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The Tailor-Made Top 15 Family-Friendly Attractions to Visit in Helsinki


**Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Regardless of this, please be advised that all opinions expressed in this blog post are genuine and authentically my own.**

Author: Barry Pickard

Helsinki, the capital of Finland, offers a plethora of activities for families to enjoy. From exploring the great outdoors to immersing in the local culture, there is something for everyone. This vibrant city is a perfect destination for families who are looking for a unique and memorable experience. From adventure to relaxation, Helsinki promises to leave a lasting impression on visitors of all ages.


Don’t forget that Tailor-Made Itineraries delights in creating bespoke self-guided tours. So, if visiting any of these family-friendly attractions appeals to you, reach out to me by email. I would be more than happy to design a self-guided tour around your requirements incorporating the family-friendly attractions of Helsinki, or indeed, a general tour of Finland’s capital.


It is difficult to create a list of the best family-friendly attractions in Helsinki and is sure to be a little controversial with some, but here are our top fifteen.



Family-Friendly Attractions to Visit in Helsinki


15. Sibelius Park & Monument


The Sibelius Park was named after Finland's greatest composer Jean Sibelius on his 80th birthday in 1945. The world-famous composer Jean Sibelius' (1865-1957) monument by Eila Hiltunen is located at the Sibelius Park. It was unveiled 7 September 1967. The Sibelius Monument, resembling organ pipes, is made of welded steel with over 600 pipes and with the bust of the composer on one side. The park is a lovely green space for the family to enjoy and the monument is sure to beguile the kids.



14. Amos Rex


Amos Rex is an art museum where the past, present and future meet. Located within the functionalist landmark of Lasipalatsi, the newly built domed exhibition spaces lie under the distinctively undulating Lasipalatsi square. Amos Rex presents site-sensitive, experiential, and often technologically experimental exhibitions by contemporary artists and their Modernist predecessors. A permanent exhibition with Sigurd Frosterus's post-impressionist art collection is also on display.



‘The Quiet Parade’ by Belgian artist Hans Op de Beeck was the exhibition being held during my visit and what a visual treat it was! The monochromatic sculptures really were an eye-catcher. The whole family would be mesmerised with these exhibits. Check out their website to see what exhibitions are on.


Tailor-Made Top Tip: This can be a very popular destination in Helsinki, so an early visit might be required to beat the rush.



13. Fortress of Suomenlinna


The Fortress of Suomenlinna is a sea fortress located just off Helsinki. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most popular tourist attractions in the city.


The fortress was built in the 18th century by the Swedish Empire to protect Helsinki from attack. It was later used by the Russian Empire and Finland. The fortress has never been attacked, but it played an important role in the Finnish War of Independence in 1918.



Today, the family will enjoy exploring the six kilometres of walls, 100 cannons, exciting tunnels, and beautiful parks while admiring the panoramic views of Helsinki. If you are interested in history and culture, then the Fortress of Suomenlinna is a must-visit in Helsinki. It is a fascinating place to learn about Finland's past and its unique military history.


Tailor-Made Top Tip: A small ferry regularly shuttles between the island and the jetty beside Market Square.


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12. Korkeasaari Zoo


Korkeasaari Zoo is a great place to visit with the whole family. It is located on an island, connected to the mainland by two bridges. The zoo is home to over 150 animal species, from reindeers and wolverines to camels and musk ox. There are also a variety of educational exhibits, making it a great place to learn about animals and their habitats.


The zoo has a variety of amenities to make your visit as enjoyable as possible, including a restaurant, a cafe, and a gift shop. There are also playgrounds and picnic areas, making it a great place to relax and enjoy the outdoors.


Tailor-Made Top Tip: Wear comfortable shoes. You will be doing a lot of walking! Also, pack a picnic lunch. There are a few restaurants at the zoo, but they can be quite expensive.


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15 Family-Friendly Attractions to Visit in Helsinki
Korkeasaari Zoo

11. Helsinki Tram Museum


Helsinki's oldest tram depot houses the small, but interesting Helsinki Tram Museum. The museum presents the history of trams in Helsinki from a passenger's point of view. At the Tram Museum, you can have a seat in an old tram that instantly transports you to the Helsinki of yesteryear.


