Unwrap the Ho Ho Holiday spirit in Finland
Your December just got more festive with these seven events to keep you jolly this holiday season.
LET’S GET MEDIEVAL
December 1 – 2
Going back in time is easy: Jump on a train from Helsinki to Hämeenlinna and in an hour you arrive in the Middle Ages, with no pillaging required. A two-day event at the Häme Castle, complete with medieval re-enactments in the various rooms of the castle, brings history to life. Discover the food, activities, and excesses of the nobility, the gentry, and the peasants.
ROCK CAPPELLA SPECTACULAR
December 1 – 19
Brace yourselves for FORK, a Finnish a cappella and rock ‘n’ roll band. FORK is all about positive energy, edginess, humour, and blow-your-mind flawless vocals with slick choreography. Their So… This is Christmas? concert will be touring Helsinki, Porvoo, and Vaasa.
SLUSH IS THE BUSINESS
December 4 – 5
First organised in Helsinki a decade ago, Slush has grown into the world’s leading start-up and tech event where thousands of innovators, investors, tech heads, and journalists come together to network.
LAUGH YOUR STRESS AWAY
Ali Jahangiri, a highly regarded comedian, has been making people laugh in Finland for over a decade, and he’s still at it. There’s nothing like a healthy dose of ha-ha on a freezing winter’s night. If you are in Helsinki head to the Savoy Theatre where this stand-up show will have everyone rolling in the aisles. The performance is in Finnish.
CHILL OUT AND MAKE A HIMMELI
December 6 – 15
Valamo Orthodox Monastery in eastern Finland is about as far as you can get from the hustle and bustle of urban insanity. But here people get together during the holiday season to create the quintessential Finnish Christmas decoration, the himmeli, a hanging mobile usually made from straw. The workshops are organised by himmeli connoisseurs, and if you care to stay the night the monastery provides accommodation. You can also pick up some wine from the monastery’s own wine shop!
FOR MARKET-LOVING PEEPS
December 7 – 9
If design makes your world a better place, then beeline it over to Helsinki’s Cable Factory for the Ornamo Design Market. Unashamedly big and trendy, it’s an event fuelled by the talents of Finland’s creative industries, showcasing everything from fashion to ceramic art. This year’s market comes with an added Estonian twist.
LAPLAND UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL
Open every day except December 24
Arktikum – a science centre and museum combo with stunning architecture, and often rated among the country’s best attractions – is the place to deepen your understanding of Finnish Lapland. On a lucky day, the 172-metre long glass roof will give you an unforgettable view of the Northern lights. Arktikum is a must if you are on your way to Santa’s crib in Rovaniemi.
Text Carina Chela
Photo Pekka Koski