This blog post is a collection of Instagram posts published on the @letsgoslow.blog and @slow_adventuring instagram profiles. We hope you'll like this collection and that you find some of the tips useful for planning your own slow adventures!
Let's Go Slow into the New Year and Merry Christmas!
This post was made possible with help from the Slow Adventure in the Northern Territories (SAINT) project. Read more about our fantastic new sponsor here! Although this post is sponsored, all opinions are our own.
24 Slow Adventure tips in Northern Europe
Slow Adventure tip 1 - Northern lights in Finland
Your best chances to see the northern lights are when your surroundings are pitch black. In other words when there is no light pollution. It can therefore be a good idea to travel north before snowfall and the ground is white. Traveling to see the northern lights before winter also saves you from long freezing nights staring at the sky!
Slow Adventure tip 2 - Scottish Ale
The craft beer revolution has taken Scotland by storm, fuelling their traditional pub culture with more tasty alternatives! Historically the Scots made and drank Ale and if you are up for a mix between history and new trends check out the @isleofskyebrewery ales!
Slow Adventure tip 3 - Oslo's wilderness
Most people who travel to Norway go North or West, queuing up to see the northern lights and the spectacular fjords. What if we told you about a unique wilderness only 20 minutes from Oslo Central Station? Do like the locals do! In Østmarka (Oslo east forest), you can #getlost paddling, hiking well marked trails or spend a night in one of the @dntoslo cabins! @oslooutdoor @wildnorway
Slow Adventure tip 4 - Hunting and wild food
Hunting is the traditional way of supplying the family with fresh meat in many of the Scandinavian countries. This is also true for Sweden. Traditional hunting is not about status and trophies, but about keeping a sustainable number of animals and at the same time providing for your family or local community. Wild food has more nutrition and the taste is amazing. Make sure you get a taste of moose-sausage, reindeer stew or wild bird the next time you are in Sweden. @jagiska
Slow Adventure tip 5 - Mindful ice
Watching the glacial ice on Iceland is like watching time. The endless ice is ancient. It's almost impossible to image how the world has transformed in the same years. If you have the time (take time!), sit still and just gaze. Look at the ice, at all the colours, the shapes and vastness of it all. Don't rush past, take your time.
Slow Adventure tip 6 - Finland's 100th anniversary!
The Finns achieved independence on December 6, 1917! So, today we celebrate their 100th year as an independent nation with this picture from Hossa National Park. #hossanationalpark is the 40th National Park in Finland and was given to the people of Finland as a 100th anniversary gift this summer. We went canoeing on the Julma-Ölkky Canyon Lake and it was amazing! Rent your canoe at the Hossa National Park visitor center.
Slow Adventure tip 7 - On the back of a horse
No engine, no metal, only the rocky movements and sound of four strong legs. The landscape looks different from a horse. You are taller and the constant rocking makes your journey feel slow. It makes perfect sense appreciating the Irish countryside from the back of a horse. Try a new perspective on your next guided landscape tour and you might get a new friend as well! @cityofderryequestriancentre
Slow Adventure tip 8 - Irish Hawthorn Berry Fruit Leather recipe
At The Organic Centre in Rossinver, Ireland, Hans showed us a beautiful Hawthorn. @theorganiccentre_rossinver you can pretty much learn everything there is to know about Irish plants (yes that might be an exaggeration, but that's how it felt). On a foraging tour with Hans we got to taste his homemade Hawthorn Berry Fruit Leather, made from the beautiful Hawthorn. If you are like us and would like to bring nature home, try out this recipe that we got from Hans. The recipe was created by: Gaby Wieland, Neantog Kitchen Garden School.
1. Pick ripe hawthorn berries (1.5 kg of berries makes 3 sheets of fruit leather)
2. Place in a saucepan and add half their volume of water or apple juice, berries will be just covered
3. Simmer for 15-20 minutes and allow to cool. Mash the pulp with a potato masher or briefly blend in a food processor to loosen pulp from the seed.
4. Rub through a coarse sieve or use a food mill (Moulin or “Flotte Lotte”).
5. If you like you can add some cinnamon or/and honey to counteract slight bitterness. Pour strained pulp either on baking trays lined with parchment paper, silicon baking mats or on non-stick dehydrator sheets less than half a centimetre thick.
6. Dry at lowest temperature if you use an oven until pulp is dry and leathery and easy to peel off without being sticky.
7. Either roll leather up or cut into pieces and store in airtight jars.
8. If dried and stored properly they will easily last for a year.
9. Add to your breakfast or desserts – a 2cm square everyday will help to keep your heart and circulation healthy.
Slow Adventure tip 9 - Wildlife photography
Since the first time we went to Scotland, Thea @letsgoslow.blog has been yearning to photograph a highland cow. Not from the car or from the side of a field, but to photograph them properly. Just like how you would take the portrait of an old man. This year Thea finally got her highland cow photo! Wondering through the hills on the Isle of Canna, we found ourselves on a field and there they were, all relaxed, fuzzy and cool. Todays tip to the keen slow adventure photographer is: Don't rush, the perfect photo will come to you and for all the times it didn't, just enjoy the fact that you got to see amazing animals!