Read on to find out which family-friendly attractions are in our top ten.



10. Moomin Shop Lasipalatsi


The Moomin Shop Lasipalatsi is a great place to take your family if you are fans of the Moomins. The shop is bright and cheerful, and it is full of Moomin-themed items that will appeal to children and adults alike. You can find everything from Moomin plush toys to Moomin coffee mugs.


The Moomins are a beloved symbol of Finnish culture and values. They were created by Tove Jansson, a Finnish-Swedish author and illustrator, in the 1940s. The Moomins are a family of hippopotamus-like creatures who live in a magical valley called Moominvalley. They represent the Finnish love of nature, the Finnish sense of humor, and the Finnish resilience. The Moomins have been translated into over 50 languages and have been enjoyed by children and adults all over the world.



9. Military Museum's Manege


The exhibition at the Military Museum's Manege, on the island of Suomenlinna, focuses on the Finnish Defence Forces 100 Years at War and Peace. Portrayals of the wars Finland has fought during its independence: the Civil War in 1918, the Winter War in 1939-1940, the Continuation War in 1941-1944 and the Lapland War in 1944-1945 are all covered. The exhibition continues in the adjacent building Artillery Manege, telling the story of the Finnish Defence Forces in the post-war period up to the present day.



Tailor-Made Top Tip: There is a fun opportunity to try on various military uniforms and helmets, which is always a hit with the youngsters.



8. Helsinki Central Library Oodi


Helsinki Central Library Oodi is a stunning new library that opened in 2018 and must be one of the most user friendly and welcoming libraries in the world. It is more than just a place to borrow books. It is a space for people to learn, create, and connect. The library has a wide range of facilities, including a reading room, a music room, a makerspace, and a café.


Tailor-Made Top Tip: Oodi is a great place for the family to relax and unwind. Pick a space on the stepped area at the back of the main library area and enjoy the view.


Read on to find out which Family-Friendly Attraction to Visit in Helsinki tops the list.



7. Hietaranta Beach


Hietaranta (also called Hietsu) offers a shallow and safe swimming area and is very popular on hot summer days. You can also enjoy beach volleyball and basketball. Children have their own play area. Café bar GT1929 in the pavillion serves the likes of coffee, ice cream, and burgers.


Tailor-Made Top Tip: Nearby you will also find a miniature golf course, basketball court and the Taivallahti Tennis Centre.


15 Family-Friendly Attractions to Visit in Helsinki
Hietaranta Beach

6. Helsinki City Museum


The Helsinki City Museum is a great place to visit with your family. It is located in the heart of the city, and it is free to enter. The museum has a variety of exhibits that explore the history of Helsinki, from its early days as a fishing village to its current status as a modern capital city. There are also interactive exhibits that allow children to learn about Helsinki in a fun and engaging way.


Tailor-Made Top Tip: In addition to the exhibits, the Helsinki City Museum also has a number of other family-friendly features, including a museum shop, a cafe, and a children's play area.



5. Rock Church


The Rock Church, also known as Temppeliaukio Church, is a unique and fascinating place to visit with your family. The church is built into the bedrock of Helsinki, and its striking design has made it one of the most popular tourist attractions in the city.


15 Family-Friendly Attractions to Visit in Helsinki
The Rock Church

The Rock Church’s special architecture was designed by brothers Timo and Tuomo Suomalainen. and completed in 1969. The church hall is covered with a dome, lined with copper and supported on the rock walls by reinforced concrete beams. The interior walls are of rugged rock and rubble wall. Before noon, the sunlight spreads from the row of windows surrounding the roof periphery to the altar wall, where an ice-age crevice serves as the altarpiece.


Tailor-Made Top Tip: Make sure to go up to the balcony for different perspective on the eye-catching interiors.


