Size: About 338,145 square kilometers, slightly
than Missouri and Illinois combined. About 10 percent of
made up of inland water. A quarter of the country above
Topography: Four natural regions. Archipelago
begins in southwestern coastal waters and culminates in
Islands. Coastal Finland a band of clay plains, extending
Soviet to Swedish border. Seldom exceeding width of 100
kilometers, plains slope upward to central plateau that
basis of interior lake district. This core region contains
than 55,000 lakes set within country's densest forests.
above central plateau, upland Finland extends into
forests gradually yield to harsh climate. Above timber
barren fells and numerous bogs. Upland Finland crossed by
country's largest and longest rivers.
Climate: Gulf Stream and North Atlantic Drift
moderate temperatures somewhat, but winter still lasts up
seven months in north, and most years gulfs of Finland and
Bothnia freeze, making icebreakers necessary for shipping.
days in summer permit farming far to north. Continental
systems can bring quite warm summer temperatures and
spells in winter.
Data as of December 1988