What to do and where to go on Vappu
There are various events, festivals, concerts, and market sales happening for everyone to enjoy. Every big city everywhere in Finland has different events. However, if you are visiting Helsinki, here are some places you can check out:
Children´s Vappu (May Day)
Helsinki, 30 April, usually all day
During Vappu, the park has a May Day program for children. These events are free of charge for visitors, including the entrance fee to the amusement park. Going to Linnanmäki is easy, usually by bus or tram that often goes throughout Helsinki's city. Linnanmäki is open on April 30 and May 1 at 13:00-21:00. The gates are open at 12:30.
Lasten Vappushokkelo 2022
Helsinki, 1 May, 10am-5pm
Tickets: 2€ adult, 4€ child
This year, the theme is Finnish nature. The price includes the entrance to the garden and shock track, farming your plant, microscopy, stone exhibition, animals, and other programs. In addition, the area has face paintings, horse and pony riding, lottery, and food sales. Reserve cash or download mobile pay to your phone.
Read more on the event page
Kengurumeininki performs at May 1 at 11:30- 12:15 and is a part of Helsingin työväen vappu. The vappu parade will arrive in Rautatientori at 12:15.
Finnish restaurants are filled with different vappu themed buffets for vappu brunch or lunch. Usually people like to posh and dress up and enjoy the festivities for a glass of sparkling wine and vappu treats. It is usually better to booked beforehand to get a reserved seat. There is no vappu without herring, meatballs and potato salad. At least not traditional. You can always take it away and head to the beach, park or stroll around in nearby islands such as Suomenlinna.
Vappu by the Beach
There are many beaches in the Helsinki Metropolitan area. However, Hietaniemenranta , Munkkiniemenranta, Rastilanranta are popular beaches where the youth hang out in vappu.However, the weather might be pretty chilly this labor day. If the weather is good enough, the beach is such a nice place to stay, listen to some concerts if there are any, join volleyball games, and enjoy food and drinks.
Helsinki, 1 May, usually all day
An old tradition for most people on Vappu is to go to Kaivopuisto, the big green park in Helsinki. The park is indeed beautiful with its amazing views of the sea, the harbor, and the Kaivopuiston Tähtitorni and Helsinki observatory. Locals would usually go there to have a picnic at the start of the day, no matter the weather. Some were already there the night before.
The park is big, but it gets crowded fast, so it's better to go there early to find a place to sit. A blanket is also handy to carry and some snack foods and drinks. You can also walk around the park and enjoy its beauty. There are kiosks along the seafront that offer drinks, coffee, and ice cream. To go there, you can take a tram.
There are other various park venues in Helsinki where you can picnic on Vappu, such as Esplanade Park, Kaisaniemi Park, and Töölönranta.
There are many activities such as the vappu parades, outdoor concerts and theatre performances that you can enjoy. All you need to do is walk outside and enjoy.
Know more what Vappu is all about.
Originally written in 2019. Updated in 2022.