Rajaportti sauna in Pispala, Tampere, is the oldest public sauna in Finland still in use. Built 1906. Separate departments for men and women. A preheated, massive stove. A long-lasting, sturdy löyly, that is, the sauna spirit. Also a coffee house and services of a massotherapist available.
Rajaportti Sauna has remained more or less unchanged through decades. Here you can experience a genuine time travel to the past while entering the best sauna ever. Actually, the only change in facilities worth mentioning was made in 1930’s by erecting a wall to separate mens’ washroom from womens’. This sauna, still heated by wood in traditional manner, was started in 1906 and has since offered memorable sauna bathing for Tampere dwellers as well as visitors from near and far.
The massive masonry stove makes the heart of the sauna. Meter-long logs are needed to make the stones, in all weighing over a ton, to glow and sparkle in red. After the fire is out, water is thrown over the stones to remove remains of carbon monoxide, then the lids of the funnel are shut, and the heat is getting smooth and steady, the stove calms down. Löyly, the heat and the spirit of the sauna, spreads out and lasts for the whole of the evening. First somewhat stern and dry, the löyly gets more gentle, moist and supple later in the evening.
In each dressing room there is space for 15 – 20 persons at a time, and approximately 12 in the sauna room itself. We do not want any haste in the sauna and therefore appreciate that mobile phones will be shut when entering the sauna zone. Sauna bath with other sauna fellows, whether new acquaintances or old friends of yours, is an essential part of a visit to a public sauna and may make your sauna visit all the more pleasant and interesting experience.