Finland has a lot to offer! From rolling landscapes of Lapland to the scattered islands and picturesque countryside, Finland offers rare beauty and unique flair. The Nordic country is also known for its world-class heritage sites and museums. So, if you’re interested in Finnish history and culture, you should plan a holiday in Finland. Additionally, you can also go on a sightseeing tour of the vibrant art-filled cities of Helsinki and Turku on your trip to Finland. To help you find your way around this Nordic country, we’ve compiled a list of the 9 best museums & heritage sites in Finland. Read on.
Museums & Heritage Sites In Finland – Top 9
Immerse yourself in military history at Suomenlinna Fortress located right by the sea. This landmark is a well-preserved example of 18th-century military architecture. The purpose of the fortress was to defend the Finnish capital and the country’s southern coast from the deadly attacks of the Russian Empire. During World War II, Suomenlinna Fortress served as an active submarine base and housed the 250-tonne submarine Vesikko. Today, the old fortress is also famous for its museums such as the Dolls and Toys Museum and the Ehrensvard Museum. It is one of Finland’s most iconic UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Location: 00190 Helsinki, Finland
Rovaniemi Local History Museum
The Rovaniemi Local History Museum is one of the most famous museums in Finland that reflects local culture. It depicts the way of life in a local farmhouse from a century ago. They were primarily associated with old-fashioned trades like fishing, raising cattle, hunting, and raising reindeer. Villager artefacts from the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries make up the collection. The 1840s main building, which has an empire-style design, is still in its original location and has been decorated in a manner that is typical of the area. It’s one of the few remaining residential buildings in the Biokola district of Rovaniemi.
Location: Pöykköläntie 4, 96400 Rovaniemi, Finland
Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma
Another attraction is the Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma designed by the American architect, Steven Holl. If you want to explore Finland for its fascinating contemporary artworks, you should include this museum in your Finland tour itinerary. The museum was founded in 1990 and displays over 8,500 works of art from Finland and its neighbouring countries. It houses the art collection of the National Gallery of Finland. There’s also a café and souvenir shop where you can browse to spend your day.
Location: Mannerheiminaukio 2, 00100 Helsinki, Finland
Old Rauma was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991. It is an outstanding example of a wooden-built town that dates back to the medieval ages. There are about 600 buildings today, dating from the 18th and 19th centuries including churches, halls and houses. Most of them are single-storey and famous for their traditional architecture. Old Rauma is situated on the Gulf of Bothnia and is a town with cobblestoned streets and adorable courtyards. Besides the wooden houses, there are marketplaces, a shopping street, and a church that you can explore. The harbour town is worth a visit!
Location: 26100 Rauma, Finland
One of the most famous museums in Finland is the Arktikum Museum, located on the Arctic Circle. The museum serves as a science centre and conference venue and is worth a visit in your Rovaniemi holiday plan. Here, you can also observe Nordic nature and history up close. The glass-roofed foyer and educational exhibits make it a popular Finnish attraction. You can learn about Arctic nature and experience everyday life in the beautiful Arctic environment.
Location: Pohjoisranta 4, 96200 Rovaniemi, Finland
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Petäjävesi Old Church
The Petajavesi Old Church is one of the top museums & heritage sites in Finland. It has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1994. The wooden church was built between 1763 and 1765 and is well preserved. The old church is surrounded by a forest area and is famous for its bell tower and pitched roof. The Nordic-style architecture makes the complex unique and attractive. It was built by the land-owning peasants of Central Finland from 1763 to 1765. Take a Finland tour to visit the beloved church which has witnessed the joys and sorrows of Finnish people for four centuries.
Location: Vanhankirkontie 9, 41900 Petäjävesi, Finland
Finnish Museum of Natural History
The Finnish Museum of Natural History is a must-visit place on your Finland tour. Also serving as the research institution of the University of Helsinki, it is one of the three central national museums in the country. That makes it one of the most famous museums in Finland of its type. Here, you can see a curated collection of botanical, zoological, paleontological and geological exhibits from all over the world. The Finnish Museum maintains and exhibits Finland`s nature and life history. So, if you are keen on educational research in the field of biology, then the museum is unmissable.
Location: Pohjoinen Rautatiekatu 13, 00100 Helsinki, Finland
Next, we introduce you to the Kraven Archipelago, one of the best museums & heritage sites in Finland. It’s located in the northern part of the Baltic Sea in the Gulf of Bothnia. It’s the only place in Finland where the land still rises due to isotactic uplift. Due to the geomorphological process in the region, you’ll see a variety of glacial formations and boulders. The archipelago has also been on UNESCO’s World Heritage List since 2006. So, take a trip to Finland to experience a land uplift phenomenon caused by the last Ice Age.
Location: Gulf of Bothnia, Finland
National Museum of Finland
Lastly is the National Museum of Finland, which illustrates Finnish history from prehistoric times to the present day. The building’s architecture, with its granite façade and steatite decoration, is one of the most significant national works. You can stroll through the vaulted central halls, whose interiors reflect the 20th-century design. Embark on a journey that covers over 10,000 years of Finnish history as you explore the exhibits inside the museum. The National Museum was designed by award-winning Finnish architects such as Herman Gesellius, Armas Lindgren and Eliel Saarinen. So, don’t miss out on visiting this attractive museum on your Finland tour.
Location: Mannerheimintie 34, Helsinki, Finland