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This page contains information on leisure time activities in Turku. For more important information on the topic see the page Leisure.
Cultural experiences in Turku
Turku’s vibrant, eventful, and high-class cultural life offers alternatives for all tastes.
Turku has long traditions in theatre and music. Turku City Theatre was the first fully municipality owned theatre in Finland and it was established in 1946. The Turku Philharmonic Orchestra, founded already in 1790, is the oldest orchestra in Finland. Turku is also famous for the second oldest rock festival in Europe, Ruisrock.
Music and Concerts
The Turku Philharmonic Orchestra offers classical music in the Concert Hall (Aninkaistenkatu 9). In the spring and autumn seasons, symphony, chamber music and popular music concerts are held almost weekly. Free internet concerts can be watched online either recorded or live.
The Turku Philharmonic Orchestra is Finland’s oldest orchestra. Its roots date back to 1790. Its main place of performance has been Turku Concert Hall, since it was built in 1952. Tickets to concerts by the Turku Philharmonic Orchestra are sold by Lippupiste the Ars Musica cultural shop located in the Concert Hall. Tickets can also be bought at the door one hour before the concert.
Concerts are also held at the Wäinö Aaltonen Museum on Tuesdays and the Sibelius Museum holds its own series of concerts on Wednesdays. Many more concerts are held in churches and at Vanha Raatihuone. Numerous clubs and other event organisers are responsible for the light music offering.
Theatre, dance theatre and movies
Theatrical performances can be viewed at, for example, the City Theatre, Åbo Svenska Teater, Linnateatteri, Tehdasteatteri and, in summer, the Summer Theatre. Dance theatre is offered by Aurinkobaletti and Dance Theatre Eri. Turku also has active puppet theatre and amateur dramatics.
Turku also has the Finnkino Cinema and a range of film clubs.
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Logomo is a former workshop of Finnish Railways and now a culture centre. It hosts many different kinds of events such as art exhibitions, concerts and other cultural functions.
Museums and exhibitions
Turku has many museums where you can learn about Finnish history, Finnish customs, folk traditions and art as well as Finnish nature. At the same time, you can learn the key vocabulary of the subjects.
The museums include Turku Castle, the Pharmacy Museum, Luostarinmäki Handicrafts Museum, Forum Marina and Aboa Vetus.
Art can be admired at Wäinö Aaltonen Museum, Turku Art Museum, Ars Nova and in galleries. The Turku Biological Museum acquaints its visitors with Finnish nature, key types of landscape and different species of fauna.
In addition to exhibitions, the museums offer several different kinds of events, guided tours and workshops for all ages.
Kuralan Kylämäki is an area of recreational culture for the whole family. You can visit the area of Kurala all year round, have a picnic there or get to know the animals on the farm. In summer, and during events, you can learn about life on a 1950s farm on a guided tour, watch displays of work and try out your own handicraft skills. Kurala’s experimental workshop organises workshops and courses all year round.
The addresses, opening hours and ticket prices are listed on the museums' web pages.
Further information: Museums
Libraries are the meeting places of books, cultures and people. For more information: Libraries
Several branch libraries all over Turku are a part of the Turku City Library, as is the main library in the city centre. In addition to this, mobile libraries travel around the city.
In a library you can, for example:
- read books and magazines in Finnish and other languages
- use a computer and the Internet
- Read international newspapers using the PressDisplay program
- participate in various events and lectures
- Study and hang out.
Visiting a library, borrowing books and using its computers are free of charge. Everyone who has a library card can borrow books, CDs, DVDs and other material free of charge. In Turku you can also add the Culture Card feature to your library card and by so doing you will receive e-mail updates about Turku’s abundant cultural offerings and ever-changing range of benefits and offers.
The library can also be hired for meetings, events and exhibitions of different sizes.
Contact information of the Turku City Library:
Sports and exercise in Turku
Turku has an abundance of different sports services to offer all year-round. Turku has playing fields, gymnasiums, public swimming pools, fitness tracks, nature trails, cycling trails and, in winter, ice rinks and ski trails. For more information: Sports
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The City of Turku’s indoor and outdoor swimming pools offer a wide range of reasonably-priced possibilities to engage in water sports. Impivaara Swimming Pool also arranges guided activity, water aerobics, swimming lessons, baby swimming and family swimming. Petrelius Swimming Pool offers water aerobics, among other things, as well as special slimming times for men and women. The city’s outdoor swimming pools and beaches offer wonderful swimming opportunities in the summer.
Turku has many volleyball-, basketball- and tennis courts and pitches for other ball games. The use of some courts and pitches is open to all, whilst for others you must book times that are either chargeable or free of charge.
Turku also has many fitness centres all over town. The centres also organise activity with an instructor and ABC courses for fitness centre training, in which the basics of training can be learned.
The Sports Park in the city centre offers everyone a great setting for athletics, exercise and disc golf. In winter, everyone may skate on natural ice rinks, artificial ice tracks or at public sessions at the Impivaara and Varissuo ice halls.
In the city centre around the banks of the River Aura are cultural fitness trails on different themes. You can get to know the city through romance, statues, architecture and stories about the city. You can get maps from the library and the internet.
In the area of the city, there are also many conservation areas in which you can move around freely. ‘The Paths of Paavo’ are trails marked on the terrain, which introduce people to local nature and the urban environment in different parts of Turku. The trails are marked on trees and rocks with painted blue runner symbols and round signs.
