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Hidden Oasis of Helsinki: Rhododendron Park – Alppiruusupuisto


If you love flowers and gardens, the Rhododendron Park in Helsinki, the capital of Finland, is a must! In the middle of the residential area of Haaga in the northern part of Helsinki, this park is a true hidden green oasis that bursts into full bloom in early June. There are thousands of rhododendrons and azaleas in all possible colours – white, pink, fuchsia, red, purple, yellow and orange. And the scent of the flowers is absolutely beautiful.

Even though I am originally from Helsinki I did not know about the existence of the Rhododendron Park until a couple of years back. Finally this week I had the chance to discover the park and I was totally blown away by its beauty.

The Rhododendron Park (also known as Alppiruusupuisto, Rodopuisto and Rhodopuisto in Finnish) is a magical pine forest that spreads over an area of eight hectares. The park was originally founded and still functions as a plant breeding experimental site of the University of Helsinki. Simultaneously the area is a park open to the public. So it is relatively unique in the world.

The first rhododendrons were planted here in 1975 and by now many of them have grown very high, up to 5 meters. The park is divided into two sections: the southern part offers evergreen rhododendrons, while deciduous azaleas have been planted in the northern end of the park.

Here floral splendour can be viewed from wooden pathways and platforms that are also accessible on wheelchair. In addition to colourful flowers I was happy to encounter some wildlife like squirrels and lots of different types of birds.

The best time to visit the Rhododendron Park is the first weeks in June before Midsummer. If the winter has been long and cold, then the bloom might be at the fullest a week or two later. I heard that rhododendrons and azaleas do not bloom with the same abundance every year. Rather abundant flowering is usually followed by a less prolific year. 

Even if you miss the bloom, I would still recommend to have a walk around in the green park and enjoy the cool and fresh air.

 Quick facts

You may like to read more about Helsinki:

Green Getaway in Helsinki: Lammassaari Island

5 New Places to Visit in Helsinki 2017

Hidden Secret of Helsinki: Lapinlahti Former Psychiatric Hospital

Helsinki: 6 Unique Summer Cafes Loved by Locals

Helsinki Street Art: Guide to Pasila Street Art District

Island Escape in Helsinki Archipelago: Former Military Island Isosaari

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Author: Piia | Ticket to Adventures

Captivating travel stories from around the world, near and far, by an experienced traveller and adventurer.

21 thoughts on “Hidden Oasis of Helsinki: Rhododendron Park – Alppiruusupuisto

  1. Very beautiful. Can you please tell me if I’ll find flowers during my holiday in August?
    Thank you


    • Thank you! The peak season is in June, so I think there will not be too many flowers left in August, however, the park is definitely worth a visit outside the main flowering season too, as it is a very refreshing green oasis and feels like a true magic forest.


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  9. I have a cerise rhododendron, here in my Devon (UK) front garden, that blooms each May and is locally much admired. The photos of the park at Haaga, Helsinki, look awe inspiring!! I planted my tree about 30 years ago and it flowers every year now. Initially it was every other year.
    I am delighted for the university and the Helsinki residents that they have access to members of the wonderful Azalea and Rhododendron family. If I visit Helsinki in the Spring I will certainly come and visit the park. I have told my Helsinki friends and Finnish family about your gardens, via Facebook and Twitter.
    With all best wishes for the park and its continuing success!
    Helena Ancil


    • Hello Helena, Thank you for your comments and thanks for sharing my post! I just love rhododendrons and azaleas and we are lucky to have such a unique park full of these beautiful flowers here in Helsinki. I truly hope you have the opportunity to visit Helsinki and the park some time in the future. I am sure you will love it!


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  13. Very pretty. I love the orange ones!


  14. Looks very beautiful and enjoyable! I have been to Finland in winter before, but you just gave me reason to travel there at summertime as well 🙂


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