In April 2021, myself and Glenn Murray visited Art & Culture Centre Kalevan Navetta in Seinäjoki. This building has a varied history, an re-invigorated present and, surely, a long future bringing art, craftwork, culture and community to Seinäjoki.
On Saturday 27th February 2021, myself and Glenn Murray, The Nordic Tourist, were invited to a special event on Lake Lappajärvi in Etelä-Pohjanmaa, to witness an attempt at the world record biggest ice carousel. What is that? Read on and I’ll explain all…
Introducing Glenn Murray, The Nordic Tourist, who will be my collaborator during the upcoming season of Explore Finland Radio Show. In this episode, Glenn introduces me to Katikankanjoni in Finland’s Wild West, a natural canyon with running water all year round, even during months of sub-zero temperatures.
Löyly Helsinki is a public sauna and restaurant, located on the edge of the sea in the Munkkisaari area, a part of Helsinki that is
As part of my guided tour around Culture Centre ‘Vanha Paukku’ in Lapua, we stop for an extended visit in the Lapuanjoki Museum. Museum Director, Sakari Hanhimäki and Cultural Director, Susanna Oversteyns regale me with historical tales of Espionage, Poisoning, Fascism, An Attempted Coup… and Photography!? Includes an intriguing revelation from Susanna’s family history.
Part one of a two-part episode, I undertake a tour of the Kulttuurikeskus ‘Vanha Paukku’ with two expert guides; Susanna Oversteyns, Cultural Director and Sakari Hanhimäki, Museum Director. HUGE thanks also to Anu Haavisto, Leena Sarjola and Anniina Kivimäki for the impromptu, live performance of some haunting Finnish folk music. Mahtava!
Based on my regular blog for the Visit Seinäjoki website. I talk about some exciting theme parks and activity centres in Etelä-Pohjanmaa. I highlight events and activities that are ideal for teenagers and focus on some participation sports and outdoor games for the summer season.
I speak with Olli-Pekka Tuomaala & James McDade from Seinäjoki Rugby club talk about rugby in Finland; the history of the game in Finland, the development of rugby in Finland as a summer contact sport and how Finland is no longer the worst National rugby team. We also discuss the annual snow rugby competition because, if rugby isn’t a tough enough sport, the Finns have found a way to take it up a notch.
Based on my regular blog for the Visit Seinäjoki website. I talk about some of the more interesting shops in the Seinäjoki area, as well as introducing some of the companies that produce locally-made textiles and homeware products.
In part two of a two-part episode, I speak with Kalle Valkonen , Co-Founder and Head Distiller at Kyrö Distillery. He gives me a personal tour of the distillery, taking me step-by-step through the distilling processes of both Kyrö Rye Whisky & Kyrö Napue Gin and answering questions, such as: What is malting? And what are the ‘heads and tails’?
Episode 41In part one of a two-part episode, I speak with Miko Heinilä, Co-Founder of Kyrö Distillery. He gives me selected highlights from the history
Based on my regular blog for the Visit Seinäjoki website. I talk about the outdoor activity that get you lost in Finnish nature; foraging in the woods, exploring the variety of nature trails & running tracks, and beaches in Seinäjoki to relax upon.
Play the Podcast Download an MP3 of Six Things You Must Experience at Ähtäri Zoo Read the original article here: https://explorefinlandpodcast.com/2019/02/18/six-things-you-must-experience-at-ahtari-zoo/ Read more in English and plan
Play the Podcast Download an MP3 of Conservation, Medication and Procreation. The Vet’s Life at Ähtäri Zoo Guest: Heini Niinimäki, Zoological Director, Ähtäri Zoo When talking
Subscribe to the Ähtäri Zoo Podcast on iTunes Once you get out into the wilds of Finland, it’s easy to think you are in the middle
In Winter 2018-19, I was commissioned to make a pilot series of a new podcast; The Ähtäri Zoo Podcast. This episode is a selection of stories from the first three interviews with people powering Ähtäri Zoo. I’m sure you will find this a fascinating look, at the workings of a modern-day zoo. Search for “Ähtäri Zoo Podcast” on your podcast player to find the whole pilot season.
