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Jyväskylä

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A view from the observation tower of Harju

Jyväskylä [1] is a university city in Central Finland. It is the biggest city on Finnish Lakeland area. Its population was about 85,000 until January 1, 2009, when the surrounding regions were merged with it, thus increasing the population of Jyväskylä to 130,000.

Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

Jyväskylä has a small airport [2] which is mostly served by the FinnComm (Finnish Commuter Airline) [3] and Finnair [4]. There are also some direct charter flights to popular holiday destinations.

From the airport you can travel to city with airport bus. The cost is 5 euro. The bus will leave the airport when all passengers have picked up their luggage. Reaching the airport for an outgoing flight is also possible by bus, the bus will leave from the city one hour before the departure time of the flight.

You can also reach the city by taxi in 15-20 minutes. Catching or calling a taxi from the airport it will cost approx. 35 euros (March 2010) to get to the city center. If you are traveling alone, it's cheaper to order the taxi as a special "Airport-Taxi". Ordering Airport-Taxi two hours in advance will lower the cost for one person down to 20 euros, and a designated taxi driver with a name sign will be waiting at the airport for you. The service number for taxis in Jyväskylä area is +358 10 06900 (also for Airport-Taxi).

By train[edit]

Jyväskylä is well connected with railroads to the other Finnish cities, and getting in by train is rather effortless. The journey from Helsinki takes from 2 hours 45 minutes to 3 1/2 hours depending on the train. A bit depending of the train type, one way Helsinki - Jyväskylä train ticket costs a 54,75 euros for adults (August 2013).

The combined bus and train station ("Jyväskylä travel center" / "Jyväskylän matkakeskus") is open from 06:00 to 22:00 from Friday to Saturday and from 08:00 to 22:00 on Sundays. Train tickets are sold at ticket machines at all opening hours, but the booking office does not sell tickets in the early morning or late night [5].

By bus[edit]

Buses travel between Jyväskylä and other Finnish cities, as well as smaller destinations. When traveling between cities, using trains is typically faster. Express Bus [6] ticket for adults from Jyväskylä to Helsinki or Helsinki-Vantaa Airport costs a bit less than 50 euros (March 2010).

Get around[edit]

Jyväskylä has rather nice opportunities for getting around by foot or by bicycle, so if you're not in a hurry, you might want to just consider walking everywhere.

By bus[edit]

Local buses travel between the different parts and suburbs of Jyväskylä. The single tickets are sold by the bus driver and the fares are relatively costly, 3.30 € per trip (the exact amount changes quite ofter). Night fare (23:00-04:00) is almost double, 6.00 €, making taxi relatively cheaper option when travelling in groups of three or more.

If you need to change buses during one trip, you need to ask for a special receipt (siirtolippu) that you can show in the next bus (you'll have to get on to the next bus within one hour from buying the ticket). This receipt does not currently cost anything extra, but you still have to ask for it explicitly before you pay for the trip.

If you're planning to stay longer and want to use the bus service regularly, you might want to consider buying a bus card, which will be a bit cheaper (much cheaper if you are a student living in Jyväskylä). A 30-day bus card costs 61 € and it can be used as much as wanted during this 30-day period. No matter which part of Jyväskylä you want to get, there are approximately three buses leaving each hour (daytime).

By taxi[edit]

Taxis can be usually be found waiting at the Jyväskylän matkakeskus or other taxi poles in the center of the city. In case of a taxi cannot be found or you need to order it in advance, the taxi service number in Jyväskylä area is +358 10 06900. The starting cost during daytime (Mon - Sat) is 5.10 € and on other times 8.00 € (March 2010). The cost per traveled kilometer varies between 1 - 2 € depending of the amount of passengers. The price list is always available in taxis.

See[edit][add listing]

There is a nature preservation area just a few hundred meters off the city center. The area is located on the bank of the Tourujoki-river. There are also six other recreational 'nature paths' in Jyväskylä.

Exhibitions and art museums: Admission is free for all on Fridays to Jyväskylä Art Museum, Craft Museum of Finland and Museum of Central Finland. Ask for a student discount in the museums and galleries.

Jyväskylä has many buildings by the famous architect Alvar Aalto. These include kaupunginteatteri (the town theater), some buildings in the main campus of the universty and the Alvar Aalto Museum.

