In time of ice and snow, Tampere is your winter wonderland. You don’t have to leave the city centre to enjoy winter sports; the smoothest ice skating rinks and sled hills are just a walking distance away! You can also try your hand e.g. at skiing and snowshoeing, just a stone throw away from your hotel.
On a beautiful winter’s day, pretty much nothing can beat Nordic ice skating on lake Näsijärvi. When the ice is thick enough there will be a skating track ploughed on the lake, with a possibility to enjoy refreshments and a bite to eat out in the open air on many winter days. You can rent tour skates from Hiking Travel’s rental shop at Bikini Bar. Skating on natural ice with rental equipment is available also in the idyllic lakeside setting of Saarikylät village in Kangasala, a neighbouring town to Tampere. There is also a possibility to tourskate on natural ice on lake Tohlopinjärvi in Tohloppi district of Tampere. There you can also find a café and a tour skate rental, open on Saturdays and Sundays throughout the skating season. You can also go ice skating during the public hours at the ice rinks (e.g. in Koulukatu, in Pyynikki area) and if you are romantic by nature, you can head out to the occasionally organized rousette skating events or the idyllic ice rink at the Emil Aaltonen park, in Tammela district. Hockey Heaven rents and sells hockey equipment and women’s skates.
The closest locations from the city centre to do cross-country skiing are Kauppi sports park and the Pyynikki area and altogether there are about 80 kilometers of lit skiing tracks inside the Tampere city limits. If you want to replace the cross-country with downhill, there are slopes for downhill skiing in Hervanta. Sappee Travel Resort in Pälkäne and Ellivuori Ski Center in Sastamala offer a great variety of slopes less than an hour’s drive from Tampere, plus a setting for your dream cottage holiday with family or friends.
The ultimate must-do thing in Tampere is ice swimming! The city situated between two large lakes offers excellent possibilities to take a dip in the frozen lake, for example in the Rauhaniemi or Kaupinoja saunas. After bathing in the heat of the sauna, you can plunge into the refreshing water through a hole in the ice, and let the lake cool you down. A bit more extreme and a bit closer to the city centre, in Mältinranta, you can try ice swimming without sauna!
For those looking for speed, there’s a list of favourite sled hills in Tampere further down on this page.
Throughout the year, you can also take part in weekly guided activities.
For some winter activities for groups you should check out Hiking Travel!