The dark months of winter are the perfect time to explore the calm and peaceful side of Helsinki. Let the city’s hot saunas, natural settings, and new and old traditions energize and soothe you as the new year begins.
Social and health care services closed on January 1 and 6
Helsinki’s health stations (Kalasatama and Vuosaari locations included) are open every weekday 8-16 from 23 December to 12 January, with the exception of New Year’s Day, January 1, and Epiphany, January 6, when the facilities are closed.
People in need of urgent care when health stations are closed should turn to emergency services. Residents are advised to call the toll-free service number 116 117 before seeking out emergency assistance. The advisory phone service is open 24/7.
The 24hTelephone Health Service, tel. 09 310 10023 also provides information about Helsinki’s health services and treatment instructions around the clock, at the cost of a normal local phone call.
Emergency dental care services are available on New Year's Day and Epiphany from 9-21 at Haartman Hospital, Haartmaninkatu 4, building 12.
In the event of a severe or life-threatening illness or accident at any time of the day, call 112.
Phone lines at Emergency Social Services and Crisis Emergency Support are open every day throughout the holidays:
Emergency Social Services, tel. 020 696 006
Crisis Emergency Support, tel. 09 310 44222
Changes to public transport timetables
There will be several changes to public transport services in the capital on New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day and on January 5 and 6 to mark the Epiphany holiday. Several bus and tram routes in the city centre will be diverted during New Year festivities, with additional service on some bus routes. Consult HSL’s Journey Planner for the latest updates.
- Changes to routes and timetables from 1 January 2020
- Port of Helsinki terminal opening hours during the holiday season
Bring in the New Year at Citizens’ Square
Join in the fun as Helsinki celebrates the arrival of 2020 with a free concert in the city centre. Hosted by actress Alina Tomnikov and Yle Kioski’s Constantinos “Gogi” Mavromichalis, the evening’s stars performers will include Finland’s rising singing sensation ALMA, hip hop artists Pyhimys and Gasellit, and children’s favourites Pikku Papun Orkesteri & Blind Gut Company. DJ Windows95man will keep the crowd dancing and warm with his 90s selection, and Helsinki Mayor Jan Vapaavuori will be on hand to present the traditional New Year’s speech. The evening will end with a bang, amid a dazzling display of fireworks.
Holiday greenery at the Winter Garden
Visit Helsinki’s Winter Garden to see a colourful variety of blooming winter flowers, including poinsettias, amaryllises, hyacinths and azaleas. The star of the show is the garden’s old camellia plant. Visitors will enjoy finding the hidden elves in the cosy Christmas décor, which will be on display until 7 January.
Puppet theatre Sytkyt will also perform a puppet show featuring fairy tales at the Winter Garden until 6 January. The Winter Garden is located at Hammarskjöldintie 1 A.
Follow Kurre the squirrel at Korkeasaari Zoo
Solve the mystery of the winter coat with Kurre the squirrel at Helsinki’s Korkeasaari Zoo this winter. Follow the numbers on a map to retrace Kurre’s footsteps around the grounds and take a wintery tour of the island. Access the story with your mobile device or print it out for your own use.
Gnome adventures at the Suomenlinna fortress
Head out to Finland’s world heritage site and explore the Trail of the Fortress Gnome. Pick up a map for the self-guided tour from the tourist information desk at the Jetty Barracks.
Santa’s helpers have gone missing at the City Museum!
Come and look for signs of the missing elves in this light-hearted Christmas orienteering challenge at Helsinki City Museum’s Children’s Town, an event that runs until 6 January 2020. The start leaves from the information point in the museum’s lobby.
Opening hours for sports facilities over the holidays
Check the following attachment for the holiday opening hours of indoors sports facilities and outdoor skating rinks in Helsinki. Holiday opening hours (in Finnish)
The Allas Sea Pool is open daily through the holidays.
Remember to sort and recycle your trash
It is important to sort rubbish left over from the holidays correctly. Aluminium baking tins, tealight cups and other metal waste should be collected separately and put in the proper receptacles for recycling. Wrapping paper should be discarded as mixed waste, which is turned into district heat and electricity. Broken Christmas decorations, such as baubles, tinsel and lanterns should also be disposed of as mixed waste. It is possible to reduce waste by favouring long-lasting decorations, reusable cups and dishes, and candles without excess packaging.
- Waste sorting and recycling
- Tips for celebrating a smart Christmas - avoid unnecessary things, sort correctly
A fire tornado, colour therapy and sci-fi – this is Lux Helsinki 2020
A bright spot in the dead of winter every year, Lux Helsinki will once again present a diverse range of top Finnish and international light installations from 4 to 8 January 2020. The official route comprises nine different works of light art and stretches from Senate Square through Kaisaniemi Park to the beautiful Tokoinranta shoreline. The route is designed as a dramaturgical series that should be seen in numerical order from start to finish.
- A fire tornado, colour therapy and sci-fi – this is Lux Helsinki 2020
- Satellite installations extend Lux Helsinki from Hanaholmen to Itäkeskus