Religious sites in Finland

Vehmaa Church

The picturesque stone church of Vehmaa was built probably between years 1425 and 1440. It's one of the oldest still existing churches in Western Finland. There are some artefacts from Middle Ages in the church. The pulpit is from the 17th century and other interior from 1840s.
Founded: 1425-1440 | Location: Vehmaa, Finland

Hiittinen Church

St Andrea's Church in Hiittinen (Hitis) was built in 1686 and it’s the second oldest cross shape church in Finland. There was a chapel in Hiittinen already in the 13th century. Some stone wall ruins of that building are remaining in the small cemetery.The altarpiece is painted by A.F.Ahlstedt, and the pulpit is a late plainer replica of the one in the Dome of Turku from 1650.
Founded: 1686 | Location: Kemiönsaari, Finland

St. Henry's Chapel

The St. Henry's Chapel is a medieval wooden barn, which was surrounded by the present brick chapel in 1857. According the legend St. Henry, the first bishop of Finland, spent his last night in the barn before local peasant Lalli murdered him in 1156. Although according modern archeological investigations oldest parts of the barn were made in 1472-1473. Oldest records from the 17th century tells that the barn has been a de ...
Founded: 1857 (the Chapel) | Location: Kokemäki, Finland

Närpiö Church

The church of Närpes was originally built around 1550-1555, but it has been expanded several times during the 17th and 18th centuries. The church itself, surrounding magazines and stables creates an unique historical milieu in Finland.
Founded: 1550-1555 | Location: Närpiö, Finland

Snappertuna Church

The cruciform-shape, wooden church of Snappertuna was built originally in 1688-1689 and renovated in 1797. The belfry was erected in 1776. Nearby the church are wooden magazine and the tomb added in 1778. Snappertuna church and surroundings are one of the most well-preserved church sites in Finland. In summertime the church is open every day.
Founded: 1688-1699 | Location: Raasepori, Finland

Kanta-Loimaa Church

The red-brick Kanta-Loimaa Church was completed in 1837. A fire ignited by a lightning strike destroyed all its wood components, but the church was repaired according to a plan by Josef Stenbäck in 1891. The altarpiece was completed in 1850 and organs in 1895.
Founded: 1837 (renovated 1891) | Location: Loimaa, Finland

Iisalmi Old Church

The parish of Iisalmi area was founded in 1627, and the parish church was built in the same year. Kustaa Aadolf Church, which was built in 1779, is not, however, the original one as two churches were previously built on the same site. The oldest artefacts in the church are the small 17th century chandeliers above the galleries. The other chandeliers were purchased later.The paintings which decorate the galleries date from ...
Founded: 1779 | Location: Iisalmi, Finland

Luhanka Church

The wooden church of Luhanka was inaugurated in 1893 and is designed by Josef Stenbäck. Stenbäck was one of the leading church architects in the tide of 19th and 20 centuries. Luhanka church epresents the Neo-Gothic style and its interior is unpainted.Because there are no heating or electric lights, the church is only used in summer season. It ish is popular for concerts.
Founded: 1893 | Location: Luhanka, Finland

Ylikiiminki Church

Ylikiiminki Church was probably completed in 1786. The cruciform church was designed by Jacob Rijf, the famous church builder from Pietarsaari. The altarpiece was painted by Gustav Holmqvist in 1839.
Founded: 1786 | Location: Oulu, Finland

Soini Church

The wooden church of Soini municipality was built by Yrjö Lepistö and in completed in 1793. The present appearance date mainly from the restoration made in 1885. The bell tower was erected in 1795. There is an old cemetery surrounding the church with a monument erected for people died of starvation in the 19th century. National Board of Antiques has defined Soini church site as a national built heritage. The un ...
Founded: 1793 | Location: Soini, Finland

Ikaalinen Church

Ikaalinen Church was completed and inaugrated on 4 August 1801. Architect was Thure Wennberg and builder Salomon Köhlström (Köykkä). It is a wooden cruciform church and seats approximately 1,100 people. The altarpiece is Berndt Godenhjelm's 'Glorification of the Christ' from 1874. During the summer, Ikaalinen Church functions as a road church. The rugged belfry was built in conjunction with the renovation of the churc ...
Founded: 1801 | Location: Ikaalinen, Finland

The Church of St. Catherine of Alexandra

Lammi post-medieval church was built probably in the 1510s, although there is a written mark "1444" inside the church. The church and bell tower were destroyed by fire during Finnish Civil War in 1918, and the reconstructions were completed in 1920.
Founded: 1510 | Location: Lammi, Finland

Somero Stone Sacristy

Somero medieval stone sacristy was built probably in the end of 15th century. The sacristy was originally a part of wooden church. It is supposed to be the first part of a planned stone church, but the plan was never finished.
Founded: 1490-1500 | Location: Somero, Finland