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4. Kaisaniemi Botanic Garden


The Kaisaniemi Botanic Garden's glasshouses and surrounding grounds offer families and nature lovers a unique experience all year round. The lush Rainforest House presents the coffee bush and the strangler fig, and in the Palm House, the visitor can see not only the world's biggest seed, but also an impressive collection of orchids. The outdoor garden attracts the visitor to experience the world of plants. In summertime, perhaps the most attractive part of the grounds is the central garden, an open area with ponds and flowers, bordered by the glasshouses and rose bushes.



3. SkyWheel Helsinki


SkyWheel Helsinki is a 40-metre-high Ferris wheel by the Market Square and Allas Sea Pool and enjoys magnificent 360-degree vistas all year round. For a more luxurious ride, you can pick the Veuve Clicquot VIP experience with champagne and music, although that’s maybe one more for the adults!


Have you guessed yet which family friendly attraction tops the list?


15 Family-Friendly Attractions to Visit in Helsinki
SkyWheel

2. Flying Cinema Tour


The Flying Cinema Tour is a unique and exciting way to see both Helsinki and Finland. Two films can be viewed, where one of them takes you on a virtual flight over the capital and the other over the country, giving you a bird's eye view of all their most famous landmarks.

The tour is shown in a special theatre with moving seats and special effects, which make you feel like you are actually flying. The films are narrated in English and Finnish, and they are suitable for all ages. The Flying Cinema Tour is a great way to learn about Helsinki and Finland and to see them from a different perspective. It is also a lot of fun, and it is sure to entertain the whole family.


Tailor-Made Top Tip: The cinema is next to the Skywheel, making it ideal to visit both of these attractions one after the other.



1. Natural History Museum


The Finnish Natural History Museum's exhibitions show the diversity of nature. The "Finnish Nature" exhibition offers a fascinating journey through Finland from the southern coast to the northern fells. The "History of Life" exhibition presents the course of the evolution from the Big Bang to dinosaurs and larger mammals of the Ice Age. Through the exhibition "World Nature" the visitor is taken on an exploration excursion that begins from the polar areas and ends in the tropical warmth. The secrets of the bones are introduced in the exhibition "Story of the Bones". The "Change in the Air" exhibition presents the research on climate change conducted at the University of Helsinki.


Tailor-Made Top Tip: Audio guides in English, French and Russian are available.


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15 Family-Friendly Attractions to Visit in Helsinki
Finnish Natural History Museum

Conclusion


If you're looking for a city that offers a mix of excitement and relaxation, Helsinki should be on your list. With its stunning natural beauty and rich cultural heritage, it's a destination that provides an unforgettable experience for families. So, pack your bags and get ready to explore the best that this city has to offer. Whether you're seeking adventure or relaxation, you're sure to find it in the heart of Helsinki.


Helsinki Accommodation Suggestions


As befits a world capital, Helsinki has a wide range of accommodation options to suit all pockets and all the major chains are represented in the city. I chose to stay in the Hotel Arthur. This hotel was comfortable, with large bedrooms and the buffet breakfast was excellent. The hotel also had a great location, just a five-minute walk from the train station and ten-minutes from the harbour area.



Other central options ideal for seeing the city and its Art Nouveau treasures are the NH Collection Helsinki Grand Hansa, Hotel F6, and Hotel Indigo Helsinki-Boulevard.


Related Blog Posts

If you would like more information on the beautiful city of Helsinki, please view the Tailor-Made Itineraries posts below:


Comment below and let us know what your favourite family-friendly Helsinki attraction is.



Don’t forget that Tailor-Made Itineraries delights in creating bespoke self-guided tours. So, if visiting any of these family-friendly attractions appeals to you, reach out to me by email. I would be more than happy to design a self-guided tour around your requirements incorporating the family-friendly attractions of Helsinki, or indeed, a general tour of Finland’s capital.


Join me next time on my adventures when I discover the Art Nouveau architecture of Helsinki. Tailor-Made Itineraries posts every two weeks, and you can subscribe to the latest blog and newsletter here. Until then, happy reading and safe travels.

Barry

Tailor-Made Itineraries creates one-of-a-kind bespoke self-guided travel itineraries for adventurous and curious travellers.

These self-guided tours deliver a personalised and exciting holiday experience that takes the effort out of trip planning.









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