Category Archives: City Guide

Getting to know Helsinki and how to make the most of all it offers.

Public Holidays & Sundays


It’s worth knowing when Finnish public holidays will fall as generally businesses and services will close or have shorter hours.

Christmas Eve and Midsummer Eve are perhaps the two most important holidays on the Finnish calendar. Although not officially called holidays many people will not work these days and stores will close early.

May Day or Vappu is also an important event in Finland and celebrations begin the evening before. Easter dates are decided each year depending on the first full moon after spring equinox.

Mother’s Day (second Sunday in May) and Father’s Day (first Sunday in November) are de facto holidays. This means some stores close while others have shorter trading hours.

Finland also has what is known as ‘ski week’ – a break rotated around Finland so that everyone doesn’t go on holiday at the same time. Usually in February, many people do use the time to go skiing, while others take the chance to fly south for some sun.

Shops have shorter hours on Sundays and are usually open between 12.00 – 18.00, if at all.

New Years Day – 1 January

Epiphany – 6 January

Maundy Thursday – the Thursday before Easter (not an official holiday but often marked by shorter working hours)

Good Friday ( Pitkäperjantai ) – moveable dates

Easter Sunday ( Pääsiäispäivä ) – moveable dates

Easter Monday – moveable dates

May Day ( Vappu ) – 1 May ( Celebrations begin on the evening of 30 April)

Midsummer’s Eve – the Friday before Midsummer Day

Midsummer Day ( Juhannus ) – the Saturday following 19 June

Ascension Day – 39 days after Easter Sunday

Pentecost – 49 days after Easter Sunday

All Saint’s Day – the Saturday following 30 October

Independence Day of Finland – celebrated 6 December. 2017 will mark 100 years of Finnish independence.

Christmas Eve – 24 December, when Finns hold their main Christmas celebrations

Christmas Day – 25 December

St Stephen’s Day – 26 December

New Years Eve – 31 December, not an official holiday but often marked by shorter working hours


What’s On

Photo: Jussi Hellsten / Visit Helsinki

Photo: Jussi Hellsten / Visit Helsinki

Helsinki is a city with four distinct seasons. Life doesn’t stop over winter however so don’t let cold weather keep you inside. Good places to check out what’s on in the city include:

Visit Helsinki – the official tourism website for the City of Helsinki

Hel Yeah! – events and suburb guide for Helsinki

Creating Helsinki – interviews and tips from Helsinki’s creative people