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The best authentic Finnish sauna

A thoroughly authentic sauna offering - very different to the tourist experience offered by Allas... read more

Reviewed 5 December 2023
Matthew J
Very Warm, in More Ways Than One

I had a wonderful experience visiting this sauna. As a solo American stopping by, I wasn't sure... read more

Reviewed 5 July 2023
freutmich
,
Kansas City
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Reviewed 22 November 2021

I visited this traditional community sauna with local friends on a recommendation. It goes back to the 1920s, a time of solid workmanship and organisation. As a sauna, it is not so harsh, more mellow than some. The whole process by which the sauna is heated is fascinating, and too long to write in this review. The long handled water scoop is huge. The interior is so functional. Well worth a visit if you want to learn about classic sauna.
If you wish, you can sit outside between sessions, or just have a beer in the changing room.

Date of experience: November 2021
1  Thank Westlawns
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 26 January 2020 via mobile

Kotiharjun Sauna is absolutely worth of visit. There is separated saunas for women and men. After relaxing sauna you can chill a moment outside the sauna on the street.

Even we visited in Kotiharjun Sauna on Saturday evening there were enougt room and free lockers for us.

Date of experience: January 2020
2  Thank juhopulkka
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 11 January 2020

As a fan of Saunas in the UK I wanted to try the most traditional sauna I could find in Helsinki and this one ticked all the boxes. First thing to say is that no sauna in the UK that I know of can prepare you for the cultural difference in taking a sauna in Finland. These differences are immediately apparent as you walk up the street to the entrance to the sauna, where you will see sauna users (male and female) wrapped just in towels, sitting on the walls outside the building cooling off drinking tins of beer. Note this is not accompanied by loutish behaviour! Sauna staff friendly and welcoming, the changing rooms charmingly original. On getting undressed you pass through what again appears to be an original shower room, before entering the sauna itself which is dimly lit, very hot,multi tiered and to a British tourist's eye resembles something closer to a power station boiler room than a sauna - Great !!! Some points of Sauna etiquette - before putting water onto the sauna coals, check with the sauna user sitting at the highest point in the room first. This was belatedly pointed out to me (politely) when I did otherwise. Birch twigs freely available to enhance this traditional experience. Note there are separate changing rooms and saunas for males and females as it is expected that you go into the sauna naked.

Date of experience: September 2019
4  Thank CarolnIan
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 26 December 2019

I found it expensive (like most things in Finland) but then it's the only wood-heated public sauna in Helsinki, and so I would say it's the authentic Finnish sauna experience. It's also much cheaper than renting a whole private sauna to yourself. Bring your own towels if you want to save 2-3 euros. Though this is an old sauna, the facilities are decent, and the wooden cabinets didn't bother me. Tip: Bring flipflops, since the stone floor can get quite hot.

Date of experience: December 2019
1  Thank cobbdouglas
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 27 August 2019

Harjutorin sauna or Kotiharjun sauna is real living history. In the good(?) old days public saunas made up for the lack of bathrooms in working class homes - but only a few have survived, or remained this authentic.

A real, proper wood heated stove ensures a great sauna experience. Plenty of space in this sauna, though very popular among locals as well as visitors. Basic, slightly run down - but then again, why change a concept that has served the Helsinki people so well for nearly a 100 years?

PRO TIP

You can go out in your towel to cool down. Out as in out on the street. Perfectly acceptable.

PRO TIP 2

Men's sauna is always a lot busier than womens - so if you're a lady, lucky you. Especially during the week, plenty of space for you.

PRO TIP 3

Unlike in many other saunas, it's okay to bring your own drinks and snacks here.

PRO TIP 4

On Saturdays - or by arrangement, you can indulge yourself and have the washer-lady wash you from top to bottom, like in the old days. Super-relaxing (but not for the shy...).

Date of experience: August 2019
3  Thank lmsk2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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