If you are heading to Helsinki on Christmas Time, we made you a list of interesting places to visit.
Suomenlinna Sea Fortress
Suomenlinna, The sea fortress, founded in 1748, is a Unesco World Heritage site and one of the most popular tourist attractions in Finland. Visitors are not charged an admission fee – you only need to pay for the ferry crossing. Suomenlinna is also a borough of Helsinki.
Christmas at the fortress is full of experiences and cosy atmosphere from 2 December 2017 to 7 January 2018. Restaurants, museums and galleries are open with special opening hours and Christmas themed program is available around the islands. Read more
How to get there?
Suomenlinna is accessible only by water. A ferry service runs from the Market Square to Suomenlinna throughout the year.
The trip to Suomenlinna takes 15–20 minutes and offers magnificent views of Helsinki and the surroundings from the sea. During the cold winter months, the trip through the ice-covered waters is a unique experience. More information
The photo archives of the Governing Body of Suomenlinna/Arttu Kokkonen
Kiipeily Areena Climbing Centre
Salmisaari Sports Center (K1st floor)
Energiakatu 3, Helsinki
KiipeilyAreena in Salmisaari, Helsinki is the Scandinavia's biggest and highest indoor climbing centre! Here you will find the perfect level of difficultiness. KiipeilyAreena suits also for groups and children's birthday parties incl. climbing instructor.
Adult 14 € (with equipment 20€)
10 € Mon-Fri before 16 (with equipment 16€)
Child 10 € (with equipment 15€)
Prison Island Helsinki
Salmisaari Sports Center
Energiakatu 3, Helsinki
Prison Island is a destination with adventure for all in ages 9-99 years old. It’s a lot like the successful TV-show “Fort Boyard” where you use team-work to solve tricky challenges in cells and collect points. All while the clock is ticking…. Gather your friends, form a team and solve the challenging tasks in the prison cells together. Cooperate, collect points and have lots of fun.
Key card 60 min. 18€ / person
Key card 90 min. 25€ / person
Key card 120 min. 32€ / person
Closed 24.-25.12. and 1.1.
Please make a reservation in advance: tel. +358 50 596 5017
Prison Island Helsinki. Photo by LikeFinland.com
Megazone Laser Game
Salmisaari Sports Center
Energiakatu 3, Helsinki
Megazone laser tag is a fun, futuristic and exciting game that is suitable for all ages. Laser tag is played in a dimly lit, fog-filled, multi-level arena where players are provided with high tech vests and awesome but harmless laser guns. Players then try to score points by deactivating other players’ vests and destroying their bases.
1 game 10€
2 games 18€
3 games 25€
Closed 24.-25.12. and 1.1.
Please make a reservation in advance: tel. + 358 50 595 4094 or helsinki(a)megazone.fi.
Exit Room Helsinki
Eurantie 2, Helsinki
At EXIT ROOM HELSINKI you have 66 minutes to explore a mysterious room full of surprises and to find the key for the exit. ESCAPE ROOMS are the perfect freetime activity for friends, families, colleagues… Search the room, turn it upside down. Be clever and solve all the puzzles. The rooms in a very special atmosphere are suitable for groups of 2 – 5 people. Read more
2 players 80€
3 players 90€
4 players 100€
5 players 120€
6 players 135€
Prices are valid from Monday to Saturday. On Sundays and Finnish National Holidays all games cost 135 €. Book a game!
The Ice Park is centrally located in the heart of Helsinki, right next to the central railway station.
Enjoy the urban culture with skates on. Relax with a hot drink in the atmospheric café, listen to music or meet friends. Come as you are – with or without the kids, straight from work, with your special someone under your arm, or on your way to a night out with friends. The award winning Ice Park is the perfect meeting spot! Read more
24.12. – Closed
23.12. - 6.1. – Open from 10 until 21
Tickets and prices
Adults 6 €
Children (under 18 years-old) 3 €
Skate rental 6 €
The ticket is valid all day. Before skating you will buy a ticket from the ticket booth and put it on your jacket. If you need skates, you can rent them from the Ice Park. Helmets and helping sleds can be borrowed free of charge.
Image source: Jääpuisto - Ice Park, Helsinki
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Helsinki City Museum
Aleksanterinkatu 16, Helsinki
2.12.–10.1. ”Shadows of the Past” light installation
Helsinki City Museum at Aleksanterinkatu 16 will again create a peaceful winter oasis of light installations in its outdoor courtyards. This year, Alexander Reichstein, the creator of last winter’s immensely popular historic light sculptures, will bring Shadows of the Past to the historic Govinius’ courtyard. In this installation, ghostly silhouettes walk in an endless procession. The procession marches to the strong rhythms of Shostakovich’s music, which conveys the drama of time passing by.
