I take a boat from a grey, rainy Stockholm on Thursday evening and arrive in Helsinki on Friday morning. Here the sun shines as I get off in the harbour and I get picked up by Riina, one of the VAI-KO staff members. I go to pay them a visit at their office outside of Helsinki and we chat about living simple, bouldering and we also discuss some future work plans.
Then I meet up with Jennifer and we have a nice lunch together before heading out to spend the weekend in Teijo.
Kirjakkalan Ruukkikylä B&B
After an 1.5 hour car ride we arrive to the Kirjakkalan Ruukkikylä bed & breakfast. It’s evening by now and we have a nice, simple meal before going to bed. In the morning I wake up by the sound of birds chirping. It’s around 07:00 and the first daylight shines in through the window. Everything else is quiet.
I realise how much I’ve missed the forest and countryside.
The bed and breakfast is run by Jennifer’s parents-in-law and after breakfast we go with her boyfriend and his dad to check their nets for fish.
It’s a beautiful day and there was indeed some bass as well as pike perch to bring back with us.
The bed and breakfastIt is located in Teijo National Park, it’s hiking trails not being very far away. It used to be an old ironworks yard with one mansion and three log buildings. It is situated quite beautifully with tall oaks and lindens around it.
It was so beautiful to be here in the beginning of May as spring had just arrived, the grass was green and blossoms in full bloom.
Teijo National Park
Once back from the boat ride me and Jennifer prepare some sandwiches, snacks and coffee. Then we grab our packs and set out on a hike in Teijo National Park. It’s a park that covers an area of 34 square kilometres and is home to about 50 kilometres of marked trails.
The park has a nature centre where you can buy maps, get help and tips for routes as well as rent everything from a meeting room and sauna to boats and canoes. Here you can also buy fishing permits. There is also a forested camping area and the nature centre organises kota-tent and open fire dinners as well as overnight stays.
The walk takes us through forests and over cliffs that remind me of the high coast in Sweden. There’s barely a cloud in the sky and sun is quite warm. It’s the perfect day for a hike! It’s still wet and muddy in some places and we have to jump or balance across branches.
At one point we arrive at a small pier that we actually use to pull us across the water to a small island.
≫ It feels good to get to work a bit in order to reach the island! Right Jennifer?
On the other side we find a good, sunny spot to enjoy our lunch and talk about a lot of topics. Amongst them the language of Finnish, living abroad, working as a freelancer, blogger & influencer and much more.
≫ Want to learn more about Finland? Check out Jennifer & Malin’s new podcast Faraway Finland! (in Swedish)
After a good rest we pack up and start to head back again.The scandinavian nature is just as welcoming and beautiful as always. I walk in only my t-shirt and I am really enjoying being outdoors and hiking.
It has been quite a while since I last did it.
I feel tired after the hike and take a cold shower before we sit down for dinner. On the menu is the fish we brought up earlier in the day and my gosh is it ever delicious?!
I try to eat more and more vegetarian food, and when I do enjoy meat I want it to be good, local and something out of the ordinary. Having local fish like this, that I even saw being brought up from the nets, now that is special to me!
I had let Jennifer know that one my bigger interests is craft beer and that I would like to explore the local, Finnish beer scene while I was here. As it happened to be, there is actually a brewery, bakery and bar in Teijo. So once dinner was done, we got in the car and drove to Mathildedal.
Meri-Ruuki holiday village
This village is located by the sea in Mathildedal which another ironworks village. Here you can find a shared village shop where they sell both sourdough bread and artisanal beer directly from their makers.
We went to the local restaurant and bar Terho to enjoy some of the beer brewed here. It was a cozy little place called the village’s “public livingroom” where there is sometimes karaoke or live music. They also roast coffee for you to enjoy there or bring home with you. What a place!
I had both the American Pale Ale and the Indian Pale Ale from Mathildedalin Kyläpanimo and I quite enjoyed it and would definitely have it again, especially the IPA.
Do you also enjoy beer, and do you use the app called Untappd? If not, I can highly recommend it for keeping track of what beers you drink, where you drink them and what you think of them.
If you want, you could also add me as a friend to follow me on my craft beer adventures!
I really enjoyed my weekend in Teijo and really feel that I got to see and experience a great variety of things.
A huge thank you to Jennifer, her boyfriend and his parents at Kirjakkalan Ruukkikylä for showing me around, treating me to some local delicacies and teaching me about some local history as well as the Finnish language ♥︎