Is it hot the place where you live? It’s quite cool especially in the morning and at night here. The colour of trees is getting more yellow or red day by day.
Well, I would like to introduce you Ähtäri Zoo that is about one hour drive from Seinäjoki. Mark Wiltshear wrote about it before but I add some information in this article.
Two giant pandas – Lumi and Pyry came to the zoo in 2018. They are called “Snowpanda” and are popular in Finland and maybe in other countries, too. I took this photo below in March, 2018. I enjoyed watching Lumi played with the snow to prove her real “Snowpanda”.
2,5 years have passed since they came to Ähtäri Zoo. As you see, Lumi is so relaxed with covering one eye and showing the bottom of the foot in the summer of 2020. She’s cute, isn’t she?
On the other hand, Pyry was eating breakfast. It was also lucky to see his eating. (They often take a nap during the daytime.)
Ähtäri Zoo (not only Ähtäri but other zoos in Finland) has a big nature environment for animals and people enjoy walking and seeing around it. Ähtäri Zoo is open even in winter but you may miss some animals that are in winter sleep. On the other hand, some animals may take a rest and hide in a cool place during the summertime. I think this is a very natural and nice way to keep animals living in nature.
This red panda could have been popular before snowpandas came. I couldn’t take a photo with its face last time, so I put one that I took in March.
This is not just a cat, a lynx. It may look normal cat because nothing to compare, but it’s quite big. For me it looks to have a strong will.
All elks were heading for the other side. By the way, do you know the weight of an adult elk is sometimes over 700 kg? Additionally, they are active at night, so they sometimes come to general roads. Due to that there are several car accidents every year. At least elks here are protected safely.
When some children get tired of walking or seeing animals, they can play here.
For the children or people who want to do exercise more, Flowpark is the place. Unfortunately, I forgot to take photos last time, so you can see one that was taken in March. It is closed during the wintertime. You can check the opening hours from here.
If you want to buy souvenirs, yes, this shop is next to the Panda House. You may be able to find other animal’s version than panda, but most of them are panda products.
If you are hungry or thirsty or want to take a rest, don’t worry. The cafe restaurant is also available.
Address：Karhunkierros 150, 63700 Ähtäri
How to go：https://www.ahtarizoo.fi/index.php/en/how-to-get-here
I would like to introduce you a newly opened sauna restaurant, Kiulu this time. Some of you may know it already but many public saunas are open and are very popular in Finland in recent years. And this is one of them. It’s in only Finnish but this is the web site.
Kiulu was designed by Studio Puisto. It’s a modern, warm and simple design with a great lake view. Many people enjoyed the food in the terrace because it was a nice summer day.
The pier on the left-hand side is for sauna users. You can enjoy SUP boat during the summertime.
Sauna opens every day during the summertime. In other seasons it’s open based on order. Since this sauna is a code, please remember to bring your swimwear. The entrance fee is 15 euro for adult, 6 euro for under 16 years old. Bath towel and sauna cover is included the entrance fee. After you warm up in a sauna, you can cool down in the lake or take a rest in a restaurant or on a terrace. A resting space is also next to the sauna.
Addition to this, there is a rest space on the second floor both for restaurant and sauna customers.
You may want to know the restaurant more. This menu of this restaurant is produced by Tomi Björck. He also produced a very popular restaurant in Helsinki, Gaijin. This food is Chorizo bun Rovesco. It looks gorgeous and of course sauce and buns were also good. I became full.
Address：Karhukierros 162, 63920 Ähtäri（near the zoo）
※This is translated by Google.
If you are interested in architect, I would like to recommend Hotel Mesikämmen. It was designed by Timo and Tuomo Suomalainen. They also designed Temperiaukio Church in Helsinki. That’s why this hotel reminds me of Temperiaukio Church or buildings that were designed by Tadao Ando. It was built down into the Ähtäri bedrock. All rooms are underground. There are also a sauna, a swimming pool, a gym and even a bowling alley.
Address：Karhunkierros 149, 63700 Ähtäri（near the zoo）
After enjoying Ähtäri Zoo, how about going shopping? Keskisen Kyläkauppa, the biggest department store (or hyper supermarket) in Finland situates in Tuuri that takes 30 minutes by car from Ähtäri Zoo. The 2nd floor of the left-hand side and all right-hand side building is a hotel.
This shopping centre is composed with a supermarket and another part. In the part you can find Finnish famous brand, Marimekko and another famous brand, Iittala. Addition to that, sports section, cosmetic section and other products are sold. If you like shopping, surely you would enjoy it.
When you come to Seinäjoki, it’s another way to enjoy by combining the trip to Ähtäri.
Hyvää loppukesää tai alkusyksyä!（＝Have a wonderful late summer or beginning of autumn！）