About the City
© Oulun kaupunki
Oulu (https://goo.gl/maps/YcHf2qxWFVP2) is the capital of Northern Scandinavia located at the Gulf of Bothnia, in the Oulujoki river delta. It is the largest city in Northern Finland with some 190 000 inhabitants. In Oulu modern business, technology and tourism meet northern peace.
Location of the City of Oulu and a map of Oulu region
Nature and outdoor activities play a central part in Oulu. You can find beautiful parks all around and the city centre with the pedestrian street and market place is especially inviting during summer time. The Market Square area along with Rotuaari Promenade and the other streets in downtown Oulu form an urban living room. There are also a wide variety of high-calibre cafés and restaurants on offer. Cultural events are organized in Rotuaari Square all year round. The Market Square is full of life all day long, and the surrounding old storehouses are now home to restaurants, cafés and boutiques.
Oulu has many interesting attractions to visit especially during summer time, the time of the midnight sun. Pikisaari, an idyllic wooden town and industrial area await visitors crossing the river at the Market Square. It was used in the 17th century as a place to build boats. This unique island also boasts Oulu's oldest wooden building, which is now a museum. Located approximately three kilometres from the centre of Oulu you can reach the Nallikari beach which offers different kind of activities especially during summer time and a spa with many types of relaxing treatments.
Pikisaari Island (© Oulun kaupunki)
The Tietomaa science centre has Åström's leather factory and 19th-century large-scale industry to thank for its distinctive landmark - its tower. The exhibitions with changing themes from different scientific fields guarantee a thought-provoking experience at Finland's first science centre.
The island of Hailuoto is unique because of its abundant nature and well-preserved old buildings. The island can be reached with a ferry leaving some 15 km from the Oulu airport. Attractions and activities are free to be explored by tourists, but guided tours can be taken as well. Sights include an old lighthouse, interactive nature exhibition, a museum, a church, sandy beaches and bird watching spots.
The Turkansaari Open-Air Museum located about 20 km from Oulu city centre has over 40 museum buildings complete with their articles. The buildings include a church built in 1694 and the old country manor house, completed in 1894.
Koitelinkoski is a beautiful place for nature lovers. The Koiteli region is surrounded by rolling forested hills and rich vegetation, and its many islands provide excellent opportunities for fishing, canoeing and kayaking, and trekking. The Koitelinkoski rapids are part of the free-flowing River Kiiminki. The rapids are about four kilometres from downtown Kiiminki and a quick 24-kilometre drive from Oulu.
Lapland can be experienced with a single day trip to the City of Rovaniemi at the Arctic Circle. The sun never sets between June 6 and July 7 in Rovaniemi. Places to visit are the Arktikum Science Centre, the Santa Claus Village and reindeer farms.
You can find information about the culture and activities in Oulu from www.visitoulu.fi/en/home.