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Europe > Nordic countries > Finland > West Coast (Finland) > Finland Proper > Archipelago Sea > Kimitoön

Kimitoön

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Överölmos, village in Dragsfjärd.
Cliffs in Dragsfjärd.

Kimitoön is a municipality in the Archipelago Sea, Finland. The main island (which gives the municipality its name) is a large coastal island with rural landscape typical for southern Finland. It is surrounded by inner archipelago and outer archipelagos of minor islands, similar to that in the rest of the Archipeago Sea.

Understand[edit]

Kimitoön as a municipality was created 2009 by joining the municipalities of Kimito, Västanjärd and Dragsfjärd, all partly on the main island. Earlier many of the island groups and some other villages were independent municipalities. What is now the municipality of Kimitoön was the eastern part of the Åboland region (the western part, Väståboland, is now called Pargas).

  • Tourist information, +358 2 426-0170, .
    • Villa Lande, Engelsbyvägen 8 (Kimito). M-F 12:00-17:00.
    • Magasinet, Stallsbacksvägen 6 (Dalsbruk). W-F 10:30-17:30, Sat-Sun 10:30-16:00.

Villages[edit]

(among others)

  • Kimito, a traditional rural village (or a couple of them) with a medieval church and some museums. The new centre by the main roads hosts large grocery stores and other service.
  • Björkboda, village between Kimito and Dalsbruk with lock factory and museum.
  • Dalsbruk, the most urban settlement of Kimitoön, nice village with ironworks and a related museum, famous for its Baltic Jazz festival. Marina.
  • Hitis, island group and former municipality south of Kimitoön. The quite large village of Hitis has retained much of its traditional character. The adjacent Rosala has a Viking centre. Ferries from Kasnäs.
  • Kasnäs, spa hotel, marina and ferry harbour in the south-west.
  • Högsåra, island near Kasnäs, with a road ferry passage.
  • Vänö, a larger remote island, ferry from Kasnäs M–F and Sun.
  • Västanfjärd, in the eastern part of the main island, with two churches and some shops.

Talk[edit]

Kimitoön has a Swedish speaking majority, like the rest of Åboland. Most people also speak decent Finnish, and people know English as in the rest of Finland.

Get in[edit]

There are three roads to Kimitoön: from the north via Sauvo from national road 1 (E18) or regional road 110, both between Helsinki and Turku, from the east via Perniö over the Strömma canal (said to be the only place in Finland where tides can be observed) and from north-east along small roads via the Kokkila–Angelniemi ferry. The main village, Kimito, is some 60 km from Turku, 155 km from Helsinki via Ekenäs.

There are buses from Turku to Kimito and Dalsbruk (€18.70) about once an hour in daytime, with a few connections e.g. to Kasnäs and Västanfjärd (check before counting on them). Buses from Helsinki more sparsely, possibly with a transfer. In addition to the normal buses, there is a bus from Helsinki 07:15 via Kimito, Dalsbruk, Söderlångvik, Kasnäs and Rosala to Hitis.

By bike you can follow the same routes as the cars, but the roads are narrow, so this is less nice if there is much traffic. If coming from the east, there is a biking route mostly avoiding the main roads, Kustrutten (description in Swedish, links, map) from Salo either via Kirjakkala, Teijo (Tykö) and Mathildedal ironworks, Teijo National Park, over the Strömma Canal and via Dalsbruk to Kasnäs with ferries to some of the islands, or via Finby and Angelniemi to Kimito and Dalsbruk. The route mostly follows small village roads, with some legs by the main roads, some through the forest. Not suited for racing bikes, but normal bikes will do.

With yacht you probably arrive via Hanko in the east or via the waters of Pargas or Nagu in the west. The main inner fairway between the Gulf of Finland in the east and Pargas, Nagu, Turku and Åland in the west and north-west goes south of Dalsbruk and Kasnäs, north of Hitis and Örö. The outer archipelago south of these is difficult to navigate and lacks official channels.

There are probably also boat connections from Hanko to Kasnäs in summer, for those who want a cruise. Vitharun has ended its services, hopefully somebody else continues them. You could also take a boat to the Bengtskär lighthouse and "return" with another boat to Kasnäs (check both legs before booking).

Get around[edit]

There are good roads on the main island, suitable also for bikes, but they are narrow and without bike lanes, so biking in hours with much traffic is less pleasant. Check what hours to avoid.

