10 Fun Facts about Kuopio

What do you know about the city of Kuopio? Before you visit this great Finnish city yourself, here are some fun facts about Kuopio.

What do you know about the city of Kuopio?
Before you visit this great Finnish city yourself,
here are some fun facts about Kuopio.

Fun Facts about Kuopio

1. Where is Kuopio?

Kuopio is a city and a municipality located in the region of North Savo, about 340 km distance from Helsinki.

2. Kuopio is Surrounded by Lake Kallavesi

Lake Kallavesi is an important part of the city of Kuopio. It surrounds Kuopio from almost every direction.

3. Kuopio was Founded in 1775

Kuopio was founded in 1653, but Kuopio officially became a city in 1775 by the order of King Gustav III of Sweden.

4. The Name Kuopio Comes From…?

It is not known where the city’s name comes from, but there are a few theories. According to one theory, it is related to horses and comes from the Finnish word kuopia (=paw). Another theory was a traveling salesman named Prokopij who gave his name to this place. And the third explanation was a man named Skopa, who the locals called Coopia or Cuopio.

5. Kuopio is Finland’s 8th Biggest City

With the population of 122 000, Kuopio is Finland’s eight biggest city.

6. Kuopio is the Capital of Lakeland

Kuopio has named itself as the “Capital of Lakeland”. In total there are over 900 lakes in Kuopio municipality, so the name is well justified.

7. Kuopio is the Summer Cottage Capital of Finland

Kuopio municiapility could also be called the the summer cottage capital of Finland. There are over 10 800 summer homes in the area of Kuopio, which is more that in any other municipality in Finland.

8. Puijo is Kuopio’s Best Known Landmark

Kuopio is a very popular travel destination. The City’s best known landmark is the Puijo hill and the Puijo Tower on top of the Puijo hill. So it is one of the must-visit places in Kuopio!

9. Kuopio Market Square is the Centre of the Universe

Kuopio Market Square is called in Savo dialect as “Mualiman Napa”. Which means nothing less than the centre of the universe…

10. Kalakukko is is very Popular in Kuopio

And when you are visiting the centre of the universe, you should taste the kalakukko. Kalakukko is a traditional Finnish dish that is especially popular in Kuopio. It is a fish baked inside a loaf of rye bread. It might not be everyone’s favorite but you should taste one when in Kuopio!

+The Best Saying in Savo Dialect

The Savo dialect is full of funny sayings. Probably the best known, and one that works in every situation, is “suattaahan se olla vuan suattaahan se olla olemmattakkii”. This could be translated as “it might be or it might not be”. How wrong you can go with that?

More info:
City of Kuopio

Image by Vicente Serra / City of Kuopio

Kuopio Market Square is “Mualiman Napa”

Kuopio Market Square is a popular destination in Kuopio. Located in the heart of the city, it’s the place where everything happens

Kuopio Market Square is a popular destination in Kuopio. Located in the heart of the city, it’s the place where people meet, go shopping, enjoy a cup of coffee, or just spend free-time. It’s the place where everything happens.

The market square could be called the centre of the city. And that’s the case in most of the cities which have a market square. But in Finland, in North Savo, in the city of Kuopio, they are a bit more ambitious…

Kuopio Market Square is Mualiman Napa

Kuopio’s market square isn’t just the centre of the city, or even the centre of Finland. Oh no, that’s not enough for Kuopio. Kuopio Market Square is called nothing less than “Mualiman Napa”!

And what is mualiman napa, you might ask?
In a Savonian dialect, which is a form of Finnish language spoken in Nort Savo and some other parts of Eastern Finland, mualiman napa basically means the centre of the universe.

Savonian people (Savolaiset in Finnish) are known the be humorous. So we shouldn’t believe everything they claim. But, we have to admit, it does sounds cool and inviting. So even if it really isn’t the centre of the universe, the market square is still definitely worth a visit!

What to at the Market Square

So now that you are at the Kuopio Market Square, what should you do?
Well, you have a lot of choices but first you must take a selfie. And yes, sounds a but boring, but this isn’t just any selfie. Find the “Mualiman Napa” logo and take a selfie while standing on it.
Just how many times you think you’ll be standing in the centre of the universe?

After this must-to-do ritual, you can explore a bit. For example there is the Kuopio City Hall (kaupungintalo in Finnish), constructed between 1882-1885, located north of the market square. On the southern side of the market square there is the Kuopio Market Hall (kauppahalli in Finnish), which since 1902, has been the shopping place for fresh meat, fish and bakery products. Close to the market hall, there are also Siskontyttö (sister) and Veljmies (brother) statues.

In addition to the traditional market foods and treats, you should also try some of the local foods, like kalakukko. It is a traditional loaf of bread with a fish baked inside. This is popular especially in Kuopio.

Many of Kuopio’s stores, coffee houses and restaurants are located around the market square, so there is lot to see and do.

Fun to Know Facts about Mualiman Napa

  • With a size of 130 m x 147 m, Kuopio Market Square covers an area larger than a hectare. It is one of the largest, if not the largest market square in Finland
  • Kuopio market had originally different location, next to Kuopio Cathedral. Planned already in 1818, the market was relocated to its current location finally in 1856
  • Known previously as Kimnaasitori, Heinätori (Hay market) and Hevostori (Horse market), it has been called Market Square square since 1918
  • The market is located about one hundred meters above sea level
  • Under the market square, there is a defrosting system that melts the snow from the pedestrian streets and the center aisle of the market during winter
  • Kuopio Market Square has been officially the “Mualiman Napa” (the centre of the universe) since 2018

More info:

Images by Vicente Serra / Kuopion Kaupunki