photo © Uusikaupunki
Tourism Uusikaupunki & Uusikaupunki Travel Guide
A charming coastal town, Uusikaupunki has a proud maritime tradition and during the 19th century the sailing fleet based here was the second largest in Finland. This tradition can be explored in the numerous maritime themed museums, and by visiting the harbours of the old town. Vistors can also take cruises in the archipelago to Isokari Lighthouse and Katanpää Fort Island or explore the towns history via the 4km Promenade of Cultural History. Other highlights should include a visit to the Myllymäki Windmill Park and St. Olaf’s Church. Crusell Week is held annually and attracts visitors from all of Finland and abroad.
Wooden House District of Uusikaupunki
Uusikaupunki has also managed to preserve its old town centre, and visitors should take the opportunity to stroll around this extensive wooden house district dating from the 19th century. To really get to know the town’s past take a walk along the Promenade of Cultural History, a 4km meander which takes the visitor past many of the historically important sites in the town. Another point of interest is the Myllymäki Windmill Park, a hill where you can explore four historic windmills, relax in the gardens and arboretum, and let the children loose in the playground. There is also an old observation tower, 50m above sea level, which you can visit by borrowing the key from the Tourist Information Office.
Museums in Uusikaupunki
Uusikaupunki’s fine tradition of seafaring can be seen in the museums here. It had the second largest fleet in Finland in the 19th century, evidence of which is on display in the numerous maritime themed museums in the town, in particular the Sailor’s Home Museum and the Naval Pilot Museum. The Uusikaupunki Museum manages also Wahlberg’s museum house and the Kalanti Regional Museum which are worth a visit.
Churches of Uusikaupunki
Despite its name, which means ‘new town’ in Finnish, Uusikaupunki is a town rich in history and almost 400 years old having gained its charter in 1617. Its age can be measured by the churches here, the newest was built in 1863 and the oldest of which is St. Olaf’s grey stone church in Kalanti village, dating from the 1400s. The Old Church of Uusikaupunki, completed in 1629, is one of the more interesting buildings in the town, having a barrel vaulted ceiling decorated in stars. The Putsaari Chapel is a small wooden chapel, probably built in the early 17th century, as was the Sacrifice Church of Pyhämaa, which is also wooden and decorated with numerous murals on the interior walls and ceiling. The Church of Lokalahti from 1763 is also wooden, with a very interesting steeple and belfry, and the newest church is suitably named The New Church of Pyhämaa, a granite building from 1804 with an altarpiece by Arvid Liljelund.
Events in Uusikaupunki
The Uusikaupunki Woodwind Festival, or Crusell Week, is an annual internationally recognised festival dedicated to woodwind instruments where musicians from Finland and beyond gather at the end of July and beginning of August for a series of concerts performed in a number of different venues. Finally, no visitor to Uusikaupunki should miss out on a visit to the Bonk Museum, the only permanent exhibition for non-functioning apparatus which styles itself as a world leader in Third Millennium technologies such as ‘fully Defunctioned Machinery, Cosmic Therapy, Repacking, Advanced Disinformation Systems and Localised Black Holes’!!