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Turku is a city on the southwest coast of Finland at the mouth of the Aura River, in the region of Southwest Finland. Turku, as a town, was settled during the 13th century and founded most likely at the end of the 13th century, making it the oldest city in Finland. It quickly became the most important city in Finland, a status it retained for hundreds of years. After Finland became part of the Russian Empire (1809) and the capital of the Grand Duchy of Finland was moved to Helsinki(1812), Turku continued to be the most populous city in Finland until the end of the 1840s, and it remains a regional capital and an important business and cultural center.
Because of its long history, it has been the site of many important events, and has extensively influenced Finnish history. Along with Tallinn, the capital city of Estonia, Turku was designated the European Capital of Culture for 2011. In 1996, it was declared the official Christmas City of Finland.
Due to its location, Turku is a notable commercial and passenger seaport with over three million passengers traveling through the Port of Turku each year to Stockholm and Mariehamn.
As of 30 September 2014, the population of Turku was 183,811, making it the sixth largest city in Finland. As of 31 August 2008, there were 303,492 inhabitants living in the Turku sub-region, ranking it as the third largest urban area in Finland after the Greater Helsinki area and Tampere sub-region. The city is officially bilingual as 5.2 percent of its population identify Swedish as a mother-tongue.
|POPULATION :||• City 186,030|
• Urban 252,468
• Metro 315 751
|TIME ZONE :||• Time zone EET (UTC+2)|
• Summer (DST) EEST (UTC+3)
|LANGUAGE :||• Finnish (official)|
• Swedish (official)
|AREA :||• City 306.37 km2 (118.29 sq mi)|
• Land 245.67 km2 (94.85 sq mi)
• Water 60.7 km2 (23.4 sq mi)
• Urban 252.65 km2 (97.55 sq mi)
• Metro 2,331.1 km2 (900.0 sq mi)
|COORDINATES :||60°27′N 022°16′E|
|SEX RATIO :||• Male: 49.1%|
• Female: 50.9%
|ETHNIC :||• Finnish 88.1% |
• Swedish 5.2%
• Others 6.7%
|AREA CODE :||2|
|POSTAL CODE :||20000–20960|
|DIALING CODE :||+358 2|
Turku (Swedish: Åbo) is the oldest city and former capital of Finland. It was settled during the 13th century, making it one of the only few – and by far the largest – medieval cities in Finland. Turku is the cradle of Finnish culture, since over the years it has played an important role as the gateway to Finland for international influence.
Bisecting Turku city centre, the river Aura is the heart and soul of the city: this is where Turku was born and a large part of city life – museums, sights, restaurants and cafés – still concentrates around the banks of the river. The river banks, together with the island of Ruissalo with its oak forests and 19th century villas, form a national urban park allowing for a pleasant stroll from, say, the national shrine of Finland, the Turku Cathedral, to the Turku Castle, which used to house Swedish Kings. Turku is at its best in summertime, when it hosts a great number of festivals, including rock festivals, chamber music festivals and a medieval fair.
In addition to the cultural sights and museums, Turku attracts visitors due to the Archipelago Sea, which stretches all the way from Turku to Åland and on to Stockholm, forming the largest archipelago in the world by the number of islands and islets.
Turku is Finland’s oldest city and one of the oldest in the entire Nordic region. The city came into existence at Koroinen on the banks of river Aura, a few kilometres north from the Turku market square. Trading took place on this historic site as early as in the 1150s, and in 1229, the bishopric was transferred there as well. Aura river valley had already been a prosperous and relatively densely populated area since the Iron Age. The Finnish name, Turku, is an archaic Russian word for 'marketplace' – the city's market has long been one of the largest and finest on the south coast. The etymology of the Swedish name Åbo is unclear.
The year 1229 is regarded as the year in which the City of Turku was founded. In recent years, excavations in different parts of the city centre have provided more light on the city's history. The construction of Turku Castle began in the 1280s, the Dominican monastery of St. Olof was being built on Samppalinna Hill and Turku Cathedral was consecrated in the year 1300. From this point on, the city held an important position in the Swedish state and it had staple town charter (the right to conduct foreign trade), assuring that trading was brisk. The German bourgeoisie of Turku held a major role in the early development of the city, and Turku had a community that was part of the Hanseatic League, which dominated trade along the coasts of Northern Europe.
During Swedish rule, Turku was the largest and most important city of its region, as well as being a major city of the Swedish Kingdom. Queen Christina of Sweden founded the first university of Finland in Turku in 1640. At that point it was only Sweden's third university following Uppsala University and the Academia Gustaviana in Tartu. Turku remained the Finnish capital until the year 1812. Russia, after overtaking Finland from Sweden 1809, moved the capital to Helsinki, which was closer to Russia and farther from Sweden. Turku still remained Finland's largest city until the end of the 1840s, but its ambitions were dealt a death blow in 1827, when a raging fire destroyed most of the city. "Turun palo" is still the largest urban fire in the history of the Nordic countries. The city was almost completely destroyed, and the rest of the major institutions with the exception of the archbishop's seat were moved to Helsinki. The burnt city needed an altogether new town plan, which was drawn up by German architect Carl Ludvig Engel the following year.
In 2011 Turku was the European Capital of Culture along with Tallinn, the capital of Estonia. Afterwards Turku has seen a huge boost in both domestic and foreign visitors.
Turku's official tourist agency is Turku Touring
- Visit Turku, Aurakatu 4 (Centre of Turku next to the City Hall), , fax: , e-mail: [email protected]. Sep-Mar M-Su 10AM-3PM; Apr–Sep M-F 8:30AM-6PM, Sa-Su 10AM-3PM;. Turku Touring's office offers tourists and visitors alike, advice, souvenirs, bicycle hire, sight-seeing tours, group outings and more.
Turku, as the rest of Finland, has four distinct seasons. Situated by the Baltic Sea and sheltered by the islands of the Archipelago Sea, Turku has a humid continental climate. Like much of southern Finland, the city experiences warm summers, with temperatures ranging up to 30°C (85 °F), and winters with frequent snowfall and temperatures down to about -25°C (-15 °F). The best time to visit is definitely the warm period from late May to early September. If visiting in wintertime and meeting slush, ride somewhat more inland (a local bus can get you far enough) and you will probably find the snow.
Current weather forecasts can be checked at the Finnish Meteorological Institute website.
|Daily highs (°C)||-2||-2||2||9||16||20||22||21||15||9||3||0|
|Nightly lows (°C)||-7||-8||-5||0||5||9||13||12||7||3||-2||-5|
Located at the mouth of the Aura river in the southwestern corner of Finland, Turku covers an area of 245 square kilometres (95 sq mi) of land, spread over both banks of the river. The eastern side, where the Cathedral of Turku is located, is popularly referred to as täl pual jokke ("this side of the river"), while the western side is referred to as tois pual jokke ("the other side of the river"). The city center is located close to the river mouth, on both sides of the river, though development has recently been expanding westward.
There are ten bridges over the Aura river in Turku. The oldest of the current bridges isAuransilta, which was constructed in 1904. The newest bridge is Kirjastosilta ('library bridge'), a pedestrian-only bridge built in 2013. The Föri, a small ferry that transports pedestrians and bicycles across the river without payment, is a well known feature of the city.
With a population of approximately 300,000 , the Turku Region(LAU 1) is the third largest urban region in Finland, after Greater Helsinki and the area around Tampere. The region includes, in addition to the city itself the following municipalities: Askainen, Kaarina, Lemu, Lieto, Masku, Merimasku,Mynämäki, Naantali, Nousiainen, Paimio, Piikkiö, Raisio, Rusko, Rymättylä,Sauvo, Vahto, and Velkua.
A more exclusive definition for the urban area is the city region of Turku with a population around 235,000 consisting of four major municipalities Kaarina, Raisio, Naantali, and Turku.
The business district in the city's economy is centred on the Port of Turku and other service-oriented industries. The city is also a renowned high-tech centre – the Turku Science Park area in Kupittaa hosts over 300 companies from the fields of biotechnology and information technology, as well as several institutions of higher learning that work in closely with the business sector. This cooperative element is seen as a particularly important factor with regards to the city's expected future economic development, as outlined in the Turku Strategy that is published annually by the city council. At least the following major Finnish companies have their corporate headquarters in Turku: HKScan and Hesburger. Other major companies which have operations in Turku include Bayer, Fläkt Woods, Meyer Werft, Orion Corporation and Wärtsilä.
As of 2007, the city's unemployment rate is 9.4%. The problem of unemployment is however troublesome in the districts of Pansio, Lauste, and Varissuo, where it hovers at around 16%.
The city is divided into 78 districts and nine wards that do not function as local government units. There are, however, some projects that are based on the district divisions, particularly in the eastern part of the city, where unemployment is high in certain areas. The largest populated districts are Varissuo and Runosmäki. By area, however, Kakskerta and Paattinen, formed from former municipalities that were annexed to the city proper in the mid-20th century, constitute the largest districts.
As many of the small neighbouring municipalities from the north and south of the city were annexed during the mid-20th century, Turku is today shaped like an elongated pear. The city centre and most of the suburban areas lie in the middle, separated from the less densely populated northern rural areas by the Turku bypass, that forms part of European route E18. Islands such as Ruissalo,Hirvensalo and Kakskerta, forming the southern part of the city, are also sparsely populated and mostly contain summer residences, with the exception of some districts in Hirvensalo which are currently growing into upper-middle-classsuburbs.
Opened already in 2003, SparkNet is the largest WiFi network in Finland and gives you seamless access to wireless internet in your Home, Office and on the go. You can use it with your phone, laptop or PDA. Its free to all the personnel of the city of Turku as well as the students of the schools and universities in the city. Others can purchase the connection from SparkNet's website.
In addition to the SparkNet much of Turku is blanketed with wifi ("wlan") hotspots. Most cafes and bars offer wireless internet connection without requiring a person to be a paying customer. Some restaurants will do this as well, but may insist that you purchase something.
The city main library offers public computers with Internet access. Mostly you will find a free one at least for quickly checking e-mail.
Prices in Turku
MARKET / SUPERMARKET
|Beer (domestic)||0.5 l||€2.60|
|Bottle of Wine||1 bottle||€9.00|
|Dinner (Low-range)||for 2||€35.00|
|Dinner (Mid-range)||for 2||€60.00|
|Dinner (High-range)||for 2||€80.00|
|Mac Meal or similar||1 meal||€7.50|
|Beer (Imported)||0.33 l||€5.00|
|Beer (domestic)||0.5 l||€5.00|
|Coctail drink||1 drink||€1.70|
|Men’s Haircut||1 haircut||€|
|Mobile (prepaid)||1 min.||€0.07|
|Pack of Marlboro||1 pack||€5.90|
|Toilet paper||4 rolls||€1.80|
CLOTHES / SHOES
|Jeans (Levis 501 or similar)||1||€87.00|
|Dress summer (Zara, H&M)||1||€37.00|
|Sport shoes (Nike, Adidas)||1||€86.00|
|Local Transport||1 ticket||€3.00|
84 € per day
Estimated cost per 1 day including:
- meals in cheap restaurant
- public transport
- cheap hotel
270 € per day
Estimated cost per 1 day including:
- mid-range meals and drinks
Transportation - Get In
Turku Airport (TKU)
Turku Airport (IATA: TKU) is a compact airport with 2 terminals for check-in located 8 km north of the city centre.
The national carrier of Finland, Finnair has a connection between Turku and Helsinki-Vantaa International Airport every few hours. Scandinavian Airlines services Turku from Stockholm and Kittilä. AirBaltic has a connection between Turku and Riga. All these carriers use Turku Airport's terminal number 1.
Hungarian low-cost carrier Wizz Air serves Turku from Gdańsk and uses terminal 2 at the airport.
Transport to/from Turku Airport
Bus line 1 departs from the airport every 20 minutes and goes via the market square in the heart of the city to the Port of Turku. Several hotels happen to be along the route. Tickets are available on board for €3/1.50 (free transfers for two hours). The line operates from 05:20 AM to 00:50 AM. Days' last bus has flexible time schedule for passengers' convenience.
Helsinki-Vantaa Airport (HEL)
Turku is well connected domestically, but sparsely connected internationally. That's why one of your options is to fly to the internationally well connected Helsinki-Vantaa International Airport (IATA: HEL). Turku is 166 km away from Helsinki and it takes around 1 hour and 40 minutes to get from Helsinki to Turku by the Finnish national road 1 (E18).
There is an almost hourly ExpressBus coach connection from Helsinki-Vantaa to Turku bus station operated by Pohjolan Liikenne and Vainio, departing from platform 13 in front of the international flights terminal.
The service operates round the clock, although there may be a gap of two hours between services in the small hours of the night. The trip takes between 2 h 15 min and 2 h 55 min, depending on whether the service calls in towns on the way. In some cases, there is a change of coach at Lommila, but it is well co-ordinated and easy.
VR, the state-owned railway company, operates all the domestic routes as well as the connections to Viborg, Saint Petersburg and Moscow in Russia. Turku has three VR operated Railway stations: the Central railway station ("Turku", service M-F 08:30–17:00, Sa 8:30–15:30) on the northern edge of Turku's central business district, Kupittaa railway station ("Kupittaa") in the eastern part of the city and Turku harbour railway stop ("Turku satama") in Turku harbour on the western edge of Turku centre. Trains arriving from the direction of Helsinki first stop at Kupittaa and then arrive at the central station, while trains from Tampere only stop at the central station. Some of the trains continue onward to the harbour, which is handy if you are connecting to a passenger ferry towards Stockholm or Mariehamn. Kupittaa has limited service (tickets bough in advance, from a machine or on board), the harbour none. From the central station you can purchase all domestic train tickets and train tickets from Finland to Saint Petersburg, Moscow, Viborg and InterRail cards to Europe.
Links between Turku and the rest of the country are frequent and excellent, although not hourly anymore. There are connections to Helsinki (travel time 1:58) and Tampere (1:45), onward to such domestic cities as Jyväskylä (3:36), Kuopio(05:32) and Oulu (7:04). Onward from Helsinki you can also reach Saint Petersburg (5:36) and Moscow (15:19). There is also an overnight car and sleeper train connection to Rovaniemi in Lapland (9:51–14:40).
Finland is not easy to get to by train from most of Europe, since the Baltic Sea is between Finland and the south-western part of the continent. If you want to travel by train to Turku from abroad, except Russia, you have to first travel to Stockholm, and take a ferry cruise from there. This can be a scenic and environmental friendly option, and if you travel by rail otherwise, most of the European railway companies offer discounts for the ferry connection.
Matkahuolto operates the Turku bus station, where long-distance national and international buses usually terminate. The station is located at the northern edge of the city centre within walking distance from the central railway station (1km) and Kauppatori (800m). The bus station also has good local and regional bus connections, whereas Kauppatori is the hub for local buses. Some bus lines arriving at the station continue to the Port of Turku, if needed. If going there, tell that when buying your ticket and when boarding.
Normal bus connections from Kamppi in Helsinki leave for Turku more or less every half an hour during the day and every hour or two during the night. All these connections are either express or special express (there are also a few "regular" connections, if you search for them). Tickets cost around €30 (round trip around €55) for adults, around €20 for children aged 12–16, €15 for children aged 4–11 and Finnish students (ISIC not accepted). Children under the age of four travel for free.
Also Onnibus and Åbus (now owned by Onnibus) have connections between Helsinki and Turku. Onnibus proper stops at Posankka/Caribia by the student village, just north of the centre (good local bus connections to Kauppatori), Åbus stops by the city hall by the Aura bridge near Kauppatori and at Kupittaa. Neither stops at the bus station. Tickets to these buses vary in price, cheapest well in advance on the Internet, €15–20 if bought when boarding (with busy services often sold out).
There is a line from Tampere hourly in daytime, the last arriving 21:30, from Pori about hourly and from Vaasa about every two hours, the last arriving 22:15.
Turku is well connected by roads to other parts of Finland. Main routes are highways 1 (E18) from Helsinki, 8 (E8) from Pori, 9 (E63) from Tampere, Jyväkylä and Kuopio, and 10 from Hämeenlinna. Highway 40 is also very important, as it circulates Turku. Highway 1 is a high-speed controlled-access highway all the way to Helsinki. Beginning of highway 8 as well as highway 9 are also high-speed highways. Helsinki can be reached by the highway in around 1 hour and 20 minutes during the summer and 1 hour 40 minutes in winter. The old road from Helsinki, regional road 110, is somewhat slower but allows your seeing more of the landscape.
From Sweden, use the ferries, which all take cars. From Åland, you can either take one of those, or use the ferries connecting islands of Åland and the Archipelago Sea with each other and with the mainland. Using the small ferries is more complicated and possibly more expensive, but can be rewarding.
There are a few scenic roads around Turku as well:
- The partly medieval King's Road (Kuninkaantie) leads from Turku all the way to the eastern border of Finland. It is an old mailing route in Northern Europe dating back to the 14th century, starting from Bergen in Norway on the Atlantic coast, passing through the capitals of Norway and Sweden (Oslo and Stockholm), crossing the Archipelago Sea to Turku and ending up in Vyborg in Russia. The modern tourist route is also extended all the way to Saint Petersburg. You can see lots of scenic medieval churches, museums and old villages along the road.
- The Ox Road of Häme (Hämeen Härkätie) leads from Turku to Hämeenlinna and is the most important road of early Finnish history. The route was once used by merchants, pilgrims, and kings. Along the route, with small detours, you will find a splendid array of interesting sites, such as museums, churches and shopping spots. If you want to really experience a journey in time, you can stay at an old manor house or inn along the way.
- The Archipelago Trail (also called The Archipelago Ring Road, Saariston Rengastie, Skärgårdens ringväg) allows travellers to access the archipelago without a boat of their own – and without backtracking. The circular route can be taken clockwise or counter clockwise, starting from Turku, and continuing through rural archipelago villages and astonishing Baltic Sea sceneries. The trail is especially popular among cyclists. Off season some ferries are unavailable; in winter you may not be able to complete the circle. Coming from Åland you can use a smaller ferry from Långnäs to Korpo and continue from there by the Archipelago trail (all year).
Perhaps the most scenic way to get to Turku is by taking a passenger ferry across the Baltic Sea, from Stockholm or from Kapellskär, Norrtälje, in Sweden. The Port of Turku is situated next to Turku Castle and is easily accessible on bus line 1, which travels between the port and the airport via the centre. The port also has its own railway and bus station, and some trains and buses depart at the port. With light luggage, strolling along the river to the centre (3 km to Kauppatori, buses within reach all the time) can be a nice option.
The two biggest ferry lines are the Finnish Viking Line and the now Estonian TallinkSilja. Both operate two departures each day from Stockholm via Åland: one in the morning, arriving in the evening, and one in the evening, arriving in the morning. For a scenic view, and less expensive prices, a morning departure is advisable. Going in the night, you avoid one night at a hotel, but the effective sleeping time is quite short, as you are probably waked up for cleaning of the cabin well before arrival. Evening departures provide adequate night club activities on board if you want to cut loose before arriving. All ferries between Turku and Stockholm make a brief stop in Åland, in either Mariehamn or Långnäs. Due to this stop, plus a Finnish-demanded exception to European Union rules, passengers can make purchases on the ferries tax-freely.
