A stunning view from the Nordic mountains

Written by Staff Writer at CNN

There are few places that tourists love more than an unobstructed view of the mountains. And when it comes to stunning views, Scandinavia has some of the most atmospheric spots in the world.

Kakslauttanen National Park is some five hours from Reykjavik by car. On a clear day, all the way up to the Arctic Circle, it’s possible to see Greenland in the distance.

But view it you must to get a feel for the real nature of what makes up this region. The highest peaks in the area are sometimes so high that they rise above the buildings of the capital, Helsinki, which like most towns and cities is built on a cliff.

Tourists can look out to the sea from the top of a hill in Finnish town Lahti. Credit: Neeme Järvinen

If that’s not what you’re looking for, some of Europe’s most picturesque towns can be found on the northeastern border of Finland and Norway.

Visit Lahti and you’ll see why Lonely Planet has called it a jewel on the Norwegian Coast. Situated between two volcanoes, it’s one of the most celebrated of scenic spots in the world, with mountains that have a rich history.

“Lahti used to be the capital of the island of Lahti, but when the volcano Rohukuhmirtunen came, the cities of Lahti and Molja were thrown out onto the edge of the snow,” said Noiri Melker, project manager at Lahti’s tourism office.

As lava erupted, “there was no road up the volcano, so people had to walk from the bottom up, and climbed almost a mile up the mountain to the top.”

Lahti has been compared to Las Vegas. Credit: Jeff Berkes/Getty Images Europe/Getty Images

Lahti’s 12,000 residents are famed for having the world’s tallest king of cakes, known as an snorkel cake, and its busiest water tower, which is also the highest tower in Finland.

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