Falkman’s courtyard will be filled by Willem Heeffer and Jussi Karjalainen’s light installation Around Helsinki, based on shadow theatre techniques. The installation features familiar and less familiar landmarks of Helsinki, including Hotel Torni, a kiosk and an old street lamp, alongside iconic urban transport vehicles ranging from a tram to a Zeppelin. Both light installations can be admired during the museum’s opening hours from 2 December 2017 to 10 January 2018. Read more
What does the nose remember? What does the city smell like? Can a museum experience be built on a single smell? The Helsinki City Museum at Aleksanterinkatu 16 will offer a new sensory experience starting from Friday, 7 October 2016 when Smell opens on the fourth floor of the museum. Read more
The Helsinki City Museum whisks visitors away on a time-travelling expedition one hundred years into the past. The Time Machine makes the photographs of famous Helsinki photographer Signe Brander come to life with a little bit of help from new technology. Time travellers can also visit the courtyards and streets of 1960s, 1970s and 1980s Helsinki. Historical VR experience! Read more
In Children’s Town, Helsinki’s past is illustrated by means of play and joint activities. Entrance to Children’s Town is always free of charge. Read more
The Helsinki Bites exhibition dives into the past of Helsinki, bringing up common memories about the city’s history. Miniature Helsinki about the city in the 1870s, a thoroughly decorated 1950s apartment, and the interactive panorama experience are just some parts of Helsinki Bites. Read more
The freedom to be yourself is not something all of us can take for granted. The Helsexinki-exhibition in the Helsinki City Museum, is based on the everyday experiences of city folk. It’s about sexuality, gender and sex – and about the freedom to choose how to express them. Read more
mon – fri 11–19
sat –sun 11–17
24.-26.12. and 1.1. More information
Helsinki City Museum exhibitions can be enjoyed free of charge.
Helsinki Bites. Image source: Helsinki City Museum
Löyly - un urban oasis
Hernesaarenranta 4, Helsinki
Löyly, an urban oasis, offers exceptional architecture in a unique location. The sauna is open to the public and has separate locker rooms and showers for men and women – however the sauna rooms and other facilities are open to everyone. Please remember that appropriate swimwear must be worn in the shared sauna room. If you would like to enjoy a private sauna visit, a smaller wood-fired sauna is available for exclusive hire. Read more
The admission fee for a two-hour sauna visit is EUR 19.00. The price includes a towel, seat liner and shampoo and shower gel. Additional hours are charged at EUR 10.00 per hour.
Fri-Sat 13-23 (morning sauna on Saturday at 8-10)
Sat 24.12. closed
Sun 25.12. closed
Image source: Löyly. Photo by Pekka Keränen
Allas Sea Pool
Katajanokanlaituri 2 A, Helsinki
Allas Sea Pool is a gardenlike oasis in the heart of Helsinki with a large pool area and magnificent saunas. In addition to swimming, bathing in the saunas and good food, Allas Sea Pool offers many options for wellness. Allas is full of events and things to do - good modern life right at the shore of the Baltic Sea! Read more
Swimming ticket 12€
Children’s ticket (children 3-11) 6€
Children 0-2 for free
Opening hours in December:
Exceptional opening hours:
24-25 December: 10am-8pm
26 December: 10am-9pm (Special event until 23:00)
31 December: 10am-1am
Image source: Allas Sea Pool
Mustikkamaanpolku 12, Helsinki
Helsinki Zoo is home to 150 animal species and almost 1000 plant species that show the diversity of nature. Helsinki Zoo is one of the few zoos located on an island. It is the perfect place to visit due to its natural environment, animals and history. The zoo was established already in 1889 and this makes it one of the oldest zoos in the world. Helsinki Zoo also participates in the work to protect the habitats in the original homes of the various species. Helsinki Zoo´s mission is to work towards preserving biodiversity. Read more
How to get there?
Bus number 16 runs from the Central Railway Station to Helsinki Zoo every day all year round, except on Christmas Eve. The platform at the Railway Station is no. 17. The estimated travel time is 21-23 minutes.
Every day at 10-16. Closed on Christmas Eve 24.12.
Please note that the ticket office and entrance closes one hour before the Zoo closes.
Child 4-17 years 6€
Child under 4 years Free of charge
Manta Christmas market
Manta Christmas market (Mantan markkinat) will be brightening the darkest time of the year at the beautiful Havis Amanda square from November 18th until January 9th. The market will be open from 10am to 8pm every day, except on Christmas Day, when we will remain closed.
There are about 20 stalls at the market, and they will be selling everything from Christmassy food and beverages to traditional Finnish bakery products, various delicacies and beautiful crafts - for yourself or for your loved ones!
Market Halls in Helsinki
Helsinki’s adjacent indoor market halls are homes of great food. Hakaniemi Market Hall, Hietalahti Market Hall and the Old Market Hall are full of friendly family enterprises selling unique local delicacies. Many loyal customers come in to town regularly from the countryside and even from overseas to stock up on items you won’t find anywhere else. Read more
TOP 5 CAFÉS IN HELSINKI
Pohjois-Esplanadi 37, Helsinki
Café Esplanad is well known for its central European atmosphere and style and especially for its huge cinnamon rolls (a Finnish sweet pastry called Korvapuusti) that are baked in the cafés own bakery. On the outdoor terrace one can also enjoy the sun. Restaurant Bistro in the back of the café offers inexpensive lunch.
