Tips for Naantali x 5

As Finland’s most beautiful summer town, Naantali has many cute little boutiques, cafés and places to stay. Walk around the Kultaranta Gardens and dream of a villa by the sea.

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1Kultaranta Gardens

Kultaranta Gardens are one of the best-preserved, architecturally designed gardens in Finland. There really is no place like it, especially given Kultaranta also serves as the Finnish President’s summer residence. 

With the red garden, the blue garden, pergola, gazebos, fountains and diplomatic passages, the Kultaranta garden is split into sections. Every year, approximately 22,000 visitors come to admire the gardens. In addition to those smelling the roses, guest of Kultaranta have included, Vladimir Putin, Carl XVI Gustav as well as Kofi Annan.

In Finland, even the tourist happening by can access the presidential gardens. However, restrictions do apply, so check the opening times and guidance for the summer season from the website before you go.

2The Old Town

Mainly composed of 19th Century wooden homes, you’ll not find a place like old Naantali anywhere else in the universe. Its narrow streets and colourful buildings are known throughout Finland, forming the backdrop for numerous movie sets. Full of quaint idiosyncrasies, even the houses have names – look out for the one named Big Bear

Bordering the western flank of the old town is the Naantali guest marina, whose piers, yachts and seaside restaurants form a fantastic view, and a perfect Instagram photo. You’ll also find lots of delightful little cafés, restaurants and shops in the area. And best of all, old Naantali is teeming with locals, making this very much a living idyll.  

3Idyllic Accommodation

In addition to enjoying Naantali’s summer evenings, the morning is an experience of equal value. This is why we recommend staying in a place with as much charm and character as possible. 

In Naantali’s old town, in the idyllic quarter of wooden homes, there are quaint guesthouses and apartments full of individuality, available throughout the year. Most of the rooms are self-contained mini-suites, where you can prepare your own breakfast and snacks. Sizes range from small, two-person homes to whole houses suitable for a family of Moomins. And speaking of the Moomins, Moominworld is just a short walk away, as is the beach. 

4Café Tour

Finns drink more coffee than anyone else in the world. So now Naantali provides a café tour, offering the chance to enjoy the region’s charming little cafés. Select your surroundings; choose from old town cafés, spots by the sea or elegant manors like Louhisaari, the birthplace of Mannerheim. In addition to coffee, each little shop offers their own unique delicacies. 

Vouchers for the café tour are paid in a lump sum, after which you can visit the cafés of your choice during opening hours. Check the cafés, opening times and up-to-date prices from the link below.

5Traditional Events

Classical music, fabulous yachts and the sleepiest person in the kingdom!

May in Naantali culminates with the impressive Boat Show, which fills the guest marina with all manner of boats and things that go in the water.

In summer 2019 the Naantali Music Festival celebrates its 40th anniversary. Be sure to expect the usual premieres and rare orchestral performances.

The time to celebrate the Sleepyhead Day occurs from 26th–27th July 2019. Celebrations begin with the screams of a well-known local Naantalian being thrown into the cold Baltic Sea, after which the rest of the weekend is spent in the midst of a joyful market melee. 

Naantali’s autumn season events are lit up by the fabulous programme of Lux Gratiae. Arriving from Vadstena, the birthplace of the Bridgettine order, the group performing in Naantali church, brings musical drama from the life of Saint Bridget.

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