Beyond The Baltic: Cruising Finland’s Gulf Of Bothnia
New cruise destinations along the Gulf of Bothnia allow cruise passengers to explore beyond the marquee ports that typically characterize Baltic cruises.
Earlier this summer, I visited three aspiring cruise destinations in Finland, along with four other destinations in Sweden, which I wrote about earlier this week in a post titled, “New Ports Of Call: Aspiring Cruise Destinations In Sweden’s North Have Much To Offer.”
The Gulf of Bothnia is the northern extension of the Baltic Sea. The region has been relatively unexplored by cruise ships. All of these destinations offer a breath of fresh air, particularly for those who have cruised the Baltic before and are seeking new ports of call. And all are relatively small cities and towns where cruise ships are still a spectacle.
The destinations also have put together a number of interesting experiences ashore, which are shown in the videos below. Of the more interesting experiences for me were 1) pedaling through the “Copenhagen of the North,” which is how Oulu has been referred to due to its more than 500 kilometers of bicycle trails, and visiting the Kierikki Stone Age Center; 2) visiting not one, but two, UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Rauma and dinner at a Lighthouse Restaurant & Hotel; and 3) seeing the site of the Pori Jazz Festival and visiting the renown Villa Maria, a beautiful home with impressive original artwork.