Play the Podcast Download an MP3 of Being The Panda Keeper Is The Best Job. Ever! Guest: Anna Palmroth, Panda Keeper, Ähtäri Zoo The Giant Pandas
Play the Podcast Download an MP3 of Things To Do At Ähtäri Zoo & Snowpanda Resort When You Visit Finland Guest: Satu Keski-Valkama, Tourism Development Project
Play the Podcast Download an MP3 of Introducing the Ähtäri Zoo Podcast Hello. Welcome to the Ähtari Zoo podcast. My name is Mark Wiltshear, and during
For this episode, I am grateful to Engel Jones for allowing to rebroadcast an interview that first went-out on his 12 Minute Convos podcast in January 2018.
Engel is an Entrepreneur & Podcast Host who set himself a goal: 800 recorded conversations in 12 weeks from Sep 19th – Dec 12th 2017.
In this conversation, hear me on the other side of the mic (for a change) talking about why I make the Explore Finland Radio Show, the motivation behind founding Xport, writing a blog for Visit Seinäjoki and the relevance of the Diana Ross song ‘Chain Reaction’.
If you know me, you won’t be surprised that my #12minconvo lasted 18 mins!
I speak to Marjo Matikainen-Källström, Satu Hallonberg and Markku Pulli about Karjalaisetkesäjuhlat; the commemoration of the evacuation of 430,000 people from Karelia after World War 2 and a celebration of continuing Karelian culture. I then speak to Satu (now Mrs Wiltshear) who shares some of her family’s memories as evacuees from Karjala.
In this episode, I speak to Teemu Öhman who is a Craterologist or, to be more precise, an Earth and planetary scientist and lecturer at Arctic Planetary Science Institute.
Teemu explained about the creation of Lake Lappajärvi in Etelä-Pohjanmaa, and then gave some recommendations of places to visit in the Lappajärvi area. All of which you can discover for yourself, using the new virtual Craterlake Geotrail
I visit Sankta Maria church in Närpes/Närpiö, and speak to town guide, Marianne Winter. I learn why the church is surrounded by over 100 stables, about the unique Swedish dialect in Närpes and why the Vietnamese name, Nguyen, is the most common surname in Närpes.
I discuss the traditional Finnish Puukko knife with Ethnologist and Bushcraft champion, Marcus Lepola. We talk about it’s importance in the history of violence, love & marriage, and everyday life in Finland.
I speak to internationally recognised culinary authority and TV host, Kristina Vänni, who is also a food writer, TV host, recipe developer, cooking contest expert. We discuss her upcoming cookbook, Homefarm, but also her Finnish roots in Peräseinäjoki, Etelä Pohjanmaa.
She tells the the story of her Great-Grandmother, Josefiina Pitäkranta’s emigration to the USA in 1899 and how Kristina came to connect with her distant relatives, her ‘return’ to Pitkäranta Farm and the inspiration for her book.
Season 3 Introduction Hi everyone, it’s Mark here. I’m back and I just wanted to take a few minutes to explain where I’ve been, what
Satu and I, with Boris the Dog, embarked on our third road-trip through Pohjanmaa. This is a photo blog of our trip: Närpiö–Kaskinen–Kristiinankaupunki
Satu and I, accompanied once more by Boris the Dog, enjoyed our first road trip so much, we decided to go out exploring a different part of Pohjanmaa once again.
Here is a photo blog of our road trip, the second in this series: Pohjanmaa: Merenkurkun ( (Raippaluoto & Björkö)
Satu and I, plus Boris the Dog, took a drive to explore parts of Pohjanmaa that we don’t know so well. We made a photo blog of our road trip: Seinäjoki–Kokkola–Pietarsaari–Ylistaro
Hopefully, the first is a regular series.
