Helsinki has lots of excellent jogging paths with lots to see and admire along the way. You can jog through deep forest just a short distance from the city centre, you can enjoy stunning views to the sea all around Helsinki, and you can explore the urban environment with your sneakers on. Here are 8 +1 jogging routes ranging in distance from just a few kilometres to a half marathon.
Töölönlahti and Tokoinranta – a legendary route in the heart of the city
If any of the shorter jogging routes in Helsinki can be called an absolute classic, it has to be the one that circles the Töölönlahti bay and takes you to the Tokoinranta shoreline. What makes this route particularly attractive is that it is right by the centre of town. As you curve around the bay you will no doubt come across other joggers, couples walking hand in hand, old people out for a stroll, kids chasing geese, stand-up paddleboarders on the water, and dogs of just about every breed imaginable!
Distance: Each section of the route is just over 2 kilometres, so by combining them you can set a suitable distance for yourself.
Mustikkamaa – an island route that’s easy to get to
The charming island of Mustikkamaa (“Blueberry Land”) is the perfect destination for short and scenic jogs. The distance around the island is 2.5 kilometres, and along the way you will also pass a swimming beach and exercise equipment that you can use for an extra workout. The easiest way to get to Mustikkamaa is across the modern Isoisänsilta pedestrian bridge from the Kalasatama district.
Distance: Approximately 2.5 kilometres per loop.
Arabianranta to Vantaanjoki – idyllic nature a tram ride away
Both banks of the Vantaanjoki river leading to the Old Town Rapids have excellent sandy paths that are ideally suited for jogging through the forests. By jogging up the river on one side and down the river on the other, you can enjoy a fun route and even go swimming at the Pikkukoski swimming beach at the halfway mark. If you start from the Arabianranta shoreline, you can begin jogging straight from the tram stop. You can even extend your jog by running along the duckboards to the idyllic island of Lammassaari.
Distance: Approximately 6 kilometres from Arabianranta to the Pikkukoski swimming beach and back again. You can easily shorten or prolong your jog by crossing the river before or after the swimming beach, as there are numerous pedestrian bridges along the way.
Southern peninsula – a sightseeing tour of Helsinki
Jogging around the southern districts of Helsinki is a great way to experience Helsinki’s maritime nature and discover all its historic architecture. The simplest route is start from Kruununhaka and jog all the way around the Katajanokka peninsula, continue through the Market Square and follow the shoreline around Kaivopuisto until you get to the exclusive Eiranranta waterfront district. Most of the route is asphalted.
Distance: The distance from Kruununhaka around Katajanokka and along the shoreline to Eiranranta is approximately 7 kilometres. This can be extended to 10 kilometres by continuing onwards to the Hietalahti swimming beach and to 12 kilometres by continuing again to Meilahti and the wooden bridge to Seurasaari. You can return to your starting point from Eiranranta by jogging along the Baana pedestrian and bicycle corridor and continuing through Kaisaniemi Park back to Kruununhaka for a total distance of 12.5 kilometres.
Lauttasaari – A 10k run around the island
The shoreline around the island of Lauttasaari creates a perfect 10K jogging loop with lots of beautiful scenery along the way. Jogging to the sound of seagulls in the fresh sea breeze and along the varied terrain crossed by the paths makes this a popular route for joggers from near and far. You can take a bus from the city centre and get off at the end of the bridge to Lauttasaari, or take the metro to the station in the centre of the island, around half a kilometre from the shoreline.
Distance: The distance all the way around the island along the paths is approximately 10 kilometres.
Keskuspuisto – Forest in the city
Despite its name, Helsinki’s “Central Park” is not really a park in the traditional sense of the word but rather a genuine Finnish forest. Even though the nature in the park attracts many visitors, it’s easy to unwind among the trees, where you can sense all the unique seasonal rhythms, colours, scents and light. A good jogging route is to start at the southern end of the park, nearest the city centre, and jog from Laakso to the Pirkkola sports park and back. For a longer jog, you can continue all the way to Paloheinä – or even further. Pirkkola sports park also has its own shorter jogging trails, as well as a public swimming pool if you want to cool off afterwards.
Distance: The distance from Laakso to Pirkkola and back is just over 10 kilometres. The entire park, from top to bottom, is also 10 kilometres long, and there are lots of trails, so you can jog as much or as little as you want – even a full marathon if you like!
Meilahti-Kuusisaari-Lehtisaari-Lauttasaari – island hopping in jogging sneakers
One of the most attractive routes for a long run in Helsinki is from Meilahti across the islands of Kuusisaari and Lehtisaari to Lauttasaari and from there via the Hietaniemi swimming beach back to Meilahti. This route is not only nice and long but also incredibly beautiful, taking you through some of the city’s most prestigious and secluded islands.
Distance: Approximately 13 kilometres.
Old Town Bay – everything from concrete to birdwatching towers
The Old Town Bay is bordered by the districts of Arabianranta, Viikki, Herttoniemi and Kulosaari. Circling the bay provides not just a nice long jog but also diverse scenery: lots of shoreline paths, the green meadows of Viikki, pretty forests with birdwatching towers, charming allotment gardens and the enormous construction site for the new Kalasatama district. The jogging route can get quite complicated, so study the map carefully in advance or bring your smartphone with you in case you don’t know which path to take.
Distance: Between 13 and 17 kilometres depending on the route you take.
Bonus: Eläintarha Stadium
The historic Eläintarha Stadium is a classic sports venue that dates back to 1910, providing a nostalgic setting for timing your 400-metre laps – or taking the Cooper test for the first time in years!