The Tampere skyline reflected in the lake
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Six reasons to visit Tampere, Finland

Bri Bleiwas

Contributing writer

Tampere is a beautiful city in southern Finland. It’s the most populous inland Nordic city and the most populous Finnish city outside of Greater Helsinki. This trip destination sits between two lakes, and it’s known for its saunas, cultural attractions, and “hipster” vibes. If you’ve already visited more well-known cities like Helsinki, consider making another trip to Finland to visit this beautiful destination.

There are many reasons to visit Tampere. The city is small enough to allow you to hit every item on your to-do list during your trip, so you won’t leave feeling like you’ve missed important attractions. Here are just a few of the cool things that draw people to Tampere.

Buckets and steam inside a Finnish sauna

1. Tampere is the sauna capital of the world

Finland has a thriving sauna culture that you should indulge in while you’re there. Tampere is the sauna capital of the world, with over 50 public saunas to choose from. It’s home to Finland’s oldest public sauna, Rajaportti (which is even older than Finland itself!) You could also try Rauhaniemi or Suomensaaren. If you’re looking for a truly unique sauna, go to Saunaravintola Kuuma, which has a restaurant.

When visiting Tampere’s saunas, be sure to book them well in advance. Saunas take a while to heat up, and you’ll want to make sure it’s ready for you to use.

The log flume at Särkänniemi amusement park, Tampere

2. Tampere is home to a great amusement park

Tampere has its own amusement park, Särkänniemi. It has an aquarium, observation tower, and much more. If you’re visiting Tampere with kids, this attraction should definitely be on your trip itinerary. Even if you’re not bringing children with you on your trip, it’s still worth checking out for the adult-friendly rides.

You can buy passes to the entire amusement park or a ticket for an individual attraction. A Särkänniemi pass gives you admission to the park, aquarium, observation tower, and access to rides. The earlier you buy your pass, the cheaper it’ll be, so buy it as soon as you book your trip to Tampere for the best price.

An exhibition at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Tampere, Finland

3. Tampere has many unusual museums

If you like museums, you’ll love Tampere. Tampere hosts many cool and unusual museums, like the Spy Museum and Finnish Labor Museum. There’s also an exhibition center that has even more cool museums to check out. Some highlights of that attraction include the Hockey Hall of Fame, a mineral museum, a postal museum, and some temporary exhibits.

You’ll also find some more typical exhibit centers in Tampere - don’t miss the Tampere Art Museum. Additionally, the Vapriikki exhibition center is home to a natural history museum dedicated to the Tampere region. No matter what you’re into, you’ll find an intriguing museum in Tampere.

A stall serving food at the fishmarket in Tampere, Finland

4. Food in Tampere is really good

Grab some lunch at the Tampere Market Hall, where you can get a black sausage with lingonberry jam. Alternatively, head to the food stalls at Laukontori Market Square, a haven for street food. Tampere has several great places to find traditional Finnish food, so be sure to visit a couple of them while you’re in town.

At Tampere’s markets, you can buy produce, chocolates, pastries, and more. Some of the markets have cafes in them, so don’t feel rushed to get done shopping quickly - stick around and enjoy a drink.

An aerial view of Tampere, Finland

5. Tampere is surrounded by beautiful lakes

Back in the day, the Tammerkoski lake helped provide water power to Tampere. These rapids were also used to transport goods. Nowadays, you can explore the lake on a cruise during the summer months. The Finnish Silverline ferry excursion lasts eight hours and features some fun stops, including a wine tasting.

During the winter, you can go ice fishing in Tampere’s lakes. Small lakes freeze over in November and larger lakes freeze in December, providing suitable territory for catching fish. Whether you’re visiting during the summer or winter, you can experience Tampere’s lakes in all of their glory.

The Cathedral in Tampere, Finland

6. Tampere has many stunning churches

If you like exploring churches, visit a few in Tampere. Many were built in the 1800s, with some built in the 1900s. Some gorgeous churches you can visit include the Church of St. Alexander Nevsky and St. Nicholas, Tampere Cathedral, and Messukylä Old Church.

Tampere’s churches still actively host services, so be sure to check their websites to ensure you’re not visiting during them (unless, of course, you wish to sit in for the service). 

If you haven’t added Tampere to your travel bucket list yet, now is a great time to do so. With so many interesting things to see and do, visiting this Finnish city is an experience you’ll remember for a lifetime.

Planning a trip to Tampere? Stay at the Solo Sokos Hotel Torni Tampere for comfortable rooms and lake views.

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Bri Bleiwas

Author - Bri Bleiwas

Bri is a New Yorker living in Oregon who loves dogs and writing. She also enjoys traveling and has been to Austin, Finland, Orange County, and many other places. In her spare time, she bowls and makes crafts with her Cricut.

Last Updated 8 September 2022

Aerial view of Punkaharju Nature Reserve in Finland

Finland

Unlike craggy Norway and Sweden, Finland is a land of low, rolling plains interspersed with lakes and hills. The capital, Helsinki, straddles several islands, brightened by colourful architecture and the former capital Turku is also well worth visiting.
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