Once known for supplying tar for the protection of ships across Europe, Oulu Finland is now one of northern Europe’s most highly-evolved technological centers. The sixth largest city in the country, Oulu is situated on the western coast of central Finland, and due to its location, it experiences quite a variance in sunlight between the four seasons. Come midsummer, the sun never sets, and during winter, the city is enveloped in what amounts to almost total darkness. It is a strange phenomenon for visitors coming from lower latitudes, but just a part of life for Oulu residents. In the fall and spring, there is a more even distribution of light and dark. Bring some heavy clothing if you plan to travel to Oulu Finland during the cold winter, and be sure to pack some light and colorful clothes for the summer so that you can better fit in with the local crowd.
Once you arrive in Oulu Finland, you might head straight for the city’s Market Place, where you will find the famed statue of a portly police officer. Known as "The Bobby," this statue is highly revered by the citizens of Oulu, and it’s pretty much an Oulu tourism must to at least snap one photo of it. Another Oulu travel must involves taking a look at the Oulu Cathedral. Originally built in 1777 for then King of Sweden, Gustav III, the Oulu Cathedral was severely damaged in the Oulu fire of 1822, which claimed much of the city. The restored version of the cathedral that you will see in the center of town today was designed by Carl Ludvig Engel, who is responsible for designing many of the Finnish cathedrals, city buildings, and city layouts across Finland. Though a German-born architect, Engel found his niche in Finland, and among his most renowned works are the University of Helsinki’s main building and the Helsinki Senate Square. Restorations to the Oulu Cathedral were ultimately finished in 1845, and should you check out its interior, you can view Finland’s oldest surviving painted portrait. Believed to have been painted by Cornelius Arendtz in 1611, the portrait depicts Mr. Johannes Messenius, who is a famed Swedish historian.
There are many museums in Finland that you can add to your list of things to do during your Finland vacation, and for those who enjoy Oulu travel, the City Art Museum offers changing exhibitions. You never know what might be on display here. A daily English-language guided tour of the museum is offered at no extra cost, so you can inquire about that on your visit. While kids might not enjoy the City Art Museum as much as adults, they will most certainly fancy the city’s science center. Tietomaa, as the center is called, offers some 150 exhibits and an also oft-changing range of overall exhibitions. Kids will have the chance to enjoy hands-on activities at Tietomaa, and all visitors will want to ascend to the top of the center’s tower for views of the city. An elevator transports folks to the top, and if you take the steps down, you can take in the Astronomy exhibition as you go, not to mention the Hologram Gallery.
While doing some sightseeing in Oulu Finland, considering checking out some of the city parks and outdoors areas. Those who travel to Oulu Finland can take a break at the Botanical Gardens or head to Hupisaaret Park. The Botanical Gardens are part of the University of Oulu, and the two greenhouse pyramids here boast a myriad of plant species from around the world. At Hupisaaret Park, you can admire the gardens, enjoy a picnic, or take a stroll along the paths and streams. While visiting the park, make a point to stop by the Matila House, which was built in the 1730s. Now a museum that depicts a traditional sailor’s home, the Matila House is the oldest wooden home in town. For more insight into Oulu’s past and people, the Northern Ostrobothnia Museum begs a visit. It is found in Ainola Park, which is essentially part of Hupisaaret Park.
In addition to visiting city parks and museums, Oulu
travel can involve enjoying the great outdoors on a more
strenuous level. There are wonderful bicycle paths in
Oulu that wind through both the city and its surrounding
area, and there are plenty of good hiking trails as well. Come March, ice-skating, skiing,
and ice-fishing are among the top things to do, and regardless
of the season, you can seek rejuvenation in one of the
city’s saunas. Finnish
saunas are abundant and are a way of life for Finns,
so you’ll want to see what they’re all about
at some point during your Finland
holiday. Many Finnish hotels have their own saunas,
and even some hotel rooms come with a private one that
guests can enjoy in solitude.
When you travel to Oulu Finland, you’ll find that there is plenty to keep you busy and interested. The city boasts a fantastic symphony, as well as a competent theatre, and for those who want to do some shopping in Finland, there are great handmade items for sale at the city’s shops and markets. Wooden mugs, blown-glass pieces, and other interesting wares are just some of the things that you can buy here. A popular stop on the way to Finland’s northern Lapland region, Oulu has the country’s second-busiest airport, and it is well connected to other Finnish cities by rail and bus. Book a few nights at one of the Oulu hotels during your trip to Finland, and see for yourself all that Oulu vacations have to offer.