Experience art, architecture, history, excellent food,
magnificent lakeside nature and hearty service!
Located a little over 3 hours north of Helsinki, and about halfway between the cities of Tampere and Jyväskylä, amid some Finland’s finest Lakeland scenery, lies the small town of Mänttä. Although small, Mänttä is home to two of Finland’s finest international art museums, Gösta Serlachius Museum of Art and Serlachius Museum Gustaf, and one of the largest and most important private art collections in the Nordics. The museums are idyllically situated in lakeside parklands, Gösta looks out over Lake Melasjärvi, while Gustaf is beside Koskenlampi Bay, and it is these natural surroundings that make a day trip to Mänttä the perfect way to blend cultural and nature-based experiences.
This summer’s big hit was no doubt be the “Banksy – A Visual Protest” exhibition, but there are seldom less than seven exhibitions running at any time – at least three contemporary art exhibitions, a fine art exhibition from the classics in the collection, and the three historical installations in Serlachius Gustaf. There are numerous guided tours available, not just to the exhibitions or through the manor houses, but also a range of nature walks, and tours of the town’s historic sites. As an added bonus, Restaurant Gösta is open all year, with the award-winning chef Henry Tikkanen serving natural and simple flavours from local, high-quality, and seasonal ingredients.
Exhibitions Summer 2022
This summer and autumn, there are four exhibitions of international artists to experience: ‘Punoutua’ – porcelain sculptures by Rachel Kneebone; ‘Between Before and After’ – paintings by Clare Woods; ‘Where Art Thou?’ – photography by Andy Freeberg; and ‘Autofictions’ – film & photography by Trish Morrisey.
- Classic Works of Fine Art at the Manor – Updated collection hanging – Art Museum Gösta
- Behind the Pulp Gate – Work and stories from Mänttä pulp mill – Museum Gustaf
- Apotheckary’s Trade House – Experience history hands-on – Museum Gustaf
- Paper Devil – The life and business affairs of G. A. Serlachius – Museum Gustaf
Guided tours – Art, History and Nature
Nature abounds in Mänttä. Situated at the southern intersection of Lake Keurusselkä and Lake Melasjärvi, and surrounded by native coniferous forests, there are endless possibilities to enjoy nature based experiences here. The most popular nature areas are the Mäntänvuori area, with its forest church, observation tower, and nordic hiking trails; Vilppulankoski Park, also suitable for physically challenged explorers; Lemmenpolku, a beautiful walking route from Tennis pavilion to Serlachius Museum Gösta; Elämänmäki conservation area; and Jaakkoinsuo, an old peatland research area.
Serlachius wants to combine culture and nature. In addition to their high-quality art and history tours it is also easy to include soft activities in the forest or on the lakes: Nordic walking, berry picking and cycling with the museums’ special Jopo-bikes. Or just relax and take a stroll in the forest or a guided walking tour and hear about nature and the Finns’ relationship with it. Guided nature tours offered include a stroll along the historical Love Path, a 2.5 km walk from one Gustaf to Gösta, following the strand of Lake Kuorevesi through forested lakeland nature. Or visitors can be guided through the primeval forests of Mäntänvuori, to the forest church and the observation tower, which is one of the tallest timber buildings in Finland, to one final surprise hidden in the forest, Central European style wine tavern. Visitors can also stay within the grounds of Serlachius Gösta, and enjoy a guided walking tour admiring the beautiful landscape, sculpture park and architecture of the pavilion, old peasant cottage and 1930’s manor.
Whether you fancy a savoury or sweet snack or four-course dining experience, Restaurant Gösta provides natural cuisine by top chef Henry Tikkanen, whose insistence on local high-quality ingredients according to the season ensures a tasty experience for everyone. As the restaurant is located in Art Museum Gösta, chef Tikkanen always designs an Art Menu inspired by the content of the current exhibitions.
How to get there
Serlachium Museum operate a daily shuttle bus from and back to Tampere, starting from the bus station at 10:50 am, then the railway station at 11:05 am, arriving back in Tampere at around 7:00 pm, leaving visitors with around 8 hours to experience a wonderful day into the heart of art!. The shuttle bus timetable matches the train timetable from Helsinki to Tampere, making it possible to catch the morning train from the capital, and arrive back by nightfall.
Mänttä-Vilppula is on National Route 58 between Orivesi and Keuruu. The travel time from Tampere to Mänttä is 1 hour 15 minutes, and from Jyväskylä to Mänttä 1 hour and 10 minutes. The journey from Helsinki to Mänttä takes 3 hours and from Turku, Vaasa and Kuopio 2 hours and 50 minutes. Mänttä’s location between Jyväskylä and Tampere, makes it simple to include Serlachius in a Lakeland round trip, enjoying the cultural and natural riches of the Heart of Finland.