Travelling to Valkeakoski

Looks like Haka drew a team with fans, so its only fair to let them know stuff about Finland. Valkeakoski is not a big town, it smells awful if you’re downwind of the paper mill on a bad day, there are not many pubs there and the passenger trains stopped a long time ago. That aside, it’s a lovely place!

First up, you have to get there. Valkeakoski is only 30km or so from Tampere, and there are local buses from the central square (keskustori) and the main bus station (linja-autoasema). There are long distance buses from the main bus station in Tampere, from Helsinki-Vantaa airport, and Kamppi bus station in Helsinki. You can check the timetable at expressbus.fi.

Finland does not have as many cheap airlines as Ireland, and the only direct connection is Dublin to Tampere. As the game in Valkeakoski coincides with the Rally of Finland, you might find it difficult to get affordable flights, but it probably isn’t impossible. If you can find connecting flights, there are also connections from Turku to Gdansk with Wizzair, Tampere to Riga, Bremen, Frankfurt, Dublin and Stansted with Ryanair; Helsinki to Stansted and a lot more places with Blue1 and Air Berlin; and if all else fails you can probably fly to Sweden or Estonia and get a ferry with Viking Line, Nordic Jet Line, Linda Line, Eckerö Line or Tallink.

Travel in southern Finland is easily done by train, you can find times and prices at vr.fi. Journey times between Turku, Tampere and Helsinki are under two hours, and the return fare is about €50 depending on the type of train you get.

Accommodation in Valkeakoski is limited. There is Apianlahti campsite and Hotel Waltikka, but your best bet is probably to stay in Tampere and get the bus. Tampere has a wider range of accommodation, from cheap places like Sofia and Omena to more upmarket options like Rosendahl and Tammer.

You may have heard that Finland expensive place to drink. You heard right. Look at the ‘special offers’ in the local Irish bar to see just how dear it can be, but there are some cheaper places in Tampere. If you look for the word ‘Ale’ (discount) in a bar’s name, you should find ways to get drunk without testing your credit card. There are three such places on Hämeenkatu, Tampere’s main street. Good bars (as opposed to cheap bars, the two virtually never coincide here) include O’Connells, Soho, Höyry, Oluthuone, Teerenpeli and Plevna.

You might want to take a look at the Finnish football museum in Valkeakoski, or the Finnish ice hockey Hall of Fame in Tampere. Other than that, I would recommend getting drunk and enjoying the weather, it’s pretty nice at the moment. Finns don’t drink much because it’s not socially acceptable most of the time, but at weekends and during the summer they make up for it by getting absolutely wasted.

Advertisements

5 Responses

  1. Hoping to get to see some of your country. Don’t worry I’m not a drinker so it might be a bit cheaper for me. Not sure how I’m getting there yet. Hopefully there will be 100 of us. Thanks for the information. Come on the REBEL ARMY!

  2. 100! Crikey, that’ll be great. Only TamU take that many to Valkeakoski.

  3. We should have at least 100, we had that in Iceland last year.

    We took about 1000 to Prague but that was easier and cheaper to get to!

  4. Haka – probably the least picture-esque ground I’ve ever visited!

  5. “Valkeakoski is not a big town, it smells awful if you’re downwind of the paper mill on a bad day, there are not many pubs there and the passenger trains stopped a long time ago. That aside, it’s a lovely place!” – best summing up of Valkeakoski ever… tosi hyvä! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: