Häme Castle and Its Surroundings
Around the medieval Häme Castle and on the shore of Lake Vanajavesi is a special district with cultural and historical significance. This area, only a few steps away from the city centre, offers many things to do. Spend a fascinating day here by exploring museums and adoring the nature around this historical centre.
The first parts of Häme Castle are believed to have been built at the end of the 13th century. This over 700 years old castle has a long and colourful history that is told by many stories. It has served as a military fortress, residence for Swedish nobility, prison, meeting place for many and now a museum. Thoroughly restored and maintained Häme Castle is Scandinavia’s most well-preserved stone castle and is open for visitors all year round. Exhibitions around the castle and daily guided tours in English will take you to the tales of the castle.
Castle Park (Linnanpuisto) surrounding the castle is a popular place to spend spare time among locals. It has spectacular scenery and beautiful walking paths along the shore of Lake Vanajavesi. The vast park has excellent opportunities for outdoor activities and picnics, not to forget children’s playgrounds, concerts, park cafes, summer theatre and even an annual medieval festival. In this park, you will find things to do all year round – just pack some snacks and enjoy.
The park is also part of Hämeenlinna’s national urban park and from the walking paths, you can even continue to Aulanko by crossing the water with a railroad bridge. A popular walking path is the six-kilometres-long Lake Vanajavesi Shore Walk (Vanajaveden rantareitti) which Castle Park is also part of.
In the redbrick barracks next to the castle, visitors can explore the Museum Militaria, which is one of Finland’s largest war and military museums. Three floors and an outdoor exhibition area display artillery, Finnish war history and the development of artillery, engineering and signalling.
Prisoners have been part of the castle’s history for a long time. In 1872, a separate prison facility was constructed right next to the castle. Today here -during the summer seasons- operates Finland’s largest prison museum. What was life like for prisoners? Find out and view the prison’s facilities, cells and items.
Escape Room with Knights and Vikings
Just right outside the walls of Häme Castle, you can experience Hämeenlinna-themed escape rooms. Getaway Room Escape Hämeenlinna has three rooms available in English: Knight’s Destiny, Witch Brothers and Viking Exhibition. Try to solve the mysteries in the historical surroundings and suspenseful atmosphere.