For those with vehicles (e.g. a car or bikes) there are also more quiet ropax ferries from Kapellskär (either directly or via Långnäs) to Naantali outside Turku, by Finnlines. As for Viking and Silja, looking for special offers may save a lot of money.
Many people also from other regions, including Helsinki, spend their summer vacation yachting around the Archipelago Sea surrounding Turku. The Sea of Åland and the Gulf of Finland, coming from Sweden and Estonia respectively, can easily be crossed in a day, while a voyage directly from Gotland requires overnight sailing. There is an abundance of minor guest harbours on the remaining distance through the archipelago. Turku Guest Harbour is on the Aura river halfway between the port and Kauppatori, while Turku Yacht Club's Guest Harbour and Ruissalo Marina are situated on the scenic island of Ruissalo, with buses to the city centre once an hour or half an hour in daytime. All have fuel stations.
- Turku Guest Harbour, Läntinen Rantakatu 57, .City guest harbour, in the centre. Good services. May be full in peek season. For size over 15m×5.2m, check special arrangements. €27–43; in season, beam<3m, without reservation: €31.
- TPS Guest Harbour, Pursiseuranranta 30, .Marina of one of the local yacht clubs. On the island Ruissalo, a 20 minutes bus ride from the centre. €20.
- Ruissalo Marina, Ruissalon puistotie 618, . By the Ruissalon Kylpylä spa hotel near the western end of the island, a 25 minutes bus ride from the centre. Bikes for rent. €28.
Transportation - Get Around
Turku has an excellent public transportation system, and its buses reach every corner of the city. The hub for the local bus traffic is the market square,Kauppatori (Swedish: Salutorget), which is at the heart of the city's central business district. Most main sights are situated within walking distance from there. A bike is the quickest way to get around and bikeways are generally good except in the absolute centre (try a nice trip along the river).
The vast majority of the city's sights are within a kilometre or two from Kauppatori. The river Aura passes through the centre, and its banks are very popular, allowing for a pleasant stroll from, say, the national shrine of Finland, the Turku Cathedral, to the Turku Castle, which used to house Swedish Kings – or upstream to experience some countryside.
Turku Touring, the official tourist agency of the city, offers different walking tours for visitors. Among them are the following:
- Turku Top 3 tour, where you get to see the three main sights of Turku: Turku Cathedral, Turku Castle and the Handicrafts museum
- The Seven bridges tour along Aura river banks. On the tour visitors will walk over and under Turku’s bridges to learn about their past and present
- Mysterious Turku, which takes visitors to places which they would not probably find by themselves
- Aalto and Bryggman Architecture tour familiarizes visitors to with the works of two great modern Finnish architects – Alvar Aalto and Erik Bryggman
- A design tour which focuses on the design, vintage and handicrafts shops around Turku
There are also leaflets with self guided walking tours, such as Sculpture walk, ArchitecTour, Romantic Turku and Stepping it up.
The fastest and most flexible way of seeing Turku is on a bike. There are good bike paths mostly as needed, although at the very heart of the city you might have to avoid the busiest streets or get off the bike, unless sufficiently experienced (the best routes may not be obvious). In the winter bikeways and roads are not always maintained sufficiently for easy (in the centre: safe) biking, but local hardcore cyclists are biking throughout the year.
For getting out of the city, bikes can be loaded on the local buses (including those in the Föli regional cooperation) for €6 at the driver's discretion, i.e. probably when there are few passengers. Cost on coaches varies by company, probably about the price of a children's ticket for longer voyages.
The city tourist office can suggest cycling routes and publishes an excellent free bike route map of the city and surrounding towns. They also rent bikes (20 €/day) as do e.g. Polkupyörävuokraamo in the harbour (phone +358 40-372-5310, €12/day, €59/week) or the Tammenterho visitor centre in Ruissalo (€5/four hours or €7/day).
The city library has bikes to be borrowed, for quickly getting around the city. The museums have a scheme of their own, providing bikes for getting from one museum to the next. Both these are experiments, launched 2016, check details.
From July 2014 tickets are harmonized with some of the surrounding municipalities: Raisio, Naantali, Kaarina,Rusko and Lieto, as the "Föli" cooperation. Tickets are handled as all buses in the area were local. Some routes and bus numbers changed at the same time (if your map may be old, look for lines 7 and 11: if you find the former, the map is new, if the latter, it is too old).
Information about local buses can be found at the Föli pages. You can use the Föli route planner to seek local bus routes between given locations and addresses. The route planner has several map views (e.g. one showing the current locations of buses) and tailored timetable views (such as for a specific stop).
Almost every bus stops at Kauppatori, and bus lines radiate outwards from it. There are few 'circle lines', so usually if you need to transfer, you will need to take one bus to Kauppatori, then transfer there to the bus taking you to your final destination. Buses generally go in two directions from Kauppatori, so make sure that you are taking the correct numbered bus in the correct direction as well.
Destinations are mentioned in Finnish on some stops (such as at the market square) and on most buses, but you should note the numbers of the lines you intend to use. If going towards Kauppatori it is mostly enough to know on what side of the street to stand.
Buses passing the municipality border mostly have 3-digit numbers (notable exceptions lines 6 and 7). Buses not reaching Turku (often minibuses) have their number prefixed with a letter such as L for Lieto – but "P" means Turku lines meant primary for seniors. There are some quirks, e.g. regional buses not primarily coordinated through Föli use stops for coaches. Buses with destinations outside the Föli area may be part of the cooperation inside it, but not otherwise (notably 7xx and 8xx via Kaarina).
A single ticket is €3 (children 7–14: 1.50), and is valid for unlimited transfers within two hours of the ticket's purchase. In the night (23:00–04:00) tickets cost €1 more. Notes of more than €20 are not always accepted. Persons in wheelchair and the person assisting travel for free, as does a person with an infant or toddler in a baby carriage (use the middle door; there is usually sufficient space).
If you intend to take the bus more than twice a day (read: in more than two two-hours periods), it becomes economical to ask the bus driver for a 24 hour ticket, priced €7.50. The equivalent, for the same price, can be bought by sending an SMS of "LIPPU24" to 169003 (not by prepaid SIM:s, as it is invoiced later). The bus office at Kauppatori and the tourist office sell cards for one day and more, costing €7 for the first day, €3 for each additional day up to a week, €30 for two weeks and €5 + €52 per thirty days (€20 for ten additional days). Those staying longer or travelling as a group may want to check other options also, e.g. "value cards", with which trips cost €2.20/1.20, plus €1 in the night; a value card is economical for 3 adults doing 3 trips or 3 minors doing 6 trips (both €5+20; children using a card for adults pay full price). For groups of more than three, ask for a group card. Show the card once for each person the first time, once for all the group at "transfers". The tourist office sells Turku Cards (of 24h and 48h varieties) which, as well as providing free admission to most sights, also provides you free bus rides for the validity period.
Once upon the time modifier letters (as in 12A and 12B) got removed and numbers changed (in this case to 32 and 42). The lines are ordered according to these associations: 1, 2, 2A, 3, 30, 4, ... Often the associated lines behave the same most of the route, but have different destinations in one end. In a few cases the destination varies without any change in line number (e.g. 13 going to Impivaara, "uimahalli", half of the time), usually with a sign in the front window of the bus. The corresponding notes in the timetable are often incomprehensible without some understanding of the individual lines, but usually you know when you need to understand them and can ignore them otherwise. The worst trap is some extra rush hour buses on long lines stopping prematurely: check that you get the one going all the way to your stop.
Timetable booklets give starting times at the ends of the route and at Kauppatori, and an estimated duration of the trip to or from Kauppatori. Some lines are (only or additionally) listed in groups, with information for common (possibly intermediate) destinations. The timetables at major stops instead give the estimated passing time of the bus (and line number, as lines are grouped together). A timetable booklet can be bought from the bus office at Kauppatori (€1). It includes a miniature route map. A decent map is for sale separately (€2; not including the neighbouring towns, nor the extreme points of Turku). School buses, night lines, rush hour lines and lines serving the elderly, and the quirks of these, are partly handled in their own maps, chapters and booklets, although tickets are valid as usual.
Some interesting or useful lines include:
Seaport - Kauppatori - Airport The line to use to and from the airport and seaport. Departs from the airport and seaport every 20 mins during the weekdays and Saturdays, twice an hour on Sundays. Much cheaper than taking a cab. Stops at, e.g., the Bus Station in the center of Turku before continuing on towards airport.
Kauppatori - Railway station - Ruissalo The bus route to large natural reserve of Ruissalo island.
Saramäki - Oriketo - Kauppatori - Erikvalla / Kakskerta Bus lines which go to islands of Kakskerta and Satava, which have beautiful archipelago nature to enjoy.
Kauppatori - Paattinen - Tortinmäki Long countryside route which you can ride at no more cost than ordinary city bus ticket.
Taxis are abundant and easily available throughout the city and they are of high standard. They are pricey though, and there are three crunch times when they might be problematic: the morning and evening ferry departure times (particularly in summer), around 8AM and 9PM, and the bar closing times (particularly on weekends) around 4AM.
You can recognize a free taxi in dark, since the taxi sign on the top will have its light on. Hailing taxis on the street is rare, however, and may not even work; calling the central dispatch is the common method. There is a central dispatch for all Turku taxis at phone number +358 2 10041, and bookings can be made in advance for an extra charge (€7), though more than one day in advance is unnecessary. Advance bookings less than 30 min before desired departure time are not accepted — in that case, just phone the dispatch when you are ready to go. Outside the worst rush hours, a taxi usually takes no more than 5 minutes to arrive. If you are out late at night, plan ahead. During weekend bar closing hours, wait times in excess of an hour are not unheard of.
A normal taxi will carry 4 people and a moderate amount of luggage. For significant amounts of luggage, you may want to order a "farmari" taxi, an estate/wagon car with a roomier luggage compartment. There is also a third common type of taxi available, the tilataksi, a van which will comfortably carry about 8 people (many also equipped for wheelchairs). The fares are the same, but you might have to wait longer.
Taxis charge a base fare of €5.90 or 9.00 (daytime in the week respectively nights, Sundays and holidays), about €1.50–2.15 per kilometre, depending on amount of passengers (more passengers, higher mileage charge) and about €0.72 per minute waiting time. Quick 1–3 km trips will cost in the €8–15 vicinity. All taxis accept major international credit cards. Generally you can trust taxis with both prices and the route taken. Because of the high flag-fall charge, they are better off having many trips and will prefer the quickest route. At the railway station and similar places there may also be a "Kimppataxi" offering rides together with strangers (cf minivans in some countries), which in some cases is considerably cheaper.
Föri city ferry shuttles people and their bikes (no cars allowed) across the Aura River every day from 6:15AM to 9PM, or until 11PM in summer. Föri has served the Aura River for over a hundred years, first taking passengers in 1904. Beloved by Turku citizens, the little orange ferry covers a grand distance of 78 meters and takes about a minute and a half. A running local gag is to ask visitors if they have taken the trip from Turku across to Åbo on the Föri yet; actually, both sides of the river are called the same, Åbo is just the Swedish name. Incidentally, the name comes from the Swedish färja and is related to the English word "ferry".
Jakke Jokilautta (River ferry Jakke) is a café ferry going up and down the river all the way from the castle to the cathedral. Along the way you can enjoy refreshments and the wonderful views of the city. Some of the cruises are also guided. There are five stops along the river for the ferry: Tintå restaurant, Pharmacy museum, Esposito, Turku guest harbour and Crichton street. The ferry always stops at the Pharmacy museum and Crichton street, and if there are people waiting for the ferry, also on the other stops. Entering the ferry costs €5 for adults and €2 for children (aged 3 to 14). Children under 3 year old can enter for free, and there's also an option to buy a 2 parent plus 2 children family ticket for €12.
There are a number of cruises in and tour boat connections to the archipelago, e.g. to the island Vepsä , a recreational area of the city (1–2 hours), to Utö in the very outskirts of the Archipelago Sea (5 hours; twice a week, overnight stay at the island necessary due to the distance) or to nearby Naantali with the Moomin world, Kultaranta (the summer residence of the President of Finland) and a nice wooden old town. Most ferries taking passengers to the archipelago can be found between Martinsilta bridge and Föri. Some of the tours are available only in summertime, others continue as long as ice conditions permit.
On your way out from the city you can see the old ships by Forum Marinum, Turku castle, the harbour and Pikisaari and Ruissalo with their old charming villas, before you reach the open Airisto.
s/s Ukkopekka is a family-owned steamship, which takes passengers through the archipelago from Turku to Naantali (day cruises) and to the island of Loistokari (evening cruises) in the summer season. The pier is just downstream of the Martinsilta bridge.
m/s Rudolfina takes you on a relaxing cruise. On evening cruises, to crown it all, you can see Naantali with it´s charming boulevard by the sea and Kultaranta. Eat, drink, meet friends and let your mind wonder off in the beautiful scenery.
m/s Lily. With Lily you can depart for a two-hour cruise in the Airisto or spend the entire summer's day on the Vepsä island. The voyage is an hour each way. There is a café on board. The main deck consist of a bright 100-person lounge, with a 40-seater cabinet downstairs and a large deck and sun terrace upstairs.
Jale Line offers several scheduled routes and charter cruises in the archipelago of Turku. m/s Ruissalo operates from River Aura to Ruissalo right next to Turku. m/s Autere makes daily cruises between 1st of July and 11th of August from Kaarina (from 1st to 14th of July) and from Turku (between 15th of July and 11th of August) to the islands of Själö (Seili) and Nagu Storlandet (Nauvo) at the heart of the Archipelago Sea.
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There are plenty of opportunities to part with your cash in Turku. The city centre is full of major retail and independent shops. Shopping in Turku is generally more affordable than in Helsinki, but, as with the rest of Finland, it is by no means cheap by international standards. The numerous second-hand and antique stores represent a unique shopping alternative.
- Market Square (Kauppatori).Weekdays 7AM–6PM, Sat 7AM–3PM; best before 2PM. The centrepoint of Turku's western city centre is, without a doubt, the Market Square. In the summer we wholeheartedly recommend having a coffee on the square with the locals or buying groceries from the several local producers who have stalls on the market. In the 1800s the current market square was known as Uusitori ("New Square"), as opposed to the main market square of its time, the Old Great Square, as it is known today. Today, the market square is a popular shopping and meeting place and an authentic tourist attraction. Turku mass transit bus stops are located around the square, as are numerous city businesses. On one side of the square, you'll see the Hansa shopping centre, and exactly opposite it, the venerable Wiklund department store. The legendary hotel Hamburger Börs stands at attention on the third side and last, but not least, the Turku Orthodox Church fills out the final quarter.
- Turku Market Hall (Kauppahalli), Eerikinkatu 16 (50 metres from Kauppatori along the Eerikinkatu towards harbor), . Mon–Fri 8AM–6PM, Sat 8AM–4PM. Completed in 1896, the Turku Market Hall brings a delightful atmosphere reminiscent of times gone by. The old and new meet in perfect harmony in the corridors. The Market Hall, which extends the length of an entire block, was designed by architect Gustaf Nyström. There are traditional meat and fish counters, delicatessen and speciality shops, bread, milk and cheese shops as well as restaurants and cafés. Stop by the fish shop S. Wallin, try some reindeer meat from Poronlihan erikoisliike Heinonen or buy some cheese at Juustopuoti. Have a coffee and cake in Aschan Blue Train café or shop for souvenirs at the nostalgic Wanha Turku Kauppa (Old Turku Store). There is also a great lunch court at the market hall, where you can choose to eat either ethnic or domestic food.
- Hansa Shopping Centre(Kauppakeskus Hansa or Hansakortteli), Yliopistonkatu 20 (Adjacent to the main Market Square). Mon–Fri 7AM–9:30PM, Sat 7:30AM–7PM, Sun 10AM–7PM. More than 150 shops found under one roof, Turku’s oldest and largest shopping centre offers excellent shopping with a number of specialist shops and a first class department store. You'll also find a number of cafés, restaurants and a theatre and services for even the most discerning of tastes.
- KOP-Kolmio (KOP-Triangle), Aurakatu 8, . Mon–Fri 10AM–8PM, Sat 10AM–6PM, Sun 12AM–4PM. KOP-Kolmio is a smaller shopping centre situated next to the Market Square and the larger Hansa Shopping Centre. It offers mostly fashion stores and few cosy cafes. The building is mostly home to companies that are on the upper floors of the building, including the local branch of Yleisradio (YLE), Finland's national television company.
- Skanssi Shopping Center (Kauppakeskus Skanssi), Skanssinkatu 10, . Weekdays 8AM–9PM, Sat 8AM–6PM, Sun 12AM–6PM. 20 minutes from the city centre with bus line 9 you will find Skanssi shopping centre. Its is like a charming little city just 4 km from downtown Turku. Skanssi has excellent connections and it is easy to get there also by car, bicycle, or even on foot. Skanssi is home to 90 special stores, Hypermarket, a wide variety of cafés and restaurants, an indoor playground and excellent parking facilities – not to mention the improved dog sitting service. The architecture pays tribute to the historical style and emulates a small European city, making Skanssi a pleasant and enjoyable place to meet friends and spend time.
- Shopping Centre Mylly (Kauppakeskus Mylly), Myllynkatu 1–99, Raisio.Weekdays 10AM–9PM, Sat 9AM–6PM, Sun 12AM–6PM. Only ten minutes' drive from downtown Turku on the E18 highway, shopping centre Mylly is situated in the neighbouring town Raisio. Bus lines 220, 221, 300 (30–40min). With plenty of parking you will find a variety of services, a hundred shops as well as cafés and restaurants. For the smallest members of the family, Mylly offers a free play area and childcare points. All Mylly’s shops (except Alko and Office Services) serve every day with consistent opening hours across all stores.
- Stockmann. Weekdays 9AM–8PM, Sat 9AM–6PM, Sun 10AM–6PM. Located in the centre of Turku at the Hansa Shopping Center, the Stockmann first class department store offers a wide selection of products from foods to top fashion and electronics, with selected products from Finnish design brands like Arabia, Iittala, Marimekko and Aarikka. There is also a visitor centre which provides visitors with advice and help on tax free issues and buying tickets to events and venues. Opposite to the department store at the shopping center lies Stockmann's bookstore, Akateeminen Kirjakauppa. There is also a café with great lunch as well as an excellent supermarket at the basement level of the store.
- Wiklund, Eerikinkatu 11, . Weekdays 8AM–9PM, Sat 9AM–6PM, Sun closed. Next to the Market square opposite side of the Hansa Shopping center, Wiklund is a first class department store. It services are built for women and men's fashion, beauty, home and children, outdoor activities and exercise, as well as entertainment. Department store services are complemented by the Café Wiklund, a hair salon, Alko wine and alcohol store, pharmacy, shoemaker and Eurokangas fabric store.
- Turku Design Now! -Shop, Läntinen Rantakatu 13 A, . Weekdays 11AM–6PM, Sat 11AM–4PM. TDN shop is owned by a collective of Turku based designers who sell interior decor goods, accessories, clothing for adults and children, ceramics, popular Turku-themed products, and for example Kotona Design's wonderful magnetic chalkboards. Ingenious products are designed and, in most cases, also manufactured in Finland. The shop carries products from, among others, KUI Design, Punainen Norsu, Klo Design, Terraviiva , Tonfisk Designand Woodoo Design.
