Paavo Nurmi, Matti Nykänen, Mika Häkkinen or the Floorball National Team – there have been various globally well-known Finnish athletes, who wrote sports history. They are honored in the Urheilumuseo – or: Sports Museum of Finland. As I am a huge friend of Finnish sports, I had to visit it on one of my trips to Helsinki.
Sports Museum of Finland – Location & Admission
The sports museum is located right at the West wing of the Helsinki Olympic Stadium, which is still actively used (check out for events before you visit). There are huge paid parking lots around the stadium. I did have quite some trouble to pay there as a tourist, as you typically pay by (Finnish) mobile provider. There are a bit more expansive parking lots right in front of the museum, which accept credit card payment – so I recommend to do that. If you use Helsinki public transport, the tram stations Töölön Halli and Auroran sairaala are in almost equivalent distance.
The museum is opening from Monday to Friday 10:00 to 18:00 hrs and Saturday and Sunday 11:00 to 17:00 hrs. The adult admission is 15 Euro. The museum accepts the Finnish museum card and the Helsinki Card. If you do not happen to have one of those, I would recommend to go for the 18 Euro combined ticket, which also allows you to explore Helsinki from the Olympic Stadium Tower. The museum is also driving the Home of Paavo Nurmi exhibition in Turku.
Sports Museum of Finland – The Visit
Even though the museum is not overwhelmingly large, there are quite a lot of different sections of the museum. A core area, of course, is about the 1952 Olympic Games in Helsinki. There is not only memorabilia, but also interactive screens where you can explore the results, medal winners and some other stories. Most of the displays gave information in Finnish, Swedish and English.
A very important area, of course, is about recent current sports and feelings about sports. This especially included iconic victories over Sweden in ice hockey and floorball. Cool to see that they even had a World Floorball Championship Golden Metal in display. To me, that was the most interesting part of the museum visit. Not in the same area of the museum, there were also some displays about Finnish motor sports.
Winter Sports & More
What would Finland be without winter sports? Ice hockey, skiing and other disciplines play a major role in the Finnish sports scene. The museum honors sportsmen like the legendary ski jumper Matti Nykänen, but also the NHL greatest from Suomi like Teemu Selänne. Apart from the floorball exhibits, this was naturally the part of the museum where I spend most time in. Interesting that they also teased potential scenarios about the future of winter sports.
The upper floor featured some more “modern” sports, ranging from climbing up to cyber sports / e-sports, which was a very interesting round-up of different kinds of sports.
History of The Olympic Stadium
A very interesting part of the exhibition reflected the history of the Olympic Stadium as such. It felt really interesting to see the ideas behind the structure of the stadium and the different upgrade levels of the iconic venue.
Sports Museum of Finland – Services
The staff of the museum was really friendly. If you want to take some literature with you (there were even few English books during my visit) or feel like some other Finnish sports souvenirs, there is a small gift shop.
Sports Museum of Finland – My View
The Sports Museum of Finland is really a nice place to have an overview about Finnish sports history. I loved the way they honored iconic Finnish athletes like Nurmi or Nykänen – and of course having a museum which is dealing with floorball is breathtaking to me. The price feels a bit of high – the combo ticket together with the Olympic tower feels to make it bearable.
Sports Postings about Finland
Flyctory.com on Sports Museums
Here are all Sports Museums I visited: