What to do in Helsinki in May 2024

Why you should visit Helsinki in May

May is a fantastic time to visit Helsinki as the city comes alive with the arrival of spring. The weather is milder, the days are longer, and the city’s outdoor spaces and parks burst into colorful blooms. Helsinki in May offers the perfect blend of cultural events, outdoor activities, and the chance to experience the beautiful Finnish nature at its best.

Don’t forget to pack some layers as the weather can still be unpredictable in May, but overall, it’s a great time to explore the city on foot or by bicycle.

Helsinki Weather in May

In May, Helsinki experiences an average temperature of 10-14°C (50-57°F), with the days getting longer and the sun making more frequent appearances. However, it’s always good to be prepared for sudden rain showers, so having an umbrella handy is advisable.

Helsinki Events in May

Vappu (May Day) Celebrations

May 1st, or Vappu, is a major spring celebration in Helsinki. Locals and visitors come together to celebrate the arrival of spring with picnics, student parades, and traditional merrymaking. The city is filled with a festive atmosphere, and you can join in the fun at the Havis Amanda statue where the festivities kick off.

Helsinki Coffee Festival

Coffee lovers should not miss the Helsinki Coffee Festival, usually held in early May. The event brings together coffee enthusiasts, roasters, and baristas from all over Finland to celebrate everything related to this beloved beverage. Visitors can sample different coffee blends, attend workshops, and learn about the art of coffee making.

Helsinki Beer Festival

For beer aficionados, the Helsinki Beer Festival is a must-visit event in May. Held at the Cable Factory, this festival showcases a wide range of craft beers, ciders, and meads from both Finnish and international breweries. There are tasting sessions, live music, and food stalls to complement the beer offerings.

Helsinki’s top places to visit in May

Seurasaari Open-Air Museum

Immerse yourself in Finnish history and culture at the Seurasaari Open-Air Museum. Set on an idyllic island, the museum features historic wooden buildings, farms, and cottages from different regions of Finland. In May, the surrounding nature is in full bloom, making it a beautiful and educational outdoor experience.

Suomenlinna Sea Fortress

Take a ferry to the UNESCO-listed Suomenlinna Sea Fortress and explore its historic walls, tunnels, and museums. In May, the island is vibrant with blooming cherry blossoms, and the sea views from the fortress are breathtaking. It’s a great spot for a leisurely walk and a picnic on a sunny day.

Esplanadi Park

Enjoy a leisurely stroll or a picnic in Esplanadi Park, a green oasis in the heart of Helsinki. In May, the park is adorned with colorful flowers and lush greenery, creating a serene atmosphere. It’s also a popular spot for outdoor concerts and events, adding to the lively ambiance of the city in spring.

Helsinki Central Library Oodi

Step into the award-winning Helsinki Central Library Oodi, a modern architectural marvel offering panoramic views of the city. With its open spaces, rooftop terrace, and vast collection of books, Oodi is a welcoming place to relax and immerse yourself in literature or simply admire the cityscape. In May, the surrounding Kansalaistori square hosts various outdoor activities and events for all ages.

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