- Televisio Lifestyle Store, Hämeenkatu 32, , e-mail: [email protected]. Tue-Fri 11AM-7PM, Sat 11AM-4PM. Near the East end of the Aura Bridge, in a secluded courtyard, you'll find a personal boutique offering a wide selection of clothes, shoes, bags, hats, jewelry, accessories and little bit of art as well. Everything in store is from young Finnish and Nordic designers.
- Sisutuksen koodi, Linnankatu 6, , e-mail:[email protected]. Mon 11AM–6PM, Tue–Fri 10AM–6PM, Sat 11AM–2PM. Sisustuksen koodi (The interior code) is a interior design store situated in the center of Turku. It sells functional high-quality furniture and everything else you might need to furnish your apartment. You'll also find great Finnish design brands from here such as Artek, which was founded by legendary Finnish architect couple Alvar and Aino Aalto.
- Sylvi Salonen, Linnankatu 14 (Situated in the Fortuna quarter in the centre of Turku), , e-mail: [email protected]. This boutique is situated in an old stall building of the 1880's in central Turku. It was founded in 1928 by Sylvi Salonen, who started selling her own embroidery designs. Nowadays Sylvi Salonen still offers a wide selection of embroidery and handwork accessories but also high quality gifts and trendy home décor items, Finnish handicrafts, Home décor and Scandinavian design. Also a versatile range of tableware accessories, candles and lanterns.
- Marimekko. A cornerstone of Finnish design and fashion is Marimekko, known around the world for its fresh and bold patterns and prints. You can find a number of Marimekko shops in Turku, including, amongst others, in the shopping centres of Skanssi and Mylly, with the largest store located in the Hansa Shopping Centre.
- Punainen Norsu (Red Elephant), Puistokatu 18, , e-mail: [email protected]. Weekdays 10AM-4PM. Punainen Norsu (Red Elephant) is a children's clothing line originating from Turku. All the colorful and graphic clothes are made mostly from recycled materials. You have to walk a bit from the city center to reach Red Elephant store, but there is also a small boutique in central Turku in the Forum Shopping Centre. It is open Wed-Fri 11AM–6PM and Sat 11AM–3PM.
- Baobab Kids & lifestyle, Yliopistonkatu 11, e-mail:[email protected]. Weekdays 10AM–5PM, Sat 10AM–3PM. Baobab Kids & lifestyle is a shop aimed for families with children. Their products range from kids clothing from 56cm up to 128cm, a selection of pregnancy clothing, nostalgic wooden toys, retro bags and backpacks, as well as some lovely gifts.
- Idea Estradi, Humalistonkatu 4. Weekday 10AM–5PM, Sat 11AM–2PM.Idea Estradi sells only Finnish handmade products: interior decoration, business gift, souvenirs, jewelry, bags, candles, ceramics and glass products, paintings, soft toys, textiles, towels, cards, and everything else you can think of to need from a handicrafts shop.
- Joutomaa, Kellonsoittajankatu 8, . Mon 11AM–7PM, Tue–Fri 11AM–5PM. Joutomaa (literally meaning Wasteland) is a small and funny gift shop, which is full of lovely hand-made treasures for yourself or for a friend. Most of the design products are made by the owner Reetta Isotupa-Siltanen, who is specially famous for her cards and prints, which combine old gloss photos which she has found and prints made by herself. She also has a great online store.
- VintagEija`s, Maariankatu 10 (Just few blocks away from the Market Square),, e-mail: [email protected]. Tue to Fri 10AM–6PM, Sat 9AM–2PM. VintagEija's sells gift, vintage wear and accessories, specializing in American style vintage. There is a rockabilly and burlesque atmosphere in this small boutique, with clothing from 40's,50's and 60's. In addition they sell new garment which have been made in the style of vintage for both men and women.
- Boutique Minne, Kaskenkatu 2, , e-mail:[email protected]e.com. Wed–Fri 11AM–5:30PM, Sat 10AM–2PM. Boutique Minne situated in the Kaskenmäki Hill in central Turku a small boutique and sewing workshop selling and making women's vintage clothing. Minne's range includes lovely vintage dresses and new production of bridal and formal wear for women. You'll also find new and old accessories, jewellery, as well as local arts and crafts and unique design.
- BOB's Vintage & Repair (Vintage clothing for men), Rauhankatu 12 A, e-mail: [email protected]. Weekdays 12AM–6PM, Sat 11AM–4PM. BOB's is a small vintage lifestyle boutique in the centre of the city. This store brings a small piece of London to the streets of Turku selling good quality vintage menswear. There's a large selection of all kinds of clothing, shoes and accessories.
- Butik Lilian, Yliopistonkatu 11, . Tue-Fri Noon-6PM, Sat 10AM-3PM. Butik Lilian is a celebration of individual women's clothing. Its a small business specializing in evening and party dresses, accessories and jewellery for different occasions. You can choose from vintage products or if you don't find what you need, their speciality is custom made clothing. Occasionally they have some good vintage bargains, so don't miss them.
- 8raita, Yliopistonkatu 11, e-mail: [email protected]. Weekdays 10AM–7PM, Sat 10AM–5PM. 8raita sells all kinds of records ranging from second hand cd's and lp's to music dvd's and other products. It also has a good online-store and staff that can give you great recommendations.
- Asema, Läntinen Pitkäkatu 22, e-mail: [email protected]. Tue–Fri Noon–6PM, Sat Noon–3PM. Small independent store that sells LP's, both second-hand and brand new. Music concentrates more on hiphop, soul, funk, jazz, reggae, punk and electronic. They also sell services ranging from film editing to lighting design.
- Iki-Pop, Linnankatu 7. This personal tiny record store, situated opposite the Main City Library, sells second-hand records, both CD's and LP's, but the main focus is on vinyl. This is a real haven for those who like to dig through loads of old goodies and find the one you've been looking everywhere.
- Kaakko, Yliopistonkatu 38, , e-mail: [email protected].Tue–Fri Noon–6PM, Sat 11AM–2PM. Founded in 2004 Kaakko sells and buys second hand vinyl records and has at the moment almost 9000 records in stock with daily arrivals - that's probably the largest selection of vinyl records in all of Turku. If you're not able to visit the store, you can find all the records online as well.
Turku and other parts of Finland Proper are home to the more western influenced Finnish cuisine, which has features especially from Sweden, Denmark and Germany. The long traditions of farming and fishing in the area have contributed to the local food culture. Fish, especially herring – the regional fish of Finland Proper – has been at the heart of the regions culinary traditions for centuries. It is eaten all year round salted, fried, grilled and smoked. In addition, perch, whitefish and pike are often used. You must also remember to try the famous raisin sausage, a regional speciality which you can buy for example from the Turku Market Hall. Sausages lovers will also enjoy the wide selection of sausages at Makkaraa On the side you can have a slice of another regional speciality, the Archipelago sweet malt bread. As a dessert enjoy a good cup of coffee together with pulla (cinnamon roll) or Piispanmunkki ("Bishops Doughnut"), as people here call the traditional North German pastry Berliner.
For fast food or pizzeria meals, you will generally need to pay under €10 any time, Burger meals are around €5–8 (including drink and fries). Lower end restaurant meals with some simple pasta or soup with water or a soft drink is usually around €10–20. For proper restaurant meals with a high-grade steak and good wine, expect to pay at least €30–60. Generally, proper restaurants are open until 10–11PM, on weekends maybe an hour longer. Fast food chains, pizzerias and other such places are open later at night, some as late as 3–5AM. In some establishments, the bar may remain open for drinks even though the kitchen has closed and no food is available.
Lunch and brunch
Most restaurants have offers at €7–10 at lunch time, mostly at least weekdays 11:00–14:00. There are also lunch restaurants or cafés serving meals only at lunch time, including student cafés and lunch restaurants for big workplaces, often having a very affordable price also for outsiders.
- Arvin Grilli ja Lounas, Nosturinkatu 5, e-mail:[email protected]. Mon–Fri 6:00–15:00 (lunch 10:00–13:30). Great price quality relation. Lunch €6,5, soup lunch €5 including salad, bread, milk and coffee.
- Aula Café, Itäinen Rantakatu 4–6 (In the Aboa Vetus & Ars Nova museum), , e-mail:[email protected]. Everyday 11AM–6PM, lunch served weekdays 11AM–3PM, Weekend brunch 11AM–3PM,. Aula Café, at the Aboa Vetus & Ars Nova museum, serves a rich selection of Mediterranean style dishes, including some great vegetarian choices. Saturday and Sunday it may be packed, since the brunch on the weekend is one of the best ones in the city. Reservation helps, or you need to time your visit early or late.Lunch of the day weekdays €7–10,; brunch Sat €18, Sun €15.
- Cafe Brahe, Hansa and Skanssi Shopping centers. Mon–Fri 9:30AM–8PM, Sat 10AM–6PM, Sun Noon–6PM. Cafe Brahes are situated in the Pedestrian Zone of Yliopistonkatu as well as the Hansa and Skanssi shopping centres. Huge cinnamon rolls.
- Cafe Elegia, Brahenkatu 1 B, , e-mail:[email protected]. Mon–Thu 9AM–6PM, Fri 9AM–5PM, Sat closed, Sun 11AM–4PM. Cafe Elegia in city center serves self-baked pastries, cakes, pies and lunch as well as brunch on Sundays. Atmospheric old building near the city library.
- Elvina Café, Yliopistonkatu 15 (near Kauppatori), .Weekdays 9AM–7PM, Sat 11AM–4PM. In a 1920s building, seeking an atmosphere of that time. Lunch and café products.
- Fontana Café, Aurakatu 1 (Opposite City Hall and Turku tourist office near Aura bridge). Mon–Thu 10AM–10PM, Fri 10AM–Midnight, Sat 11AM–Midnight, Sun Noon–8PM (brunch served Noon–4PM). Fresh products from own bakery. Bar opens in the evening. Popular brunch in weekends. Best café and lunch-restaurant in the city according to several competitions.
- Honkapirtti, Albert Ravilan raitti (Ruissalo island), , e-mail: [email protected]. Weekday 11AM–5PM, Weekend 10AM–5PM. East Karelian style large cabin, that has for decades been a stopping point for people enjoying the nature on the island. Unpretentious lunch consisting of traditional pea soup and delicious pancakes. Coffee table also has a range of traditional delicacies, cakes and pies.
- PullaPuoti, Puistokatu 3, . Weekdays 8AM–4PM. Close to the Turku Police Station and Hostel Turku. Pastries, snack foods, coffee and filled sandwiches and cakes. For lunch you can choose a soup, salad, pan pizza or pasta. Assortment of gluten-free products.
- Cafe Sirius, Linnankatu 2 (inner yard of the city library), , e-mail: [email protected]. Weekdays 9AM–7PM, Sat 10AM–4PM, Sun Noon–5PM. Salty and sweet delicacies, coffee products and ice cream. On weekdays it also serves lunch 11AM–3PM.
- Stockmann Buffet, Kristiinankatu 11 (inside Hansa Shopping center), , e-mail: [email protected]. Weekdays 9AM–9PM, Sat 9AM–6PM, Sun 11AM–6PM. Stockmann Buffet is the Café Restaurant of the Stockmann Department Store. Family friendly large café that serves everything from breakfast to lunch.
- Unica Restaurants, Rehtoripellonkatu 4,. Unica, owned by the Student Union of the university of Turku, owns several student restaurants around the Campus area behind Turku cathedral.
- W Café, Eerikinkatu 11 (inside Wiklund Department Store), . Weekdays 9AM–8:30PM, Sat 9AM–5:30PM, Sun Noon–5:30PM. Home cooking styled lunch. Good views of the Market Square. Family friendly; ball pit for kids.
There are plenty of inexpensive restaurants and cafés on and around the Market Square of Turku. Around the university campus you will found many student restaurants with cheap lunch also for outsiders (but some timing is needed to avoid long queues). Hesburger is the dominant burger chain in Turku, and you will find several of these in the city centre. Pizzerias are frequently kebab-pizzerias, offering both Turkish kebab and Italian pizza dishes on their menu. You will also find a lot of these downtown. Unfortunately, the restaurants offering the finest kebabs are not located downtown. During the lunch time, at least 11AM–2PM, most restaurants have offers for less than €10.
- Hesburger. Open from early morning to dusk, some of them even round the clock. Just ask any of the locals: Hesburger burgers really do taste better! Originating from Turku, Hesburger is today the largest hamburger restaurant chain in Finland, surpassing such chains as McDonald's and Burger King. It is still run by the family that started it in the 1960's. It is especially popular in Turku, since the company is still based there and has a large number of restaurants scattered around the city. Its almost hard not to pass one when walking around the city centre. You'll find four Hesburgers just around the main Market Square area. Around €5 to 10€.
- JusThai Bistro, Linnankatu 38, . Everyday 11AM–8PM. First Thai street food bistro in Turku. Promotes farm to fork, using local Finnish and Thai ingredients.
- Kiinanmuuri (Great Wall of China), Sirkkalankatu 27. Kiinanmuuri is known in Turku as one of the best Chinese restaurants in the city. Even though it's usually crowded around noon, decorations are outdated and it seems a bit suspicious, their food is superb. All the ingredients are very fresh and the portions are usually huge. Lunchtime service is really fast. If you're extra hungry or wish to survive couple of days on one portion, try the take away to get even larger portions of food.
- Kortteliravintola Kerttu (Quarter Restaurant Kerttu), Läntinen pitkäkatu 35, . Mon–Wed 10:30AM–11PM, Thu–Fri 10:30AM–Midnight, Sat 12AM–Midnight, Sun 12AM–7PM. Kerttu is a popular quarter restaurant on the northern side of the city centre nearby the Central Railway Station. They have a reasonably priced menu that includes fresh food and drinks for both omni- and herbivores. Kerttu is very popular amongst students, and there is even a laundromat in the restaurant for visitors to use, while they are enjoying their meals. On weekend they have a special Hamburger Buffet, that is very popular among locals. Staff is very friendly and welcoming whenever you wish to stop by.
- Latte Café, Kristiinankatu 5. Sweet little café in the heart of the city that also serves very inexpensive lunch. Huge list of different coffees from every corner of the earth are also available. Menu include's toasts, paninis, salads, bagels, etc. No need to go to a restaurant because of hunger because the sizes of these foods are big. Atmosphere is very relaxing thanks to jazz and Latin sounds and warm colours. If you feel like you want more privacy, you can go to the back room and sit on the cosy couch. And during summer you can also sit outside.
- Nummis, Vanha Hämeentie 19, . 10 AM to 10 PM. A pizza and kebab restaurant in the district of Nummi. Serves quite good pizzas and kebabs, but don't expect anything special. Main courses 7 € - 9 €.
- Rantakerttu, Läntinen rantakatu 55, . Mon-Thu 11AM–10PM, Fri 11AM–Midnight, Sat Noon–Midnight, Sun 12AM–6PM. Rantakerttu is Kortteliravintola Kerttu's sister restaurant situated next to river Aura close to both the Föri ferry and the Turku guest harbour. Its good place to stop by and have lunch while walking along the riverside watching at the sights.
- Rax Buffet, Aurakatu 12, . Mon–Sat 11AM–9PM, Sun Noon–7PM. Rax offers an all you can eat style buffet that includes Pizza, barbecue food, salads, ice cream and soft-drinks. Good option if you feel like really filling your stomach for a long time inexpensively.
- Taco Nito, Aurakatu 3, . Owned by Mexican brothers, Taco Nito serves simple but very tasty finger food in the Turku city centre. Corn, meat, salsa, beans, chili and avocado are cornerstones of the food. Restaurant has continuously had good feedback from customers and has relatively low prices. Around €10.
- Yasukon Keittiö (Yasuko's Kitchen), Yliopistonkatu 26 C (second floor), , e-mail: [email protected]. Yasuko's kitchen is a tiny Japanese restaurant that serves everyday home cooked Japanese meals, and some sushi and other more common dishes. Everything is well-prepared and the atmosphere in the restaurant is very authentic. Yasuko's seats less than 20 people, but more than 10 customers mean you might have to wait for your food, but it's worth it.
- Sergio's, Läntinen Rantakatu 27, , e-mail:[email protected]. Weekdays 4PM–11PM, Sat 1PM–11PM. Sergio's Restaurant is an authentic Italian restaurant situated in a 1787 wooden house by the river Aura. Most of the ingredients are imported from Italy, so the food is of quality and taste. Also, as a rule, the staff is Italian, but the service is of course also in Finnish and English. Sergio's serves authentic Italian cuisine: pizzas, pasta, fish, meat, risottos, vegetarian dishes and Italian desserts. Good wine selection as well.
- Wanhan Paronin Kellari (Old Baron's Cellar), Yliopistonkatu 37, , e-mail: [email protected].Tue–Thu 2PM–10PM, Fri–Sat 2PM–Midnight. Don't be fooled by the humble entrance; Situated a little bit off the city centre Wanhan Paronin Kellari is an atmospheric cellar restaurant that has many medievally decorated small compartments. Food includes seasonal products as well as steaks and game. Value for money is surprisingly good.
- Blanko, Aurakatu 1 (next to Aura Bridge), , e-mail:[email protected]. Mon–Tue 11AM–11PM, Wed–Thu 11AM–Midnight, Fri 11AM–3AM, Sat Noon–3AM, Sun Noon–6PM. Kitchen is open until 10PM.Especially known for its Sunday brunch, as well as the street terrace facing river Aura, where you can see locals dressed up in their finest. Blanko offers lunch, brunch, a list of foods as well as catering. Bar chosen as the best bar in many occasions.
- Kado Sushi, Inside the Market Hall, Eerikinkatu 16, e-mail:[email protected]. Weekdays 11AM–6PM, Sat 11AM–4PM. Kado sushi combines the wholesome delicacies with aesthetic pleasures, all prepared using the freshest ingredients. Japanese cuisine is famous for its light and healthy reputation. The best components create the finest flavours: sweet, salty, bitter, sour, delicious – different tastes working in harmony. From Kado you can also order takeaway and enjoy your meal alone or in a group.
- Ristorante Dennis, Linnankatu 17, . Mon-Thu 11:00–23:00, Fri 11:00–23:30, Sat 12:00–23:30, Sun 12.30–22:00, lunch Mon–Fri 11:00–15:00. Well known and respected Italian Family restaurant in Turku has served locals since 1975. It is famous for its pizzas, succulent pastas, salads and other Italian dishes. It is particularly family friendly, and especially during the weekend reservations are advisable! You can also order out or have take away. If you visit during the summer, ask to be seated on the outdoor roof terrace of the building!
- Hiili, Aurakatu 6, Second floor, , e-mail:[email protected]. Tue–Thu 5PM–10:30PM, Fri 5PM–11:30PM, Sat 2PM–11:30PM. Hiili offers an American BBQ experience with nice views to the heart of Turku. Menu includes Pulled Pork, BBQ Ribs and other American delicacies. Hiili chefs have developed their own BBQ sauces and meals from local ingredients.
