With so much to explore, figuring out where to stay in Finland is one of the biggest challenges for planning your vacation. You can opt for the metropolitan glamor of Helsinki, the remote beauty of wilder areas, and so much more.
This guide can help you decide where you should stay in Finland to make the most of your vacation to this vast, beautiful country.
The Best Places to Stay in Finland
Our favorite areas of Finland in which to stay include:
- Helsinki: Best area for arts, design, and first-time visitors
- Lapland: Best area for Arctic exploration and Sami culture
- Lakeland: Best area for exploring nature and budget travel
- Aland Islands: Best area for swimming, kayaking, water sports, and summer visits
- Turku: Best area for families and culture
The Best Areas & Hotels in Finland
Finland is such a vast country that you need to choose your base carefully, otherwise you will spend a lot of time traveling to what you want to see. Some people visit Finland wanting to spend as much time as possible in nature, while others want to check out the modern design and dining scenes.
These people will want to stay in very different places. This guide can help you decide where to base yourself in Finland and make the most out of your vacation.
Helsinki, Finland’s capital, is a must-visit for any visitor to Finland. If it is your first time in Finland, you absolutely must spend some time in the capital.
Helsinki is one of the most beautiful cities in the world, and not just because of its pristine clean streets and its prime location on the Baltic Coast.
Helsinki is a stunning blend of different architectural traditions, from older Scandinavian and Russian buildings to Art Nouveau to modern architecture. Wander the streets and check out beautiful buildings such as the Suomenlinna fortress.
Helsinki is the center of Finland’s cultural scene as well. You can visit world-class museums such as the Kiasma or catch a concert by the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra.
Even though Helsinki is the nation’s capital and a stunning modern city, you can still check out traditional Finnish culture at the many saunas or at the Old Market Square, which has vendors selling traditional food and handicrafts.
The city is also known for its cool young people that place it at the cutting edge of global culture. Check out neighborhoods such as Kallio, with a world-famous street festival and year-round culture and dining opportunities.
For unique souvenirs, head to the Design District, which highlights work by local artists and artisans.
Helsinki is a capital city that is well-incorporated into nature. The city itself has many stunning parks and even forests. Stunning natural areas such as the Gulf of Finland and Nuuksio National Park are a day trip’s distance away.
However, if your main goal for visiting Finland is to spend as much time in rugged nature, you probably shouldn’t stay in the country’s biggest city.
Helsinki Budget Hotels
- Noli Herttoniemi. The budget-friendly Noli Herttoniemi hotel is perfect for long-term stays. All guests stay in apartments and share amenities including a gym, sauna, and free bike rentals.
- Hotel Bastian. Chic Hotel Bastian welcomes guests with modern, colorful rooms, seamless check-in experiences, and a great location perfect for exploring Helsinki.
Helsinki Mid-Range Hotels
- Bob W Koti Katajanokka. Part of a local hotel chain, the Bob W Koti Katajanokka welcomes guests with great amenities and surprisingly affordable prices. Enjoy great apartments and suites with stunning nearly-spa bathrooms, great views, and a great location.
- Hotel F6. You can’t beat the location of the Hotel F6, which is just a street away from the waterfront. That’s if you can tear yourself away from the gorgeous hotel, which pampers guests with comfortable rooms, amenities such as bathrobes, and an in-house bar.
Helsinki Luxury Hotels
- Lapland Hotels Bulevardi. The stylish Lapland Hotels Bulevardi has rooms that are the epitome of Nordic elegant design, with some featuring spa baths and even saunas. The staff are very friendly and helpful.
- Hotel Kämp. Feel like an elegant aristocrat of old at Hotel Kämp, which is one of Helsinki’s oldest hotels. The Art Nouveau façade hides modern amenities such as in-room streaming systems, a hotel spa, and so much more.
The far north of Finland belongs to the international region of Lapland. This region covers Finland’s Arctic territories, making it the perfect place to visit if you want to see the Arctic and the Northern Lights.
Lapland is also home to Finland’s Sami population, with their unique culture and way of life. Finnish Lapland is the perfect place to visit to check out all of the Arctic activities you’ve always wanted to try.
You can go on a ride with reindeer, join a husky safari, or stay in an igloo. If you like kitschy things, or are traveling with kids, then you should definitely go visit Santa’s Village.
