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Kristinestad (Finnish: Kristiinankaupunki) is a town on the Ostrobothnian coast in Western Finland. Like many other towns in coastal Ostrobothnia, Kristinestad is bilingual with a Swedish speaking majority. The town has profiled itself as a small town where old and new meets in a unique way; it's motto is "Det Goda Livet" ("The Good Life"). Kristinestad was accepted as a Cittaslow town in 2011.

The nearby villages or former municipalities of (from the south) Sideby, Kallträsk, Ömosssa, Skaftung, Härkmeri, Dagsmark, Lappfjärd, Tjöck and Åback also belong to the municipality and are handled here.

Get in[edit]

Map of Kristinestad

The centre lies about 100 km from both Pori and Vaasa, 6 km from national road 8 (E8), with main crossroads in Lappfjärd and Tjöck.

By car[edit]

As with most of small towns in rural Finland, car is the easisest way to get in. The fastest option is the E8.

From Kaskinen (Kaskö) and Närpes you can come via Pjelax along Gamla Kristinestadsvägen and Gamla Närpesvägen or along Skrattnäsvägen.

By bus[edit]

Most intercity buses along E8 make the detour to Kristinestad. The Onnibus service between Turku and Oulu uses a stop at the Lålby junction on E8, a bit past Lappfjärd (Onnibus Flex services usually make the detour). At the Lålby stop you can sometimes change to line 162, which goes to Kristinestad centre. You might also want to transfer in Närpes, if there is a suitable connecting service. There are coaches from Vaasa or Seinäjoki to or via Kristinestad. See Matkahuolto for coach timetables.

The railway is used for goods only.

Get around[edit]

Walk — the town is small enough to get around by foot.

The coaches can be used for some of the villages, such as Tjöck, Lappfjärd and Dagmark. Check the routes of the buses from Vaasa via Närpes using the stop list at Matkahuolto.

There is a daily service line for getting from the southern countryside to the centre, starting in the morning and returning from the centre mostly at 11:45. It has to be ordered the preceding day before 12:00 or 15:00. It mostly follows fixed routes, but details can be negotiated.

See[edit]

Street with wooden houses

The old town is a lovely preserved grid of wooden houses on a hill slope towards the bay cutting the town in two. There is also a beautiful stone church with a separate wooden tower. There's also a little, narrow alley called Kattpiskargränden/Kissanpiiskaajankuja (Cat spanker's alley), which is among the most photographed street signs in Finland.

  • 1 Ulrika Eleonora church. Free.
  • 2 Carlsro, Carlsrovägen (5 km north from the centre). Museum by the shore of the lake Storträsket. Originally summer villa of a shipowner, one of several such of the rich of the late 19th century. Summer hotel 1922–1945. Private museum from 1960, since 2002 run by the town.
  • Lebellska köpmansgården, Strandgatan 51–53 (in the centre), +358 40-508-5251, +358 50-560-8108, +358 6 221-2159, . Jun–Aug M–F 11:00–17:00 Sa–Su 11:00–14:00 or by agreement. Museum showing how a rich merchant lived 1760–1850 (interiors from different epochs). Museum since 1939. The adjacent Felén house shows later 19th century interiors, and is used for temporary exhibitions and events. Guiding included. €4/2/1.
  • Kristinestads sjöfartsmuseum (by the market square): on the seafaring and shipbuilding history of the town. At the library attic and by the shore.
  • 3 Kilens hembygdsgård, Kilvägen 90 (in Sideby), +358 40-684-5080 (office), +358 400-668-788 (restaurant), . Open air museum: a fishing village with some 30 buildings. Restaurant on site, accommodation in modern buildings: apartments (4–6 persons, with kitchenette, shower and toilet). Reservations two days in advance. Guest harbour (depth 2.4 m at MSL). apartments: one person €50, 2 persons €85, 3 or more €115, linen €8+4/person; caravans €20–40 depending on services; mooring €10–40 depending on services.
  • 4 Björkskäret. Good view to the sea

Do[edit]

Stroll around town. Maybe visit a couple of galleries, a church and the library.

  • Tegelbruksbacken Nature Trail (north of the bridge connecting the halves of the town). A 6-km nature trail that leads over Tegelbruksbacken ("tile factory hill"), by a bridge over Tjöck å, over the wetlands in the end of the bay and to a birdwatching tower. Parking in both ends. The start and end points are 250 and 850 m respectively from the ends of the bridge.
  • 1 Bötombergen (Pyhävuori) (cross E8 at Lålby, continue towards Karijoki). Hill with nature and jogging trails, observation tower, swimming pond and ski lift.
  • 2 Sandbanken. Beach
  • 3 Havsbadet (Snellmansudden). Beach.

Buy[edit]

  • K-market by the west end of the bridge
  • Sale in Lappfjärd

Eat[edit]

  • Crazy cat, Salutorget 1 (at the market square at the west end of the bridge). À la carte, lunch and pizza.
  • Jungman, Sjögatan 8 (by the bridge, western side), +358 400-234-389, . Lunch M–F 11:00–15:00. Lunch buffet all year in weekdays. À la carte and pizzas in summer, occasionally off season. Special architecture, nice sea view (to the bay) if you get a suitable table.

Drink[edit]

Sleep[edit]

  • 1 Bockholmens camping. Camping site
  • 2 Hotel Leila and Hotel Alma, Västra långgatan 39 (on each side of the Kristinestad church (not Ulrika Eleonora), Hotel Alma by the bay), +358 40-418-5185, . Check-in: 16:00, check-out: 11:00. Small hotel in the centre at two addresses. Breakfast included as ingredients, buffet in July. Kitchenette in the rooms, Wi-Fi and sauna included. €132 (Sep–May) €142 (Jun–Aug), single €102/108; 4 person suite €165–220.

Go next[edit]

  • 5 Wolf cave (Varggrottan) (cross E8 at Lålby, continue to Karijoki, backtrack 1 or 2 km for the path to the cave). What is believed to be the only pre-Ice Age traces of humans (Neanderthals) in Finland have been found in a small cave by the border towards Bötom (Finnish: Karijoki) in Finnish-speaking Southern Ostrobothnia. Nature trail and observation tower. The visitor centre is in Bötom, see Karijoki for details.
Routes through Kristinestad
VaasaNärpes  N Tabliczka E8.svg S  PoriTurku


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