- Viking Restaurant Harald (Viikinkiravintola Harald), Aurakatu 3 (between Kauppatori and Auransilta bridge), . Mon–Thu 11–24, Fri 11–01 Sat 12–01, Sun 15–22. Quasi-authentic with furs on the walls and rustic furniture, with some humour. Good food with surprising combinations, such as jam or berries with the main courses. Perhaps the way the Vikings had it, but never mind if not. From €17 up, lunch from €8,40.
- Trattoria Romana, Hämeenkatu 9. Authentic Italian trattoria, owned by Italians. Excellent value for money. Tip: try their unrivalled pizza Margarita.
- Delhi Darbar, Hämeenkatu 8, , e-mail:[email protected]. Mon-Thu 10:30AM–10PM, Fri 10:30AM–11PM, Sat Noon–11PM, Sun Noon–10PM. Probably the best Indian restaurant in Turku, Delhi Darbar serves excellent and authentic Indian food. Short walk from the Cathedral.
- Pippurimylly (Pepper Mill), Stålarminkatu 2, .Weekdays 11AM–11PM, Sat Noon–11PM, Sun Noon–9PM, kitchen closes 1 hour before closing time. If you want to try something bit further away from the city center, Pippurimylly (Pepper Mill) is a nostalgic option. Its a traditional family owned restaurant that has served locals for decades. It uses Finnish products and is well known for its steaks.
- Mami, Linnankatu 3, , e-mail: [email protected]. Tue–Fri lunch 11AM–3PM, à la carte 5PM–10PM, Sat à la carte 1PM–10PM, Sun–Mon closed. Situated at the riverfront, Mami is considered by many to be the best restaurant in Turku. It has charmed visitors with its relaxed service, carefully prepared food and a comfortable and modern environment, as well as an outstanding location at the heart of the historic centre of Turku. The summer terrace offers the most beautiful views of Turku. They also serve a great lunch, which is price friendly compared to the quality of the food.
- Pinella, Vanha Suurtori 2, , e-mail: [email protected].Lunch: Tue–Fri 11AM–3PM, Sat Noon–3PM. À la carte: Tue–Fri 5PM–11PM, Sat 4PM–11P. Bar: Tue–Thu 5PM–11PM, Fri–Sat 4PM–1AM. Pinella is a landmark building on the river in the heart of Turku. It has been transformed into a new contemporary bar and restaurant, creating a fresh chapter in its history as an important cultural and artistic venue.
- Smör, Läntinen Rantakatu 3, , e-mail: [email protected].Smör offers delicately prepared food by professional chefs in the kitchen as well as skilled waiting staff providing a high-class service. The menu changes according to the seasons combining ingredients and flavors that stand out with purity and authenticity. Midst the milieu of the cellar vaults, Smör serves both at lunchtime and in the evening.
- Kaskis, Kaskenkatu 6 A, , e-mail: [email protected].Tue–Thu 4PM–11PM, Fri–Sat 4PM–Midnight, Sun–Mon closed. The name of the restaurant "Kaskis" is a derivative from its location on the Kaskenmäki Street. The venue has been home to different restaurants since 1973, but Kaskis was opened as recently as in the spring of 2014. It is owned by three friends who dreamed for a long time of opening their own restaurant in Turku. Now the dream is true and Kaskis offers its customers fine dining that has been influenced especially by Southern European, Scandinavian and Asian kitchens. It is highly advisable to book your table in advance.
- E. Ekblom, Läntinen Rantakatu 3, , e-mail:[email protected]. Wed–Thu 5PM–11PM, Fri–Sat 5PM–1AM. E. Ekblom is a new, comfortable high quality wine restaurant at the heart of the city. Its carefully selected wines offer wide variety for customers to choose from with seasonal changes. Ekblom is situated in a beautiful, respectfully renovated premises on two floors creating an inspiring milieu for enjoying wine in a good company. Kitchen offers sweet and savoury delicacies to accompany the wine while the summer terrace has great views towards the river Aura.
- Tårget, Linnankatu 3, , e-mail: [email protected].Mon–Tue 11AM–11PM, Wed–Thu 11AM–Midnight, Fri 11AM–2AM, Sat Noon–2AM, Sun 1PM–10PM. On weekdays à la Carte is available from 4PM onwards. Lunch is served on weekdays from 11AM to 3PM. Tårget is one of the newcomers in the restaurant scene of Turku. It offers Italian, International and Scandinavian cuisine. It also houses a great wine-bar which is one of the hot spots of the city especially during the summer when you can see the Turku Cathedral and river Aura from its terrace. If you are looking for trendy but casual bistro style restaurant, than Tårget probably suits your needs very well.
- Tintå, Läntinen Rantakatu 9, , e-mail: [email protected].Mon 11AM–Midnight, Tue–Thu 11AM–1AM, Fri 11AM–2AM, Sat Noon–2AM, Sun Noon–10PM. Tintå is a wine restaurant with a relaxed atmosphere, situated right next to the river Aura near the Aura Bridge on the west bank of the river. Restaurant serves more than a hundred different wines, and a short but good menu of gourmet pizzas and tasty lunch on weekdays. Terrace completes the river landscape.
- Suomalainen Pohja, Aurakatu 24, , e-mail:ra[email protected]. Weekdays 10AM–10PM. Club Restaurant Suomalainen Pohja (Finnish Base) was built in 1980 and was designed by architect Sigvard Eklund. Club's interior were designed by an Englishman, Sir George Salmon. The plan has been the basis for an English club activities. Pohja serves traditional fine dining food and atmosphere.
- Foija, Aurakatu 10 (next to the entrance of the shopping centre Hansa), , e-mail: [email protected]. Mon–Tue 11AM–10PM, Wed–Thu 11AM–11PM, Fri 11PM–Midnight, Sat Noon–Midnight, Sun 1PM–10PM. In an old cellar that has been decorated with some modern twists. Food of high quality.
- Teini, Uudenmaankatu 1 (in a yard by Old Great Square), . Mon 11AM–4PM, Tue 11AM–9PM, Fri–Thu 11AM–10PM, Fri 11AM–11PM, Sat 1PM–11PM. Traditional restaurant with pleasant atmosphere. The food is good, although not very special.
- Ludu, Linnankatu 17, , e-mail: [email protected].Tue–Thu 5PM–11PM, Fri–Sat 5PM–Midnight. Ludu is a small fine dining restaurant that serves European food. It also has excellent wine selection and changing seasonal products on its menu.
- Stefan's Steakhouse, Läntinen Rantakatu 37, , e-mail: [email protected]. Mon–Thu 4PM–11PM, Fri 4PM–Midnight, Sat 1PM–Midnight, Sun 2PM–8PM. Opened in 2011 by Amerikan Top Chef finalist Stefan Richter, this steak restaurant is situated on an empire building originating from 1849 on the banks of river Aura. As its name suggests, steaks are the main course on the menu. Examples include the house speciality, Wagyu beef and Kobe-style steaks.
- Restaurant Samppalinna, Itäinen Rantakatu 10, , e-mail: [email protected]. Restaurant Samppalinna – a part of the vibrant Turku history since 1832 – is a spectacular wooden villa with terraces located on the banks of the River Aura. In summer the restaurant provides great experiences for lovers of good food, drink and theatre.
- Pub Niska, Kristiinankatu 1, , e-mail:[email protected]. Mon–Thu 11AM–10PM, Fri 11AM–11PM, Sat Noon–11PM, Sun Noon–10PM. Pub Niska Turku is a restaurant concept developed by chef Michael Björklund from the Åland Islands. The idea is to serve local food produced from high-quality ingredients. Open around the year, it offers Pub Niska’s famous, tasty archipelago pizzas. Archipelago pizza, i.e. Åland-style pizza, is made from fresh, high-quality ingredients that mainly come from Åland. Our list also includes filling salads, delicious desserts and a versatile drink selection.
- Tiirikkala, Linnankatu 3, , e-mail:[email protected]. Mon-Tue 10AM–Midnight, Wed–Thu 10AM–1AM, Fri–Sat 10AM–2AM, Sun Noon–Midnight. Kitchen is open Mon–Thu 10AM–9PM, Fri–Sat 10AM–10PM, Sun Noon–7PM. In addition to a good selection of wine, Tiirikkala offers its customers traditional Danish smørrebrød sandwiches and pastry's that are handmade on the site. The interior design of the restaurant is very Scandinavian reflecting its dishes. Tiirikkala is also a good place to try some Finnish beer, as it serves Finnish Microbrewery beers from its taps.
- Bremer, Uudenmaankatu 1. Mon–Tue 4PM–11PM, Wed–Thu 4PM–Midnight, Fri–Sat 4PM–2AM. Gastropub Bremer serves food and drinks at the Old Town part of Turku near the cathedral. Bremer is also close to the universities, and because of that its often filled with students, but never noisy. The prices on both food and drinks are student-friendly, and the labyrinth of rooms makes Bremer both cosy and suitable for group meetings. Worth to check out!
- Vaakahuoneen Paviljonki, Linnankatu 38,, . Pavilion restaurant Vaakahuone is an entertainment complex situated at the banks of river Aura. It serves live music, dancing, speciality coffee shop, a pizza restaurant, ans an à la carte restaurant. End of the building also serves as the Steamship Ukkopekka's ticket office.
- Hunsvotti, Läntinen Rantakatu 55, . Mon 11AM–4PM, Tue–Thu 11AM–10PM, Fri 3PM–Midnight, Sat 2PM–Midnight, Sun 2PM–7PM.Hunsvotti is situated right next to its sister restaurant Rantakerttu next to river Aura and near Föri. Its a combination of a sportsbar and gastropub, since you can order food from the Rantakerttu restaurant to the pub.
- Pikku-Torre, Yliopistonkatu 30, . Mon–Tue 11AM–1AM, Wed–Thu 11AM–2AM, Fri 11AM–3AM, Sat Noon–3AM, Sun Noon–1AM. Pikku-Torre (Little Torre) is combination of restaurant, sports bar and club. It has a good menu full of steaks, burgers and salads. It also serves lunch every day. In the evening it turns more into a bar and nightclub.
Coffe & Drink
- Café Art, Läntinen Rantakatu 5, . Weekdays 10AM–7PM, Sat 10AM–5PM, Sun 11AM–5PM.Coffee culture in Finland is quite big, but Finns tend to prefer "regular" filtered coffee over espressos and similar coffee machine products. Café Art however is an exception in this culture, as it offers excellent special coffees along with delicious cakes. It probably also has one of the best café locations in Turku, right next to river Aura in the old part of the city centre.
- Fabbes Café, Tehtaankatu 6, , e-mail:[email protected]. Mon–Thu 8AM–6PM, Fri 8AM–4PM. Favorite of the locals and especially students, Fabbes café is a cosy small café in a beautiful area near the university and the cathedral. They serve lunch during weekdays at 11AM for great price (around €6/7, with salad and coffee). In addition, they have a nice selection of traditional Finnish cinnamon rolls and home-made sweet treats, smoothies, etc. There's also different (sweet and savoury) pies and cakes. Everything at Fabbes is baked or produced in house, and you can tell the difference – nothing factory made and no additives.
- Just Time, Humalistonkatu 7 A, . Everyday 9AM–9PM.The café charges you €1 per 15 minutes and with that price you can drink coffee or tea and eat biscuits as much as you like. In addition to coffee they serve daily newspapers, free wireless internet connection, free printer, board-games and nice atmosphere.
- Cafe Qwensel, Läntinen Rantakatu 13 B. Tue–Sun 10AM–6PM. Cafe Qwensel, located in the courtyard of the Pharmacy Museum, is a charming spot of old milieu in the heart of the city. During the summer there are chickens and roosters on the yard and you can really feel you have travelled back in time. The café serves home-made pastries that have been prepared according to recipes from the 18th century.
- Nuvola Gelateria, Eerikinkatu 13 (in Hansa Shopping Center). Mon–Fri 10AM–8PM, Sat 10AM–6PM, Sun Noon–6PM. The Gelateria Nuvole is definitely the best place to have an ice cream in Turku. The owners, Italians Angelo and Stefano, make traditional Italian ice cream on the site, without any artificial elements. The atmosphere is relaxed and happy with an Italian touch.
- Teepolku (Tee Path), Humalistonkatu 13, . Weekdays 1PM–7PM, Weekend Noon–6PM. Teepolku tea house located near to the central railway station is a Chinese shop and tea house. They import high quality tea from China as well as tea pots and cups and authentic tools. At the moment, its the only Tea house in the city.
- Café Voltaire, Aninkaistenkatu 5, . Tue–Fri 11AM–7:30PM, Sat 11AM–4PM. Café Voltaire & Boutique combines two old French concept: a literature café (café littéraire) where you can discuss and exchange ideas, for example in literature, art, philosophy, etc., and a coffee shop (café épicerie) where you can buy authentic French food.
- Cafe Manuela, Läntinen Rantakatu 65, . Weekdays 8AM–8PM, Sat 10AM–6PM, Sun 10AM–7PM. Located next to Vari Square and Sigyn, the last remaining wooden barque used for trade across the oceans. The café serves a fresh coffee, speciality coffees, as well as a wide selection of sweet and savoury delicacies.
- Gaggui, Humalistonkatu 15. Tue–Fri 10AM–7PM, Sat 10AM–6PM, Sun Noon–6PM. In this tiny café the cakes are the main thing. They are fantastic and made by hand on the site. Coffee is also top-notch and the service is super friendly. Highly recommended.
- Kirjakahvila (Book Cafe), Vanha Suurtori 1, .Weekdays 11AM–7PM. In addition live acoustic music or other cultural events often in the evening. Located at the historical Old Great Square, this is a culture café and a bookshop (hence the name, which means "Book Café") run by volunteers. Besides books there are also a lot of comics, postcards and posters by local artists for sale. Freshly baked cakes every day, even for vegans. Free wireless Internet available, ask the staff for passwords.
- Arnolds, Eerikinkatu 15 (in Hansa Shopping Centre) and Aurakatu 8 (KOP-Kolmio). Weekdays 9AM-8PM, Sat 10AM-6PM, Sun Noon-6PM. Tasty doughnuts baked on location. Arnolds is a chain coffee and donut shop with locations in all Finnish cities, so it might not be an unforgettable experience, but the donuts are good. Regular coffee from €1.60 to €2.20, doughnuts from €1.70 to €2.30.
- Aschan, Eerikinkatu 15 (in Hansa Shopping Center). Mon–Fri 10AM–8PM, Sat 10AM–6PM, Sun Noon–6PM. Aschan is a chain coffee and lunch restaurant with locations in Turku and Helsinki. It sells all kinds of coffee, drinks and sweet and salty bakeries, beard, pies and cakes.
- Coffee House, Aurakatu 5. Mon–Thu 7:30AM–10PM, Fri 7:30AM–11PM, Sat 10AM–11PM, Sun 10AM–10PM. Coffee House is a chain coffee that sells all the basic things that a coffee shop can have. It has very late opening hours, so if you feel like having a coffee to boost your energy before hitting the night clubs, this café is for you.
- Kisälli, Vartiovuorenkatu 2, , e-mail:[email protected]. Daily 10AM–6PM. Kisälli is situated right next to the entrance of the Cloister Hill outdoor museum. It serves self-made fresh bread rolls, buns, donuts and pies. Every day there's also pancake and a variety of sweet and savoury pies. And of course, great coffee and other drinks.
- Kahvila Promenade, Kansanpuistontie 76, , e-mail:[email protected]. Wed–Sun 11AM–5PM. Villa Promenade is situated in the middle of the Ruissalo Island. It has great surrounding, even though its bit far away from centre. It sells savoury and sweet pastries as well as a range of filter coffee, cappuccino, espresso and café latte and ice cream.
Sights & Landmarks
The vast majority of the city's sights are within a kilometre or two from Kauppatori. Two sights in the city are considered above others (by Finnish visitors): the medieval castle, which is the symbol of Turku, and Turku cathedral, the national shrine of Finland, but there are several more modest pearls to find. Aboa Vetus & Ars Nova invites visitors to explore the medieval history and culture of Turku and to reflect upon thought-provoking contemporary art. Luostarinmäki is the only larger part of the city that survived the great fire of Turku in 1827. Nowadays it houses an open air living handicrafts museum, with local artisans working in traditional ways. Thebiological museum has dioramas showing Finnish fauna of different biotops. The museum of art has a collection from the time of national awakening in the 19th century, besides more modern works.
History and museums
- Turku Castle (Turun linna), Linnankatu 80 (near the harbour, bus 1), . Daily 10AM–6PM; reduced hours and closed Mon in Oct–Mar low season. A must for everyone visiting the city, Turku castle is one of Finland's most popular tourist attractions. The castle, which used to house Swedish royalty, is the largest castle in Finland, and dates back to end of the 13th century. It has been carefully renovated and now it houses also a large museum, which demonstrates the history of the Turku region from prehistory to present day with its frequent exhibitions, events and furnished style rooms. Highlights include the two dungeons and magnificent banquet halls as well as toy and game exhibitions aimed at children. Tours of the stronghold are given hourly in English during high season and they give a good account of the castle's history. €8, optional guided tour €2.
- Aboa Vetus & Ars Nova, Itäinen Rantakatu 4–6, , e-mail: [email protected]. 11:00–19:00. Aboa Vetus & Ars Nova combines history and contemporary art; Aboa Vetus tells about the history of Turku, and Ars Nova is a museum of modern art. The permanent exhibition of Aboa Vetus illuminates the medieval life of Turku. The museum consists of the ruins of stone buildings exposed in archaeological excavations. Now you can actually step in and walk on the medieval streets of Turku, which used to be buried underground. The largest museum shop in Turku, Laurentius museum shop, is situated by the entrance. It sells jewellery, toys, cards, books and other souvenirs. The museum also houses Aula Café, the brunch of which is especially popular among Turku residents. In the summertime the Linnateatteri theatre company also performs comedy in the museums courtyard. €8/7/5.50, family ticket €22, children under 7 (and 20-year-olds in 2015) free.
- Old Great Square (Vanha Suurtori), Vanha Suurtori 7 (across the parks by Turku Cathedral), , e-mail: [email protected]. The Old Great Square area is part of the old Turku city centre. Today, this exceptionally handsome milieu serves as the perfect setting for such events as the annual declaration of Christmas peace and the Medieval Market. The Old Great Square was a major traffic hub, marketplace and administrative centre from the 13th century to the beginning of the 19th century. Today, the square has four historically significant buildings: the Brinkkala Mansion, Old City Hall, Hjelt Mansion and Juselius Mansion. The old buildings have been fully restored for use as cultural venues. The Old Great Square comes to life with a wide variety of events. At Christmastime, the square is transformed into a Christmas Market, and in the summer it is time for the Medieval Market. Old Great Square and its vicinities are home to several important neoclassical buildings including the Old Academy Building and the Old Town Hall
- Forum Marinum, Linnankatu 72(Just after the guest harbor when going downstream towards Turku Castle, you can't miss it.), , fax:. wintertime: Tue–Sun 11–18, summertime: Mon–Sun 11–19. The Forum Marinum Maritime Centre is a lively and versatile centre for maritime activities, comprising a national special maritime museum, and the Finnish Navy Museum. There are temporary exhibitions and a very interesting boat and ship collection: two tall sail ships, Suomen Joutsen (Swan of Finland) and Sigyn, four naval ships and several smaller vessels, ranging from a steam harbour tugboat to a police boat. The museum ships are open during the summer months only, while the exhibitions are open throughout the year. 2015 the main exhibition is about submarine building in Turku in cooperation with pre-WW II Germany. The museum also houses a Café Restaurant called Daphne, which serves café delicacies and a tasty, varied buffet lunch. The Museum Shop offers maritime gifts and other articles, literature and high-quality textiles. €6/4/– for the museum; €16/10/– for the museum and all ships (wintertime 9,50/6 €/–, not all ships), ship tickets also individually.
- Botanical Garden, Ruissalon puistotie 215, , e-mail:[email protected]. Indoor gardens Mon–Sun 10AM–5PM, Outdoor gardens Mon–Sun 8AM–8PM. The Turku University Botanical Garden on the Island of Ruissalo is both a centre for scientific research and a public showcase for the fascinating world of plants. The outdoor and indoor gardens display over 5000 species and varieties of plants. In the greenhouses are a wide range of succulent plants and a collection of tropical species. Next to the modern greenhouse is the outdoor garden where the edible plants, roses, meadow flowers, rock plants and exotic trees and shrubs all flourish. Another distinguishing feature of the new landscapes are the artificial ponds containing colourful waterlilies and other wetland plants. There's also a cafeteria on the garden premises. Indoor gardens €5, pensioners, students and children 7–18 €3), children under 7 years free. Outdoor gardens are free.
- Luostarinmäki (Cloister Hill), Vartiovuorenkatu 2, . In 1827 a fire destroyed almost all of Turku. The Luostarinmäki area (then a quite poor area in the outskirts of the town) was the only larger part of the city that was saved. Now the area is preserved and it houses the Luostarinmäki Handicrafts Museum (Käsityöläismuseo), an outdoor museum with charming late 18th century wooden house quarters. All the buildings are in their original places, which is extremely rare in an outdoor museum. Over thirty workshops from different fields of craftsmanship display the City's handicrafts history and old dwellings. During the summer season, the museum's workshops have craftsmen working there every day. The museum's shops, postal office and cafeteria serve customers round the year. The highlight of the year are the Handicrafts Days in August. During the days, masters of different professions, i.e. Golden Apple Guild masters and apprentices get together and their products are sold in the museum's shops. €6/4/4, family €15.50.
- Biological Museum, Neitsytpolku 1, , e-mail:[email protected]. Tue–Sun 9AM–5PM, Mondays closed. The Turku Biological Museum is a diorama-museum that resides in a beautiful wooden Art Nouveau building. Thirteen nature scenes present the fauna and flora of Finland, from the archipelago all the way to the fells of Lapland. The Biological Museum has altogether 30 common Finnish mammals and 136 bird species on display. The Biological Museum is great for all those interested in nature and cultural history. The Museum was established in 1907 and most of the Dioramas date back all the way to that period. There are also varying small-scale exhibitions and other types of annual events held at the museum. The museum is a popular visiting destination for school groups and it is also a suitable visiting destination for younger children. A small museum shop sells postcards, posters and other assorted items related to the museum. Right next to the Museums is the wonderfully green Sports Park of Turku (Urheilupuisto). adults €4.50, children €3, children under 7 years free.
- Pharmacy Museum and Qwensel House (Apteekkimuseo), Läntinen Rantakatu 13, , e-mail:[email protected]. 2 May–31 Aug, Tue–Sun 10AM–6PM, 29 Nov–30 Dec, Tue–Sun 10AM–4PM. The Qwensel House is the oldest bourgeois housing from the autarchic times that has survived in its entirety in Turku. The house was built approximately in the year 1700 to an area that was reserved for the nobility in the city plan put up by Count Per Brahe the Younger. A pharmacy from the 19th century has been furnished in the shop wing of the building. The pharmacy has a material room and a herb room, two laboratories and an office. The office has the oldest surviving pharmacy interior in Finland. The exhibition wing of the building has an extensive collection of pharmacy utensils on display. There is also a pharmaceutical research laboratory and pharmacy history exhibition in the wing. In addition to the main exhibitions, there are also varying smaller exhibitions and events held at the museum every year. The former stable, outhouse and barn are located at the northern end of the baker wing of the building. The Pipping family used to have an orchard by the Linnankatu Street. The cafeteria, located in the Pharmacy Museum's inner courtyard, is a charming spot of old milieu in the heart of the city. During the summer there are chickens and roosters in the yard and you can really feel you have travelled back in time. The café serves home-made pastries prepared according to recipes from the 18th century. The two chambers, are located in the wing that was housed by the building's owners in the 18th century. The chambers have been furnished in 18th century fashion. The same wing used to have a kitchen, a chamber, maid's chamber, a shed, a carriage shed and an granary according to fire insurance documents from 1791. Adults €4.50, Children (3 to 17) €3, under 3 year olds for free, Family admission (2+2) €9.50.
- Brinkhall Manor, Brinkhallintie 414, , e-mail:[email protected]. 24 June to 17 August, Tue–Su 10AM–6PM. The Brinkhall Manor, located on the island of Kakskerta, can trace its history back to the 16th century. The manor consists of some 20 buildings and 34 hectares of park, gardens, agricultural land and forest as well as sea and lake shores. Brinkhall’s neoclassical main building was built in 1793. In the beginning of the 20th century major renovations were carried out, also in the classical style. Brinkhall´s English garden was one of the first in this style in Finland in the beginning of 19th century. A few years ago Brinkhall provided the location for a historical TV-drama series called Hovimäki, which became widely celebrated in Finland. Before filming, the manor had been empty for decades. Now Brinkhall Manor has a café, where you can also find the Interior Museum and exhibitions. In mid July Brinkhall is the site of a music festival [www.brinkhallsoi.fi Brinkhall Soi].
- Ett Hem ("A home"), Piispankatu 14(Just a short walk away from the Cathedral upstream, opposite the Sibelius Museum.), , e-mail:[email protected]. Tue–Sun 12AM–3PM, closed from January to April. In their will Alfred and Hélène Jacobsson donated their 19th century house to the Swedish University of Turku, Åbo Akademi, as a museum. The idea was to preserve the atmosphere of upper class life in Turku. They owned a two floor building at Hämeenkatu 30 – it was a house that was designed by the German architect Carl Ludwig Engel. Later the interiors were moved to more humble surroundings and the museum is now situated in a wooden empire style building. The age and style of the different artefacts vary, but as a whole "Ett hem" ("A home") is decorated according to the neorenaissance principles. The museum has both a cultural and historical value. Especially important is the art collection, where most of the famous Finnish artists of the Golden Age of Finnish art, the period around 1900, are represented. Adults €4, children €2.
- Healthcare Museum, Kunnallissairaalantie 20, . Every last Mon of the month 4PM–6PM and by appointment. At the Turku Health Care Museum you get an insight into the history of healthcare. How were people treated for such things as tuberculosis or polio? What instruments would you find in the operating room? At the Turku Health Care Museum you can see the evil of diseases such as cholera and tuberculosis, view medical and autopsy equipment, electro-shock devices, as well as the operating room and the instruments used. The museum also displays artefacts from maternity and childcare clinics as well as items from medical schools from years ago. See an example of a baby carriage box that the midwives and nurses used to carry the new born babies of mothers with tuberculosis to the Joulumerkkikoti nursery to keep them safe from infection. Another attraction is an entire collection of uniforms for hospital personnel. Many of the styles were abandoned because of the conflict concerning the money spent on uniforms. Of pride of place in the middle of the museum is theHeideken exhibition showing christening gown, baptismal font, Bible, and the maternity hospital with its equipment. €4, children under 16 years free.
- The Scout Museum of Finland, Läntinen Pitkäkatu 13, , e-mail: [email protected]. Summertime sat 12PM–3PM. Finland's Scout Museum is a national special museum that is maintained by the Finnish Scouting Museum Association. It displays uniforms, insignia, flags and literature related to the scout movement in Finland. €2/1.
- Turku Art Museum (Turun taidemuseo), , e-mail:[email protected]. Tue–Fri 11AM–7PM, Sat-Sun 11AM–5PM. The Art Museum's Art Nouveau building was opened to the public in the spring of 1904. Since the beginning the museum has presented important works by Finnish and international artist, focusing on Nordic art in particular. Well represented are works from the 19th and 20th centuries, the era known as the Golden Age of Finnish art, with national treasures that include self-portraits, Finnish surrealism as well as pop art. These collections are exhibited in the luminous upstairs halls of the museum. It manifests itself on the Puolala Hill at Aurakatu 26. Looking from the city market place, the museum's granite façade rises at the end of the street. Coming from the railway station the museum is accessible via Rauhakatu, through the beautiful Puolala Park. Tours are available in Finnish, Swedish, English and Russian. €8/5, children under 16 for free, Friday after 16 free.
- Wäinö Aaltonen Museum of Art (WAM), Itäinen Rantakatu 38 (15 min walk from Market Sq, or bus 14 or 15), , e-mail: [email protected]. Tue–Sun 10–18. Named in honour of the artist and sculptor Wäinö Aaltonen (1896–1966), born in Turku, the museum offerings include changing exhibitions, new and experimental art projects as well as various cultural events. The museum is located on the east bank of the Aura River close to the Myllysilta bridge. The permanent exhibition is based on the art collection of City of Turku, which includes a large collection of works by Wäinö Aaltonen himself. Temporary exhibitions focus on Finnish and international modern art. The museum also houses Café Wäinö which offers lunch as well as small art exhibitions on the café walls. €7/4/2/–.
- Sibelius Museum, Piispankatu 17. Tue–Sun 11–16, Wed also 18–20.Located only 150 meters from the Turku cathedral is a low modern concrete building that houses the most significant museum of music in Finland and is named after the famous Finnish composer, Jean Sibelius. The museum building, itself considered as a pearl of modernist architecture, exhibits the life and music of the master composer as well as an interesting collection of musical instruments from all around the globe. The museum also organizes exhibitions and events. On Wednesday evenings the Chamber Music Hall hosts concerts during the spring and autumn season. €3/1, guiding included, children under 18 free; concerts €8/4.
- Art Galleries. In addition to the larger art museums, Turku is home to a number of smaller art galleries scattered around the city. The Turku Artists’ Association maintains a list of the galleries.
- Moomin World (Muumimaailma), Tuulensuuntie 14 (Naantali), , fax: , e-mail:[email protected]. Daily 10AM–6PM, but the park is open only in the summer (Mid-June - Mid-August). Just a short drive from Turku, to the neighbouring city of Naantali, is one of Finland's most popular amusement parks, dedicated to Tove Jansson's lovable Moomin characters (huge in Finland and Japan, but not too well known elsewhere). The blueberry-coloured Moomin House is the main attraction, but it is also possible to see Hemulen's yellow house, Moominmama's Doughnut Factory, Fire Station, Pancake Factory, Snufkin's Camp, Moominpappa's boat etc. in Moomin World. Visitors may also meet Moomin characters or the Witch in her cottage. There are many activities and fantasy paths for kids there, e.g. Toffler's Path with Witch's Labyrinth, The Hattifatteners' Cave and The Groke's House. Some of the paths – and the beach and cliffs off the paths – invite to more quiet contemplation in the spirit of Jansson, if you succeed to get out of the worst crowds. There are also performances in Moomin Theatre Emma. Moomin World is the world's 4th best theme park for children according to The Independent on Sunday (October 2005). Moomin World was also elected as the domestic travel destination of the year 2005 (Matkamessut, Finnish Travel Fair 2006). Moomin World got the Golden Pony Award 2007 by The Games & Parks Industry magazine. The Jury said: "Moomin World is welcoming, well themed and full of educational contents." The Moomin Bus (Muumibussi) connects directly to Turku. Admission €25/person.
- Väski Adventure Island, , fax: , e-mail: [email protected]. Mid June to Mid Aug every day from 11AM–6PM. Väski's Adventure Island is located in Naantali, on an island neighbouring Moominworld. The setting is designed with school-aged children in mind. Väski is ideal for climbing, jumping, gliding down a zip-wire, panning for gold or testing your archery skills. Follow the red-route and play the Väski adventure game, completing tasks and recording your score whilst exploring the island trail. The fisherman's village on the island has rustic restaurants, a beach, a sauna and animals on the villager farm. You get to Väski Island by boat, departing near to the Moominworld bridge in Naantali. The voyage is included in the ticket price. One-day ticket 23 €. Under 2-year-olds for free.
- Kuralan Kylämäki – Village of Living History (Kuralan Kylämäki), Jaanintie 45, , e-mail: [email protected].summertime Tu–Su 10–18, also open around Christmas. Kylämäki in Kurala is a village of living history, where visitors can travel back in time to a typical farm of south-west Finland in the 1950s, complete with authentic scents and rural atmosphere. It is made up of four farms with buildings standing at their original sites. The Kylämäki Village is ideal for families with children, since touching and experiencing is allowed. The village has been inhabited since the 7th century. In the summer months, you can see women at their domestic chores in the Iso-Kohmo House, making juices and jams, or dairy treats traditionally prepared around Midsummer. Visitors get to participate in some of the farm's tasks, such as hay making and handicraft: 1950s-style items out of clay, paper, yarn or fabric, tablet weaving with plant-dyed yarns and making leather belts and pouches. The themes vary, check in advance to time right. There is also an archaeological experimentation workshop. In addition to research, it lets children explore prehistoric working methods and test their hunting skills using ancient weaponry. There is cooperation with revival associations. The workshop is open all year round. Free.
- Adventure Park (Seikkailupuisto), Kupittaankatu 2, , e-mail: [email protected]. Mon–Su 10AM–6PM. Just on the edge of Kupittaa Park, the Adventure Park is the ideal environment for encouraging imagination and creative play. You are allowed to get wet in the mushroom fountain and get a thrill from the zip line. In addition to a large assortment of playground stuff in the lush park area, to be used freely, the adventure park offers guided activities from art and handicraft workshops to songs and music at the music playschool, and theatre performances. There is a kiosk where you can buy ice cream, drinks and snacks. It is also possible to grill your own food at the barbecue sites. Nearby in the park there is a bouncy castle and a traffic town.Free.
- Zoolandia, Eläintarhantie 51 (Lieto), , e-mail:[email protected]. June 1 to Mid August daily 10AM–6PM. Also open during special occasions like New Years eve around the year. Zoolandia Amusement Park situated in Lieto municipality just 20 minutes drive from central Turku offers plenty of fun activities, both inside and out. Indoor activities include soft-ball canons, climbing walls, a labyrinth, slides, ball pools and an adventure course for every age. Outdoors the whole family can ride the ATV's, jump on the bouncy castles or take a spin on the boats or pedal cars. The little ones can test their racing skills with an electric car. The residents of the zoo include both wild forest as well as farm animals, such as donkeys, reindeer, alpaca and sheep.Admission 13€/person. Under 3-year-olds for free.
- Turku Cathedral, . daily 9–18; note services and other events; main services Sun 10:00 in Finnish, 12:00 in Swedish, 14:30 in German and 16:00 in English. Dedicated to the Virgin Mary and Finland’s first bishop, St Henry, Turku Cathedral, situated on the hillock of Unikankare, is Finland’s National Sanctuary. It was consecrated in 1300 and is considered to be Finland’s most valuable historical monument as well as the mother church of the Lutheran Church of Finland. It is familiar, even dear to practically every Finn. Its bells chime at noon over the radio throughout Finland, and they also proclaim the Christmas peace to the country. Every part of the cathedral reflects the details of Finland and Turku's history; Resting under the protection of the arches are bishops and captains of war as well as one queen, Catherine Månsdotter of Sweden. South gallery of the cathedral houses a museum, which takes you on a journey through history from the early 1300s. Displayed in the museum, among other things, are sculptures of saints as well as church silverware from the Catholic era. Tours run 9AM to 7PM during mid September to mid April and 9AM to 8PM mid April to mid September. Free. Museum upstairs is €2/1/1.
- St Michael's Church(Mikaelinkirkko), Puistokatu 16, , fax: . Open in summer (Jun-Aug) Mon-Fri 10AM–6PM, Sat 10AM–1PM, Sun 11AM–1PM. The western skyline of the city of Turku is dominated by Michael's Church which was consecrated in 1905. It was designed by Professor Lars Sonck. When he won the competition for the church in 1894, Sonck was only a 23-year old architectural student. Michael's church is a distinguished example of the neogothic style in architecture. It is a long church with three aisles, galleries and a multifaceted choir. In addition to the main entrance there are also doors at each corner of the church. The sacristy is situated behind the choir. The main spire rises to a height of 77 meters from the foundations. Many locals favour it as a wedding Church. Free.
- Martin's Church (Martinkirkko), Huovinkatu, . Open by agreement. Service in Finnish on Sundays at 10AM. Martin's parish was founded in 1921 after which the parish council decided to build a church of its own. The church was consecrated on the 450th anniversary of the birth of Martin Luther, on the 12 of November 1933. The designers of the church were the architects Totti Sora and Gunnar Wahlroos. The church represents architechtual functionalism. Martin's church is a long church with three aisles with very narrow side aisles. The church has a functional and singular practicality of its own. The barrel-vaulting of the roof is one of the most outstanding features of the church. The whole altar wall is covered with an "al secco" painting of the Saviour nailed to the cross at Golgatha. This massive work is 15 meters high and 9.5 meters in breadth. At the time of painting this was the largest painting of its type in the whole of Scandinavia. Free.
- Orthodox Church (Church of the Holy Martyr Empress Alexandra), Yliopistonkatu 19, . Main church of the Turku orthodox parish is located on the north side of the Market Square. The church was built by the plans of architect Carl Ludvig Engel and was ordered by Czar Nicholas I of Russia on 5 January 1838. Construction, which began in 1839, cost 67,886 rubles and was completed in 1845. The church was consecrated on 2 September 1845. The church was dedicated to Alexandra, the spouse of Diocletian who had publicly became Christian and thus suffered a martyr’s death on 23 April 303. Most of the icons of the iconostasis have been made in Valaam Monastery
- St Catherine's Church (Pyhän Katariinan kirkko), Kirkkotie 46, . Open by agreement. In summertime (Jun–Aug) Mon–Fri 10AM–4PM.St Catherine's Church represents old medieval church building tradition. Although it once was completely destroyed and has undergone several renovations, it has preserved something of its original appearance and retains the basic plan of a medieval Finnish church. Free.
- St Mary's Church (Maarian kirkko), Maunu Tavastinkatu 2, . Open in summertime Jun–Aug) Mon–Fri 12PM–5PM. In wintertime open by agreement. Service in Finnish on Sundays at 10AM. According to folk tradition, St Mary's Church was built at a place where sacrifices had been performed in heathen times, in the village of Räntämäki. It had also been the site of the village burial ground and a place of assembly. The village of Räntämäki was renamed after the patron saint of the Church, St Mary, and in the records it is sometimes referred to as the parish of Räntämäki, sometimes as St Mary's. The church took the name of St Mary from the nearby episcopal church of Koroinen, its original patron saint having been the first Bishop of Paris, Saint Dionysios. Free.
- Kakskerta Church (Kakskerran kirkko), Kakskerran kirkkotie 110. Kakskerta Church was built in 1765–1769, and dedicated in 1770. It was designed by Christian Schroder, and is oblong in shape. The altarpiece is from the 17th century, and the interior of the church was renovated in 1940 after the plan by Erik Bryggman. The belfry was designed by C. Bassi in 1824.
