • Goosander
  • Siskins
Northern Hawk Owl
Northern Hawk Owl
Whooper Swans - Finland
Whooper Swans

Foodie Firsts

  • Reindeer

Read my full trip to Finland:

Northern Hawk Owl

Arrival in Oulu

We stayed overnight near Heathrow airport to make the 5am start on Saturday morning slightly less painful. We boarded a flight from Heathrow to Helsinki…

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Finland
Help - I am on the wrong holiday!

Owless Oulu

Owless in Oulu Our Finnish guide said very little. I think the word count got up to about 40 in 5 days? The three main…

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Finland