Further information: Recreation and travel in nature
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Lending and rental of sports equipment
From the youth spaces at Lauste, Varissuo, Pansio and Runosmäki , you can borrow sports equipment using a youth card. You can rent skates at the Parkki field, states and rollerskates at Kupittaa skating track, skis at Impivaara skating centre and other sports equipment from Customer Service at the Sports Service Centre.
The City of Turku has free-of-charge and reasonably priced sports services for people of all ages. The dedicated services for people of different ages are especially meant for those who exercise little or occasionally.
There are dedicated groups and services for women, men, senior citizens and special groups. Through them, you can easily try out different sports and find the hobby you like best. There are also dedicated sports services suitable for those needing exercise.
You can also ask for help in finding your own sports hobby from the free-of-charge sports guidance service.
Sports Service Centre, Customer Service
Blomberginaukio 4, 20720 Turku
tel. (02) 262 3232
Those with a senior citizen’s wristband or a Kimmoke wristband can engage in independent exercise at a reasonable price at the city’s fitness centres and swimming pools, and can also enjoy culture at the city’s cultural establishments. Senior citizen’s wristband can be purchased by anyone of 65 and over. A Kimmoke wristband is meant for those who are receiving basic income support and certain Kela benefits.
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Turku has more than 300 clubs and societies organising sport.
Multicultural sports services
There are different multicultural sports clubs available to children and young people that are easy to join. The clubs are meant for all Turku residents. For adults, there are separate fitness centre and swimming times available for women and men.
In addition to general support services, there are also different seasonal sports groups available for immigrants such as fitness centre activity, ball games, skiing, skating, dance, courses for trying out different sports and hiking.
Hobbies for children and young people
The city organises many different kinds of courses, club and group activity for children and young people. On offer are, among other things, theatre, music, handicraft and sports groups that convene regularly, as well as open activity in which anyone can participate.
Many private art schools and societies also teach art and offer opportunities to engage in it. Turku’s museums, libraries and art establishments also offer plenty of events and cultural activity targeted at children and families with children.
Further information: Hobbies for children and young people
Sports for children and young people
Sports arranged for school-age children by Turku sports service centre and Turku sports clubs,
In the children’s sport wonderlands, children aged 1 to 12 years in play and exercise with an adult. The wonderlands are held on Sundays at nine different places in Turku. The service is free-of-charge.
’Lapset liikkeelle’ is is a free-of-charge sports service for children aged 7 to 12.
Mihi offers free-of-charge exercise to young people aged 13 to 19 living in the region. You can find more information on the website.
The Adventure Play Park (Seikkailupuisto) is an activity centre for children and families situated in Kupittaa Park (Kupittaankatu 2). It is open all year round.
In summer the park’s play equipment, swings, climbing frames and traffic park offer a wealth of different possibilities for playing outdoors. In winter, different club and theatre activity is held in the park’s indoor premises. The activity of the Adventure Play Park is primarily directed at children of 0 to 14 years and their families.
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Youth spaces and youth services
A youth space is a place dedicated to young people, where 9 to 18-year-olds can play, do arts and crafts, cook, meet friends or just hang out. Youth spaces also organise clubs, excursions, themed days and discos. There are many youth spaces in different districts around the city. There is always an adult supervisor present.
You need a youth card to be able to participate in activities. The card is free, and can be obtained from any youth space.
The activity of Vimma in the centre of total is mainly targeted at those under the age of 29. At Vimma, you can create art and take part in concerts and other events. The building also has a cafeteria and a common room. Young people can use the computers in the lobby of Vimma, where there is an internet connection, free of charge.
Contact information for youth art and activity centre Vimma:
Aurakatu 16, 20100 Turku
Tel. (02) 262 3129
Open hours: Mon-Fri 9– 20
Mon-Fri 9.30– 18
Vimma is also a unit for multicultural youth work and international activity. It offers young people in those working with them training and multicultural events and gives them consulting help in life management matters. The units international activity promotes interaction between young people of different cultures, for example by offering opportunities for international exchanges. In Vimma, there is also a Swedish-language youth space Zabadak.
Information and advice service Nuorten Turku
Nuorten Turku is a service open to all those under the age of 29 which provides advice and guidance about hobbies and leisure time, job search and summer jobs, looking for an apartment and matters concerning international opportunities.
Nuorten Turku is situated at Yliopistonkatu 25 A. You can go there at any time during opening hours without an appointment. At the centre, you can also make your own appointment or send a question by email or Facebook.
Senior citizens’ hobbies
In Turku, senior citizens have their own activity organised. For example, Turku residents over the age of 65 and by a senior citizen’s wristband, which allows them to exercise at exercise places belonging to the City of Turku, such as swimming pools, fitness centres and, in the summer, outdoor swimming pools. Guided sports services and cultural services are also included in the senior citizen’s wristband.
Associations - multiculture in cooperation
Turku has associations engaged in international and multicultural work, friendship societies, immigrant societies and other organisations. They organise a wide range of different activities and many kinds of services for both immigrants and Finns.
Each large immigrant organisation has its own association, which acts as a cooperative body and supervisor of interests for the community. The associations organise many different kinds of cultural and sporting activity, as well as events and clubs aimed at maintaining their own culture. Through these associations, it is possible to contact experts of each culture and also their different representative groups.
More information: Associations