- Ecumenical Art Chapel (Taidekappeli), Seiskarinkatu 35 (bus 54), , e-mail: [email protected].Tue–Fri 11–15 (May–Aug 11–16), Thu 11–18.30, Sat–Sun 12–15, except when private events.Wooden chapel with art exhibitions. Built 2004–2005. 3€.
- Ruissalo Island (A few kilometres from Kauppatori. Travel past the harbour district and you cannot miss signs pointing towards Ruissalo. Bus 8.). The unique nature, culture and history of the fascinating Island of Ruissalo is to be found flanking the Turku estuary. Once the hunting island for the court of Turku Castle, the island is easily accessible by land or by sea. The oak forests, charming 19th Century villas, Ruissalo Spa hotel, Ruissalo nature reserve, Ruisrock rock concert, Honkapirtti restaurant and the Botanical Gardens have all combined to make the island famous. Scenic and well-maintained bike paths offer comfortable distances for the whole family. The rocky outcrops, beautiful sandy beaches, distinctive nature, rolling fields and pretty gardens will lead to love at first sight for all who visit the island. There is a camping area at Saaronniemi on the outermost tip of the island. The tourist services of this well-equipped camping and caravan park include beaches, barbecue sites, saunas, a small shop, indoor accommodation and various amenities including hot showers and a laundry. With mini-golf, volleyball, badminton and basketball courts, a fitness trail, playgrounds and a café-restaurant, even the most demanding traveller is catered for. There is also a championship level golf course, Aura Golf, founded in 1958 nearby. Bikes can be rented at the Tammenterho visitor centre (turn left immediately after the bridge).
- Hirvensalo, Satava and Kakskerta are three large island in line right off the coastline of Turku. They form a set of natural areas with several villages and a variety of things to see and do. Located on the mainland-side of the Hirvensalo island, facing the shipping lanes, Pikisaari, Lauttaranta and Honkaistenranta are the first settlements, while the inner reaches of the island are still quite rural in nature. Today, Hirvensalo is a haven for single-family homes and good, clean living. Some famous names from Hirvensalo are sculptor and academic, Wäinö Aaltonen and artist Jan-Erik Andersson, whose unique leaf-shaped house is located near the Hirvensalo bridge. Hirvensalo also has a sports centre, where visitors can ski in the winter and ride downhill cars in the summer. Ekvalla beach is situated on the Satava island. This sandy beach is a good choice for families and sun seekers as well as disabled. Whatever your physical impairment you can have a dip as this swimming area has specially designed walkways and a wheelchair ramp into the water. Swimming lifeguards are available during the school summer holiday period. The last island of the three, Kakskerta, was ones an independent town. Nowadays it is part of Turku, and you can enjoy the lovely archipelago nature on the island. In addition you can enjoy the golf course at Harjattula or visit the site of the TV series Hovimäki at Brinkhall Manor. There's also a stone church on the island, which dates from the 1760s.
- Vepsä Island (One hour ferry trip from Turku, ferry leaves from river Aura.), , e-mail: [email protected]. Open during the summer season from 1 June to 31 August. Vepsä island is a beautiful island located in Turku archipelago. From the vantage point on the rugged rock, you can see glittering waters and awesome landscapes of Airisto. On the way up, you can search for geocaches, if you want. Former hiding place of smugglers hides nowadays modern hobbies and hobby equipments. You can go for a walk, swim on a child safe beach, have a barbecue, take a sauna bath, play miniature golf, and enjoy other summery activities. People who like water sports can rent a boat or a canoe. One of the new activities is sumo wrestling in air filled suites. After an active day you can eat in the island's own café-restaurant. Ice-creams and snacks are for sale also in a kiosk. You can go to Vepsä for a one day trip, or stay for a longer time. Cosy summer cabins offer you warm surroundings to stay over night, and are very popular among visitors. There are three saunas to hire, one of them is reserved for enterprises. You can reserve the representation sauna and a barred hot tub beforehand. Three close-by islands – Mustaluoto, Vähä-Tervi and Pikku-Vepsä – are charming targets to visit and available for Vepsä visitors.Return ticket for the ferry €15/5. Cabin €50–90/night, tent site €3/person..
Museums & Galleries
There are numerous museums, such as the Turku Art Museum and the Wäinö Aaltonen Museum of Art. The Åbo Akademi University maintains the Sibelius Museum, which is the only museum in Finland specialising in the field of music. Apart from these, there are also several historical museums that display the city's medieval period, such as the Turku Castle, which has been a functional historical museum since 1881, and the Aboa Vetus museum, built in the late 1990s over the 14th centuryarchaeological site. The Luostarinmäki handicrafts museum, converted from residential buildings that survived the Great Fire of Turku in 1827, was the first Scandinavian venue to receive the "Golden Apple" tourism award.
Things to do
Turku is especially lively during the summer season, from the latter part of May to early September, as well as around the Advent and Christmas period in December. The banks of the river Aura are regarded Turku's summertime living room. The shores are the setting for many urban events and are also popular for picnic and relaxing.
Theater, performing arts and cinema
- Turku City Theater (Turun kaupunginteatteri), Itäinen Rantakatu 14, , fax: , e-mail: [email protected].On the main stage of Turku’s City Theater you’ll see the biggest musical spectacles and the highest quality drama. From August 2014 to June 2016 the main theater building on the banks of river Aura will go through a thorough renovation. During the renovation it's performances are temporarily mostly based in Logomo (Köydenpunojankatu 14) next to Turku Central Railway Station and Linnateatteri (Linnankatu 31) in Turku city center. After the renovation Turku City Theater offers performances on four different stages. Notwithstanding children’s favourites and visiting productions, everything from comedy to more serious drama for the thirsty theatergoer can be found within the theatre’s portfolio.
- Logomo, Köydenpunojankatu 14, , e-mail:[email protected]. Situated in an old locomotive workshop, Logomo was the main venue for the Capital of Culture year in 2011. It is located right next to the Turku city centre and the Central Railway Station. It provides spaces for several exhibitions and major performance throughout the year. It also has a café and a shop.
- Turku Concert Hall (Turun konserttitalo), Aninkaistenkatu 9, e-mail:[email protected]. located on the north side of the Puutori Square, Turku Concert Hall build in 1952 was the first concert hall in Finland. The Turku Philharmonic Orchestra primarily performs at the concert hall but there are many top international venues that perform there as well.
- Swedish Theater of Turku (Åbo Svenska Teater), Eerikinkatu 13, , e-mail: [email protected]. This is Finland's oldest theatre. The beautiful theatre house reached its 175th anniversary in January 2014. ÅST is acclaimed for performing world-class musicals, enjoyed by audiences midst the splendid theatre hall. The three scenes also offer other kinds of drama, cabaret, concerts, more experimental theatre and children's plays.
- Linnateatteri, Linnankatu 31, , e-mail:[email protected]. Linnateatteri is a professional theater, which performs both in the house and the garden. Linnateatteri has over the last decade presented such comical shows as the Amazing History of Turku and the Amazing Near-history of Turku. You’ll find the Old Kivipaino Theater house and Theater Restaurant on Linnankatu street.In addition to comedy and stand-up performances there's also drama, concerts and children theater among its repertoire. During summer you can also catch up with Linnateatteri on the courtyard stage of Aboa Vetus & Ars Nova.
- Samppalinna Summer Theatre (Samppalinnan kesäteatteri), Paavo Nurmen Puistotie 3, . Samppalinna summer theater is Finland’s largest summer musical theater and, over the course of fifty years operation, has taken its place in the hallmark of Finnish theater. It specializes in musicals.
- Kinopalatsi (Kinopalatsi Cinema Complex), Kauppiaskatu 11, +358 600-03391 (€1, 97/min + pvm/mpm). This modern cinema complex opened in Turku in the spring 2001. All 9 auditoriums has been invested in the audience comfort. Seat rows are strongly staggered and leg room between rows is optimal. The technique is the highest quality with digital sound and big screens. around €10.
- HK Areena (Ice Hockey and Music Arena), Artukaistentie 8, , e-mail: [email protected]. The modern and comfortable HK Areena is well known for hosting large public events and for hosting the games of TPS (Turun Palloseura), Turku's number one ice hockey team. In terms of championships, TPS is the most successful team in the history of the SM-liiga, the top professional ice hockey league in Finland. HK Arena offers a large arena and grandstands in addition to smaller function rooms. Restaurants serve before the entertainment, during the intermission or at breaks, and often even after the event. Big screens and TV monitors ensure the arena atmosphere fills the restaurant and lobby areas.
- Marli Areena (Ice Hockey Arena), Hippoksentie 2. Marli Arena is situated next to the Kupittaa park, and is primarily used for ice hockey. It is the home arena of TuTo (Turun Toverit) hockey team. TuTo plays in the second highest ice hockey league in Finland, Mestis, but the atmosphere in the games can be even better than in the TPS games, since the fans really love the team. Tickets are also less expensive and the Marli Arena is just around 15 minutes walking distance away from the city center.
- Veritas Stadion (football (soccer) stadium), Hippoksentie 6, , e-mail: [email protected]. Located in the heart of Turku at the Kupittaa Park, Veritas Stadium is Turku's number one football stadium. Both Turku-based teams playing in the national league of Finland – FC Inter and FC TPS – play on the grounds of the stadium.
Sports grounds and parks
- Urheilupuisto Sports Park (in the Turku city centre, on the east bank of the river Aura behind the City Theater).Urheilupuisto is home to the Paavo Nurmi Stadium and many other sporting facilities. This extensive parkland holds many places to exercise, come winter, come summer. In addition to the Paavo Nurmi Stadium, there is e.g. the Karikon lenkki running track, tennis courts, basketball courts, a volleyball court, an artificial turf playing field and a frisbee golf course. In the winter months the Sports Park, naturally, has its ice field and a popular sledding hill. Turku Trojans, one of the oldest American Football teams in Finland, plays its games on the upper field of Turku Sports Park.
- Kupittaa Park (Kupittaanpuisto) (Near the Turku city centre, on the east bank of the river Aura, around 15 minutes walk from the Old Great Square and Cathedral). Finland's largest and oldest city park is popular for picnic as well as for children and sports. There are ice skaters in the winter, in-line skaters in the summer, skateboarders, cyclists, ballplayers, petanque enthusiasts and everyone out for some exercise. Urban athletes can catch some air and grind some rails at the skatepark. Pump some iron at the Turku city's official gym or hit the lanes at the bowling hall. Kupittaa Park also offers families with kids the ever popular Traffic-City, Adventure Park, Kupittaa Outdoor Pool and (Sundays 17–19 in the sports hall, free) the Sports Wonderland for Kids. Watch birds in action at the Bird Pond. Visitors are spoiled for choice when it comes to picnicking. The wide-open lawns of Kupittaa Park are perfect for everything from football to croquet, while frisbees and kites vie for space in the skies above. One end of the park is dominated by the Veritas Stadium, which is the home pitch of local football team, TPS. And when it's time for a bite to eat, Kupittaa Pavilion will serve up a tasty treat right in the heart of the park. Veritas Stadium is also home to the full-service Olè restaurant.
- Skating worm (Luistelumato) (Kupittaanpuisto, behind the sports hall), . Mon–Fri 16–20, Sat–Sun 12–20. Meandering skating lane forming a circle, 5–6m wide and 500m long. Skate rental (also hiking skates), hot drinks for sale. Roller skating in the summer. Skates: adults €5, children €1; hiking skates €5/2h, €12/week; roller skates €5; drinks €1; skating free.
- Park Field Artificial Ice Rink (Parkin kenttä), Tuureporinkatu 2, . Mon, Wed, Fri 8–22, Tue, Thu 8–20, Sat, Sun 9–21 (maintenance daily 15:30–16:20). Skating field, partly for ice hockey. Sometimes music. Skates and hockey sticks for rent weekdays 17–20, weekends 12–18. The entrance fee has to be paid in advance, e.g. by mobile phone or in the café next door (second floor), which is open M–F 9–20, Sat–Sun 12–18. €2.
- Flowpark (Climbing park), Skanssinkatu 10, , e-mail:[email protected]. Open in the Summer season from May to October M–Sa 12AM–8PM, Sun 12AM–6PM. Closed in the winter season from November to April except around special Winter Feast days in January. Flowpark is a new kind of adventure theme park, where you can measure your skills up in the trees on specially constructed high rope adventure trails. There are fifteen different trails and nearly one hundred missions where you can test your balance, coordination and nerve. Flow park is ideal for the active and adventurous types, regardless of age. However, for the high ropes adventure trails there is a minimum restriction in age of seven years and in height of 120cm. For the smaller fast and fearless climber there is a specially built children's trail closer to ground. Flowpark is located in the leafy green courtyard of shopping centre Skanssi, with good transportation connections from the centre. Day ticket €22.
- Hirvensalo Ski Resort, Kakskerrantie 111 (Situated at the Hirvensalo Island on the southern side of the city 6 kilometers from the city centre. You can conveniently reach Hirvensalo from the market square of Turku on the Turku city bus lines number 14, 15, 51, 53 and 55. The centre also offers a large number of parking places for private transport.), , e-mail:[email protected]. There are four well managed and lit slopes at the Turun Hirvensalo Ski Centre in Turku: 1, 2 and 3-slopes and a slope for children. There are three lifts in Hirvensalo. The longest slope is 300m and the greatest altitude difference is 60m. The degree of difficulty of the slopes ranges from easy to difficult and there are several boxes and rails. Hirvensalo Ski Centre is the perfect place for both beginners and experts, without mentioning families. Services also include Slope café, Ski School, and equipment rental. €17 to €28.
- Hohtogolf Westcoast (Glow Minigolf and Curling), Yliopistonkatu 17(Located underground. Entrance is right next to the Turku Orthodox Church), , e-mail: [email protected]. W–Th 5PM–9PM, Fri 5PM–Midnight, Sat Noon–Midnight, Sun–Tue closed. At Hohtogolf Westcoast is a glow in the dark 15-hole miniature golf course with over-the-top mechanized special effects and a special "horror" section. Fun thing to do in a group, especially after a few drinks from the bar. As a new feature they also offer a small curling track.10/12€.
- Cross-country skiing. There are skiing tracks in most suburbs, as jogging routes are transformed to skiing routes, with groomed tracks and a lane for freestyle skiing (80 km maintained by the city in good winters). The Nunnavuori routes (0.35 and 1 km on flat ground, 1.7 km in easy hilly terrain) are maintained also in adverse weather, which gives them the longest season. At one of its starting points, Eskonkatu/Kurrapolku near Impivaara, there is equipment for rent (Tu 17–20, Sa–Su 11–15; in the winter holiday 20–28.2 daily 11–15, Tu 11–20; equipment to be returned 20 min before closing) and coffee, warm juice and snacks for sale (by a charity; usually somewhat longer hours than the rental; sausage €1, coffee and bun €2). Many of the routes have lighting 6–22. Free; equipment €5/3/1.
Boating and canoeing
Here are options for smaller vessels and quick trips:
- Låna (the river shore at Vähätori, by Tuomiokirkko bridge). Open boats (max 8 persons) for cruising down the river and back, perhaps while having a picnic (speed limit on the river 6km/h i.e. 3 knots), with electric motor. €50/hour, double with skipper.
- Buster Rent (delivery at the guest harbour or by trailer), , e-mail: [email protected]. Open or semi-open boats for rent, with outboard motor. Usable also for longer voyages given suitable weather. 150–440 euro/day, trailering 60.– +1.50/km (free with own car).
- Sea kayaking (Aavameri) (bus 8 from Kauppatori to Saaronniemi, walk to the beach), , e-mail: [email protected]. Th 17:00 (Kauppatori 16:30) or by agreement. Evening tour with kayak and guide (2½–3 hours) from Ruissalo. Register before 15:00, pay online. Also longer full service guided trips and supported solo expeditions with transportation from/to Turku.Evening tour €55; guided day tour (7 h) €95/person; rental: first day €45.
- Turun melojat, Rykmentintie 55 (Uittamo, bus line 13), , e-mail: [email protected]. Tu and Th 17–20, Sa–Su 11–15 or 11–17.Local canoe/kayak club, equipment for rent. Also short and three-evening courses. Quick intro on-site, if you need more advice, ask in advance (instructions about equipment etc. in Finnish on the website). Pay in cash. Kayak €10/hour, €20/day, €40/weekend; twin or canoe €20, €60, €120; courses €40/110.
- Aurajokisäätiö, Valkkimyllynkuja 2 (Myllärintupa by Halistenkoski rapids), . 1.6–31.8 Tu–Su 10–18. Kayak/canoe rental for trips on the river. Also guided tours. Kayak €16/two hours, €28/one day; canoe €20/€32; guide €36/hour.
Due to its location at the shores of the Archipelago Sea, Turku has a number of great beaches, some of them really close to the city center. There are also two outdoor pools, a water park, and a number of indoor swimming pools and arena's. Most indoor facilities – and some outdoor ones – are open round the year.
- Turku has a number of free beaches around the city. Ispoinen Beach is located within easy reach from Turku Centre by bus number 9 or 13. Swimmers can even access the beach during the winter since there is a sauna and option for ice swimming, when the water is frozen over (see below). Ruissalo camping beach is the favorite of many locals. It is situated at the very end of the Ruissalo Island (bus line 8) and on a beautiful summer day you can really feel the archipelago here. Ekvalla beach is situated on the Satava island (bus lines 14 and 15). When the Finnish summer gets hot, this sandy beach is a good choice for families and sun seekers as well as disabled. Whatever your physical impairment you can have a dip as Ekvalla beach has specially designed walkways and a wheelchair ramp into the water. Lifeguards are supervising swimming on all of the beaches mentioned above during the school summer holiday periods from the beginning of June to the end of August. Other smaller beaches include Brinkhall beach, Moikoinen beach, Sorttamäki beach and Maaria beach.
- Turku's Winter Outdoor Swimmers Club, Rykmentintie 51 (Ispoinen Beach), . Mon 15:00–19:45, Wed 15:00–20:45, Fri 15:00–19:45, Sat–Sun 15:00–19:45. Sauna, ice swimming and club room. Members are happy to help newcomers. Non-member single ticket: adults €5, children under 16 €1, accompanied children under 7 free.
- Samppalinna Swimming Stadium, Volter Kilven katu 2, , e-mail: [email protected]. Open fom mid May to mid September Mon-Thu 6AM-8PM, Fri 6AM-7PM, Sat-Sun 8AM-7PM. A refreshing oasis in the middle of the city, on a warm summer day Samppalinna is really popular with the locals. An olympic-size swimming and diving boards where swimmers can jump from the tower. Children have their own pool and there is sunbathing among the stadium’s sunny banks. The changing areas are indoors. The lockers can be locked with a 50-cent coin. Samppalinna has excellent sauna and shower facilities. Adults €5, Discount groups €3, Children between 5 and 16 €2.5, children under 5 years free.