Sääksmäki Stone Church

The Sääksämäki stone church was built at the turn of 15th and 16th centuries. It burnt down in 1929, and was consecrated in 1933. The major restoration was made between 1998-1999. The stained glass windows and wall paintings in the ceiling were done by the well-known local artist Kalle Carlstedt. The relief was also made by the another local artist Aukusti Veuro. There are two old sculptures of Catholic saints in the ...
Founded: 1495-1500 | Location: Valkeakoski, Finland

The Church of Pedersöre

The Pedersöre (Pietarsaari) church is one of the oldest in Ostrobothnia. There have been wooden churches from the 13th century and the present stone church was built 1510-1520. The church was modified to cross shape in 1787-1795 by famous church builder Jakob Rijf. Pedersöre Church was damaged badly by fire in 1986. It was supposed to be an arson, but any suspects were never found.
Founded: 1510-1520 | Location: Pietarsaari, Finland

Muonio Church

The wooden church of Muonio was completed in 1817 and inaugurated in 1822. It is designed by Charles Bassi. The bell tower was built in 1889. Muonio Church was one of those few buildings the withdrawing German army didn’t destroyed during the Lapland War in 1944. The village of Muonio was almost completely burnt down. The church is open from June to August Mo-Fri 10-14.
Founded: 1817 | Location: Muonio, Finland

Parikkala Church

The construction of Parikkala church started in 1813. It was designed by the government architect C. Bassi and built by the local master Matti Salonen. The church has been in use since 1817, but it wasn’t finally completed until 1840. The interior dates mainly from the 1830s.
Founded: 1813-1840 | Location: Parikkala, Finland

Maalahti Church

The current wooden Maalahti church was built in 1829 and it is designed by C. Bassi. The belfry was erected in 1832 according the design of famous C. K. Engel. The altarpiece was painted by A. Såltin in 1881 and organs date from 1875.
Founded: 1829 | Location: Maalahti, Finland

The Church of St. Anna

First record of the church of Kumlinge is in a testament dated back to the year 1484. The church was consecrated to St. Anna. There have been probably a chapel and even two wooden churches before the present stone church, which was built approximately in 1510. Baroque fashioned belltower was erected in 1767. There's also the oldest altarpiece in Finland (from year 1250) and wooden Madonna statue from the 15th century.
Founded: 1510 | Location: Kumlinge, Finland

The Church of St. John

The stone church of Sund was built at the end of 13th century or at least before 1310. Church was damaged by fire in 1672 and again in 1921. The church bells were destroyed in both accidents. There are still an altarpiece and wall paintings remaining from the 14th and 15th centuries. Sund Church is the biggest church in Aland.
Founded: 1290-1310 | Location: Sund, Finland

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Wroclaw Town Hall

The Old Town Hall of Wrocław is one of the main landmarks of the city. The Old Town Hall's long history reflects developments that have taken place in the city since its initial construction. The town hall serves the city of Wroclaw and is used for civic and cultural events such as concerts held in its Great Hall. In addition, it houses a museum and a basement restaurant.

The town hall was developed over a period of about 250 years, from the end of 13th century to the middle of 16th century. The structure and floor plan changed over this extended period in response to the changing needs of the city. The exact date of the initial construction is not known. However, between 1299 and 1301 a single-storey structure with cellars and a tower called the consistory was built. The oldest parts of the current building, the Burghers’ Hall and the lower floors of the tower, may date to this time. In these early days the primary purpose of the building was trade rather than civic administration activities.

Between 1328 and 1333 an upper storey was added to include the Council room and the Aldermen’s room. Expansion continued during the 14th century with the addition of extra rooms, most notably the Court room. The building became a key location for the city’s commercial and administrative functions.

The 15th and 16th centuries were times of prosperity for Wroclaw as was reflected in the rapid development of the building during that period. The construction program gathered momentum, particularly from 1470 to 1510, when several rooms were added. The Burghers’ Hall was re-vaulted to take on its current shape, and the upper story began to take shape with the development of the Great Hall and the addition of the Treasury and Little Treasury.

Further innovations during the 16th century included the addition of the city’s Coat of arms (1536), and the rebuilding of the upper part of the tower (1558–59). This was the final stage of the main building program. By 1560, the major features of today’s Stray Rates were established.

The second half of the 17th century was a period of decline for the city, and this decline was reflected in the Stray Rates. Perhaps by way of compensation, efforts were made to enrich the interior decorations of the hall. In 1741, Wroclaw became a part of Prussia, and the power of the City diminished. Much of the Stray Rates was allocated to administering justice.

During the 19th century there were two major changes. The courts moved to a separate building, and the Rates became the site of the city council and supporting functions. There was also a major program of renovation because the building had been neglected and was covered with creeping vines. The town hall now has several en-Gothic features including some sculptural decoration from this period.

In the early years of the 20th century improvements continued with various repair work and the addition of the Little Bear statue in 1902. During the 1930s, the official role of the Rates was reduced and it was converted into a museum. By the end of World War II Town Hall suffered minor damage, such as aerial bomb pierced the roof (but not exploded) and some sculptural elements were lost. Restoration work began in the 1950s following a period of research, and this conservation effort continued throughout the 20th century. It included refurbishment of the clock on the east facade.