Slow Adventure tip 10 - Sisselfossen Waterfall
Waterfalls are for many people considered a must see when they visit Norway. There are a number of famous waterfalls like #kjosfossen, #vøringfossen and #mardalsfossen, but if you'd like to visit one of Norway's hidden gems we recommend #sisselfossen in #lierne - It's 130m high and because of our local guides we got to be right in it! Thanks @wildnorway @arcticjan!
Slow Adventure tip 11 - Sweden in autumn
Sweden has thousands of nature reserves, 29 national parks and autumn is definitively the best time to go and explore them (national parks and nature reserves cover a tenth of the country’s land area)! With a cooler temperature hikes become longer and plentiful berries, mushrooms and autumn colours will make each hike feel different.
Slow Adventure tip 12 - Kayaking with Ice
Kayak Adventuring is a unique way to experience the Icelandic wilderness. Not only because of the low perspective, but because you get so close to the water, animals and ice! Iceland is a beautiful and delicate wilderness, be gentle and experience Iceland by water. @iceguide.is
Slow Adventure tip 13 - Bushcaft
Bushcraft is not only for extreme situations on TV. Bushcraft is about being comfortable in nature. Knowing how to cook food and build shelters can make a huge difference in how you experience the outdoors. To be comfortable is not about luxury, but about being dry and warm. Learn some new skills next time you're traveling to Ireland at Lough Allen Adventure
Slow Adventure tip 14 - Slow food
Are you a foodie? Visit a local farm or producer. In Northern Ireland we visited the organic farm that provided our accommodation with fresh produce! Bacon, butter and eggs came from Bradkeel Social Farm, a huge highlight of our time in Northern Ireland! #slowadventuring #letsgoslow #landscape #slowadventure #naturelovers #northernireland #slowfood #socialfarming
Slow Adventure tip 15 - Wild berries
We love foraging, it is very calming to wonder among the trees looking for something tasty to bring home. In August the Finish forests are full of berries and during our stay at the #isokenkäistenklubi Katja and Sirpa made us this french toast with red currant, wild raspberries and wild blueberries (and som whipped cream!!), It was delicious! You can find all of these berries in the Nordic region.
Slow Adventure tip 16 - Slow food on Isle of Eigg⠀
Would you like to enjoy a homemade three course dinner whilst appreciating this magnificent view? Getting there is a slow adventure in itself, located on the Isle of Eigg in Scotland. By the time you get to this wonderful place, you have most likely also cycled over the island (like we did) and Sue's lovely slow food cooking makes you feel warm and welcomed
Slow Adventure tip 17 - Cycling around Leka
Leka is one of Norway's most spectacular islands, and cycling around Leka, is the highlight of a cycle trip on the Norwegian #kystriksveien (one of the World's most beautiful roads according to @natgeo). The west side of Leka is like coming to another planet - It's the only place in the Norway where you can make a geological journey to the interior of the earth!
Slow Adventure tip 18 - Relax and just be
Traditional nordic hunting is not always about the biggest catch, some days it's about enjoying it to the fullest, and there is nothing more enjoyable than a midday snooze in the heather. Go slow, follow your connection to nature and just be.
Slow Adventure tip 19 - Ice cave on Iceland
The natural ice caves are constantly changing. The ice moves and melts letting the caves change daily in a slow dance.
Slow Adventure tip 20 - Shannon Blueway
The first of its kind in Ireland, the Shannon Blueway is an innovative and easy to use series of on-water and land based trails. The new water ways are a great way to see the Irish landscape, towns and little villages that are connected to the canals, making it easy to include a quick stop at a local cafe or shop at the end of your trip!
Slow Adventure tip 21 - Landscape appreciation
Walking through the Northern Irish landscape is calming in itself. Landscape appreciation reveals the signs of geo-history, inviting all your senses to appreciate what you might otherwise miss.
Slow Adventure tip 22 - Local salmon cooked over embers
The secrets of cooking on the open flame were revealed to us at Helekuta Hut in #kuusamo, Finland.
There is an old tradition in the Kuusamo region to cook seasonal, local fish or salmon over scorching embers. Katja and Sirpa runs the family business @isokenkaistenklubi and together we enjoyed a full day of cooking in their traditional Lappish hut called a "Kota".
Slow Adventure tip 23 - Kayaking on Isle of Canna
Landing our kayak on a remote white beach in Scotland, was one of the highlights of 2017! Isle of Canna is a kayaking paradise, with high cliffs, wild birds, two seal colonies and white sandy beaches. On a weekend kayak trip with @arisaigseakayakcentre we got to practise paddling in various condition (due to the crazy Scottish weather!!!) and Mike was always there to help us and make us feel safe!
Slow Adventure tip 24 - Being together in nature
Thank you for following our Christmas calendar!
Slow Adventure is about slowing down, shifting our focus away from time and adrenalin to honesty and authenticity.
Our goal is to truly experience a place through food, location, skill and people.
Hopefully we'll inspire you to do the same, Merry Christmas!