Picture: Juho Kuva / Visit Finland
In addition to sporting sights, Helsinki offers visitors a variety of ways of taking some exercise.
The Swimming Stadium mentioned earlier is a summer magnet for swimmers and sun-worshippers alike.
Although the grassy open area around the pool is quite large, space starts to be at a premium on hot July days.
In winter, there are several indoor swimming pools around the city.
Helsinki is a green city.
A third of the city area consists of parks and other green areas.
The fashionable district of Kaivopuisto is home to the embassies of several nations and also boasts a handsome park.
The road that winds around the edge of Kaivopuisto by the seafront is a favourite with rollerbladers and joggers in the summer.
During the summer months, there are often free or cheap outdoor workouts in Kaivopuisto, too.
Canoeing and kayaking can be enjoyed in Helsinki’s many sheltered bays.
The now trendy SUP-ing can be enjoyed on several spots along the shoreline of the city.
One of the most central places is at Töölönlahti Bay in the very heart of Helsinki, only a ten-minute walk from the central railway station.
Hiking and rambling in the woods is also an option.
Although Helsinki is the capital city, one does not have to travel far to find completely unspoilt areas, such as the Nuuksio National Park in neighbouring Espoo.
You will also find the Finnish Nature Centre Haltia at Nuuksio. The Nature Centre brings all of Finland’s nature under one roof and closer to the visitor.
Nature Days 2017 (www.luonnonpaivat.fi) is part of the Finland 100 centenary programme, inspiring people to explore the nature together. The campaign consists of four Nature Days full of events for everyone.
If you are unwilling to leave the city, you could try Nordic walking, a sport developed in Finland.
It is, basically, walking with two poles similar to ski poles.
Nordic Fitness Sports Park has equipment rental and great grounds and trails for various sports.
You’ll find the park next door to the Olympic Stadium.
Download or print the new Urban Nature brochure from visithelsinki.fi that lists the areas of interest and various outdoor activities in the city area.
More detailed information on a range of outdoor activities and on equipment rentals can be had from the Helsinki City Tourist and Convention Bureau website at www.hel.fi/tourism.