If you are visiting the capital of Finland, where to find good working spaces at the heart of the city? In our series for travelling laptop workers, we provide some suggestions that you should check out when visiting a city for a day trip. While you can always trust in libraries, there are also exciting and inexpensive co-working spaces in Helsinki.
The City Library Oodi
Location: Töölönlahdenkatu 4 (Tölöviksgatan 4)
Helsinki’s new central library, opened in 2018 and looking forward to recording its ten millionth visitor in early 2024, has been described as the inhabitants’ shared living room – and that’s what it truly is. Despite this, and especially if you are comfortable with an experience of shared reading and being in the same space with other people, you will probably find a cosy corner somewhere. In the beautiful spaces designed by ALA Architects, there are study rooms, individual and group rooms (pre-booking needed), and open spaces available. The library also has a restaurant with an inexpensive lunch, and a café on the rooftop. Alternatively, you can get some fresh air during your working sessions and enjoy your lunch at Kiasma Café, the restaurant of the Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma, or Ateneum Bistro, the restaurant of Atheneum, the museum of modern art, at a walking distance and also known for their delicious lunch and snack offerings.
Kaisaniemi University Library
Location: Fabianinkatu 30 (Fabiansgatan 30)
Centrally located and only about 150 meters from the railway station and right next to the metro station University of Helsinki, the Helsinki University Main Library provides several quiet floors. The library in the Kaisa House also has a café with a bookshop on the entry floor. If you are not satisfied, within walking distance there are also other possibilities, such as the charming municipal library of Rikhardinkatu (Richardsgatan), and the university library – no, the Learning Centre – of the Swedish School of Social Sciences (Soc & kom).
Location: Toinen linja 2 (Andra linjen 2)
A walk away from the core of the city centre, this traditional café, popular among creative workers, might be worth the effort. Located at the Hakaniemi (Haganäs) square, you can have a 20-minute walk or take the 3 or 9 tram from the railway station to Hakaniemi. The New York Times describes Rytmi as “an endearingly dated cafe with worn red carpeting, rotating art exhibitions on the walls and music events late in the evening”.
The Media Museum and Archives Merkki
Location: Ludviginkatu 2–4 (Ludvigsgatan 2–4)
A media researcher might enjoy doing a work session at the newly renovated museum and archive dedicated to Finland’s largest newspaper Helsingin Sanomat, run by Helsingin Sanomat Foundation. The former Päivälehden Museo and Päivälehden arkisto, Merkki (in Swedish: Mediernas museum och arkiv Merkki) was opened to the public in December 2023 and is located at the intersection of Ludviginkatu (Ludvigsgatan) and Korkeavuorenkatu (Högbergsgatan), in the former newsroom facilities of the newspaper, known as “Ludda”. The museum offers spaces for working, studying and reading, so you don’t have to have a bad conscience about sitting there with the laptop. However, if you need absolute silence, this place may not be the optimal one, as there may always be voices from other visitors around.
Sofia Co-Working Space
Location: Sofiankatu 4 C (Sofiagatan 4 C)
If you are searching for a co-working space and willing to pay for it, Sofia is centrally located in the Kiseleff house, built in 1771, and a day pass at any available desk costs 32 euro. Co-working spaces offer not only a quiet desk and printing possibilities for laptop workers, but also the option of getting to know others. There are also other social working hubs close to the city centre of Helsinki, such as Mothership of Work, MOW (a day pass is 30 euro) and Wonderland Work in Vallila (18 euro and up). Coffee (remember that the Finns consume the most coffee in the world!) is usually included in the price. Pro tip: You can get a free day pass at Wonderland Work if you sign up for the newsletter!
Next article in this series:
Where to stay with your laptop in Stockholm? In the next article in this series, Nordicom’s researcher Tobias Lindberg will disclose the best places to work in the Swedish capital. Stay online!Read more arrow_forward
Photos: Kuvio/City of Helsinki, Arnd Dewald/Flickr, Roo Pokomon/Flickr, Heidi Piiroinen/Merkki Museum, Sofia