A holiday in Harjavalta – outdoor activities, exhilarating art and ancient burial mounds.
Harjavalta is a quaint, little town, and its landscape is dominated by the Kokemäenjoki, the fourth largest river system in Finland. In Harjavalta, you can get acquainted with Finnish art history and military history, and the area offers excellent opportunities for both summer and winter sports. Harjavalta also has a multitude of ancient burial mounds that are steeped in legend.
The Emil Cedercreutz Museum and Cultural Centre, situated on the River Kokemäenjoki, is one of the main sights in Harjavalta. In the museum, you can see the works of sculptor and silhouette artist, Emil Cedercreutz, as well as works collected by him and items pertinent to the culture and history of the region of Satakunta. Admire the Kalevala-themed silhouettes by Cedercreutz and visit the Temple of the Rural Spirit, where the artist collected rural artefacts. In addition to several permanent exhibitions, the museum also hosts a number of temporary art exhibitions that change on a regular basis.
History lovers should visit the Harjavalta City Library's exhibition, When the Order Was Given, which focuses on the war-time traditions of war veterans from the perspective of the people in Harjavalta. The Harjavalta Hospital Museum presents historical aspects of mental care work and dispels myths related to the field. Both museums have free admission.
A trip to Harjavalta offers plenty of opportunities for outdoor sports. The Hiitteenharju recreational area has a variety of activities available all year round. During the winter, you can try downhill skiing or cross-country skiing, or even try curling or ski jumping. The River Kokemäenjoki running through Harjavalta is perfect for fishing and boating.
In the summer, Harjavalta is an excellent place for hiking thanks to its unique wildlife. Take a walk along the 3.5-mile long Paradise Recreational Trail. The trail is especially beautiful in the spring, when the area is full of different species of birds. Relax in the peace and quiet of the grove forest and set aside several hours to enjoy a stress-free day of listening to the birdsong.
Climb to the top of the 236-feet-tall Hiitteenharju to admire the view, tens of miles into the air. Hiitteenharju dates back to the Ice Age, and several remnants of this period are still visible to this day. Make sure to visit the Stone Age heritage site on the western slope of the ridge.
While visiting Harjavalta, make sure you also visit the burial mounds; there are approximately 100 in the area. The burial mounds date back to the Bronze Age and there are a variety of myths and beliefs surrounding them. The mounds were thought to be the work of goblins and also contained treasure. The most impressive burial mounds are in Kaunismäki and Kuumoonmäki in the village of Hiirijärvi, and the biggest mound is 13 feet tall and 72 feet wide. Walk to the mythical burial mounds along an ancient, marked path.
Harjavalta is situated in the region of Satakunta approximately 125 miles northwest of Helsinki. Pori is only about 19 miles away and Rauma is about 32 miles from Harjavalta. You can travel to Harjavalta by bus or by train. Go on, escape for a weekend getaway in mythical and lush Harjavalta!