Amazing view of Helsinki from SkySauna
You wouldn’t believe where we had a sauna!
I was having lunch with a friend in the Old Market Hall in the heart of Helsinki, in a famous soup restaurant called Soppakeittiö. They have the best bouillabaisse in Finland – no visit to Helsinki is complete without trying their famous fish and shellfish soup.
While enjoying our lunch, a Travelling Sauna project came up in conversation. There is a sauna in the USA traveling throughout the country until the end of this year as part of Finland’s centenary celebrations.
From a nearby table a local woman joined our conversation, mentioning the unique sauna just across the bay from the Market Hall, in Katajanokka. Where Ferris Wheels in other countries might be used to celebrate birthdays, have dinner, or even get married, in Finland they have to add a sauna! The Helsinki SkyWheel has the world’s first sauna cabin with an amazing seaview. Adding showering facilities to the SkySauna would have proved a strain, even for Finnish ingenuity, so a separate lounge area was built at the base of the wheel.
Sauna lounge terrace with a jacuzzi
We had to try it out, and it turned out to be really easy to reserve the SkySauna online. We WhatsApped a few friends to join us for the experience, as the SkySauna can fit from four to five patrons in the gondola at a time. However, with the comfortable lounge and sunny terrace being situated right beside, it’s fine to gather a group of friends to take turns in the sauna.
When you arrive at the SkyWheel for your SkySauna experience you’ll first arrive at the terrace, where a warm jacuzzi bubbles in welcome, and inside the lounge there are a wide range of refreshments available. The spacious terrace offers sea views of the inner harbour, and the islands therein. We changed, showered, and headed onto the patio, with the massive rotating wheel moving silently above us, making our time in the jacuzzi something of a surreal experience.
Up in the SkySauna
Just a few steps from the terrace, and we were inside the gondola, admiring the quality Finnish sauna stove. Slowly the gondola rose, and at 40m up we enjoyed the magnificent views over Helsinki – Market Square, the old Market Hall, the Baltic Sea, Suomenlinna, and the Art Nouveau buildings of Katajanokka. Two of Helsinki’s most beautiful churches, and iconic landmarks, are outlined against the sky – the red-bricked Uspenski Cathedral and stunning white Helsinki Cathedral.
Each rotation takes a few minutes, and the heat of the sauna, the steam, and delightful views left us in awe – the sauna experience we’d always dreamed of. We waved to our friends on the terrace, and kept in touch with the staff through two-way radios, to let them know when we wanted to leave the sauna. Then back to the terrace to enjoy the fresh sea air and a cold drink – we could have stayed forever!
Once we’d all had turns in the sauna, feeling refreshed and fresh, we moved a short distance to the Allas Sea Pool terrace, to catch more rays of the evening sun.