A quick update from today’s trip to Vepsä Island (I can’t help but call it Vespa island all the time). It’s the summer recreational island of Turku, which means it’s only accessible in summer with a local ferry from the town. The small island has one small restaurant open only during summer, guest harbour, mini gold, Frisbee golf and a sandy beach.
I added some practical information at the bottom.
I ended up here today as a result of morning negotiations with the family, and trying to find a place which you can access without a car and it’s in the Turku Archipelago. First option was Seili island close to Nauvo, it’s famous for the old leper hospital which serves as a museum. Unfortunately the island has high density of ticks so we didn’t want to take the risk with a small kid.
Nauvo is also beautiful and accessible with the same boat that goes to Seili, but we’ve visited a few years back and the two hour ride on a ferry didn’t excite any of us. We also missed it since it leaves 10am from the Aura river.
So after a bit of research, we decided to go to Vepsä, not expecting much more just to enjoy some time in the nature, outside of the city and the confined walls of the flat. Vepsä is a very tiny island with not much activity going on. It’s perfect for families because you can rent one of the cabins for the night and spend the afternoon grilling food at the communal BBQ place, swimming in the sea and enjoying outdoors.
The boat ride was really enjoyable, it had a small kiosk to buy food & drinks, lovely top deck terrace with gorgeous views through the Turku archipelago. Just that was a good enough reasons to make the trip. The family round trip ticket (2 adults, 1 child) was 40 eur, which was a lot cheaper than the other boat trip options we investigated (Seili, Nauvo & Naantalli).
The boat leaves at certain times only, so if you miss the last one at 6pm you will be stuck there with no way of getting back. If I had planned the trip with a bit more time, I would definitely take some food for the grill & outdoor games with us.
We only had 3 hours there, which was more than enough for a stroll around the woods, enjoying the beach, quick late lunch at the cafe and a snapping a few photos. Even in the middle of the summer, the island felt deserted and peaceful. A lovely day out for the family, especially on a gorgeous summer day like this!
Vepsä Practical Information
Getting there – there is a ferry service to and back from the island running from Turku Aura river. Check the departures of Lily ferry that takes you there here. Tickets can be bought on board. The ferry is docked next to the Ukopekka boat here. Last trip back from the island is at 6pm.
Accommodation – starting from 55 eur per night for a cabin. Book here.
Restaurant – the restaurant had a short menu but you will find plenty to choose from, including salads, burgers, pizza and more. Check the menu here.