Naantali is a town situated very close to Turku, in the western part of Finland. It is one of the most popular summer holiday destinations among Finns.
The town, one of the oldest in the country next to Turku, was founded in the 15th century and grew up around the important convent established in the area.
Things to see and do in Naantali
This small coastal town has many places to visit and activities to do. Naantali is home to Kultaranta, the summer residence of the President of Finland, and Moomin World, the theme park of the popular Moomin characters created by Tove Jansson.
It should be noted that Naantali is primarily a summer town, so many of its tourist attractions are closed outside the summer season (June-August).
Naantali Old Town
The old town of Naantali, also known as Vanhakaupunki, is full of old wooden houses from the 19th and 20th centuries.
Strolling through the old town you can wander through the narrow streets with old colourful buildings and enjoy the atmosphere in the restaurants and cafes.
The Moomin World theme park is one of the most popular amusement parks in Finland. The entire park is dedicated to the Moomin, the lovable characters created by Tove Jansson.
In the park, it is possible to find some of the most important buildings from Jansson’s stories, such as the Moomin House where the main characters live, Hemulen’s yellow house, Moominmama’s doughnut factory, Snufkin’s camp and Moominpappa’s boat, among others.
Visitors can also meet the main Moomin characters, including the witch in her cabin. The park has many activities and fantasy paths for the little ones, such as Toffler’s Trail with the Witch’s Labyrinth or the Hattifatteners’ Cave.
Naantali Convent Church
The Naantali Convent Church, built between 1443 and 1462, is the oldest building in the town and one of the oldest in the country. It is also the second-largest medieval church in Finland.
The church is the only convent building still standing, although outside the church there is still a piece of the stone fence and a well as a remnant of the convent.
Kultaranta is the summer residence of the President of Finland. It is possible to visit the house during June and August. It is a very popular activity, so it is necessary to book in advance for a visit.
Kultaranta Mansion was a summer villa belonging to Alfred Kordelin and is now the summer residence of the Finnish President. The Kultaranta gardens, located next to the castle, are particularly noteworthy, with 16 hectares of flowers of all kinds, hedges and fountains.
The Naantali Museum is a small museum consisting of two old wooden buildings. In the first, the Humppi house, you will find some archaeological finds from the area and other temporary exhibitions.
In Hiilola you will find a 19th-century bourgeois house and its garden, as well as the much more modest Sau-Kallio House.
The Casa Haartman belonged to the Finnish artist Axel Haartman and his wife, which also served as their studio.
The classic wooden building was designed by Finnish architect Erik Bryggman, and inside you can find works by some of Finland’s best-known artists.
Kuparivuori is a hill next to the old town with a lookout point from which you can enjoy wonderful views of the seascape, the islands surrounding the municipality and Kultaranta.
At the top of the hill is also a small WWII-era aircraft control bunker.
How to get to Naantali
Naantali is only 17 kilometres from Turku, so the easiest way to get to the town is to travel there first.
There is currently no train service to Naantali, so it can only be reached by car from anywhere in the country, or by bus, boat or bicycle from Turku.
How to get around the city
The city is not very big, so you won’t have much trouble getting around. The wooden old town can be visited entirely on foot, while most of the archipelago can be reached by car or bus.
Public transport will get you to the more remote parts of Naantali. Also, if you’re visiting the Moomin theme park, the Moomin Bus or Muumibussi makes the journey from the town of Turku.
Where to stay in Naantali
Naantali has a wide range of accommodations to suit all budgets. As a popular tourist destination in summer, the town is well prepared to accommodate tourists.
All you need to do is choose the type of accommodation that suits you best for your trip and you can choose from simple hotels, campsites, luxury hotels or even small wooden flats.
Where to eat in Naantali
The town centre offers plenty of dining options, and it is even possible to find restaurants in some of the wooden buildings in the old town.
Kaivohuone Restaurant is one of the most popular restaurants in town and is housed in a building built in 1868, which was part of an old spa.
We hope our Naantali travel guide will help you prepare for your trip to Naantali. We invite you to share this article on social media using the buttons below. And if you have any questions, you can use the comments section to ask them.