Turku - the oldest city of Finland
Turku is the oldest city (783 years) and the first capital of Finland. Today it is the capital of its region, the Southwest Finland. It is a vibrant city of events and culture with a population of around 178.000 people. The city centre is in the valley of the river Aura, surrounded by seven hills. Turku is the only Finnish member in the modern Hanseatic league. It is often said to be the only West European town in Finland as all medieval European towns have four things in common: a river for transport, a cathedral for religious power, a castle representing the secular power and a market place for commerce.
All main places of interest are located by the river Aura starting from Turku castle with unique national treasures to the medieval Turku cathedral close to the Old great square. The riverbanks are pulsing with life in summertime when people gather there to wine and dine, to listen to music and to have a good time. In Turku you can see different styles of architecture ranging from the 13 th century to modern times. The cultural life is versatile: several theatres, a city philharmonic orchestra, chamber music, jazz & rock. The lively shopping district increases the appeal of the city.
In 2011 Turku enjoyed a successful year as The European Capital of Culture. Turku gained more visibility in global media than ever before and visitor numbers went up as well.