Sauna, rinse, repeat in a Finnish mokki

Finland isn’t as cold as you’d expect, according to Trevor Corson in The Atlantic Monthly. It’s far enough north that, on this side of the ocean, you’d freeze your ass off on the best of days. But, thanks to the magic of the European climate, it feels a lot like Maine. It’s in this part of the country that the locals find the perfect vacation spot.

Nudity abounds, though of course behind closed doors. Find a mökki (really just a cottage), and spend your time sweating in the local sauna. Apparently, this is fun. It must be, because there are around half a million mökki in Finland – roughly one for every 10 people in the country.

There’s a catch … as there always is. Life in a mökki involves forsaking running water and electricity, and the manliest of men look forward to digging ditches. There’s more than just mileage, it seems, between the exclusive parties of Southampton and the Finnish recreational ideal.

The sauna aspect is something that I’ve never been able to understand. Extreme heat just doesn’t work for me, and when invited to partake of this ritual last summer, I declined (not as politely as I probably should have). But, the Finns swear by it, roasting their bodies and subsequently jumping naked into nearby lakes … rinsing before they repeat.

It’s not for me. Not only do I not hang out in sweat-boxes … I need the rhythms of the city to rock me to sleep.

Are you into this stuff? Not sure? Check out the video after the jump.