Esplanade Park / Photo: Mika Lappalainen

How to celebrate Midsummer in the city

On Midsummer, there are plenty of events to go around in various parts of the city. You may visit Seurasaari Island where Midsummer is celebrated traditionally and there are many other inviting city islands to go during the holiday. The city saunas will be heated and you may join Midsummer dances even in the city. The municipal services have exceptional opening hours.

Here are some useful tips for those who spend Midsummer in the city.

Seurasaari Midsummer Bonfires

The traditional Midsummer Eve celebrations on the island of Seurasaari get underway at 5pm on 21 June, and the celebrations continue all the way until midnight. Each year a lucky wedding couple is chosen who get to dance their wedding waltz on the main stage and light the bonfire on the Kyrösjärvi lake from a wooden church boat. 

The programme also includes other smaller bonfires, a Midsummer pole decorated in flowers, Finnish folk dances and a magic path where you can make spells in the enchanted night.

Tickets to the traditional Midsummer Eve celebrations at Seurasaari cost €25, but children under the age of 12 and accompanied by an adult are free of charge. The easiest way to get to Seurasaari is by taking Bus 24 from the city centre. Extra bus services are provided on Midsummer’s Eve. Read more: HSL

Three ways to experience the Finnish Midsummer celebrations in Helsinki

The summer solstice can be celebrated in many ways also in Helsinki. The islands off the coast of Helsinki are filled with Midsummer celebrations and Midsummer dances have become an important tradition. One way to experience the celebrations is by taking a Midsummer cruise, during which you can see all the bonfires along the shoreline. A traditional Midsummer sauna can also be enjoyed at one of the many public saunas in Helsinki.

Midsummer Eve celebrations on the island of Pihlajasaari

Midsummer Eve celebrations are also held traditionally on the island of Pihlajasaari, where the bonfire is lit at 9pm. The restaurant on the island serves food and drinks to the accompaniment of dance music. You can get to Pihlajasaari by taking the JT-Line waterbus from either Merisatamanranta (by Café Carusel on the southern tip of the peninsula) or Ruoholahti. Round-trip tickets cost €4.50 to €7.50.

In islands

The Stadin Juhannus (“Midsummer in the City”) event will be held again this year throughout the Midsummer weekend from 21 to 22 June on the island of Lonna just off the coast of Helsinki. Entertainment at the island’s own Midsummer festivals will be provided by Yona, Kauriinmetsästäjät, Sofa, Kynnet, Maustetytöt and many others. Lonna’s restaurant and café bar will serve food throughout the event, and the partying will continue back on the mainland.

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Enjoy the Midsummer bonfires aboard a cruise

One way to experience Midsummer in the city is to take a cruise through the islands, where you can see lots of bonfires along the shorelines. 

JT-Line, Royal Line and Strömma offer special evening cruises to see the main bonfire at Seurasaari. Along the way you can also see lots of smaller bonfires and enjoy the breathtaking archipelago scenery at the same time.

IHALines takes you to admire the Midsummer spirit in the eastern archipelago. Midsummer cruises depart from the Market Square and take between 3 and 4 hours. Many cruises also offer a special Midsummer menu featuring traditional Finnish summer treats, such as salmon soup and archipelago bread.

Midsummer dances and festivals throughout the city

In recent years an increasing number of Midsummer parties have been organised along the shores and on the islands of Helsinki. Traditional Midsummer dances are also held in the city. 

We Love Helsinki organises Midsummer Ball 2019 dances to the tune of Finnish hits and classics from Thursday 20 to Saturday 22 June  at the restaurants Kuudes Linja and Kaiku.

Bar Loose helds Midsummer dance event on Fri and Sat 21-22 June. Bar is open until 04:30am.

A Midsummer dance event will also be at Tavastia on Fri 21 June 11pm-04am.

Midsummer party at Kivinokka in Fri 21 June includes dance, bonfire and buffet. Event starts at 12-noon and ends at 11pm when Dallapé band plays at 10-11pm.

Linnanmäki

Fun things tfor every taste! Linnanmäki has over 40 rides, many different games, as well as restaurants and cafés.The entrance to the park is free of charge. You get to enjoy the atmosphere of the park and events on the Estradi stage.

Spend a fun day in Korkeasaari

Korkeasaari Zoo is home to 150 animal species and almost 1000 plant species that show the diversity of nature. The Korkeasaari island lies close to the city centre. A bridge connects us to Mustikkamaa recreation area, so you can visit the Zoo all year round. In summer you can also take the boat from the Kauppatori market square or Hakaniemi.

Midsummer events in the city:

Public transport over the Midsummer weekend

The public transport runs throughout the whole Midsummer weekend. On Midsummer Eve, Friday 21 June, a Saturday service will operate. On Midsummer Day, Saturday 22 June, a Sunday service will operate. More information at hsl.fi.

Social and health care services in Helsinki at Midsummer

24/7 Telephone Health Service, tel. 09 310 10023
Information is provided about Helsinki’s health services and treatment instructions 24/7 at the cost of a normal phone call.

In life-threatening emergencies – call 112
In the event of a severe and life-threatening illness or accident situation at any time of the day, call 112 for help.

Health Stations
Health stations are closed on Midsummer (21 - 23 June) and open on Thursday the 20th of June at 8-16 (Kalasatama and Vuosaari are open at 7-16).

Emergency services - tel. 116 117
When local health stations are closed, patients in need of urgent care are treated by emergency services.

Call 116 117 before you go to the emergency clinic. The service is open 24/7 and free of charge.

Read moreSocial and health care services in Helsinki at Midsummer







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