This article is about our crazy road trip to the Arctic Ocean and about the last day. Marko had visited Kajaani and I spent that time in Oulainen. It was late evening when Mini turned to the yard and we began the last part of our trip. If we had only a faint plan for the days 1-3, this time we had none what so ever.
If you have missed the stories from day One, Two or Three, I highly recommend you take a look at those first.
We sat on the car and the question was: “Where to?” I had a suggestion of going to sand dunes of Kalajoki and get a nice photograph of the car with the Baltic Sea on the background. Now we had some plan so it was time to hit the road again. The area with the dunes in Kalajoki is pretty large. There are cabins, golf course, spa and even an amusement park. The best part of it (beach road) is not so long though but you are usually able to get the car right beside the sand. I would like to visit that place a while longer some time. Just to take photos of sunset and the dunes. I haven’t tested the golf course either but that must wait until I have some free time again. One thing I have done there is drive go-karts. Track was ok but loaded with tight corners and not so many straights.
At some point we though of returning to Helsinki via the east side of Finland but it was too late for that long detour. Then again if we took the shortest way, we would be at Helsinki way too early. So we made a compromise and drove all night using only small country roads. That way we would arrive early morning.
We drove traditional Finnish country roads through Himanka via Toholampi to Perho. At some point we took a break and also switched me behind the wheel. We continued to Multia, Keuruu and Ruovesi. At this point we had arrived to Finnish version of Route 66 because the number of that road is 66. Not perhaps quite like the equivalent in USA but not bad either. We kept on this road until arriving in Tampere. There we took a break at 24/7 gas station and drank some coffee.
We thought about our next move while having coffee. It’s a shame that even though its summer, it will eventually become dark in Southern Finland unlike the midnight sun in North Finland. So there was no point trying to find scenic roads at this point of the night. Then again, it would be light again in a few hours but these roads are a bit too familiar to both of us and we were already quite tired. No point driving to Turku either (an hour at home before leaving again would have felt even worse than not getting there yet) so we took the motorway to Helsinki.
We did have quite nice time driving to Helsinki chatting and listening to music. But we were there so early that no place had opened yet. BWM Finland would not open in a few hours. So we took this time to wash up the Mini and fill it up. Then we drove it to the parking place at BMW, moved our stuff to my car and headed to breakfast to a gas station that had opened in the mean time.
As soon as the time was 08:00 we were already behind the doors at BWM office. The person at reception took the keys and we were free to leave towards Turku. It was time for the last 180 km and at this point the weariness hit like a hammer so it got me a bit worried. After some driving I had to stop to a gas station and get an energy drink (a thing I try not to do unless I really have to). Marko fell asleep and I tried my best to stay awake with that drink. All went well and I dropped Marko at his place before heading home myself. It was 10:00 in the morning when I was home with my stuff and was able to go to bed. There are not many times I have fallen asleep as fast as I did then.
If I hadn’t put an alarm, I had most likely slept until the next morning or woken up late at evening. Sleep rhythm would be messed up. So I woke up around noon and got a takeaway pizza. I was not able to do anything sensible that day but then again, I didn’t have to. Next day I would have another 500 km to drive back to Ostrobothnia.
There is one more thing I’d like to mention here in the end. There are countless beautifull places in Finland and also thrilling roads. You have those here in Southern Finland but if you want something a bit more exotic, you need to go to Lapland or to the Arctic Ocean. If mountain roads are your passion, you don’t need to go further than Norway.
So many places were left unseen and 4 days is way too short time for this kind of trip. A lot was left to next trips and hopefully we will have those in the future.
This trip was pretty accurately 4000 km and we did that in 4 days. Doing this amount of miles in this little time I do not recommend to anyone. Please reserve at least double the time or even more if you can stay a few days at some place. There are really beautiful nature parks there with possibilities to hike or mountainbike and spend time.
Here’s the video from the last day.