How to spend a winter day in Helsinki

Helsinki is a capital city where you can do ice skating and cross-country skiing practically in the city centre. Finns love outdoor life and cold weather is no excuse to stay indoors. Besides sights seeing and museums, here are listed few fun winter activities.

Ice-skating and sledding

Right in the centre of town next to the Central Railway Station you will find Icepark skating ring where you can rent skates and practice your figure skating skills.

The city’s many parks and hills are perfect sledding slopes during the winter. Head to parks such as Kaivopuisto and Sinebrychoff and you will find local children with their sleds. If you don’t happen to have a steerable Stiga sled with you, try riding down with a plastic bag.

Winter day in Helsinki, photo Robert Smith

Hike in wilderness in Espoo

If you are looking for something more wild, Nuuksio national park is a short drive away from Helsinki. Nuuksio offers hiking and skiing paths in the Finnish forest. Remember to take a pot of coffee or hot chocolate with you to enjoy it on a campfire.

Once it gets cold, Nuuksio has a newly-built exhibition centre, Haltia, dedicated to Finnish nature. Haltia provides a genuine experience of the Finnish nature from the southern coast to the very north of the country. You can also rent hiking gear from Haltia exhibition centre.

Dip to the frozen Baltic sea and warm Sauna

There is no better way to warm yourself up after a cold winter day than step into a Finnish sauna. And, believe it or not, take a swim in icy water. See the list of our favourite of public saunas in Helsinki. 

Harjun sauna in Helsinki
Winter day in Helsinki

Winter walk in the city

The shoreline and islands are wonderful places to breath in the fresh air and enjoy a winter day. The archipelago of Helsinki consists of around 330 islands, and some islands, such as Suomenlinna and Seurasaari can be reached during the winter as well. Take a ferry over the frozen see to Suomenlinna from Kauppatori or reach Seurasaari by foot.

On your way back home stop to eat a hot bowl of fish soup in market halls of Hietaniemi or Eteläranta.