Lahti Tourist Attractions
Lahti lies 100km/60mi northeast of Helsinki on the northwestern edge of the Salpausselkä ridge, at the south end of the Vesijärvi (alt. 82m/269ft; area 113sq.km/44sq.mi), which is surrounded by wooded hills. One of Finland's largest towns, Lahti owed its rapid rise to prosperity to its excellent situation, with good communications. It received its municipal charter, however, only in 1905. It now has a varied range of industries (large furniture factories; glass, textiles, metalworking, electrical goods). It also has a powerful radio transmitter and an Academy of Music.Lahti is best known for its annual World Cup winter games, which includes skiing, ice hockey and football.
Lahti is a popular winter sports resort. Every February the Finlandia Run, a cross-country skiing race, is held here; and this is followed in March by the Salpausselkä Winter Games. The Nordic skiing championships were held in Lahti in 1978 and 1989.
The central feature of the town of Lahti is the Market Square (Kauppatori), surrounded by shops and offices, on the north side of which stands a wooden church. In Kirkkokatu is the brick Holy Cross Church (Ristin Kirkko), designed by Alvar Aalto (1978).
Lahti Historical Museum
To the west of Lahti's Market Square, at the end of Kirkkokatu, can be found the Historical Museum, which has been housed in a mansion, since 1968, built by a local industrialist at the end of the 19th century. The collection includes pictures and prehistoric material from Viipuri, formerly a Finnish town but now in Russia. In the adjoining park is the Kariranta Open-Air Theater.
South of the Market Square stands Lahti's Town Hall (by Eliel Saarinen, 1912), a monumental Art Nouveau building in rough brick. Also in the town center is the Concert Hall (by Kaija and Heikki Sirén, 1954). To the west is the modern Municipal Theater (1983).
Standing in the park adjoining the Lahti Town Hall the Freedom Monument commemorates the liberation of the town from Communist forces. In front of the railroad station, to the southeast, is an equestrian statue of Marshal Mannerheim (by Veikko Leppänen, 1959).
Radio and TV Museum
In the center of the Lahti Municipal park is the old radio station, with the Radio Museum (over 1,000 exhibits).The main museum collection is radio and TV receivers, broadcasting studio technology, amateur radio devices, domestic audio recording equipment, and telephone appliances.
Museum of Art
The Lahti Museum of Art at Vesijärvenkatu 11 houses works by Akseli Gallén-Kallela. Two specialized museums are the Poster Museum and the Skiing Museum.The museum collection features about 1700 works of art, mainly Finnish and local art from 1950's to present day.
Lahti Orthodox Church
At Harjukatu 5 in Lahti is the Orthodox church (1954), a copy of the church of the Prophet Elijah in Viipuri.
International Organ Festival (August): Writers' Seminar (August); Poster Biennale (alternate years in summer).
International Organ Week
Lahti International Organ Week.The festival began in 1972 to bring together world-renowned organ pianists and orchestras for one week each year.The festival runs from late July to early August and includes many daily events. Apart from organ concerts, the program includes film screenings, puppet theaters, master classes and traditional performances. The venues are equally varied and include the Lahti City Theater, and the Church of the Cross, among many other churches and historical buildings in the town.
Trotting races in Lahti are in June.
Lahti Finn Cycling
International cycle trek, 170 km, is in July.
Kiveriö - Water Tower
To the west of Lahti is the Skiing Stadium, with a ski-jump 90m/295ft high (viewing platform) and three other jumps, cross-countrytrails and a floodlit sawdust run 1,000m/1,100yd long. There are also an ice rink and a swimming pool.
11km/7mi northwest of Lahti lies Tiirismaa (223m/732ft; radio transmitter), a skiing resort with two ski-lifts and a slalom run. The hill is an outlier of the Salpausselkä ridge, a massive terminal moraine which bounds the Finnish Lakeland on the south and extends northeast for 550km/340mi into Karelia.
5km/3mi north of Lahti, on the east side of the Vesijärvi, is the Mukkula recreation and holiday center, and a few kilometers northeast, on the road to Heinola, the Takkula recreation area. 8km/5mi northwest of the town can be found the Messilä holiday center, with facilities for water sports, adventure playgrounds and restaurants (open in summer).
There is a hydrofoil service from Lahti to Jyväskylä (3.5 hours each way). In summer there are also steamer trips to Jyväskylä (10.5 hours) and Heinola (4.5 hours).
8.5km/5mi northwest from Messilä is Hollola, with a stone-built 14th century church (fine woodcarving).
This manor houses a collection of old and contemporary Finnish paintings and sculptures. In summer time, there will be some exhibitions by the leading Finnish artists.
Map of Lahti Attractions