Harju A ridge just next to the center of the town has a park on its slopes. Good for picnics and such. Vesilinna (water tower) is a building on top of the ridge that acts as an observation tower, restaurant and a museum of natural science in addition to dispensing water to the town. The building can be seen from many parts of Jyväskylä.

Do[edit][add listing]

The city's web site [7] has an event calendar for current and upcoming events.


Ice skating on Lake Jyväsjärvi in the winter once the ice is thick enough.

Skiing and snowboarding (Laajavuori) Laajavuorentie 15, +358 (0)14 624 885 (info@laajavuori.com), [8]. When there is snow. A small ski centre for downhill skiing and snowboarding with an extensive network of crosscountry skiing tracks in the vicinity.

Swimming and Beaches[edit]

Jyväskylä has plenty of lakes and these provide nice opportunities for swimming and general beach activities during the warm summer months. Some of them offer ice swimming during the winter.

  • Vuorilampi, Laajavuori, close by to the ski centre. A small pond with usually relatively warm water. Swimming is possible also during the winter.
  • Tuomiojärvi, north from the centre. Maybe the most popular beach in town and has two beach volleyball fields.
  • Alban ranta, next to Hotel Alba and one of the university campuses.
  • Kolmisoppinen, (or Korloppinen on Google Maps) couple of kilometers southwest from the town, off Ronsuntaipaleentie road. Relatively small lake with a beach somewhat secluded compared to those nearer the town centre.
  • Köhniönjärvi, a popular beach among the inhabitants of Köhniö and the nearby neighbourhoods. Buses 1 and 2 stop here.

Buy[edit][add listing]

You'll definitely want to look for shopping opportunities at the Jyväskylä pedestrian precinct, which is located at the other end of Kauppakatu.

  • Forum, Kauppakatu 20–22 and Vapaudenkatu 49–51, [9].  edit
  • Jyväskeskus, Kauppakatu 29-31, [10].  edit
  • Torikeskus, Yliopistonkatu 36-38, [11].  edit

During the summer, the marketplace (Yliopistonkatu 15) is a good place to visit if you want fresh vegetables or fish, flowers or craft items.

There is also a big flea market worth visiting in Jyväskylä.

  • Seppälän kirpputorimarket, Laukaantie 3, [12]. A flea market is situated about 6 km from the city centre and it's larger than 5000 square metre. You can take a buss nr. 12 from the centre.  edit

Eat[edit][add listing]

It's cheap to have lunch at the student restaurants. They are situated all over the university buildings. With a finnish student card it costs about 2.6 euro. Without the card it costs about 5,5 euro. Student restaurants:

  • Ilokivi, Keskussairaalantie 2. Vegan food is served every day.  edit
  • Lozzi, Keskussairaalantie 4, [13].  edit
  • Wilhelmiina, Ahlmaninkatu 2, [16].  edit

There are many pizzerias offering large pizzas for as cheap as 4-5 €, guaranteed to fill your belly.

  • Katrina Restaurant, near the city center. The only vegetarian restaurant in Jyvaskyla. Unfortunately, it is open only for lunch between 11 am and 2 pm.
  • Hong Kong City, across the street from Katrina, serves up pretty decent Chinese cuisine every day until 11 p.m.
  • Grilli 21, located near the university serves up high quality traditional Finnish street food. Try the Taksari, deep fried french fries and sausages, with your choice of condiments, 4,5 €. Especially tasty after an evening of drinking. Open until 5 a.m. weekends.
  • Figaro, a good small restaurant located a bit off from city center (at Asemakatu 4), however it only servers lunch between 10.30 am - 2.00 pm
  • Restaurant Pöllöwaari, located at same place where Hotel Yöpuu is (Yliopistonkatu 23, near city center). Serves excellent lunch between 11am - 2pm
  • Pizzeria Maria, located in the city center. For less then 10 euro: selection from the salad bar, pizza, pasta, kebab, fallafel, and coffee. The pasta vegeteriana is excellent.

Drink[edit][add listing]

Pubs, Bars and Nightclubs[edit]

Nightlife is centered in the downtown part of Kauppakatu and cross streets, some also in the uptown part of Kauppakatu, near the University. As most of the bars are situated on Kauppakatu or very close to it, pub crawls can be easily arranged in Jyväskylä. Start from Yläkaupunki and work your way down to the clubs in Alakaupunki!