Bulevardi 9, Helsinki
With a history dating back to the 1850s, Ekberg is considered a beloved veteran of the Finnish café and confectionary culture. The classic café Ekberg still serves the Napoleon cake and the Champagne Cork, favourite to many of its customers.
Café – Restaurant Ursula
Ehrenströmintie 3, Helsinki
Ursula was founded on the seaside the same year 1952 as the first Olympic Games took place in Helsinki. The profit of Ursula has been used since the beginning for the benefit of poor people.
Merikannontie 8, Helsinki
Outdoor café by the sea in Töölö with funky vintage interior and decoration.
Kluuvikatu 3, Helsinki
Karl Fazers French-Russian café&cake shop was opened in Kluuvikatu 17.9.1891. As years have passed by the building, designed by Juslen, has been renovated and the interior of the café has been changed many times. The design of the cupola salon has been designed by interior designor Kaisa Blomstedt, who's well acquainted especially with interiors in functionalistic style. A part of the café&cake shops goodies are still made in Kluuvikatu, and it is possible to see the confectioners at work behind glass.
Read more about Cafés in Helsinki
MUST SEE DESTINATIONS OUTSIDE HELSINKI
Flamingo Spa for adults & Aqua Park Flamingo
Tasetie 8, 01510 Vantaa
In the Spa, you can enjoy the relaxing warm water pool, the therapeutic mineral water pool, the six different saunas, the relaxation divans, and the treats at our pool side restaurant, Spa Café, which is licensed to serve alcohol. In addition to all this, the adult spa has over 20 luxurious treatment rooms where you can savor our Spa-treatments or luxuriate in an oriental steam sauna together with a group of friends or your beloved. Read more
Aqua Park Flamingo offers thrilling moments to all lovers of action- packed water games. Inside the water park, you will find different kinds of pools and slides, as well as our pool side restaurant, Spa Café, which is licensed to serve alcohol. In connection with the showers, there is also a Finnish sauna. Read more
Image source: Flamingo Spa
Tasetie 8, Vantaa / Piispansilta 11, Espoo
Pikseli is Scandinavia's first virtual reality park. Our great selection of games and short films takes you around the world, to the mountains and up to space. Experience everything that you have ever wanted – experiences and adventures are waiting for you in virtual reality! Read more
Heureka - The Finnish Science Centre
Kuninkaalantie 7, Vantaa
The Finnish Science Centre Heureka intro- duces the public to science and technology in an engaging and interactive way. Visitors can experience the joy of discovery through spectacular exhibitions, planetarium films and events. Read more
Fazer Experience Visitor Centre
Fazerintie 6, Vantaa
The journey of Karl Fazer’s French-Russian café started on Helsinki’s Kluuvikatu, and on 17 September, it will have been going on for 125 taste bud-inspiring years. To commemorate our anniversary, we opened a new, unique visitor centre in October that have a memorable exhibition, a Fazer Café and a store. Read more
Talmantie 341, Sipoo
Talma Ski is a high-class ski resort and snow playground for the whole family in Sipoo, near Helsinki. Alpine skiing, snowboarding, snow park, ski school and also Werneri Park for small children. Read more
Haltia - The Finnish Nature Centre
Nuuksiontie 84, Espoo
The Finnish Nature Centre Haltia presents all of Finland's nature under one roof. Haltia is also a modern and ecologically designed Conference and Event Center. The main exhibition will fascinate the visitor with its enthralling visualization of the Finnish nature. Read more
Haltia - The Finnish Nature Cantre, Espoo. Image source: LikeFinland.com
You can sense already at first sight that Fiskars Village enjoys a unique setting beyond compare. Fiskars was built on the banks of the river and architecturally is completely unlike other places in Finland. Forget the rush of everyday life as you let the verdant surroundings inspire you. Read more
Hållsnäsintie 89, Raseborg
Svartå Manor is one of the most precious manor houses in Finland with a history of more than two hundred years. The Manor is situated about 80km west of Helsinki along the Finnish coast. Today it is a museum and is opening its doors to the public with guided tours. Read more
Tytyri Mine Experience
Kuilukatu 42, Lohja
The Tytyri Mine Experience is a unique and multi-faceted travel destination 110 metres below ground level, combining the Nordkalk mining industry, Kone’s top-class technological development, and the adventure and thrills of a travel destination. Read more
My Helsinki - Your local guide to the best of Helsinki
What does Helsinki look like? How does it feel? Finnish photographer Jussi Hellsten in co-operation with Visit Helsinki has captured local moments in Helsinki for one year.
Discover the best kept secrets and places where you can enjoy the most genuine atmosphere as recommended by the locals themselves.
Helsinki Region Journey Planner
Hel Yeah! Food Helsinki brochure (including map)
Sources used in this article: Visit Helsinki, MyHelsinki, Suomenlinna, Flamingo Spa, Löyly, Allas Sea Pool, Helsinki City Museum, Ice Park, Haltia, Fazer, Heureka, Korkeasaari Zoo, Megazone, Exit Room Helsinki and Prison Island -websites.
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