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Authentic Sauna Blog

Saunatimes is heading to Finland and we welcome your input!

It’s been over thirty years since Glenn has been to Finland.

He was there as a young man, a college student hitchhiking around. It was at that time when Glenn discovered and fell in love with authentic sauna.

This upcoming trip to Finland is jam packed with everything sauna.

Glenn will be visiting at least 17 different special saunas around Finland. During these visits, he will be sitting on the sauna bench with very important and significant people surrounding sauna.

He will be recording most all of these interviews for Sauna Talk podcast.

Saunatimes values your input!

We would love to have your voice as part of these Sauna Talk interviews.

Please list questions you’d like Glenn to ask our guests for Sauna Talk podcast. Glenn will also be writing various feature articles during his visit. You can email glenn@saunatimes.com, or type in the comments section below. Please list the sauna or guests’ name, if appropriate.

Thank you for helping us build a list of topics and questions for Sauna Talk guests!

Here is an updated schedule of events:

DAY MAY # OF SAUNA SAUNA TALK GUEST
Sun 50
Mon 61Loyly Spa, Helsinki Jarmo Lehtona, former CEO Finnish Sauna Society
Tue 72Hotel ClarionHotel Staff
Tue72back to Loyly with Samuli, IkiLoyly Staff
Tue73Finnish Sauna
Society – Risto
Risto Elomaa, President, International Sauna Association
Wed 84Kaurilan, Helsinki, Harvia?1. Riikka Ruunaniemi, Varjola 2. Harvia?
Thu 95Varjola – JariDr. Jari Laukkanen, 25 year study on sauna health benefits
Thu96Savutuvan ApajaSauna From Finland, Carita & Satu Freyberg
Fri 107RajaporttiFounder, Rajaportti
Sat1182-3 Tampere sauna Jarmo Lehtona, @ two saunas
Sun 1210Tampere saunas- sauna proprietor(s)
Mon 1311Narvi/JesseJesse Hämäläinen, Narvi Sauna Stoves
Tue14142-3 Helsinki saunassauna proprietor
Wed1515Iki factorySamuli Kerrman, Iki Sauna Stoves
Wed1516Kaurilan sauna
3pm. w/Samuli
Saara, Kaurilian proprietor
Wed1517Hermanni sauna
visit w/Samuli
Hermanni staff
Wed1518Samuli private tent saunaSamuli, Timo
Thu1619Lonna, SaunaIslandKimmo Ratto
Thu16212 Additinoal saunasKimmo Ratto
Fri 1722Helsinki AirportHelsinki Airport sauna staff

———————————

Do you know someone from a media outlet?

Glenn will be honored to represent authentic sauna by writing a piece for a publication. The story is compelling. We are on the cusp of an urban public sauna revival, and a sauna revolution! We are all feeling it. It is great to help share the awesomeness of authentic sauna with others.

As you know as a reader of Saunatimes, we are committed to the authentic.

From Glenn: “Many Saunatimes readers have been fans of good sauna for a long time. It is exciting that sauna is becoming a bigger deal. People used to make fun of us, now they want to join us on the bench.”

This trip is a celebration of the Authentic! Thank you for joining along.

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26 Comments on This Post

  1. Have a great trip, Glenn. I can’t wait to hear all of you wonderful stories!

    No great questions that I can think of at this time as I am currently having my first cup of coffee and hoping it will motivate me.

  2. Glenn. How about an article on the 10 orsobest saunas in Finland? Or even break it down by region?

    Thanks!

  3. Hello Glen,
    A neat stop would of been The Experimental house by Alvar Aalto on the shore of Lake Päijänne with a neat Sauna .
    Smooth roads for your trip will look forward to your updates and Photos..

  4. We spent a chunk of Feb in Finland and got to experience a number of wonderful Sauna’s around the country. You’ll have a great time! I’m jealous (doubly – of your going and who you’re spending time with) and wish I could go. I’ve only ever been to Finland in winter and would love to see it in spring sometime.

    Something to note is that Löyly (and Rajaportti) is really a tourist place. We were fortunate to be with a friend (who had a love of the smoke sauna, ladling water on for increased löyly, and cheerfully making sure that we fully immersed in the gulf (of Finland) frequently!). He pointed out that this was perhaps not a true Finnish sauna experience.

    BTW, Finns are, of everywhere we’ve been, the friendliest people on earth.

    Fun Stuff: Sauna supplies at a grocery in Ivalo: https://i1.wp.com/bamasotan.us/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/B1200Arctic-123.jpg. Yes, they take it seriously!

  5. Where are all the women? 50% of the population go to sauna, but the podcast and tour lacks diversity. I hope that you put more effort in supporting women as you tour Finland. Not impressed.

  6. Hey, Glenn. Have a great time and enjoy Finland. I will be there about month later, enjoying sauna of course and visiting our factory at the southernmost tip of Finland. Your schedule looks full, but if you have time, I’m sure I can roust up my colleagues to heat up their awesome SAGA wood fire heater right on our factory property and on the Baltic Sea/Gulf of Finland. Mikko Koivu, among others, has enjoyed our sauna on the sea while enjoying fun times in the summer port city of Hanko, Finland. Again, have a great time!

  7. Glenn
    My wife and I travel to Helsinki every summer to visit our son and his family. There is a real deal smoke sauna at Kuusijarvi recreation park in Vantaa(where the airport is). Check it out if you have time.

  8. The other 4 saunas not listed here are for gman and a bunch of females. Given the numbers involved it’s should the totals closer to 50%.

