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Welcome to Turku

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Turku was once the capital city of Finland and it’s easy to see with its historic castle and cathedral that point to a rich cultural history, but these days, contemporary Turku, which was a European capital of culture in 2011 is alive with festivals, art and museums as well as the home to many of Finland’s top writers and artists. The medieval architecture in Turku is a big draw for tourists, but the lack of public transport make it a tricky place to navigate, so a car hire in Turku is the perfect way to see the sites and make your way around the city.
 

Turku - The Facts

 

  • Turku is home to the oldest rock festival in Finland and the second oldest in Europe. Ruisrock was founded in 1970 and sees some 70,000 festival goers attend each year, though it’s largest attendance record was back in 1971 with 100,00 visitors.

  • The population of Turku is a little under 200,000 people

  • The city of Turku was founded in the year 1229, making it Finland’s oldest city

  • Finland’s first university was founded in Turku in 1640

 

Turku - A short Guide

 

 

Turku is located on the south west coast of Finland on the River Aura - it has one of the busiest sea ports in Finland that handles more than 3 and a half million passengers every year. There is a strong maritime influence in Turku, and as such there is lots to see by the water. One of the more interesting attractions is the steamship SS Ukkopekka - which is said to be the last Finnish steamships - as well as being a pleasure to look at, you can also dine on the ship whilst sailing to the nearby Loistokari Island. It’s easy enough to get to the port - just take the Martinsilta bridge on the west side of the river. If you’d like to take a boat ride, you can visit Ruissalo island and you can even arrive in Turku by boat from Stockholm, Sweden. A morning cruise is an excellent option if you’d like a scenic view of the route.

 

If you’d prefer to stay on land, then a visit to some of the cities excellent art museums is an absolute must. Start with the Turku art museum, based in Puolalapark and built in 1904 by Gustaf Nystrom, it houses local Finnish artworks spanning early history up to ultra modern media art. From there you can head to the museum duo Aboa Vetus & Ars Nova which is a pair of museums under one roof specialising in art and archaeology. If you plan on visiting the beautiful Turku museum, then once you’re done admiring the inspiring Gothic Architecture and the romantic frescoes inside, you can head to the Turku Cathedral Museum which showcases the different stages of the cathedral’s construction form the 14 century as well as displaying a range of medieval sculptures and religious artefacts. For something a little different you could either head to the Sibelius museum which is the most extensive musical museum in Finland, displaying more than 300 instruments and named after the Finnish composer - Jean Sibelius, or you could head to the Wäino Aaltonen Museum which displays cubist and naturalist sculptures. If neither of these are your thing, you could try the Turku Biological Museum which features Finland’s wildlife depicted in realistic scenes and the Forum Marinum which is a merchant navy and shipping museum located in the centre of the city on the River Aura.

 

The Mammoth Turku Castle which is conveniently located close to the ferry terminals is one of Finland’s largest castles. It was founded in 1280 and was the seat of the Swedish Count Per Brahe in the 17th century. There are two dungeons and banqueting halls and there are guided tours in English everyday from June to August. If you’d like to get outside to explore more of the fascinating nature in this area of Finland, then you could start by heading to the Turku Archipelago - made up of 20,000 islands stretching out from the city of Turku into the sea.You can explore the islands in numerous different ways including several bridges, ferries and even by cycling - which is a popular option. You’ll find lots of quirky bars and restaurants around the city, as well as elegant wine bars and even viking themed restaurants - many of which are by the river and offer up perfect romantic night spots with stunning views out over the water.

 


This city is served by its own airport - Turku Airport, but there are few direct flights so you’ll have to change at Helsinki or Stockholm, and several other destinations - depending on who you fly with. The airport is a perfect place to pick up your rental car but there are few desks so they tend to sell out quickly in busier periods. Use Car Rentals Network to get the best car rental deals for Turku - we have a wide selection of cars from all of the available car hire suppliers, making us the best, and cheapest option for rentals for your trip to Turku.


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