Bus transport is sparse (see Get in). There are ferry connections to the main remote islands. The ones to Högsåra and Rosala are car ferries, on the other islands there is no parking and no road to drive. Except Kimito, most places of interest are reachable by boat with some walking.

The main island is 60 km long from north-east – Angelniemi of Salo not counted – to Kasnäs in south-west and 40 km wide from Mjösund in north-west to Lammala in south-east.

See[edit]

Interior of Söderlångvik mansion.
  • Churches.
  • 1 The ironworks museum in Dalsbruk (Dalsbruks bruksmuseum), Tullbacksvägen 7, +358 40-721-9535, . daily 11–18 or by request. Dalsbruk has ironworks traditions from 1686. The museum tells about the history of ironworking and worker housing. Signboards probably in Swedish only, ask about guiding in English in advance. €4/2, children under 16 free, guiding included.
  • 2 The lock museum in Björkboda (Björkboda låsmuseum), Tullbacksvägen 7, +358 40-721-9535, . 27.6–5.8 Wed–Sun 14–18 or by request. Björkboda has ironworks traditions since 1732. The museum tells about the local locksmith and lock factory traditions (Abloy still has a lock factory here). The museum is in a worker house from the 1840s. Signboards probably in Swedish only, ask about guiding in English in advance. The museum is administratively part of the Dalsbruk ironworks museum. €2/1, children under 16 free, guiding included.
  • 3 Sagalund local museum, Museivägen 7 (Vreta, 500m from the bus stop), +358 2 421-738, . 1.6–31.8 daily 11–17, wintertime (main building only) Mon–Fri 9–16, Sat 10–13. Good local museum with history revival activities for children (perhaps Swedish/Finnish only). Includes houses of district court, schools and farms. Café. Nice museum shop. Groups should call in advance. €6/5/1, children under 7 free, guiding included, history revival tours €5/person, lunch 8,50.
  • 4 Söderlångvik manor, Amos Andersonvägen 2 (also mooring for guests when museum open), +358 2 424-662, . Main bulding closed for repairs until autumn 2020, park open for the public at all times. Mansion, museum, park, farm, café, craft and farm shop, cottage-like accommodation. The museum is primarily about Amos Anderson, but has also e.g. a large art collection from the first half of the 20th century. The mansion interiors and the park are in themselves worth a visit. €3.50, children under 18 free. Söderlångvik manor (Q6581530) on Wikidata

Do[edit]

  • Tour to the Bengtskär lighthouse, +358-40-218-2960, . 2017: 3 Jun–27 Aug daily 11:30–18:15. Tour from Kasnäs to the Bengtskär lighthouse, including a visit to the Rosala Viking centre, lunch and guiding. €59.00, children 4–14 €29,50.
  • Sailing with traditional sailing ship (Eugenia) (from Kasnäs, Dalsbruk or Kalkholmen (Västanfjärd)), +358 440-427-862, . Weekly to Örö, check other routes and dates. Groups of 15–34 can book trips of their own. Start usually 09:00. The original Eugenia, built 1879–1880, was one of the last Finnish ships without engine in 1951. She was a small ship sailing with coastal cargo, e.g. stone for the Bengtskär lighthouse 1905–1906. The replica was built 1997–2000. The ship is maintained by volunteers. Book in advance. Dress warmly. €48/30 for an eight hours trip including lunch (children's fare for 5–14 years old).
  • Go on a sea kayaking tour
    • Aavameri, +358 50 569 70 88, . Full service guided trips and supported solo expeditions with transportation from/to Turku. Also help with route planning and maps. Equipped sea kayak 40€ first day, 35€ consecutive days, delivery or pick up at Kimitoön 40€; hiking mattresses and sleeping bags for two, tent and camping stove 56€/day/night. Day tour with guide (ca 7 hours, 4–8 persons, lunch included) from Kasnäs or Rosala 95€/adult, 50€/child. Four days' tour with guide and tent accommodation (own food, 4–8 persons) 440€/person, with accommodation indoors 560€/person.

Events[edit]

  • Baltic Jazz, Dalsbruk, +358 440 790 340, . 7–9 July 2017. Relaxed music festival annually in July. Mostly €20–25.
  • Kimito Music Festival (Kimitoöns musikfestspel). 10–17 July 2017. Chamber music. Concerts at different venues, such as Söderlångvik and Sandö mansions, Kimito, Dalsbruk, Karuna, Hitis, Teijo (Tykö) and Västanfjärd churches, Dalsbruk market place and Salo art museum. Mostly €25–30.
  • September Open, Dalsbruk. Harvest and handicraft markets, reenactment shows (including tournament by Rohan Tallit), related programme for children, sailing race, and evening party. Free.

