The town of Rauma in western Finland’s Satakunta region was founded in 1442, making it the third oldest town in the country. It is especially known for its colourful regional dialect, its long tradition in bobbin lace-making and the well-preserved wooden buildings of Old Rauma.
Old Rauma, one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites, is the largest unified wooden town in the Nordic countries. Approximately 700 people live in the 70-acre area, which contains 600 buildings. Walking around Old Rauma is like stepping into a fairy tale: the colourful wooden houses, decorative gates, cobble stone streets and beautiful public buildings create an atmosphere of the long-forgotten past.
In the heart of Old Rauma is the recently restored market square, where the locals like to relax. There are many shops, cafés and restaurants in the town and Café Sali is one of the quaint little shops surrounding the square.
The annual Lace Week event, held in late July, features a variety of interesting happenings and unique exhibitions. Pictured is a privately owned telephone museum.
The Kontio café offers a pleasant respite from a busy day in town. The café’s speciality is the vanilla doughnut, which has been on the menu for over a decade.
Rauma boasts a large number of unique interior design shops and craft boutiques, which attract visitors from afar There are also many delightful shops, cafés and restaurants in the town. All shops are within walking distance from each other, which makes shopping a pleasure.
The Lumo grocery store is situated in the heart of Old Rauma. Every food article on sale comes from local organic producers, guaranteeing a rich, pure flavour.
The tower of the Old Town Hall becomes a focus during Lace Week, when a special eventide melody is sounded every evening by a trumpeter from the Rauma brass ensemble.
The Church of the Holy Cross, the principal church in Rauma, was built in the late-15th century as a Franciscan abbey church. It was inaugurated in 1512.
The beauty of the church interior is visually stunning, especially the colourful murals that were painted sometime during the Catholic period (1510-1522).
The Old Rauma gardens are quite small, but there’s enough beauty and pleasure to compensate. They are a delight on a warm summer day and also make a lovely venue for a garden party.
The winding alleys and pathways of Old Rauma date back to the Middle Ages, one of which, Kitukränn, is thought to be the narrowest street in Finland.
Walking around Old Rauma is like stepping into a fairy tale: the colourful wooden houses, decorative gates, cobble stone streets and beautiful public buildings create an atmosphere of the long-forgotten past.
One of the highlights of Lace Week is a friendly battle in which contestants vie for the title of the town’s fastest lace-maker. Lace Week is an annual event abundant in music, dance, traditional cooking – and lace. Historical sources reveal that bobbin lace-making in Rauma goes back all the way to the 1740s. Initially, Lace Week was a set of exhibitions during which skilled bobbin lace-makers could display their works, but it has since developed into a wide-ranging communal event.
The sea has provided a livelihood for the town since time immemorial. Pictured is the guest harbour of the Poroholma Holiday Centre.
Raatihuone, the old seat of the town council, was built in the market square in 1776. Since the early 1900s, Raatihuone has functioned as a museum.
The most anticipated event of the week is the Night of the Black Lace, when market stalls and merry locals fill the streets of Old Rauma. The warm evening air is filled with the cheerful chatter of friends and music from lively dance halls and outdoor concerts. All shops and boutiques in the Old Rauma area have longer opening hours, and it’s also a busy night for bars and cafés.