Similar to my summer 2016 post, in summer 2017 I had another opportunity to put what I learned in the podcast into practice. Whenever I
During summer 2016, I had the opportunity to visit the wilds of Eastern Finland, near to the town of Kitee. I was invited to join Satu at her Grandparents’ old home, right on Finland’s border with Russia. During this trip, I found myself saying ‘yeah, I know about this, I covered it in the podcast’, for example; sauna with vihta, foraging in the woods, the evacuation of Karelia and Finnish ice cream.
I thought I’d share with you some pictures of these activities, and the podcast episodes they came from.
On Friday 13th May 2016, I was given an award by Etelä-Pohjanmaan aluekehittäjät ry EPAK (a Regional Development Association in Etelä-Pohjanmaa. This was in recognition of the work I have done with the Explore Finland Radio Show and the Finnish Football Show.
Season 2 Credits I decided that, like Season 1, I would also record 16 episodes for Season 2. Now it’s time to take a look
I learn why swimming in ice-cold water after taking a sauna is better than sex or morphine! Journalist Jussi Mustikkamaa explains ALL the benefits of Avantouinti, before taking me swimming in the hole in the ice on a frozen pond. Yep, that’s right…
Brewmaster Jyri Ojaluoma takes me back in time to the re-birth of Mallskoski and their Kuohu beer. We discuss brewing techniques and tricks and review the 1st Lakeuden Panimojuhlat (Beer Festival) in Seinäjoki.
Season 2 Episode 30 Student Film-makers Tytti & Onni tell me about the origins and history of the Jussi paita, plus what they learned while
Mari Keskinen welcomes me to the ‘Filmiä- ja valoa elokuvafestivaali’ at Matin-Tupa Cinema. She introduces me to the past, present and future of the cinema that’s been in her family for 70 years.
Matias explains the requirements to be able to play golf in Finland, the fun of midnight golf, and his marathon 24-hour, sponsored fund-raiser in 2014.
This week I get to sit down with Miia Keski-Nikkola and talk food, which is no hardship for me; busting some myths, discussing Mother Nature’s offerings and looking at traditional Xmas Food.
Episode 26 Tella takes us on a walk through history at the World of Trails in Peräseinäjoki. A collection of buildings, previously owned by Finnish
Juha talks about more Finnish festivals. From the Heavy Metal Midsummer through the invasion of camper vans for Seinäjoen Tangomarkkinat and on to newer, urban events for HipHop and EDM.
Juha talks about the history of the Provinssirock Festival, and the popularity of domestic music making it possible for Finnish-only events to sell-out.
Join Mark (@explorefinland), Rich (@escapetosuomi) and Mark (@FCSuomi) for the first episode of the Finnish Football Show series, where 3 old blokes sit and talk about football in Finland. In English.
Päivi explains how ice cream is made at Wirtalan Jäätelö and gives a surprising answer to the question ‘What is South Ostrobothnia’s favourite flavour?’ You’ll never guess.
Lari returns to the pod to reveal his highlights from following SJK Seinäjoki in 2015. Spoiler alert, it has a very happy ending!
Emilia explains the basics of Jokamiehenluoka/Jokkis/Finnish Folk Racing, before getting behind the wheel on race day.
Pekka explains the rules, techniques and tactics of Frisbee Golf, before I join him on the course in the CityFrisbee Golf competition in Seinäjoki.
A short introduction to traditional Finnish music from Piia & Mika, including Iskelmä, Choral, Rautalanka, Folk… and Rap.
Tella tells about Finland’s historical emigration, where people came from, where they eventually settled and some that made their fortune and came back again.
Explore Finland’s ‘scopes are first broadcast via a live stream on the Periscope app, search for ExploreFinland in the app. Follow @explorefinland on Twitter for