Sweden for a True Sauna Experience
Posted on November 21, 2012
Sweden has many new and exciting attractions for tourists, but the sauna is one of the things that you cannot afford to miss. This heated bathhouse experience makes you feel relaxed and revived, and generally does your body a lot of good. The sauna originated in Finland and is a common activity in other Scandinavian countries. However, it is more than an exciting adventure in Sweden; it forms an important part of the nation’s culture.
Sauna Locations in Sweden:
Here, visitors can experience a sauna in public bath houses. Some of these are even located right beside the sea, so that you can have a quick shower immediately after you exit the steam room and then take a swim in the cold water. The strategic locations of these saunas offer awesome views of the abundant natural beauty in Sweden, including lakes and mountains. Some sauna rooms separate the males from the females, while others are meant for families with children. Almost every local home has a sauna, or “bastu” as it is known in Swedish, and friends are invited over to join in for some weekend entertainment. Smaller apartment houses have a shared sauna facility.
Tips for Sauna First-timers:
The best way to enjoy a sauna in Sweden is to shed your bikini, your towel and all your inhibitions. It is only when you become comfortable with your natural state that you will really enjoy the sauna. If it is your first time and you are really, really shy, you may wrap a towel around your privates, but a bikini is strictly forbidden for hygienic purposes. People often spread out their towels and lie down over them.
Local Way to Enjoy a Sauna:
If you are looking for a true traditional experience, find a sauna that is heated by fire and not via electric supply. The lowest sauna temperature is 70 degrees, with an ideal setting of 85 degrees accompanied by some steam. Follow the example of the locals and take a shower before and after you enter the sauna, as well as during each break taken while you’re there. Most people take a break every 15 to 20 minutes, but you should leave the room once it becomes too unbearable.
Beware of the extreme heat and sweating as it can stop the flow of blood to your brain and make you dizzy. You need to keep hydrating your body by drinking lots of water or fluids. However, stay away from alcohol as this could put your safety in danger. As is the customary practice, you are most welcome to relax with a glass of chilled beer afterwards. Everyone cools off naked in front of everyone else, whether they are strangers or friends. You might feel weird sharing the room with other sweaty people at first, but you will quickly get used to it.
Sauna in Winter:
If you decide to visit Sweden in the winter, you can try out ice swimming, another specialty of the land, before you relax in a heated sauna. The added benefits of visiting during this season are a range of unique winter sports, lesser crowds and cheaper accommodation. So go ahead, try a real sauna in Sweden for one of the most relaxed experiences of your life.
You can learn more about sauna in different countries from www.wellnessandsauna.co.uk, or you might specifically be interested to read the Holiday-Velvet.com guide on the best saunas in Amsterdam? For accommodation in Sweden, staying in Stockholm can act as the perfect base from which to explore the country.