- Kupittaa Outdoor Swimming Arena, Kupittaankatu 10, , e-mail: [email protected]. Open from mid May to mid August everyday 10AM-7PM. Kupittaa has offered facilities for swimming for over a hundred years. Its located next to the Adventure Park and is a favorite of families especially. In addition to the large 50 meter pool, there's a smaller 25 meter pool, 0.6–0.9m deep children's pool as well as a play area for the little ones and a lawn area for relaxation. The pool area has a kiosk. The nearby Blomberginaukio square offers ample parking. Adults €5, Discount groups €3, Children between 5 and 16 €2.5, children under 5 years free.
- Impivaara Swimming Centre, Uimahallinpolku 4 (last stop of bus 13 when marked "u" in the timetable; 18 passes reasonably close), , e-mail: [email protected]. Mon–Thu 6AM–8PM, Fri 11AM–6PM, Sat–Sun 9AM–5PM. The stunning and newly renovated facilities are named after characters and places in author Aleksis Kivi’s classic novel, Seven Brothers. The swimming area comprises eight pools, called Venla (50 m), Juhani (25 m), Tuomas (diving pool), Aapo (multipurpose pool), Simeoni (family pool), Timo (teaching pool), Lauri (paddling pool) and Eero (cold pool). Impivaara gyms Jukola, Toukola and Männistö have comprehensive and spacious strength training and aerobics facilities. Single entry €7.50/€5/€3; 10 time card €60/€40/€24.
- JukuPark Waterpark, Kurrapolku 1, . 7 Jun to 10 Aug every day from 11AM to 5/7PM. JukuPark is a paradise for the whole family just three kilometers from Turku center. At JukuPark, come rain or shine, you're sure to get soaking wet! You’re guaranteed a great day with many spectacular water-slides, large heated swimming pools, sunbathing areas together with saunas, shower rooms and the Pirate Island water-world for the little ones. When hunger surprises there are Juku Park’s grills, cafes, kiosk services and terraces available.€21, children under 4 year free.
You should know some foxtrot (which can be danced to much of the music). Do your best with other dances you do not know, or just skip them. Many different dances are danced.
- Uittamon paviljonki, Rykmentintie 29 (bus no 9 towards Katariina, bus stop "Tanssilava"), , e-mail: [email protected].Dances 13 May–11 September: Fri 20:00–01:00, Sun 19:00–24:00. Dance pavilion by the sea. Also dance courses. Mostly €15.
- Littoisten lava, Vanha Littoistentie 153 (bus 2 or 2 A to Kohmo and a 1.7km walk or bus 6, 600, 7, 702 or 801 with a transfer to K1 in Kaarina, last bus back from Kohmo 23:30), , e-mail:[email protected]. 19 May–8 September, Thu 18:30/20:00–23:30.Dance pavilion by the Littoistenjärvi lake. Dance course Thu 18:30–19:50 included in the price of the dance. Quite few left at last waltz. Mostly €12; taxi to Kauppatori €20–25.
- Valasranta, Valasrannantie 363, Yläne (bus from the orthodox church at Kauppatori), . Summertime (7 May–) Sat 20:30-01:30, bus from Turku 19:50. Dance pavilion by the Pyhäjärvi lake, quite some distance from Turku. Bus from Turku, returning in the night. €16–18, bus 2×€6.
Festivals and events
- Easter at Cloister Hill (Annually around Easter, 15 to 16 April in 2017), Cloister Hill (Luostarinmäki) outdoor museum, Vartiovuorenkatu 2. 10AM to 4 PM.Cloister Hill outdoor museum offers a unique perspective to Easter traditions in Finland. During the festivities you can participate in egg rotation competition and explore the different traditions of decorating Easter eggs. Professional Easter egg decorators are performing as well as confectioners who make Easter eggs and bunnies out of marzipan. This event is especially recommendable to visitors with children. Adults 6€, Children aged between 7 to 15 4€, Children aged between 4 to 6 1€, Family ticket 13€.
- Maritime Markets (April and October, 20 to 23 October in 2016 and 14 to 16 April in 2017) (Along the river Aura). Weekdays and Saturday 9AM–6PM, Sunday 9AM–4PM. Traditional and very popular markets are held every April and October on the riverfront right in the Turku city centre. Archipelago Market in April and Herring Market in October bring fish delicacies as well as handicrafts to the riverside. Both markets bring professional fishermen from the Archipelago Sea to the heart of the city to sell their products, some still straight from their boats. Also e.g. sea-buckthorn juice, honey and bread are sold, in addition to meals and standard market fare.
- Vappu (Annually between 30 April and 1 May). In Finland, Vappu (Walpurgis day and May Day) is one of the four biggest holidays along with Christmas Eve, New Year's Eve, and Midsummer (Juhannus). Walpurgis witnesses the biggest carnival-style festival held in the streets of Finland's towns and cities. The celebration, which begins on the evening of 30 April and continues to 1 May, typically centres on copious consumption of sima, sparkling wine and other alcoholic beverages. Student traditions are one of the main characteristics of Vappu, and you'll see lots of students on the streets wearing a traditional Student cap. On 30 April evening streets are filled with party people and a large market is held in Market Square with vendors selling cheap carnival paraphernalia. On 1 May the parks, especially the Vartiovuori Park, are filled with hungover Finns having a picnic. There are also working union parades around the city centre and politicians from all different parties giving speeches.
- Turku Design Festival (Mid May, 3 to 9 May in 2017), Around Turku Central Business District, , e-mail: [email protected].Turku designers and fashion designers combine forces once again in the Turku Design Festival. The week consists of exhibitions, fairs, fashion shows, seminars and open-days where visitors can easily get to know local designers and design products. Turku Design Festival, a cooperative creation from the regional design industry, involves dozens of different companies ranging from industrial designers to ceramic artists.
- New Potato Festival (Mid June, 16 to 17 June in 2017), Courtyard of the Brewery Restaurant Koulu, Eerikinkatu 18, e-mail: [email protected]. The New Potato Festival, or Neitsytperunafestivaali in Finnish, celebrates the opening of the early harvest potato season in June. It’s a true cultural feast of fabulous flavours and local food. The very first crops from the Turku archipelago will reach the River Aura shores with this traditional ceremony. During the festival, the potatoes will be enjoyed with local fish treats and herring. The festival will also include competitions for best recipes, getting to know different potato varieties and cultivation methods. The new potatoes from the Southwest Finland region are unique plants with gastronomic qualities to match other celebrated European seasonal products like asparagus, globe artichoke and truffle. The flavour is unique to early potatoes of Southwest Finland and neighboring countries with a similar climate.
- The Medieval Market (End of June, 30 June to 3 July in 2016), Vanha Suurtori 3 (Old Great Square), , e-mail:[email protected]. Thu and Fri 12AM to 8PM, Sat and Sun 12AM to 6PM. This is the best (and original) Medieval Market in Finland. Follow the rows of market stalls at the Old Great Square and take a trip back in time to Medieval Market with performing groups, jesters and minstrels. People working at the festival dress up in medieval costumes and act out scenes in the middle of the street, rather than on stages, giving you a feeling you're genuinely in medieval Turku.
In the area for work displays artisans will demonstrate medieval working methods. Visitors can watch the smith working away at their forges, see how beer is brewed using ancient recipes and touch freshly tanned leather. At the children's activities area the smallest of the family can attend the real princess school as well as enjoy watching the wild boars. The Old Town Hall hosts events for science, art and fashion. The whole family can enjoy the medieval amusement.
Medieval costumes for adults and children are available for hire at the event. Medieval-style food, clothes and souvenirs available on site. Free of charge, but charges for food, drink and souvenirs.
- Juhannus (Annually on Saturday between 20 to 26 June. Juhannus Eve Friday is usually also a day off). Juhannus (Midsummer Festival) is a main national holiday in Finland. Originally a celebration of the summer solstice, it is typically spent with friends and family at a summer cottage away from the city, either partying or relaxing. Large bonfires are lit in Ruissalo Island and other parts of the city, but otherwise the streets are often eerily empty and the doors of the shops closed, making this the most quiet days of the year in Turku. You may mistake Turku for a ghost town!
- International Market of Turku (Mid July, 20 to 24 July in 2016), Around Old Great Square, Vähätori and the banks of river Aura. Wed–Sat at 10AM–8PM. Key idea of the International Market is to bring different countries and provinces around the world to showcase their specialities. In recent years there have been around 70 traders from around 30 countries taking part in the market. Europe has usually a strong presence, but there are also traders from America and Asia. From the market you'll usually find For example, authentic Dutch cheese merchant, French bakeries, different delicacies from Italy, Bavarian sausages and German bakeries as well as artisans from such countries as Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and Spain. Finnish provinces are also presenting their own specialities.
- The Night of Arts (Mid August, 18 August in 2016), Around Turku Central Business District, . Night of the Arts puts on its best in the centre of the city. Its a versatile cultural event that is held annually in mid-August. Usually a lush programme of events will take place in different parts of the city centre. Some of the main venues include the Fortuna-block, Vähätori, Puutori, the Turku Main Library Courtyard, as well as the books stores, museums and galleries of the city, all situated in the heart of Turku. Programme usually includes musical and art performances, literature, theatre, dance, museums and street culture.
- Turku Day (Annually third Sunday of September), Events take place all around the city. The traditional Turku Day is annually celebrated on the third Sunday in September. The inhabitants of Turku are offered many possibilities to get acquainted with their city during Turku Day. The shops in the city centre are open, there are markets and bazaars in different parts of the city, open houses and guided tours, museums and music, art and dance. The day culminates with fireworks at the Samppalinna Park hill at 9PM.
Advent and Christmas
The Christmas season starts more or less with the turning on of Christmas lights in the pedestrian part of Yliopistonkatu a week before Advent. The market at the Old Great Square opens. Department stores and many shops have nice Christmas displays in their windows. Christmas muzak is played. Charity bazaars in many schools, parish halls etc.
Most every choir gives some kind of Christmas concert in or immediately before Advent. The church arranges sing-alongs with collect to their development aid.
The lights on the Christmas tree of the cathedral are turned on the Saturday when Advent begins (programme begins at 17:00).
Many museums, also some that otherwise are closed in winter, have displays or events related to the season; table settings and food of Christmas in different times and social classes are shown at the castle, the Qwensel house and the handicraft museum. Handicraft workshops (such as of making candles) are arranged at the Adventure park and Kurala. There are also events at other institutions, such as candle light swimming at Impivaara and Petrelius.
Independence Day, December 6th, is celebrated by the philharmonic orchestra by two free concerts (12 & 15; tickets are distributed a few weeks in advance). There are services in the churches (mostly at 10:00). The students have a torch parade to the war graves (start 18:00). People light candles in their windows, which makes for a nice evening stroll.
On December 13th, Lucia is crowned in the morning, blessed in the cathedral 16:30 and performing in the Hansa shopping centre 18:00 (programme starting at 17:00; the arrangement has changed somewhat from earlier years). She and her company will be seen on many occasions, mostly in retirement homes and the like, but also e.g. at the Christmas market.
Christmas peace is declared at Christmas Eve 12:00 in the Old Great Square, with thousands of spectators (programme starts 11:30). The Swedish service in the cathedral afterwards welcomes also the international audience. Most people are going to spend the evening and the Christmas Day with their family; the city will mostly close, including bus traffic (last buses leave 14:00). Services in the churches.
- Christmas Market at the Old Great Square, Old Great Square. Four weekends before Christmas, in 2016: 26–27.11, 3-4.12, 10-11.12 and 17-18.12 at 11–17. Feel the magical spirit of Christmas at the Old Great Square of Turku on four weekends before Christmas. The Old Great Square fills with high quality handicrafts, Christmas delicacies and various music, theater and circus performances. And of course, there’s also Santa Claus and his family! In addition, you can enjoy the lovely winter weather with a cup of warm glögg or a bowl of Christmas porridge, find something nice in the Christmas ornaments’ exchange point and escape the hustle and bustle to the Christmas concerts of the Old Town Hall.
- Turku Christmas Market (In December, 2 to 22 of December 2016), Central Market Square. Weekdays 10AM-/PM, Sat 10AM-5PM, Sun Noon-17. Turku Christmas Market is a traditional Central European style Christmas market open at the Market Square of Turku in December. Traditional and cosy atmosphere of Christmas arises from the flavors of Christmas, helpful sales persons and their unique quality products and a wide-ranging programme.
- Seikkisrock (Beginning of June, 10 to 11 June in 2017). A two day festival, organized in early June since 1999 at Turku Adventure Park, offers a wonderful entertainment for children of all ages and childlike persons. Over the years, numerous leading children´s music artists and special guests, have had performances at Seikkisrock. The festivals main focus is on music, but available is also crafts and art workshops, plays, circus, magicians and dancers – not forgetting the bouncy castle. Non-governmental organizations are also involved in the event; they are presented to children in their own ”Worldvillage” with the themes of tolerance and sustainable development. Adventure Park, activity center for children and families, which is located in the district of Kupittaa, offers verdant, comfortable and stimulating environment for the Seikkisrock. Performances that take place at two stages and smaller shows throughout the area guarantee great and memorable festival experience. Advance Ticket 10€, From gate 12€. Under 2 year olds free.
- Ruisrock (Beginning of July, 8 to 10 July in 2016), Ruissalo Island, , e-mail: [email protected].Ruisrock, founded in 1970, is the second oldest rock festival in Europe, and the oldest in the Nordic countries and Finland. During the three-day event fans are offered international names, domestic stars and the hottest new acts. Ruisrock attracts almost 100,000 visitors every year from Finland and abroad and it is the biggest music festival in Turku. The festival has attracted world-famous artists throughout its lifetime including such names as Nirvana, Björk, The Cure, Bob Dylan, Bon Jovi, Ozzy Osbourne, Pet Shop Boys, Oasis, Aerosmith and Rammstein. The festival takes place in the Ruissalo Island, right next to central Turku. The area where the festival takes place is divided into two sections, Niittyalue ("meadow section") and Ranta-alue ("beach section"). Introduction video for the festival can be seen in YouTube. three day ticket €145, 2 days €125, 1 day €85. Under 7 year old get in free with an adult with a ticket. People over 70 get free entrance and can use a ferry connection from Aura river free of charge (prices of year 2016).
- Turku Modern (Annually in July, 14 to 176 July in 2016), e-mail:[email protected]. Turku Modern, the festival for electronic music, storms Turku clubs and galleries annual in July. It brings forward top foreign artists and accomplished domestic performers focusing on electronic and dance music. It takes place in central Turku on the banks of the river Aura in a number of clubs, bars, stages and especially the charming river boats. In 2016 prices from 35€ to 65€.
- H2Ö (End of July, 22 to 23 July in 2017), Hevoskarintie 23, e-mail:[email protected]l.fi. H2Ö festival debuted itself in the summer of 2014 and became a huge hit in Finland. A heir to the previous electronic music festival ILMIÖ, H2Ö will again fill the maritime, industrial-romantic dockyard milieu with hard-core representatives of Finnish alternative music and intriguing international underground gems, without any genre restrictions. On top of the diverse music, the old carpentry shop area will be coloured with a vast multi-artistic programme: performances, installations, workshops, street art and more will be included. The age limit of the festival is 18 years. In 2016 price for one day is 58.50€ and two days 85.50€..
- Down by the Laituri (DBTL) (End of July, 27 to 30 July in 2016), Downtown Turku. Finland´s oldest and most legendary city festival takes place in downtown Turku annually in end of July. DBTL was sparked into life in the late 1980's by the rock-club of the Student Union of the Turku University. It's popularity spread like a blaze and nowadays it attracts around 70,000 visitors every year. With most of the acts performing pop and rock music, this multicultural event is centered on the east bank of the River Aura, around the Turku City Theatre. €49 to €125 in 2016.
- Aura Fest (Beginning of August, 12 to 13 August in 2016), Barker Park next to river Aura. One of the largest Hiphop and Urban music festivals in Finland, is held annually right next to river Aura. In 2015 the festival takes place in Barker Park, just a kilometre away from the central Market Square. Performers include practically all the top domestic Hiphop and urban music performers as well as international guests.
- Turku Music Festival (Annually in August, 11 to 20 August in 2016), Around Turku, , e-mail: [email protected]. Turku Music Festival is the oldest continuously running festival in Finland. This diverse city festival offers large orchestral concerts, chamber music, recitals, jazz and outdoor events as well as experiences for the whole family. A variety of Turku’s stunning venues, both modern and historical, are being imaginatively used to host performances from the best in their field.
- Turku Jazz (Mid August, 18 to 21 August in 2016), Concerts mainly in the Brewery Restaurant Koulu, Eerikinkatu 18 (in 2015). Second oldest Jazz Festival in Finland. Performers include leading Finnish jazz musicians and special international guests. Concerts are held in restaurants and entertainment venues throughout the city of Turku. In 2015 concerts are held mainly in the Brewery Restaurant Koulu in the city centre.
There's a great number of expos and fairs held in Turku annually. Most of the fairs take place outside the summer season in autumn and spring. Large part of these fairs take place in the Turku Fair and Congress Center, which is a diverse setting for fairs, meetings, congresses and grand public events.
- Turku Fine Art and Antique Fair (Annually end of March, 18 to 19 March in 2017), Turku Fair and Congress Center, Messukentänkatu 9-13. Turku Fine Art and Antiques Fair is a premier trade event where a vast array of antiques and art are exhibited. More than 10,000 people visit the fair annually and witness how world renowned artists and antique collectors gather in this exhibition and showcase their art and antique collections.
- Turku International Book Fair (Beginning of October, 30 Sep to 2 October in 2016), Turku Fair and Congress Center, Messukentänkatu 9-13. The Turku International Book Fair is Finland’s oldest book fair. The Turku Fair and Congress Center hosts the annual event, which brings together visitors, program creators and exhibitors from all over Finland and abroad. The Turku Book Fair garners an abundance of praise and publicity thanks to its solid reputation, long history and cozy atmosphere. The mingling of visitors and exhibitors enables spontaneous encounters between authors and readers. The fair plays host to a variety of events, both large and small. The first Turku Book Fair was held in 1990, and in 2012 an all-time record was set, with 25,000 people attending the fair. Each year, the Turku Book Fair selects one country as the special focus, in addition to a Finnish-focused theme. In 2015 the country in focus is Sweden.
- Turku Food and Wine Fair (Beginning of October, 30 Sep to 2 October in 2016), Turku Fair and Congress Center, Messukentänkatu 9-13. Arranged at the same time as the Turku International Book Fair. The Turku Food and Wine Fair is one of autumn’s highlights in the city. In October, thousands of food, wine and culture enthusiasts will gather at the Turku Fair and Congress Centre to find new products and services, experience new tastes, learn and shop.
- Women's Kuntovitonen 5km Run (End of May, 21 May in 2016), , e-mail: [email protected].The Women's Kuntovitonen 5km run energizes the Turku Sports Park in May, when spring is in full bloom. Here the sweatbands are more fashionable then functional. In addition to the five or ten kilometer routes there will be star performers on stage, guided group aerobics and a diverse exhibition area and a play park to leave your children and spouse to spend the day while you enjoy yourself.
- Paavo Nurmi Games (End of June, 29 June in 2016), , e-mail: [email protected]. 5PM–9PM. The first Paavo Nurmi Games was arranged in 1957 as a birthday present to Nurmi on his 60th birthday. During his career Nurmi took 9 Olympic Gold medals and was among the first athletes to be nominated in the IAAF Hall of Fame. The tradition has gone on ever since and the event is held every year at the Paavo Nurmi Stadium named after the legendary runner. Now a track & field classic, the Turku Paavo Nurmi Games are part of the EA Premium Permit circuit.
