Before autumn completely takes over, I wanted to quickly write a blog to share our recent summer vacation in Nuuksio National Park. I think it is also our first out of town vacation as a family of four now. It was super exciting but to be honest, I was also a bit worried at the same time as this is our first time to spend some nights in a cabin in the middle of a forest!
We spent a whole week in Nuuksio National Park. So before going here, we had to file a vacation leave from our work. To do this, we only need to tell our team lead, at least 2 weeks in advance, that we want to go on vacation for some days. Then we’ll have to input it in an internal tool for our manager to approve. The peak of summer here in Finland is in July. A lot of people go on vacation during this month. That’s also the hottest month of the season.
Holidays in the woods
This year, we’ve decided to spend our summer holidays in a cabin. It’s a new experience for us as we haven’t really had the same back in the Philippines. Though, there maybe vacation places like these in the Philippines, we haven’t really tried it. We loved going to beaches before which are a bit different here in Finland. The water is also cold even during summer here.
Even though July is the hottest of the season, the last weeks of the month is already starting to feel cold. We actually didn’t know about this so we came here a little bit unprepared. We packed lighter clothes and lesser stuff for layering. Luckily, I brought my long cardigan. The wind can be really cold especially in the evening even though it is still bright. It is also very close to the lake, it makes the wind very chilly.
We booked our cabin from Hawkhill. They have different cabins all located in Nuuksio National Park. We chose one with one bedroom and a kitchen. It looked really nice and we could really feel the cabin life. The walls are made of stacked woods and upon entering the cabin, we could already smell the burning wood from the fireplace. The room was really clean and well-maintained. The space is good enough for the four of us. I would say this is very common in Finland and as a matter of fact, many families have their own cottage houses or cabin for summer days.
Our favorite part of the cabin is the living area. I like to see the stacked of woods and the lights reflecting on it. It gives me a calm and a peaceful feeling. The kids love it, too because that’s where the television is at (lol). It’s also so close to the fireplace so we can sit and relax in a very warm and cozy area in the cabin.
Because it was our first time here, we didn’t know what to do aside from staying and relaxing inside. Some of our colleagues recommended berry-picking, boating and hiking which we all tried. Our kids especially liked berry-picking. Blueberries and other berries were just outside the cabin and kids could just go there and spend time munching on them.
Aside from berry-picking, we also enjoyed boating. Though, I spent shorter time than Nico and Skyler in the boat, I still liked the experience. There were also some people boating at the same time with us. We exchanged smiles and I think they were delighted to see the kids in the boat. Some people were even swimming in the lake although I think the water was really cold.
The boat use was free of charge or already included in the price of the stay in the cabin. We also borrowed a fishing rod for free and were able to catch small fishes which we also set free afterwards. The fishing rod was also free to use but we needed to put it back to the post where we got it as we’re only allowed to use it for 24 hours while the boat was exclusively ours and was tied up to the dock near our cabin.
Hiking and admiring the view
Another thing we did and would love to do over and over again, was hiking! I carried Sapphire on my back and Skyler walked on his own picking berries on the way up the mountains. We’re a bit worried at first because we saw a sign warning the hikers about some wild animals. We didn’t find any but because we’re not very used to hiking, we had to be extra careful.
We also stopped for a small break on our way up. Because we were not fully equipped for this hike, we didn’t stay for a long time after reaching the spot we aimed to reach. Soon after, we headed back to our cabin for a good rest and some more fun time. For a more relaxing experience, we put up a hammock (that we own) with the trees just close to the lake. We stayed here for a couple of hours just picking berries and admiring the nature.
Aside from these activities, there are lots of other things you can do in Nuuksio National Park. The rest, you can find here.
Food and cooking
In usual days, guests can eat in a restaurant located just around the corner. However, during our stay, the restaurant was closed as the chef was on a holiday so we decided to have some groceries delivered to our cabin from a nearby grocery store. We planned it before coming and already ordered in advance so we didn’t have to wait for the groceries to arrive. We cooked our food and snacks for a week. The cooking and eating equipments in the kitchen were enough to prepare our food. They even have baking stuff and oven if you feel like you want to bake bread or cookies.
Sometimes, we would eat outside, just in the balcony to enjoy the view while eating. The kids really loved it and I believe we just made some core memories there that they will remember for a long time. Well, same for me and Nico. It’s the kind of vacation that would definitely reset your mind and body as it’s very relaxing and peaceful. We’re also able to focus on ourselves only and don’t mind any other things around us. For some days, even though it’s daytime, the only thing we could hear were the sound of the wind blows and the birds.
We spent a lot of time in front of the cabin and talked about a lot of things with the kids. Here, they have a fireplace outside where we would light up for extra warmth or if we wanted to grill something. For this reason, we decided to buy some pork to grill and marshmallows. Both Skyler and Sapphire were singing as they wait for the food to be ready.
We could also hear some people from the nearby cabin. I assumed they’re also a family with kids so I would say this place is really good for families even though you have smaller kids. It is safe and comfortable and it is something we would want to do again after some time. Maybe not immediately in the next summer because we still want to explore different kinds of summer activities but surely something we will do again or once in a while.
Going here and going home
Because we don’t have a car, we came here via taxi. We booked it in advance so we can make sure we arrive the right time. It’s also a bit close to our place so we didn’t pay much going here. We live just close to Espoo Center. The best way to come here is by car or by taxi/uber as it can be a bit far from public transpo. At least if you go directly to the cabins. We did the same going home. We packed our things the night before going home so we would still have plenty of time outside enjoying the sceneries.
It was indeed a great experience and vacation altogether. After living in Finland for 2 years, we started to appreciate nature more. Not only that, but also the time we shared together as a family during this vacation was really worth documenting hoping that it would stay here and in our memories for a very long time.
Edit: Finally, I was able to finish the last paragraphs only after 2 years. LOL. Anyway, the emotions remain the same and reading this again brought me 2 years back when our kids were only 4 and 2 years old. Oh! Their baby faces! Now, two summers after (summer of 2023), I’m still looking forward to an even happier summer vacation with these 3. Hopefully, out of the country next time! But hey! We can always go back Nuuksio National Park anytime because we are even closer to it after moving. 🙂
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