With the start of school right around the corner I thought it would be fitting to write a post about the most child friendly place I visited in Finland, Muumimaailma! Moomin World as we would call it in English, is a magical place, but before I get carried away let me give a little background on what the heck Moomin actually is.
Moomintroll is a white, hippo looking character created by Tove Jansson in the 1940s. Moomintroll and along with his family and friends grew in popularity over the years and can now be found all over the world. The first time I visited Finland I spotted this endearing character and have been in love ever since. You can read all about the different characters and get more information at the official Moomin website.
Now back to the good stuff, Moomin World! One of the first days my sister and I arrived in Turku we made plans to take a trip to Moomin World.
Located along the archipelago on a little island, it could not be situated in a more beautiful spot. You walk over a bridge to access the park where you enter, not to a clear cut concrete amusement park, but instead a wooded wonderland.
As with most places in Finland, nature is one of the main features of the park. Surrounding the shops, cafe, theater and attractions are lots of trees and of course water. It didn’t feel at all like the amusement parks I have been to in the states.
I was a little nervous about being the oldest people in the park without small children in tow, but it didn’t seem to matter much. With Moomin’s popularity around the world, we learned that people of all ages come to see the original Moomin World park. I soon found myself patiently waiting with 2-5 year olds to get my picture with each of the characters around the park. I mean adults love Disney characters, and get their photos with Mickey and Minnie at Disney, same thing right?!
Overall it was a great day. I loved walking around, exploring the blue, round Moomin home, walking along the water and relaxing a bit in a Fatboy beanbag in the enchanted forest.
To top it all off, my sister and I got to spend some time with our newly acquainted cousins Veikka and Elisa. They were such good sports agreeing to spend the day at Moomin World with us. I can’t imagine a better first full day in Turku!
Needless to say my students at school will be well aware of all the Moomin characters. In fact Moomin even sent a postcard to my class from Moomin World telling my students how great it was to meet their teacher. Can’t wait to share some Moomin love with my students this year!