Lapland is the perfect destination for nature lovers. Go on a tour to try to see the Northern Lights, one of the world’s most unique sights. Explore the frozen tundra, many lakes including massive Inarijärvi, and mountains that are perfect for skiing.
Just make sure that you pack plenty of winter gear and layers as the weather gets extremely cold! You have a few options for towns to stay in while you visit Lapland.
Rovaniemi, Lapland’s biggest city, is where most people stay, and it can get a bit crowded during the Christmas season. Nature lovers will beeline for smaller villages and towns in more rural areas.
You can also stay in Inari, the center of Sami culture. Learn about Finland’s indigenous people in the Siida museum or by staying on a Sami-owned farm. Lapland has so much of what people think is quintessentially Finnish.
However, it is definitely not the best place to visit for people that don’t like the cold, especially not in the winter.
Make sure that you purchase the right winter gear before you plan your trip to Finnish Lapland. Lapland is also fairly pricey, so you will have to save up to visit.
Lapland Budget Hotels
- Arctic Light Hotel. The Arctic Light Hotel in Rovaniemi is a great base for exploring Lapland. The airy hotel has comfortable rooms and amenities such as chef-created breakfasts.
- Kierinki Village Majatalo. This hotel is the perfect choice for a rustic, authentic homestay. Stay in an authentic house with a cozy common lounge area, delicious food, and prime location for watching the Northern Lights.
Lapland Mid-Range Hotels
- HAAWE Boutique Apart Hotel. This stylish hotel features modern apartments with their own kitchen and bathrooms and great privacy.
- Parkside Pyhä. The views from every apartment in this hotel are stunning and worth booking alone. That’s before we even talk about the other amenities such as the spa bathrooms and excellent service.
Lapland Luxury Hotels
- Beana Laponia. This luxurious hotel features plush sled-themed décor and an on-site bar. The biggest attraction is the location and the many activities the property can help arrange—even safaris with the hotel’s own huskies!
- Aurora Collection. This hotel in Inari doesn’t look like much from the outside, but inside it has stunning rooms, hot tub access, and ski trail access.
Finland’s stunning Lakeland, or Lake District, is one of the best places to go in the country if you want to experience nature. This region of the country has many of Finland’s stunning ten thousand lakes, beautiful scenery, and plenty of space for outdoor adventures.
It’s also relatively affordable, even in an expensive country such as Finland. The best thing to do in Finnish Lakeland is to get out onto the water, and with thousands of lakes, there is no shortage of opportunities.
Take a cruise along Lake Paijanne or rent a kayak and explore the smaller lakes such as the many lakes in Oulanka National Park.
On shore, you can hike to interesting landmarks such as the Kummakivi Balancing Rock or drive along scenic routes such as Route 62. Lakeland also has several interesting towns and cities.
You can visit the stunning castle of the town of Savonlinna, which hosts an internationally famous opera festival in the summer. The city of Kuopio is nestled in Lakeland, on the shores of Lake Kallavesi, and offers beautiful views and local museums.
Finnish Lakeland boasts pretty nature, but if you want a more metropolitan flavor to your visit, you might get bored. There are cities and towns in this region, but they tend to be smaller and laid-back.
Lakeland Budget Hotels
- Karkausmäen Kammari. This comfy rustic hotel welcomes guests with bright rooms, a small yet comfy shared space, and beautiful lake views. It is a favorite for romantic getaways.
- Villa Saimaan Sydän. Stay in this authentic lake district house and enjoy comfy rooms, shared amenities including a barbecue and a sauna, and a great location on the beach.
Lakeland Mid-Range Hotels
- Boutique Hotel Villa Klubiranta. This elegant hotel is located right on the lake and has beautiful views. Indoors, you can enjoy sauna access and comfy, well-designed rooms.
- Café-Restaurant & Hotel Saima. This lush hotel features welcoming touches such as bathrobes for guests and excellent breakfast at the in-house café and restaurant.
Lakeland Luxury Hotels
- Lillan Boutique Hotel & Kök. Guests at this high-end hotel get to enjoy luscious rooms and bathrooms, an in-house bar, and a great location in the Lakeland city of Tampere.
- Boutique Hotel Yöpuu. This gorgeous hotel is located in a historic building and offers the typical luxury hotel amenities, such as an in-house restaurant, but shines in touches such as complimentary welcome wine for guests.
4. Aland Islands
You may not associate Finland with swimming and island life. However, in the summer, many Finns flock to the Aland Islands along the southwestern coast to do just that.