- Paavo Nurmi Marathon (End of June, 2 July in 2016), Around central Turku and Ruissalo island, , e-mail: [email protected].Paavo Nurmi was a Finnish runner who achieved 9 gold and 3 silver medals in the Olympic games during his career. He was born in Turku and is celebrated by a number of sporting events every year. One of the highlights is Paavo Nurmi Marathon, which is one of the leading running events in Finland. One can choose to participate in the full marathon, half marathon or a 10 kilometer races. The total amount of participants has been around 3500 runners annually. The beautiful route of the marathon showcases the most attractive sides of Turku from the shores of the river Aura to Ruissalo Island and back. Right after the start the runners pass by the famous Paavo Nurmi statue, sculpted by Turku born sculptor Wäinö Aaltonen.
- Turku Triathlon Weekend (13 to 14 August 2016), Around central Turku and Ruissalo island, e-mail: [email protected]. Want to provide yourself with a new kind of challenge? The triathlon is ideal for those looking for variation, because it includes swimming, cycling and running. From 13-14 August 2015 the second Turku Triathlon Weekend will take place. Read more and sign-up on their website at turkutriathlonweekend.fi.
- FightBack Run (Beginning of September, 3 September in 2016). No one in Finland is unaware of Pekka Hyysalo and his Fight Back charity project. Hyysalo, a young man from Turku, had his promising career as freestyle skier cut short after a serious head injury in 2010. Hyysalo fought his way from the hospital bed to get back on his feet, teaching his body to do everything from scratch, from eating to tying his shoelaces. In September 2014 he ran for the first time in the FightBack Run. The first FightBack Run had a distance of 2,6km and the plan is to double the distance every year. In 2015 the distances for running are 250m (directed to people with reduced mobility), 2,6km and 5,2km which Hyysalo himself will run as well. A half marathon is in sight for 2017 and 2018 then will already be up to a full marathon.
- Ruissalo races (End of September, 17 September in 2016). The traditional Ruissalo races are organized on the end of September in the beautiful island of Ruissalo right next to central Turku. The distances to choose from are half marathon called "Ruisrääkki" and 10 km run "Ruisriikki".
- Nordklang 2016. 3–6.8.2016. Nordic choir festival. Several concerts daily at different locations. Evening program at Kåren (19:30–24:00) open for the public (€5). Price differs between concerts: €0/5/27,50.
- Tall Ships' Races 2017, The guest harbour and downstream. 20–23.7.2017.Many big sailing ships and a lot of yachts gather in Turku, with young international crews and associated events.
Restaurants and bars have varying closing hours, but generally, the popular nightclubs and discos are open until 4AM. Last call always occurs half an hour before closing time, and is indicated by the bar staff turning the lights off for a few seconds, then turning them back on. They may repeat this a few times in quick succession to make sure the patrons get it. It's generally smart to leave about ten minutes before the last call, to avoid being caught in the rush of everybody trying to leave at once, especially if you are planning to get back to your night spot by a taxi.
Night clubs tend to have guarded cloakrooms where you can leave any of your outer garments in exchange for a ticket. Using the coat service is generally considered mandatory even if this is not explicitly pointed out. The cloakroom fee is usually €2 or 2,50. Do not lose the ticket; the bar staff will often not want to hash out ticket confusions during closing time when things are at their most chaotic. If you lose the ticket, you may be told to come back the following day to get your things, expect to be able to prove the jacket is your by telling the staff the make of the jacket/colour of lining/contents of pockets.
The legal drinking age in Finland is 18 for mild alcoholic drinks (up to 20%/40-proof) and 20 for stronger drinks than that, but virtually all establishments sell stronger drinks to 18-year-olds as well. The minimum age required to enter bars/pubs/nightclubs differs; legally, one must be at least 18 to enter places that serve alcohol, but many clubs and bars have higher age limits (20–24 yrs).
- The Old Bank, Aurakatu 3. Sun–Monday Noon–Midnight, Tue–Thu Noon–2AM, Fri–Sat Noon–3AM. Considered by many to be the best beer place in Turku, Old Bank is, not surprisingly, a former bank turned into a beer pub. It has beautiful interiors, great service and the widest selection of beers in town. If you feel hungry they serve amazing pie filled with reindeer.
- Brewery Restaurant Koulu, Eerikinkatu 18. Daily 11AM–2AM / The Winestube Mon–Thu 5PM–11PM, Fri 5PM–2AM, Sat 5PM–2AM / Dining room Mon–Thu 11AM–10PM, Fri 11AM–Midnight and Sat Noon–Midnight. Lunch weekdays 11AM–2PM. An old school building converted into a brewery restaurant serving their own and other beers, good food and an excellent selection of wines. A cosy biergarten in the green backyard is open in the summer and is favourite of locals. Koulu also hosts Turku Jazz festival in August.
- Seurusteluravintola Uusi apteekki (New Pharmacy), Kaskenkatu 1. Daily 10AM–2AM. Uusi Apteekki (literally meaning New Pharmacy) is a beer pub located in a former pharmacy built in 1907. Great selection of beer and spirits, and the decorations alone are worth seeing. In weekend this pub gets really crowded with locals so be prepared to stand while enjoying your beer. Its also good place to catch up with writer Reijo Mäki who has written the famous Vares detective stories that are huge in Finland.
- Mallaskukko, Yliopistonkatu 37. Mon–Thu 2AM–2PM, Fri–Sat Noon–2AM, Sun 2PM–2AM. Another good beer pub in Turku, with a great selection of beers, scotch whiskies and ciders. Mallaskukko truly feels like a living room of the locals. Good place to watch sports from the many TV screens on the walls.
- Whisky Bar, Yliopistonkatu 19. Sun–Thu 6PM–2AM, Fri–Sat 6PM–3AM.Whisky Bar in the core downtown of Turku has, as its name suggests, a wide selection of whiskies, but also serves beer and other spirits. Nowadays its strongly orientated to heavy metal by its music and atmosphere.
- Cosmic Comic Café, Kauppiaskatu 4 (inside Forum shopping center).Mon–Thu 3PM–2AM, Fri–Sat 3PM–3AM, Sun 4PM–2AM. Cosmic Comic Café has a comics gallery and a comical atmosphere, where beer meets comic books, board games and a relaxed "second living room" atmosphere. Its very popular among students, so sometimes it can be very overcrowded.
- Fontti, Kauppiaskatu 5. Mon–Thu 11AM–Midnight, Fri 11AM–3AM, Sat 1PM–3AM. Situated in the old customers office of the regional newspaper Turun-Sanomat, Fontti (literally meaning font) is one of the newcomers in the Turku bar scene. It is also a restaurant and serves great food in addition to drinks and coffees. Service can be little slow but otherwise this bar is nice place to spend you weekend evening.
- Alvar, Humalistonkatu 7 (Halfway between Central Railway Station and Market Square). Alvar, located inside a building designed by the famous Finnish modernist architect Alvar Aalto, is a comfortable place with nice staff and a large selection of beer. Free wireless internet connection is also available for visitors to use. You can also reserve time for a special beer tasting if you visit with a group of friends.
- Bar Kuka (Bar Who), Linnankatu 17, . Mon–Tue 4PM–2AM, Wed–Sun 4PM–3AM, Age limit 18. Situated in the corner of Linnankatu and Kristiinankatu, Bar Kuka with its retro 60's and 70's decoration has a loyal fanbase, who think its the best and cosiest bar you'll ever find in Turku. Kuka offers lots of live music, DJ gigs, stand-up and theme nights.
- Musiikkikahvila Sointu (Music Cafe Chord), Linnankatu 27, , e-mail: [email protected]. Tue–Thu 11AM–11PM, Fri 11AM–2AM, Sat 2PM–2AM, Sun 11AM–6PM. Sointu offers new and personal option near the city centre. It has varied live music by small and starting bands and musicians practically everyday. Best option if you want to get away from the busy commercial places in the centre of Turku.
- Rento, Yliopistonkatu 23, . Mon–Wed 11AM–2AM, Thu–Sat 11AM–3AM, Sun Noon–2AM. Rento, literally meaning casual and relaxed, has probably one of the best locations for a bar in Turku right at the end of the pedestrian street next to the Market Square and Hansa Shopping Center. You can either sit inside or on a nice terrace outside. Large selection of beers and little snacks as well.
Riverboats are a unique feature in the Turku cityscape. In the summertime, it is very popular to spend the early evening until midnight or so on one of them, and when it gets a little chilly, move indoors to a restaurant or night club. They are situated at the riverside of river Aura. Some of them also house fine restaurants while some are mostly just pubs.
- Donna, Itäinen rantakatu (River Aura).
- Svarte Rudolf, Itäinen rantakatu (River Aura).
- Papa Joe, Itäinen rantakatu (River Aura).
- Cindy, Itäinen rantakatu (River Aura).
- Aussie Bar, Itäinen rantakatu (River Aura).
- Katarina, Itäinen rantakatu (River Aura).
- Majland, Läntinen rantakatu (River Aura).
- Esposito, Läntinen rantakatu (River Aura).
- Merihelmi, Itäinen rantakatu (River Aura).
- Bruno, Itäinen rantakatu (River Aura).
- Wanha Rahtilaiva, Itäinen rantakatu (River Aura).
- Forte, Kristiinankatu 8, . Daily 10PM–4AM. Forte has been one favourite of the locals since 1996. It tends to be busy thanks to cheap drinks and daily opening hours, as opposed to majority of the other clubs in the city. The concept of 'SuFo' (='Sunday Forte'), MoFo etc. is widely recognized among students in Turku.
- Börs Night Club, Kauppiaskatu 6, . Fri–Sat 10PM–4AM.Situated downstairs as the Hotel Börs, Night Club Börs is right on the southern side of Market Square. Its one of the biggest night clubs in Turku. They have resident DJ's who mostly play latest hit music.
- Showroom, Linnankatu 18. Wed–Sun 10PM–4AM. Situated in an old Neorenessaince-style bank, this is the most posh nightclub in Turku. Showroom offers two stores of great atmosphere: Downstairs Lanson Club is situated in a beautiful old cellar and has waiters serving you to your table, which is very uncommon in Finnish nightclubs. Upstairs Heineken Bar offers trendy atmosphere with huge screens on the walls showing latest music videos.
- Apollo Nightclub, Humalistonkatu 6, . Fri–Sat 10PM–4AM / Age limit 22. Apollo serves live music by bands playing mostly cover musc hits by domestic and international stars. Music ranges from rock to pop and disco, old and new. There's also a VIP section which you can reserve. Next Door is Apollo owned Armas karaoke bar, which has same opening hours and age limitation.
- Dynamo, Linnankatu 7, , e-mail:[email protected]. Tue–Sat 9PM–4AM / Age Limit 20. At Linnankatu, opposite the main library, caters for hipsters with a passion for slightly more eclectic sound. Downstairs indie pop, electro and rock 'n' roll are the main draws, upstairs it's chiefly soul, funk and disco. Live music gigs from hot domestic artists are also frequent. Attracts a healthy amount of exchange students.
- Night Club Marilyn, Eerikinkatu 19. Tue–Sat 10PM–4AM. For the late teens-early twenties crowd, the Night Club Marilyn is particularly popular as a disco/night club. It is the oldest privately owned Night Club in Turku and has seen all the other clubs come and go. In its history it has been chosen as the Best Nightclub in the city on several occasions.
- Monkey, Aurakatu 6, . Thu–Sat 10PM–4AM / Age Limit Wed–Thu 18, Fri–Sat 20. Monkey club is divided into two floors with different atmosphere and music. Downstairs you can chill out with good drinks and groovy music that varies from Muse to Spice Girls and back — whatever gets the party going. The smoking lounge is also located on the first floor. Monkey's upper deck is all about the music and dancing. State of the art visual effects and the best DJ's from all over Scandinavia are there to make sure you will have the time of your life.
- Jazzclub Monk, Humalistonkatu 3. Fri–Sat 9PM–4AM, autumn and spring season Mon–Fri 9PM–forward. Age limit 22, during live gigs 18. The best and pretty much the only jazz club in town. Musical scale includes happy jazz, retromodern club jazz, funk, afro and Latin music. DJ's on weekends, live jazz 2–3 days a week.
- Klubi, Humalistonkatu 8. Wed 10PM–4PM, Thu–Sat 9PM–4AM. One of the leading live music venues in the city, Klubi offers a wide range of music from rock to goth, punk, electronica, ska, prog, grunge, indie/alternative on three different stages. Good club for groups or parties.
- Venus, Aurakatu 6, . Wed–Sat 10PM–4AM. For proper dancing (not night club dancing), Venus night club is the recommended place in Turku. The age group skews towards the 40s and 50s. Often music includes live performances by some of the biggest names in finnish Iskelmä (entertainer music) music.
- Yökerho, Aurakatu 14. Rock ´n´ Sport pub Mon–Thu 3PM–, Fri–Sat Noon–4AM, Sun Noon–11PM / Nightclub Fri–Sat 10PM–4AM. Age Limit 18. Yökerho (literally meaning Nightclub in Finnish) is popular specially amongst younger locals, since its age limit is only 18. Situated right next to the Market Square, the club also houses a Rock'N'Sports bar that has more frequent opening hours.
- suXes, Yliopistonkatu 9. Daily 7PM–2AM. Turku, like other larger Finnish cities in general, is quite gay friendly, though public gestures of affection are not common even for straight couples and might raise some eyebrows. Due to this reason you'll fit in at practically all of the clubs in Turku, but perhaps feel specially at home in suXes, the only gay bar and café in Turku. There you can be openly yourself while enjoying the atmosphere, coffee and drinks.
- Amarillo, Aurakatu 5. Mon–Thu 11AM–11PM, Fri 11AM–4AM, Sat Noon–4AM, Sun 1PM–10PM. Amarillo is a Tex Mex restaurant and bar that also turns into a big nightclub in the evening. Its one of the largest clubs in Turku and very popular among local late teens and twenty somethings due to its age limit of 18. Its situated right next to the Market Square.
Things to know
- Avoid walking in the cycle lanes. Dedicated cycle paths are clearly marked, but sometimes run directly next to the pavement (sidewalk). Turku cyclists are subject to a comparatively hilly landscape and are unwilling to slow down and lose momentum. Usually, however, they are careful, signal clearly and use their bells, meaning that straying tourists most often are just sworn at.
- When waiting in lines, be patient and polite. Finns never jump queues – but make sure you actually stand in the line. If unsure, ask.
- Finns usually don't complain to people who are doing things (in their opinion) wrong. They will just look at your foolish behaviour and swear silently to themselves. You might be embarrassing yourself but Finns might think that complaining about it will make an even bigger scene.
- Many Finns are not very open to strangers in public, especially in public transport. They may feel very uncomfortable and embarrassed if you try to start a conversation on the bus. If you are lucky enough to be invited to someone's home you will discover that Finns behave very differently and will be very social. Most Finns speak English very well and are more than happy to refresh their skills by talking to tourists.
- Do not feed seagulls or pigeons especially in the city centre. Seagulls taking people's ice creams or sandwiches is a real problem in some areas, and feeding them is encouraging that behaviour. Feeding birds is officially prohibited in many areas. If you'd like to feed birds you can head to the Kupittaa Park, since there is a Bird Park where you can feed the birds as long as the food is healthy for the birds.
Finland's currency is the euro (€, EUR). Finland does not use the 1 and 2 cent coins; instead all sums are rounded to the nearest 5 cents. The coins are, however, still legal tender and there are even small quantities of Finnish 1c and 2c coins, highly valued by collectors. It is common to omit cents and the euro sign from prices, and use the comma as a decimal separator: "5,50" thus means five euros and fifty cents.
Getting or exchanging money is rarely a problem, as ATM's ("Otto") are common around Turku and they can be operated with international credit and debit cards (Visa, Visa Electron, MasterCard, Maestro). Currencies other than the euro are generally notaccepted, but the Swedish krona is accepted in the Ferries travelling to Stockholm. Also as an exception, the Stockmann department store in central Turku accepts U.S. dollars, pound sterling, Swedish krona and Russian rubles. Forex Bank has an exchange office in central Turku at Eerikinkatu 13. Forex usually has better rates, longer opening hours and faster service than other banks. Credit cards are widely accepted, but you will be asked for identification if you purchase more than €50 (and may be asked to show it even for smaller purchases). Visa Electron and Visa Debit card readers are found in all major and most minor shops, so carrying large amounts of cash is not usually necessary.
As a rule, tipping is never necessary in Turku or anywhere else in Finland, aa restaurant bills already include service charges. That said, taxi fares and other bills paid by cash are occasionally rounded up to the next convenient number. Cloakrooms (narikka) in nightclubs and better restaurants often have non-negotiablefees (usually clearly signposted, €2 is standard), and — in the few hotels that employ them — hotel porters will expect around the same per bag.
Turku remains a regional capital of Finland Proper and is the third most populous city-region in Finland and the eighth largest urban area in the Nordic countries, with around 330 000 inhabitants living in the Turku sub-region. Nowadays Turku is a major academic town for Finland: there are two universities (one with Finnish, one with Swedish as its language), a technical college, two business schools (part of the Finnish and the Swedish university, respectively), a law school, and a medical school. Consequently, you will find that the city is bustling with young adults. The great number of students means that restaurants, live music clubs and nightlife are ample. A true local speciality you will find in no other Finnish city are the floating bars in the river Aura. There is a cultural spirit in the city, and some of the proud residents are still irked that Helsinki took over as Finland's capital back in 1812. In other parts of Finland people from Turku are stereotypically thought of as being bit reserved and uppish in their views of their hometown. However, if you have a coffee at the Market Square and chat with the locals, you will soon find out that this is not the case. The Turku dialect has many influences from Swedish, and it can from time to time sound even a bit like Estonian. The city is also famous throughout Finland for its processed mustard called Turun Sinappi, though ownership and production was controversially moved abroad in 2008, with production being resumed in Finland in 2014.
Safety in Turku
Turku is generally a very safe city. On weekend nights drunken people may cause annoyance, especially after last call. The River Aura is as dirty as it seems, and is surprisingly shallow. Also the river banks provide very little access to the shore, so it is better not to refresh yourself with a quick dip. Swimming in the river is also considered illegal.
In emergency cases, such as sudden illness, unconsciousness or other life-threatening situation, always call 112, which is the general emergency number for police affairs, fire, medical care and social services. If in doubt as to whether it is an emergency or not, it is always better to call and ask. The emergency medical services helpline advises you on the help you require.
For non-emergency medical care, the City of Turku’s Welfare Division provides medical advice over the phone at +358 2 10023. Lines are open weekdays from 8AM to 3PM. The hearing-impaired have their own service for the evaluation of medical care, counselling and making an appointment at a health centre. This can be contacted during office hours by sending SMS message to +358 44 907 3824.
Turku University Hospital's T-Hospital is now the region’s accident and emergency hospital. It provides everyday 24-hour specialized medical care and treatment to those who have fallen suddenly ill or sustained injury. T-Hospital is situated between the Turku Cathedral and Kupittaa Railway Station at Savitehtaankatu 1.