Winter vacation in Espoo – get the best tips!

Skiing holiday or winter vacation? Whichever name you use, this year’s holiday is just around the corner. In 2024, the skiing holiday will be in weeks 8, 9 and 10, and traditionally the holidays start with holidays in Southern Finland.

Winter vacation in Helsinki? How would it sound if you headed to Espoo this year? There are plenty of winter activities and activities for the whole family in Espoo! Espoo is also a short trip to winter adventures in the surrounding areas. We have put together a few tips for you who are thinking about what to do on your skiing holiday in Espoo.

Winter vacation snow games with children and adults.

Outdoor activities in Nuuksio National Park

Right next to the capital region is the Nuuksio National Park, which offers more than 30 kilometers of official hiking trails. You can go camping in Nuuksio all year round, and what could be more wonderful than eating outside in nature! During the winter vacation, there are several places for outdoor enthusiasts to make a fire, where you can stop to enjoy your own snacks or grill a sausage.

On the website of the Retkipaikka, you can see tips for routes and read the stories of fellow hikers about their own trips. The Retkipaikka site also offers guided tours, if you want to be accompanied by an expert on your adventure. In nature, you can adventure traditionally on foot or with rented snowshoes.

Children are outdoors on a winter holiday in a snowy forest.

Ice skating and skiing for the pleasure of the winter vacationer

Fans of traditional winter sports will be delighted to know that Espoo has more than 90 skating rinks and more than 200 km of ski tracks. 60 km of the ski slopes are lit between 6:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m., so you can freely choose the time you want to ski. In good winters, tracks can also be made in the areas of lakes and fields.

In Espoo, the condition of the skating rinks and tracks is updated on the website, and from there it is worth checking where to move in order to get the best experience.

A man skis on Espoo's forest trails in the beautiful weather of a ski vacation.

Winter swimming in the sea or lake

Do you enjoy the cold and the refreshing feeling it brings? Are you a passionate open swimmer or do you want to try the sport on your vacation?

Matinkylä’s winter swimming spot is located along good transport connections, and in total there are 11 winter swimming spots in Espoo. The winter swimming spots are free for everyone to use, and the winter swimming clubs and associations or the city of Espoo are responsible for the changing rooms. The city of Espoo’s swimming booths are free of charge, and the code for them can be obtained from a city employee on weekdays. Some of the winter swimming spots have saunas for a fee, and it’s worth getting to know them in advance if you need warmth for your day in addition to the cold.

Winter lake landscape, water swimming place in Espoo.

Fatbike – the charm of speed with electricity or muscles

Have you thought that you can also cycle during the winter holidays? There are plenty of cycling people in Espoo, and you can rent popular “läski bikes” from the nearby Matinkylä paddling station. Along Espoo’s waterfront walkway, you can also enjoy the beautiful fairy-tale scenery, as the route winds along the sea shore for 40 km. There are plenty of different routes in Espoo’s central park, so even first-timers can find places to explore from the back of a bike. Bicycle rental also always includes a helmet, so it is sufficient that you have suitable outdoor equipment.

Winter Fatbike bike tour in Espoo.

A winter holiday in sledding hill for the whole family

Climbing and sliding down in Pulkkamäki is suitable for all ages and also serves as a good form of exercise. Espoo’s sledding hills can be conveniently found in one place. There are shops or cafes in the vicinity of several pulkkamäki, so when you get a little hungry, you can easily stop by to get something to eat.

A child goes down a sledding hill on a winter holiday.

Skiing in the “South”

You can also go skiing on a skiing holiday in southern Finland, and there are slopes for both beginners and more experienced speed freaks in the nearby towns of Espoo. Kauniainen has hills especially suitable for beginners, and you can easily get there by public transport. The center has three slopes, a cafe and a rental shop. The ski resorts offer versatile slopes and each destination has a café/restaurant where you can visit during your winter sports vacation!

Take a look here at the skiing centers in the nearby areas:

Skier in a snowy landscape.

Shopping and indoor sports in shopping center Iso Omena

Right in the heart of Matinkylä, there is also a large shopping center with services and shops. Iso Omena also has a movie theater, a glow minigolf course and Duudsonit Activity Park, so you can easily spend a day or two there. This shopping center also offers a wide range of beauty and pampering services.

For the youngest in the family, there is a free small indoor playground where you can let off some energy between shopping. The playground can be found in the central part of the shopping center near the children’s clothing stores. There are also impressive seawater aquariums in the area, and it is worth visiting the place to admire the fish.

Shopping inside the shopping center Iso Omena in Espoo.

Hotel Matts – comfortable accommodation in Matinkylä

All these activities are located at a convenient distance from Hotel Matts, where you can stay in spacious apartments for the entire vacation. Of course, a wonderful warm sauna acts as a counterbalance to the cold winter! Our largest apartments have their own sauna, and the hotel has a rooftop sauna for guests to use, so you can also warm up properly at the end of the day.

Hotel Matts is located right next to the metro station, so if you want, you can also go to Helsinki to continue shopping or get to know our country’s capital. Pets are also welcome on vacation!

Relaxing in a hotel room on a ski vacation.

Espoo welcomes ski vacationers to join the winter hikes!