Turku is Finland’s oldest city and one of the oldest in the entire Nordic region. The year 1229 was of great significance to the city. It was during this year that the seat of the Archbishop of Finland moved to Turku and it became the religious centre as well as an important town of commerce.
The construction of Turku Castle began in the 1280s, and Turku Cathedral was consecrated in the year 1300. The university was founded in 1640, and Turku was the Finnish capital until the year 1812. In 2011, Turku went global as the European Capital of Culture.
Turku’s most famous people, such as reformer Mikael Agricola, the legendary runner Paavo Nurmi, the astronomer Yrjö Väisälä, rock star Michael Monroe, and the hockey playing brothers, Saku and Mikko Koivu, have not only changed Finland but also the world. The vibrant economy of Turku has delivered the world’s largest luxury cruise ships, the Oasis of the Seas and the Allure of the Seas, completed in Turku in 2009 and 2010.
Finland’s fifth-largest city has 178,000 inhabitants and 30,000 students in higher education. Natives from Turku typically speak Finnish (83 %) or Swedish (6 %). Tourists will find it easy in Turku as most people speak English very well.
The River Aura is the heart and soul of Turku! This is where Turku was born and a large part of city life. Museums, Sights, Restaurants and Cafes still concentrate around the banks of the Aura! A walk by the river from the Cathedral to Turku Castle is a fascinating journey through history whilst seeing what present day Turku has to offer!!
There are tens of thousands of islands and skerries between Turku and Stockholm. Saved from the ravages of mass tourism, the archipelago is a breath-taking natural experience that also offers a full range of traveller services. There is no need for an own boat to experience the archipelago. There are cruises, ferries and the Archipelago Trail. This beautiful route will take the travellers island hopping by bike or car.
The most famous island of the Turku Archipelago, Ruissalo, is known for its beautiful oak forests and charming 19th century villas. Once hunting grounds for the Swedish court of Turku Castle. The island is easily accessible from Turku by land or by sea.