Aurajoen Wauhtiajot, photo: Jani Vahto
Turku is a European city of culture where fresh sea winds, breath of history and modern bustle are side by side. In the summer the amount of events multiplies and Turku offers city culture, festivals and food and sports events in splendid settings.
One of the great weekends in the summer is from 14 to 16 June when there are several interesting events in the city at the same time. The 100th Anniversary Airshow of Finnish Aeronautical Association, Turku Airshow 2019, takes place in the sky of Turku and the venue is at the airport. At the same time, a new Kesärauha (Summer peace) festival is arranged in the atmospheric Old Great Square. On the River Aura classic mahogany boats run at Wauhtiajot, and early potatoes from the archipelago are tasted in the courtyard of the Brewery Restaurant Koulu when different restaurants make delicious dishes at the New Potato Festival.
This year the summer theatres in Turku will present Robin Hood at the Vartiovuori Summer Theatre, Freaky Friday musical at the Samppalinna Summer Theatre and Akselin ja Elinan hääfarssi by Linnateatteri on a new stage at the Ruissalo boatyard.
The largest traditional Medieval Market in Finland takes visitors this year to an unforgettable trip to the year 1400. There will be market atmosphere and glimpses of medieval life in authentic surroundings on 27-30 June. The medieval atmosphere also prevails in the Turku Castle Medieval Tournament when competitions of several historical martial arts are seen in the castle park on 11-14 July.
Festivals to many tastes
Ruisrock fills Ruissalo’s National Park on 5-7 July this year and DBTL (Down by The Laituri) takes place in a historic setting beside Turku Cathedral on 25-27 July. Additionally, Ilmiö festival focusing on alternative music is arranged in the area of Uittamo Paviljonki on 27 July, and Aura Fest, having taken its place among the festivals, is arranged in Kupittaa Park on 9-10 August.
A festival combining vegetarian food, small breweries and music, Vegånia, Ølfest and VØLUME, gives pleasures to all the senses at the Great Old Square right at the beginning of August.
One of Northern Europe’s most important classical music events, Turku Music Festival, is 60 years old this year and offers in its repertoire large orchestral concerts, chamber music, jazz as well as experiences for the whole family on 8-22 August.
Alvar Aalto Week, which is organised in a different city every year, brings to Turku from 23 August to 1 September a multifaceted architectural event, the themes of which are connected with architecture, design, housing and built-up environment.
Maritimity and good food
In Turku the maritimity is always present and the best places where to throw oneself into the maritime atmosphere are Ruissalo, the riverside of the River Aura and, of course, the archipelago. The historical Ruissalo boatyard area has in a short time become a popular venue where to pop over by water bus on a river ride. At the shipyard there will be, for instance, the side events of Airisto Classic Regatta, SHIFT Business Festival, the high-level food event Food & Art and Veneet Esillä sales event.
The Food & Wine Festival brings to the forecourt of the maritime museum Forum Marinum local quality restaurants and visiting chefs from top restaurants. At the same time the most impressive steam boats in the Finnish sea area gather together at the Forum Marinum when Aurajoen höyrytreffit gathers the boats after a 20-year interval to Turku on 26-28 July.
Ecstasy of sports for spectators and competitors
In the sports events of Turku you can experience the ecstasy of sports among spectators or you can challenge yourself in competitions at different levels.
The Paavo Nurmi Festival again begins with the whole family’s sports days, continues with junior and master games and climaxes with the Paavo Nurmi Games on 11 June. The Paavo Nurmi Marathon is run in August.
The public can follow a triathlon in the city centre of Turku when the competitors of Challenge Turku race on 10-11 August. The different categories of competition also give opportunities for the beginners.
At the beginning of September, the charity running event FightBack Run organised by Pekka Hyysalo encourages everyone to move regardless of age and condition.