Difference between revisions of "Kokkola"
Revision as of 21:55, 23 November 2008
Kokkola (Swedish: Karleby)  is a small town situated in Ostrobothnia, Finland, with a population of approximately 36000. Official bi-lingual town with most people understanding and speaking Finnish and Swedish. It is the biggest town in the region, between Oulu and Vaasa. It was founded in 1620 and during the 18th century it had one of the largest merchant fleets in Finland, and was a major producer of tar and ships. Presently Kokkola is a fairly peaceful city. It has also a sizeable district of wooden homes.
There are also some night trains with sleeping cars from Helsinki to northern regions stopping at Kokkola. Night trains usually arrive at early morning hours in Kokkola, which is uncomfortable unless you have somebody waiting for you.
Buses  from all over Finland stop regularly at Kokkola. If you travel as far as from Helsinki, forget the bus and take the train or plane.
The largest highway that passes through Kokkola is the E8.
Kruunupyy airport (IATA: KOK ) is the closest one to Kokkola, about 20 kilometers away. Nearly all scheduled flights only to and from Helsinki, charter flights to holiday destinations around Europe. A bus service is provided to and from Mannerheimin aukio at the centre of Kokkola.
The city is fairly small, so the easiest way to see the sights is walking.
Public transport is poor in Kokkola. There are only local buses by Kokkolan Liikenne, and you have difficulty in finding a bus especially during evenings and Sundays. However, the drivers and passengers appear to be friendly. If you want to have a sightseeing without guide, you can take the bus number 7 from Kauppatori at city center. It will take you for example to the harbour part-of-town Ykspihlaja.
There are many larger stores and smaller shops as it is regional centre.
Fast-food and pizzerias
There are at least three fast-food franchises, over ten pizzerias and many small food stalls.
Many good restaurants for everybody. Basic restaurants, Chinese and some serve slightly Mexican food.
Many small and cosy cafés.
Bars and Pubs
There is live music regularly at local bars and pubs. The local association of living music Kokemus is arranging club events for example at bar West Coast, address Rantakatu 16.
Ostrobothnian Chamber Orchestra (Keski-Pohjanmaan kamariorkesteri)  is touring both in Finland and abroad. The Orchestra was founded in 1972 and it received Nordic Council Music Prize in 1993.
Train connections to Helsinki are relatively good. If you want to reach the capital before midnight, you have 2-3 trains to choose from between 5.30 pm and 7.30 pm. Or, you can take one of the night trains if you don't want to spend money in hotel - or just for atmosphere's sake. There is a daily nite train (P266) with sleeping cars leaving just after midnight and it will reach the capital roundabout seven in the morning.