These Nature Spots in Helsinki Are a Must-See

The Finnish Nature Association compiled five urban nature spots near VALO. Take these tips for a summer day and enjoy the city’s nature!


Discover and Experience Helsinki’s Nature

Nature calms relaxes, lowers blood pressure, and increases happiness. The beneficial microbes in the forest are good for your whole body. So, get out into nature! It’s good for both office workers and holidaymakers.

In Helsinki, nature is always close by. Just around the corner from VALO Hotel & Work, you’ll find Central Park with its countless trails, and a few blocks away flows the rare trout stream, Haaganpuro. The Finnish Nature Association has compiled five natural attractions near VALO for our guests to relax and enjoy nature.

What is the Finnish Nature Association? The Finnish Nature Association is Finland’s only environmental organization for children and young people. The organization operates within VALO’s premises.

Here are five wonderful nature spots in Helsinki near VALO:

1. Ruskeasuo Community Garden

For decades, community gardens have been an important part of Finland’s urban landscape. They provide a place to relax, spend time with friends, and grow healthy local food. These gardens are also a green haven for city wildlife, offering nectar for bees, shelter, and food for birds and other urban animals. Established in 1918, Ruskeasuo Allotment Garden is one of Helsinki’s nine allotment gardens and the oldest of its kind.

2. Central Park

Central Park is a nearly ten-kilometer-long forest area stretching from the center of Helsinki to Vantaa. In Central Park, you can enjoy the scent of pine forests, listen to birds singing, have a picnic on sun-warmed rocks, and even spot flying squirrels!

Flying squirrels are classified as vulnerable in Finland due to their shrinking habitats. They thrive in diverse forests with old trees, deadwood, and deciduous and coniferous trees, highlighting the importance of protecting biodiversity.

Central Park’s terrain is varied. The area features spruce-dominated forests, groves, meadows, and numerous nature reserves, such as the Pitk√§koski Slope Grove, Haltiala Virgin Forest, Niskala Arboretum, Ruutinkoski Riverside Grove, and the Vantaanjoki Riverbank.

3. Maunula Outdoor Area

The Maunula outdoor area is about three kilometers from VALO. It features a 3.3-kilometer nature trail that passes through a babbling brook valley and a shady hazel grove. The valuable hazel grove is a protected habitat and a rarity in Finland. It provides plenty of food for various animals, including woodpeckers, jays, squirrels, and small rodents.

At the heart of Maunula’s outdoor area are an outdoor lodge and a cozy caf√©, with outdoor fitness equipment nearby. On the northern edge, you’ll find Maunula Urn Park, allotment gardens, and a duck pond. The Maunula outdoor area is part of Central Park.

4. Haaganpuro Stream

Haaganpuro, Finland’s most urban trout stream, flows less than a kilometer from VALO.

This beautifully flowing stream is known for its critically endangered trout. It is also home to other stream species, and you can spot birds like dippers, common sandpipers, grey wagtails, and kingfishers along its banks. Otters might also be seen.

Haaganpuro has been actively protected through restoration efforts, information campaigns, and advocacy. Restoring streams is crucial, as only half of Finland’s streams are classified as being in good condition, and many are dammed.

Haaganpuro is a must-see destination and an excellent example of the power of urban activism. Haaganpuro flows into Pikku-Huopalahti. Read more: Haaganpuro

5. Pikku Huopalahti Park

Helsinki has over a hundred city parks. Pikku Huopalahti is a vibrant meeting place where people bike, play in the playground, jog, and admire park art. The park features a duck pond, beautiful plantings, and undulating lawns where you can enjoy a picnic. We wish everyone wonderful nature moments in Helsinki!

Summer greetings,

The Finnish Nature Association