  9. Glenn,

    Doug Wirthlin here. Your web site has helped me, 2 brothers, and a brother in law on a journey to understanding sauna culture and creating our own outdoor saunas. (Target for completion of my outdoor sauna, May 1st).

    Good luck and safe travels on your trip.

    Questions for the Finnish that came to mind:

    – What is the perception of combi saunas (steam generator with heater) in Finland? Is this type of heater, which seems to be hyped up in the States right now, too modernized or too far from the traditional sauna experience?

    Having an electrical heater as my only option, I toiled over combi vs. traditional heater. Ultimately, I chose a powerful heater with lots of rocks over the combi heater.

    – Do the Finnish ever have a “quick sauna routine” maybe akin to a “quick work out” during a busy work/personal schedule?

    My best sauna experiences have been events with friends, family, and plenty of time, but I am anticipating that once I have my own sauna I will probably enjoy some “quick, solo” sauna runs.

    – What recommendations might the Finnish have for sauna use in a desert climate, summer temps 100 to 115 degrees? (Unfortunately, moving my family to Finland would not be an option).

    Despite recently moving from Marshfield, Wisconsin to St. George, Utah I did not give up my quest for an outdoor sauna. There is very little written about sauna use in a hot climate. It seems that exposure to cold temperatures may be as important as exposure to hot temperatures for the ideal sauna experience. Just curious what the Finish might say about a desert sauna.

    Thanks,
    Doug Wirthlin

  10. Hei Glenn, hyvää matkaa! Happy travels in Finnish.

    During your many sauna sessions, please do let our fellow Finnish citizens know of the Finnish communities here in the Mid-West. 90,000 Finnish people in Minnesota alone. More info at FinnSource.org.

    Almost every summer cabin in Minnesota and Wisconsin has a Finnish sauna, by the lake. We couldn’t have it any other way.

    Enjoy your trip and let us know how you do!

    -Minna

  11. Hyvää matkaa, Glenn. It looks like you’re going to establish/renew several great contacts related to the Finnish sauna. (Special greetings from me, please, to Kimmo Raito whom I met last September at the Saunaseura on Lautasaari.) In addition to the great sauna contacts you’ll be meeting, I encourage you to make some initial contacts with people involved in Finnish in country tourism. I think that a “Finland Sauna Tour” would attract sauna enthusiasts from all over the world.

    Steve

  12. Thanks for all these suggestions, questions, and encouragements!

    I’ve taken these notes down, and will address on the bench with Sauna Talk guests for sure.

    Please keep ’em coming. I’m looking forward to visiting with all these sauna folks as an ambassador for all of us.

  13. Lucky you!
    And just for the heck of it:
    A visit to the outdoor museum just outside of Helsinki : Seurasaari, is really worthwhile-and also the Nat’l Forestry Museum in Lusto-off the beaten path but a once in a lifetime cultural experience you won’t forget!
    Cheers.
    Nils

  14. Looks like your schedule is fully booked already, but I will just throw my recommendation out there for the savusauna (smoke sauna) at kuusijärvi (https://www.google.com/maps/place/60°18'49.3“N+25°06’53.4″E/@60.313705,25.1126543,17) not too far from the Helsinki airport is quite nice. Currently I am living close by. Might be some interesting folks to talk to there.

    Have a nice trip!

  15. Glenn, in your interviews I’d love to hear some response to the question:

    “What do you think is necessary for sauna/thermic bathing culture to grow in North America?”

    Have a great trip!

  16. Dear Glenn,

    I’m writing an article about the science of sauna for Medium magazine and it would be great if we could get in touch!

    best,
    Sally

  17. How many type of sauna methods are there?

    Examples,

    1. The weekend sauna that can take several hours with family friends? Are there traditions in being guests; bringing gifts? bring food beverage? And in being hosts? food, beverages, places to shower, change?

    2. The morning sauna before heading off to work? Length of time? Eat after? Coffee before?
    3. The after work sauna? Length of time? Beverages but no food before?
    4. Evening sauna? How long after dinner and how long before going to bed?
    5. Healing sauna? Any special oils? Water additives for the hot rock? Hotter or cooler than “normal?” Stretching? Yoga? Message? Mediation? Amount of time in sauna? Number of sweats? Time for healing? Time between healing sweats?

    I’m in a group of Ojibwa followers for sweat lodges. We have healing lodges, wipe down sweats, bear sweats, and our normal four door sweat. I was wondering how their sauna traditions compared to our sweats. It seems so many traditions have used heat as a means for deeper relationships with fellow sweaters, deeper connections with the Creative force or “god, ” and used heat in dark places for calling the spirits to help heal through various medicinal plants.

    I hope you have a great trip over there. In our western society of consumerism we could gain a lot about how to get along with each other; how to find purpose for our lives as spiritual beings ; and how to care for our human form while we are here if we follow some of the traditions that have been around for centuries.

  18. Wonderful Joe. The prevailing atmosphere here in Finland with sauna is “no rules” and “no structure”. Example, I have been asking questions like “how many rounds?” and “how long do you sauna?” and sometimes I get numbers, but mostly, the answers are vague. Not because of any confusion or uncomfortableness with the questions, but mainly in that nobody seems to count time or their cycles/rounds. This is not surprising to me.

    As far as food goes, no food before sauna, lots of traditional sauna snacks after, usually something salty. “Food tastes better after sauna” In USA and here in Finland. Makarra sausage is a staple. Will report more. Appreciate your thoughtful remarks above.

  19. Petri: Do you know Kimmo Rattio? He is leading the charge on Thurs. Will be great to sauna with you there… i’m guessing 2 pm, but i’m following his lead.

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