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Sky view over Otaniemi area

Things to do around Otaniemi area

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Popular Congress Destination

Espoo is known for being a popular congress destination, where many larger conferences and international events take place just 15 minutes from the capital, Helsinki, in the heart of research and science - Otaniemi (and Keilaniemi) area. The compact area with a modern, practical location surrounds the Aalto University campus and everything you may need within walking distance

Aalto Väre building from above
Photo: Aalto University

Home to Aalto University

Aalto University is known for its lively and active community spirit. The university is committed to identifying and solving grand social challenges and building a sustainable future. Students can apply to study programs in Arts & Design, Technology & Engineering, and Business & Economics. Besides the lively student organizations, campus spirit, international environment, and participation in innovation challenges, the university area hosts various events and festivals throughout the academic year that are perfect for collaborations and networking.

Let's look at all you need to know when visiting an event or conference in the Otaniemi area! 

First of all, How to get there?

The easiest way to reach the Otaniemi area when arriving from the capital, Helsinki, is by metro (underground) to Aalto University station, which is located within the A Block shopping mall and right next to Aalto University campuses. When arriving from the airport, you can connect the local train with bus nr. 52 or jump on the light-rail connection to the Otaniemi area. The best way to figure out your journey is to download the Helsinki Transportation HSL app. The app will show your journey from your current location to your final destination and recommend the best means of transportation, whether it is a local train, metro (underground), bus, or bike.

Metro Station: Aalto University

Bus: number 52

Light Trail

Get the HSL transportation ticket

More about Getting Around Espoo

Dron view over Otaniemi district
Photo: Omar El Mrabt

Where to eat?

Restaurant Fat Lizard offers a delicious grilled and cooked dishes in combination with craft beers from the local Fat Lizard brewery. Sundays Fat Brunches, infamous Espoo pizzas, and their to-die-for steak are highly recommended. 

Restaurant Bistro Ranta (Radisson Blu Hotel) serves food and drinks with traditional mastery. Here you can choose from salmon soup, pasta, burgers, and steaks to vegan dishes in a calming seaside setting.

Eat Poke HKi is committed to bringing a better lifestyle via fresh and quality food, positive emotional connections, and sustainability. You can taste and customize their poke bowls based on your needs and wishes. 

Restaurant Konnichiwa offers a delicious sushi buffet with a great selection of sushi, seafood, and vegetable filling as well as warm Asian dishes.

Who the **** is Alice serves criss pizzas baked in a Neapolitan oven in a combination of on-campus student atmosphere.

Kot. Otaniemi created by the Michelin-awarded chef Kim Mikkola, introduces contemporary food into affordable luxury.  



Restaurant Plats (Hotel Hanaholmen) is a place where you can enjoy spectacular Nordic cuisine while adoring the coastal archipelago. A place where Nordic art and design meet world-class gastronomy.

Lucy in the Sky a rooftop restaurant & Bar Lucy in the Sky serves Scandinavian food in Keilaniemi with spectacular rooftop views.

The façade and terrace of the Fat Lizard restaurant, with a pickup truck with the Fat Lizard logo in front of it.
Photo: Restaurant Fat Lizard

What to do and experience?

Do you have a couple of hours to spare before or after your event/conference starts or finishes? Great! Come with us to explore the neighborhood! Here are our TOP 6 tips to not miss when visiting the Otaniemi Area!

1) Fat Lizard & Olarin Panimo Breweries

Explore Finnish beer culture by visiting two of Espoo's local breweries – Fat Lizard and Olarin Panimo. Here, you can join guided tours explaining the brewing process or come to hang out with your friends and co-workers after a long conference day!

More about Breweries

2) Espoo's Waterfront Walkway & Nature House Villa Elfvik

If you feel like you need to rest and reconnect with local nature, have a walk along Espoo's Waterfront Walkway, which is just a couple of steps from the Aalto University campus, and continue all the way along the surrounding Baltic Sea. You may walk along the Otaniemi area or even head over a connecting trail to Laajalahti Nature Reserve, wherein you will find Nature House Villa Elfvik and their bird and bat-watching guided tours!

More about Villa ElfvikMore About Espoo Waterfront Walkway

3) Aalto Architecture & Aalto University guided tours

Get to know Alvar Aalto's world-known architecture and design via a guided tour. You will get to know the story behind Dipoli – the famous conference building, Harald Herlin Learning Centre, the Undergraduate Centre, Väre, sustainability, the start-up community, and much more! 

More about Architecture Guided Tours

4) Have a coffee break at the on-campus located Café

Visiting a university campus with a long history and student traditions can be an experience on its own. So why not grab a coffee, scroll around the campus, or just enjoy the refreshments, university vibe, and well-known Finnish coffee culture at one of the on-campus Cafés.  

Explore Cafetoria Aalto

5) Head to explore local islands or stay on the boat and have a cruise with Scheduled Public Boats from Otaniemi harbor (available June-August)

Otaniemi harbor is a great starting point whether you want to explore one of the local islands accessible by Scheduled Public Boats or hop on the same boat and stay for the whole 4-hour long cruise! Stops in Otaniemi, Haukilahti, Nokkala, Iso Vasikkasaari island, Suomenoja, Stora Herrö island, Rövaren island, Gåsgrund island, Otaniemi.

Check Scheduled Public Boats

6) A Bloc small shopping mall

Are you looking for some souvenirs from your Espoo trip or just buying some groceries or necessities? The small shopping mall A Block is also home to some great restaurants.

More about A Bloc

Accommodation in Otaniemi Area

Hero Image: Omar El Mrabt