This archipelago is one of the best places to visit for water sports and if you are visiting Finland during the summer. Life on the Aland Islands is all about relaxation. You can stop by the main town, Mariehamn, and explore the cafes, museums, and summer festivals.
Or get away from the crowds and stay in a summer cottage on one of the thousands of islands that make up the archipelago. There are plenty of opportunities for hiking, kayaking, biking, and more.
A stay on the Aland Islands is a great way to relax during your vacation in Finland. However, if you are an adventurous traveler or someone that prefers to stay in big, bustling cities with plenty of shopping and activities, you should go elsewhere.
The laid-back pace of life on the Aland Islands is boring to some. The attractions on the Aland Islands are rustic in nature, so not ideal for luxury travelers either.
Aland Islands Budget Hotels
- Strand Pensionat Stalldalen. This rustic guesthouse is perfect for an island getaway thanks to its natural location and many outdoor activities, but it also has amenities such as a lounge and is accessible.
- Granlunda Gårdshotell. This family-owned hotel has a location deep in nature, perfect for outdoor activities. Enjoy basic amenities such as comfy rooms, a bar, sauna, and great service.
Aland Islands Mid-Range Hotels
- Park Alandia Hotel. The centrally located Park Alandia Hotel is perfect for exploring the Aland Islands in comfort, with organized events including live music and elegant rooms.
- Hotel Gullvivan. This hotel is surrounded by nature, perfect for swimming, cycling, and kayaking. The hotel also offers parking, a shared playground, and great views.
Aland Islands Luxury Hotels
- Brudhäll Hotel & Restaurant. This hotel offers guests elegant rooms, easy access to boat trips to other islands, and an on-site restaurant with stunning cuisine.
- HavsVidden Resort. This waterfront resort is one of the few luxury options on the Aland Islands. Guests can enjoy stylish modern rooms with spacious bathrooms, a private shore area, and even private villas.
The laid-back city of Turku is the perfect place to visit in Finland if you want to stay in a city that has a quieter feeling than Helsinki, but still plenty of amenities.
Turku is one of Finland’s cultural capitals and has plenty to see and do, as well as plenty of activities for children. Turku is one of Finland’s most historic cities and was actually the capital before Helsinki, and you can explore old medieval streets in Old Turku.
For more modern culture, check out festivals such as Turku Jazz or the many craft beer bars in the city. Turku is a vibrant city with plenty to do for young people, and even has attractions for the youngest guests.
Turku is close to Moomin World, a theme park dedicated to the Moomins, a popular children’s book series created by Finnish author Tove Jansson. Kids will also get a kick out of the Föri Cable Ferry, which offers beautiful views of the Aura River.
Turku has plenty to offer for a small city, including opportunities for day trips into surrounding nature. However, if your main goal is to spend time in Finland’s rugged nature, you should probably opt for a more rural area.
Turku Budget Hotels
- Forenom Aparthotel Turku. Perfect for families that need a bit more space, this hotel offers guests cozy rooms with their own kitchens, bathrooms, and wifi.
- Hotel Kakola. This cozy, retro hotel has inviting décor, a delicious on-site restaurant, and comfy, air-conditioned rooms.
Turku Mid-Range Hotels
- Park Hotel Turku. This elegant hotel is located in a historic, ivy-covered building, but has modern amenities such as cable TV and a sauna.
- Scandic Hamburger Börs. This fully equipped hotel has a fitness center, sauna, and rooftop bar, all in an elegant Art Nouveau building.
Turku Luxury Hotels
- Solo Sokos Hotel Turun Seurahuone. This plush hotel welcomes guests with air-conditioned rooms, complete with amenities such as mini-bars, and a historic location.
- Radisson Blu Marina Palace Hotel. The luxurious hotel provides guests with baroque-style rooms and giant beds, a business center, several restaurants, and many more amenities.
So, Where Should You Stay in Finland?
|🏆 Best for First Timers||Helsinki|
|🏹 Best for Cultural Experience||Lapland|
|🌳 Best for Nature||Lakeland|
|🛥️ Best for Watersports||Aland Islands|
|👪 Best for Families||Turku|
As you can see, there are countless thing to se and do in Finland, all found in several of the country’s best areas to stay. So what are you waiting for — book your trip today and experience all that this picturesque destination has to offer. Happy travels!