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Five must-experience saunas in Finnish Coast & Archipelago
3 minute read
a birch whisk on firewood on the outside wall of the wooden outdoor sauna

Credits:: Harri Tarvainen

The five saunas not to miss in the Finnish Coast

Looking for the traditional Finnish sauna experience by the lake or in the city? Or perhaps a floating sauna raft by the river, or an underground sauna in the forest? No matter what’s on your bucket list, the Finnish Coast won’t let you down. These are the five saunas not to miss.

a floating sauna raft by the river heading to the sunset
Credits: Juho Kuva

Forum sauna, Turku

Founded in 1926 and currently run by sauna therapist Mervi Hongisto, Forum Sauna in the coastal city of Turku is where time seems to stand still. Forum is currently the only public sauna in Turku. Favouring an old-style approach to health and wellbeing, Forum is preferred by those looking for an authentic bathing experience as well as traditional treatments including peat masks and cupping therapy. The sauna doesn’t serve food or drinks, but guests can bring their own.

facade of a traditional public sauna in the center of Turku

Sauna on a raft: Koivurannan saunalautta, Oulu

Koivurannan saunalautta is a floating sauna, located on a raft by Oulujoki river. The wood-fired sauna offers private cruises along the river, where you can spy the beautiful scenery of Oulujoki river through the window as you bathe, as well as public sauna hours at the pier near downtown Oulu. From this sauna, there’s never more than a couple of steps to the refreshing river – in the winter it’s accessible to the brave through a hole in the ice.

a close up of a floating sauna raft by the river heading to the sunset
Credits: : Juho Kuva
a band performing on a floating sauna raft
Credits:: Juho Kuva

A special summer sauna: Kesän sauna, Oulu

The name Kesän sauna, meaning Summer’s sauna, is very telling: the floating sauna is open only in the summer season. This wood-burning sauna was built, and is still run, by volunteers. When it first opened in 2014, it was the first public sauna in Oulu in two decades. The sauna was initially meant to be temporary, but thanks to the great interest in it, Kesän sauna has turned into a permanent addition to Oulu city life. Since the opening, the sauna has hosted 50,000 bathers from 56 countries.

women and children enjoying their time in the Finnish sauna

Teijo lakeshore sauna, Salo

Natura Viva’s Teijo lakeshore sauna sits at the Matildanjärvi lakeshore in southern Finland, just a short walk from Teijo Nature Centre. The spot is ideal for relaxing in tranquil nature after a day filled with outdoor sports or a walk in Teijo National Park. There’s a quaint sandy beach right next door, and the sauna porch offers spectacular views over the lake. The sauna can be booked for private sessions and public sessions are scheduled weekly.

a birch whisk and seat covers used in a sauna hanging on the wall
Credits: : Emilia Hoisko
woman relaxing on sauna benches

Underground smoke sauna, Storfinnhova Gård, Kemiönsaari

Storfinnhova Gård is a farm nestled in the old cultural landscape on Kemiönsaari island, just off the southwest coast of Finland. The forest surrounding the farm conceals an underground smoke sauna with a fantasy-like setting – the 40-person sauna has been built with impressive granite boulders as well as logs. A small creek runs through the sauna, forming a refreshing pool of water for the bathers.

There are amazing saunas in other regions too – see the must-experience saunas for the Helsinki Region, Lakeland and Lapland. 

an aerial view of an underground smoke sauna in the middle of the forest in Finland