Alakaupunki (Downtown) A large number of bars, restaurants and nightclubs is located around the pedestrian district. Cheaper places in this area incude Bar Explosive, Pub Anneli and Bar Passion. Suggested establishments:

  • Bar Bra, Kauppakatu 35, [17]. The newest club in town offers the same as the others plus a beach section with hammocks. Open Tue-Sun to 4 am. with age limit of 20 on Fridays and 22 on Saturdays. Cover charge 5 €.
  • Giggling Marlin, Kauppakatu 32. This club is easily recognizable by the long queue during weekends. As a part of a night club chain, this venue offers the same blend of danceable music and beautiful people you might have seen in the other SK bars. Cover charge €5.
  • Club escape, Väinönkatu 32.
  • Old Brick's Inn, Kauppakatu 41, [18]. Situated in Vanha Tiilitalo (The Old Brick Building), is a pub with probably the biggest selection of beer in town.
  • Shaker, Yliopistonkatu 38, [19]. The one and only cocktail bar in Jyväskylä. This bar was established in 2004 and it has been since twice nominated as one of the top 20 bars in Finland. The bartender is among the best flairtenders in Finland, so don't be surprised to see some neat tricks behind and over the counter.

Yläkaupunki (Uptown) If you prefer a more laid-back night scene than euro-disco hell, walk uphill along Kauppakatu until you are past the church. This is where Yläkaupunki begins. Suggested establishments:

  • Sohwi, Vaasankatu 21, [20]. This pub has been around for a while and has still managed to stay fresh. Many students come here, maybe because the university is just next door or maybe because of the "rock hours". Food is also served. Open every day and until 2 am on weekends.
  • Vakiopaine, Kauppakatu 6, [21]. Definitely the coolest spot in town to have a beer, afternoon or evening (happy hour is 9 pm til 11 pm every day, .4 liter tap for 2€). Art shows on the walls change every 20 days or so. Live music occasionally. Theater in the cellar. Lots of board games available for play. Wireless internet.
  • Vihreä Haltiatar, Kauppakatu 13. A quality establishment with over 100 beers to choose from. Friendly knowledgeable staff. Wireless internet. Awesome jukebox packed with an eclectic collection of old 45s. Hosts couch-surfer meetings. Closed on Sundays and Mondays.
  • Ylä-Ruth, Seminaarinkatu 19, [22]. Just a block further from Vakiopaine. A true Finnish drinking experience, you'll hear the word "perkele" several times before your first beer is gone!

Alko[edit]

Wine, strong beer and spirits can only be purchased in Finland from State-owned Alko shops. The only Alko shop in the center of the city is at located at Asemakatu 8. Other locations of Alko shops in Jyväskylä area can be found from Alko website [23].

Sleep[edit][add listing]

There are a few hotels in the vicinity of the train station. All the major hotel chains (Scandic, Cumulus, Sokos) can also be found in the city.

  • Hotel Pension Kampus, Kauppakatu 11 A 4 (in centrum of Jyväskylä), +358 14 338 1400 (), [24]. Room for one person: weekday 58e, weekend 53e. Room for two persons: weekday 72e, weekend 66e.  edit
  • Hotel Omena, Vapaudenkatu 57, [25].  edit
  • Hotel Alba, Ahlmaninkatu 4 (near the University campus), tel. +358-14-636311. A nice, mid-range budget hotel. Half of the rooms face the lake, while the other half face the city.
  • Hotel Yöpuu, Yliopistonkatu 23 (near city center, at same place as Restaurant Pöllöwaari), tel. +358-14-333-900. A small, beautiful boutique hotel with a different theme for every room. Priced below average in the area.
  • Summer hotel Rentukka, Taitoniekantie 9, +358-(0)10 279 2006 (), [26]. This is situated in the student village of Kortepohja, about 2 km from the city center. Room for one person 42e, two persons 54 e.  edit

Contact[edit]

  • Grand Star Cafe, Kauppakatu 32, [27]. This coffee bar has few computers with internet access for it's customers. You can also play PS3, poker and some board games here.

Stay safe[edit]

The crime rate in Jyväskylä is generally low. However, it's best to avoid obviously drunk people during weekend nights after the bars close. Long queuing for taxis or late night snack sometimes frustrate some partygoers to seek fighting opponents from other people. Sometimes this results to a temporary conversion from a pedestrian district to fighting arena, but the common sight of patrolling police makes the occurrences more rare. Despite this, walking on the streets at night (or any time of day) is safe.

Get out[edit]

Routes through Jyväskylä
RovaniemiOulu  N noframe S  LahtiHelsinki




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