Eat[edit]

There are decent or good restaurants at least in some of the See/Do/Sleep places and in Dalsbruk. Restaurants with limited supply (including places for pizza and kebab) also in Kimito and probably in a few of the other villages.

Drink[edit]

Sleep[edit]

Hotel in Dalsbruk

No real hotels by Finnish city standards, but nice anyway. Bathrooms usually shared. Be prepared to pay with cash unless you know cards are accepted. Cottages for rent in many locations (ask around).

Accommodations below ordered by location.

Budget[edit]

  • 1 Eknäs semesterby (Ekniemen Lomakylä), Campingvägen 55 (a kilometre west from the bridge from Sauvo), +358 400-325-701, . Camping, pier and cottages. Also beach, kiosk, café, sauna and cooking facilities. Boats for rent. Tent €5+2.50/person, caravan €20/night (€25 with electricity), cottages €35–60/night (with own linen; 2–6 persons), sauna €15/hour (€20 for groups not staying), rowing boat €5/h, €40/day.
  • 2 Dalsbruks camping, Olavi Hjelmans väg 16 (600m before Dalsbruk centre, by the sport courts), +358 40-661-5939. Tents and caravans. Limited service. Nature trails nearby.

Mid-range[edit]

  • 3 Hostel Panget, Pensionatsvägen 6, +358 2 424-553, . Former pension in Dragsfjärd. Toilets ensuite, showers in some family rooms. Breakfast and linen included. single/double/... €70/93/98/110.
  • 4 Labbnäs Semesterhem, Labbnäsvägen 66, +358 2 424-637, fax: +358 2 424-999, . Nice quiet location 5km from Dalsbruk, very good local food in the catering restaurant. A rectory since the 17th century, Labbnäs was bought in the 1950s by Amos Andersson, donated to the Martha organisation and transformed into a pension. Now schools and conference groups are common guests. Rooms in the main building and as small apartments with kitchen in a modern building nearby. Events such as sing-alongs and flea markets are arranged. In wintertime there is a hole in the ice for swimming (join the weekly group, Tu 17:30 or heat the sauna and go by yourself). double €70, single €40, with kitchen €76/47, pets €10, breakfast + €8/person.
  • 5 Villa Merihelmi, Sjukhusvägen 6, +358 44-295-5639. 1930s house in local style, Dalsbruk. €30–45/person, extra bed €20; towels not included, breakfast + €7/4.
  • 6 Strandhotellet Dalsbruk, Dalsbruksvägen 694, +358 400-481-028, . Old hotel in Dalsbruk. Free Wi-Fi. €80/double, €55/single.

Splurge[edit]

  • 7 Kasnäs Archipelago Spa (Kasnäs Skärgårdsbad), Kasnäsvägen 1294, +358 2 521-0100, fax: +358 2 521-0101, . Modern spa hotel by a big marina and a ferry harbour. Accommodation in small houses. single €70/90, double €90/130 (off/in season).

Stay safe[edit]

Be careful when at sea and when getting a lift on a Saturday night. Do not let children or pets into water with algal bloom. Otherwise there are few risks. The only non-obvious one is probably the ticks, which may carry TBE or Borreliosis.

Go next[edit]

The Bengtskär lighthouse.
  • Örö, a large island with valuable nature south of Hitis. Until recently the island was closed for outsiders as a military base (first fort by the Russians 1915), which has retained many otherwise threatened features. There are meadows with rare butterflies, old forests and nice cliffs and beaches. Also the military history is interesting. It is now part of the Archipelago Sea National Park (from the beginning of 2015) and most army facilities have been converted for tourism use, with services arranged by private partners; minor areas are still off limits. Ferry connection from Kasnäs. Accommodation in hotel rooms, cottages (private or shared), at a campsite or in your yacht in the guest harbour.
  • Bengtskär, a skerry in the outer archipelago, with the tallest lighthouse in the Nordic countries. Tours from Kasnäs via Rosala (the Viking centre) and from Hanko, with optional dinner, sauna, accommodation etcetera at the lighthouse. Service is provided also for those arriving with own boat, but the island is difficult to reach, due to location and lack of shelter.
  • Mathildedal, with old ironworks, and Teijo national park, near Strömma, in the municipality of Salo
This city travel guide to Kimitoön is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.