A good start to discover Oulu is (beside VT ;) ) to pay a visit to the Tourist Office. They can provide you beside the sights in Oulu with a city map and a bus line map. This helps to find your way through town. But don't worry, you can't get lost here in downtown...
Oulu City Tourist Office
P.O. Box 32
FI-90015 Oulun kaupunki, Finland
p. +358 (0)8 5584 1330
p. +358 (0)8 5584 1331
f. +358 (0)8 5584 2099
See the photo for general directions...
If you want to get some news about Oulu and the region, you can have a look at '65 degrees north' an internet newspaper from Oulu:
->65 degrees north, An internet newspaper from Oulu
You plan to move to Oulu, have a look at this infopage, which can give you helpful tips. The page is provided by the town of Oulu:
-> Official collection of infos for people moving to Oulu.
This is Oulu City Hall and tourist information in the city centre. You can find here lots of information about the region and the tourist attractions.
Check also the official web site
Oulu is located quite North, just 200 km from Artic Circle, so it's a miracle that there is a beach like Nallikari. It's long light sand beach, so untypical in here, that I can name it one of the best beaches in Finland. There are interesting walking paths and a spa/hotel Eden. Enjoy wonderful summer days here in Nallikari and while visiting Oulu, don't miss this.
Nallikari is about 3-4 kilometers from downtown, but walking path is very worth of walking. Wonderful road goes from the corner of theater trough the Pikisaari and along Hietasaari to the Nallikari.
Oulu has grown because of it's mills and wooden products. Nowadays we still have memories of those times, the smell. Altough the mills are very fine and well created there are no science man who could delete this awful smell what comes from process of wood product production.
There is a big mill, Stora Enso. It's located in Nuottasaari, nearby harbour, and I'm living quite near of it. If it's winding from the south that smell comes from windows. But hey, you learn to live with it, but you can't tolerate it...
Oulu is quite popular among exchange students. There are two lively school organisations: Oulu Polytechnic and University of Oulu. It's so nice to noticed all those international young people while walking in the Rotuaari.
I would love to wellcome all you to study here in Oulu and if you are interested in this city as a future school town, feel free to ask anything. I can try to answer, if i just can.
Fondest memory: If you have decided to come to oulu, it's quite important to try to catch an appartment. It's not that difficult, specially if you are able to live with other students. But if you want an own flat, prepare to use the time for searching good options.
Sometimes the school cand order you an appartment before your arrive. This may be the best option, but in case if you come to Oulu in very short notice and your school can't order you a flat, there are some tips for you.
Reasonable prices are from 200 euros up to 400 euros for a one room and with a kitchen. If you'll live with other people, then you can managed to get a room from 120 euros up to 200.
Flats costs more in downtown, so if you're going to study in University, maybe you can try to search a flat from Linnanmaa, nearby University. It's 6 kilometers from downtown, but there are very good cyckling paths. And believe me, many of students bike even in the winter time. Of course there goes busses too.
Favorite thing: Put on you inline skates or hire them. Oulu has an extensive network of well maintained cycling tracks that reach all parts of the city and it's outskirts. The paths have even won awards for their quality.
The winter. It can be very cold, up to -30C.
Fondest memory: You will love Oulu in the summer but visiting during the winter will be a real experience. You get to see snow, lots of snow. And you can ski and skate, or make snowmen. The picture here is a color picture taken around 10 am.
Tietomaa is a science center for the whole family. It's a nice place to visit as you can learn a few new things while you get to play around. They have a standard exhibition about science and technology in general. On top of that they have a 'Let's play' exhibition which is about toys, games and plays. This includes for example a roller coaster simulator. The newest exhibition is called 'me and you'. It teaches us about our bodies.
It's a good idea to wear casual clothes that let you participate. Especially in the sports section where you'll definitely crack a sweat.
Tietomaa also has an IMAX super screen where they show interesting and educating movies. The current one is about the Niagara falls.
The center of the city is called Rotuaari. It's a walking street where people go to meet each other. Sometimes outdoor concerts are arranged here. The symbol of Rotuaari is a big ball made of stone. It lies on a bed of water, so it can be rotated. Kids like to play with it.
There's many shops and restaurants at Rotuaari. It's a good place to visit if you want to do some shopping.
Favorite thing: See the sunset in summer. Where I come from, sunsets never last longer than a few minutes. But what I saw in Oulu was a completely different thing. The sun started setting as I arrived, and was still continuing the same process after I wandered around looking for a hostel for what felt like hours. I had to take a picture of it at some point although of course, it could never come quite close to the real thing.
Favorite thing: Those nice wooden houses are just by the market square in the centre of Oulu. They are built in old style where you can see such house also in other harbour towns in Finland.
As a tourist you may need a map or just good info. Oulu's info is located in Torikatu 10. It's open from
9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
If Info is closed try to find Oulu this Week-catalog from bar's or library.
The best thing is to meet people because they are very nice and very welcoming.
Fondest memory: To do a sauna when the temperature is extremly cold. It's really fun and it's an experiment that I will never forget.