Surrounded by the sea, countless islands on one side, and a National Park on the other, Espoo is the perfect hub for many unique experiences, in all seasons! But in winter there are a couple of things to put on your list, that are not your usual choice.
You heard right - everyone can kayak in the summer, but what about winter? Cold temperatures and frozen water are a challenge, but a very rewarding and different activity. Natura Viva offers this guided kayaking tour until the end of April, and takes adventurers out to the frozen archipelago.
This is even beginner friendly, and besides a warm hat and good layers you don’t need to bring anything. You’re provided with all the gear and safety equipment you need, so you can focus on admiring the magnificent nature around you. Especially paddling along the massive ice shield that covers the sea in winter time, is something you will never forget. Enjoy a cup of hot juice and a chocolate treat in the middle of the water, and learn all about the Baltic sea and the islands around you.
The usual starting spot is from Matinkylä beach, but might vary depending on ice conditions.
€129.00 / per person for 2 h 30 min
ART & WINE STAYCATION
For a cozy getaway on those winter days when you want to relax, sleep in and enjoy good food (and we all have those days when we don’t want to be outside and/or do something active), a little staycation at Hanasaari Hotel is just what you need. The property is uniquely located on an island, surrounded by nature and the sea, while you can still easily get there with public transport. The building has many original design features from the 70s and could be a museum in its own right - so many art pieces are on display here. From sculptures to paintings and installations in and around the hotel, a guided tour to learn more about all those works is definitely needed. Luckily that’s just what Hanasaari offers with their Art & Wine Staycation!
Start your stay with a dip in the pool, a hot sauna moment and a break by the fireplace in the spa area, which was beautifully redone to accentuate the mid-century modern architecture through a more modern interpretation. From the tiles to the woodwork, this is a unique space for a proper break. And what better things are there than a relaxing swim while looking out to the frozen scenery!
On the Art Walk the lovely hosts tell you all about the most significant art pieces in the hotel, and take you to some hidden spots and point out the little things you wouldn’t notice yourself. Along with that, you get to taste some exquisite champagnes, which is the perfect way to learn about the art and architecture!
Restaurant Plats is one of the most hidden culinary gems in the area, and a highlight of any stay at Hanasaari. A beautifully curated menu and outstanding service are a guarantee for a wonderful evening!
Sleep in, indulge in the buffet breakfast before a late checkout - and that’s a dreamy mini-holiday!
Address: Hanasaarenranta 5
ICE-SKATING IN TAPIOLA (+ ON THE FROZEN SEA)
Ice-skating is very popular in Finland, and many sports fields around the country turn into a skating rink in the winter months. Tapiola Garden is a unique space for skating though, because you can skate around a dedicated route which feels like you are actually going somewhere and not just in circles. You’re tucked away in a cozy area, where you can also enjoy a hot chocolate on your break - a great activity for any winter day!
Skates are available for rent, both figure skates as well as hockey skates, so there’s no better place to try ice-skating if you’re new to it or don’t have your own skates. And the best thing about coming to skate here: it’s free!
Address: Tapionaukio 3
Hero Image: Kathrin Deter