town in the region of Kymenlaakso in Finland

Hamina[dead link] is a town in Kymenlaakso, in the extreme southeast of Finland.

Understand edit

Hamina's history dates back to the Swedish rule, when Gustav Vasa gave Hamina Castle and the surrounding land to the merchant town of Hamina in 1653.

Hamina was an important trading town located on the border between Russia and Sweden. Its inhabitants traded with both countries, and trade was very important to the town's economy. Hamina also had an important harbour, from which goods were transported around the world.

In the 19th century, Hamina became even more important as the postal route from Saint Petersburg to Helsinki passed through the town. Along the road there were several inns where travellers could stay and rest.

After the war of 1808–1809, the peace treaty between Russia and Sweden was signed in Hamina Castle, confirming the annexation of Finland to the Russian Empire.

In the 20th century, Hamina's importance as a trading town declined. In 1920, a few years after Finnish independence, Hamina also became an important military town with the establishment of a major garrison - the Reserve Officer School. Their facilities make up the southeastern corner of the old town.

Get in edit

By car edit

Highway 7 (E18) between Helsinki and the Russian border passes through Hamina, as does the historic King's Road.

By bus edit

Hamina has direct buses from Helsinki, Lappeenranta and Kouvola. Local bus line 1 connects Hamina with Kotka.

Get around edit

By bus edit has information about local bus routes and timetables.

By bike edit

There is a bike sharing system using bluetooth and the Donkey Republic about €1.50/1 hr, €4/5 hr, €12/24 hr. For longer stays becoming a member is cheaper: €9 or €18/month covers all trips of less than 1 hr respectively 12 hr, also in other towns using Donkey Republic – but you need to register as member in the country of your card (available: most countries in western Europe and USA). Customer service , +358 44 716 0644 daily 09:00–21:00. Several towns in south-east Finland use the same system, which is in use also elsewhere in Finland and abroad.

By taxi edit

  • Smartphone apps: Valopilkku, 02 Taksi, Taksini

See edit

18th century map of what is today Hamina's downtown
  • The circular town plan. The town plan of Hamina is quite unique, with the town hall as the middle point the streets of the city are either encircling it or leading towards it.
  • 1 Hamina fortress, Raatihuoneentori.
  • 2 Town hall (Raatihuone). The beautiful yellow building right in the "epicenter" of the city, ie. the mid-point of the historical circular city plan, still houses the city government.
  • 3 Lippupuisto. The location of the "flag park" is visible from far, as its centerpiece is the tallest flagpole in Europe (100 m tall) with a huge Finnish flag. It's surrounded by normal-sized flagpoles with flags of EU countries.

Do edit

Buy edit

In central Hamina you can find a couple of supermarkets, and a few dozen smaller businesses from clothing stores to opticians - just like in any mid-sized Finnish city.

  • 1 Market square (Kauppatori). Food products, flowers, second-hand goods... the selection varies by the day. There's also a small stage with occasional music performances during the summer.
  • 2 Disas, Puuropytyntie. The closest thing to a department store or shopping mall in Hamina, this is a fish shop that also has a large range of other food products. Foods other than fish and seafood is packaged or canned (don't expect fresh fruit or bread). It was established to cater to customers from nearby Russia, wherefore it seems rather "under-visited" after COVID and the war in Ukraine with subsequent limitations on allowing in Russians into the EU - it's still open though.

Eat edit

There are several fast food places in central Hamina, serving hamburgers, hotdogs, pizza or kebab.

Drink edit

  • 1 Konditoria Huovila, Fredrikinkatu 1. Cozy "old fashioned" café and bakery in the basement of an old wooden building. They have cakes, pastries and coffee, and during the warm months of the year home-made ice tea. One of the rooms is a bakery shop where you can buy their products to go.

Sleep edit

  • 1 Spa Hotel Hamina, Sibeliuskatu 32, +358 5 353 5555, . Hotel adjacent to the public indoor swimming pool area of the city, there is also an outdoor swimming area and a gym. The rooms have the amenities you'd expect from a mid-range hotel in a first world country. There's also a restaurant and a conference area.

Connect edit

Go next edit

  • Kotka — Hamina's bigger brother, 26 km to the west.
  • Lappeenranta — A major shopping destination for Russian tourists at the southern shore of Lake Saimaa, 88 km north.
  • Russia — If you have a valid visa (or don't require one) the border crossing at Vaalimaa is about 30 km east. Nearby destinations in Russia include Vyborg.
Routes through Hamina
HelsinkiKotka  W   E  → Vaalimaa border crossing → Vyborg (Вы́борг) → END
HelsinkiKotka  W   E  → Vaalimaa border crossing → Vyborg (Вы́борг) → Saint Petersburg

This city travel guide to Hamina 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.