A Day at Seurasaari

In 2013 when both my Chinese in-laws visited us in Finland for our Wedding there we also visited few other locations around the country. Seurasaari was one of them towards the end of their holidays in Finland. Seurasaari is an island located in Helsinki and I only knew it myself due to an open water swimming competition I participated at few years before.

An old wooden church


This island is famous for a few things such as Seurasaari Open-Air museum which has old wooden buildings from around Finland, masses of red squirrels, the huge bonfire during Midsummer and the nudist beach (it is enclosed by a wall and men and women are separated by a wall leading even into the ocean). Well, we didn’t visit the nudist beach but the Open-Air museum, watched hundred of squirrels and my crazy mother-in-law didn’t believe that people would go swimming in these cold weather conditions (+28 degrees celsius ~ 82 degrees fahrenheit) until see saw many children at a normal beach playing in the water…

For more information you can check out what Wiki has to say about the island (though in English it is really barely anything) or the National Board of Antiquities. When visiting Helsinki and you have more than just a day to spare I recommend going there for a few hours as it is perfect to relax a bit from the daily madness (okay, in Finland any place is perfect for that I guess)

Have you ever visited such Open-Air museum or similar location with old buildings gathered from around the country and centuries?

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25 thoughts on “A Day at Seurasaari”

  1. I have never been to a museum like that, but in Shenzhen there is a theme park with monuments from all over the world, haha. Windows of the World. (I haven’t been there either…).

    Why is the nudist beach separated by sexes? In Spain, nudist beaches are for men and women together 😀

    1. In Finland it ie very strict when it comes to separate the genders in those things. Even though the country is basically the origin of the modern sauna and you find them everywhere all people still separate the genders. So in public baths both the women and the men section showers got their own saunas and at home it is always that the women go to sauna first and later on the men 🙂

  2. Never been to an open museum like this one. At first glance, I had no idea it was a museum – it looked like a nice park to me. I found it rather odd that the nudist beach was there, quite close to where children are? Then again, it is separated so it must be okay…

    So MIL didn’t go to the nudist beach… 28’C is perfect for swimming…She really doesn’t sound like a water or swimming kind of person at all.

    1. Well, it Europe the whole nudist thing is a bit more open minded than the rest of the world I believe. However I have never been to one and I am not planning to ever go, just don’t get the idea of the whole thing.
      It is pretty safe for children as it is really separated from the rest of the island by this huge wall, so it is okay I guess.
      I did not even tell my in-laws about this nudist beach, they would think that all Europeans must be crazy 😀
      The whole island is really like a park and in between are those historical buildings they disassembled from other locations throughout Finland. I think the oldest wooden building there is well over 400 years old

      1. I don’t have a problem with people going nude at a nudist beach. Wouldn’t mind going myself but I will remain fully clothed. If they don’t allow it then I won’t go.

        Hahaha. We all know your MIL is the crazy one….

    1. I didn’t tell her about the nudist beach as that part no one can even see without entering it at some special entrance. The rest of the island got other beaches as well where people do wear their swimming clothes 🙂

  3. Ha ha! The lacking English info online reminds me of a tour I went on with my friend in Finland. She checked with the guide and he promised to do bilingual commentary. With the little Finnish I knew, I could tell pretty quickly he was greatly abbreviating! My friend ending up translating for me anyway. The guy would literally speak for 10 minutes in Finnish and then say 1 sentence to me. 😀
    I love outdoor museums. There are many across Canada. Other memorable ones have been in Hawaii, a sauna one in Finland, and a fantastic one outside Tokyo. There’s no better way to spend part of a day or more in my books!

    1. Here near my hometown is a outdoor museum as well all about historical north German buildings and there is also a whale skeleton as well (there used to b whale hunters long time ago here it seems).
      We did once a Helsinki sightseeing tour and the tour guide would always tell endless stuff in Finnish and then just a couple of sentences in English 🙂

    1. She didn’t even know about that beach, as it really couldn’t be viewed from the outsides, however the rest of the island got multiple ‘normal’ beaches as well (I should add that in the blog post it seems, as other people have mentioned it ). 😀

    1. Great to have some other Finnish people reading my blog. I never knew about those two other museums but that might be pretty much because I never traveled too far off my known paths in Finland between Helsinki, Tampere and then to our cottage in Kauhajoki.

  4. Looks beautiful:) What did MIL think about the nudist beach concept (even if you didn’t went)? I don’t think there are a lot of nudist beaches in China, ha ha:)

  5. I’ve never visited such a place. It looks beautiful. I like the form of the old wooden church. Last week we visited George Washington’s house. There were no houses brought from other places, but we did walk outside as we toured the various buildings that were part of his home and farm. It was very pleasant.

    1. In my opinion it is always great to be able to visit such places. Not only you can learn a bit about the architecture of the time but sometimes also about the lifestyle back then as they try to recreate the old times as well as possible

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