Forssa, Forsa, Exploring Finland

Forssa – Exploring Finland

Forssa is a town in the region of Kanta-Häme, a region previously known as Tavastia Proper. This is the inland of southern Finland with lakes like Kaukjärvi and Pyhäjärvi just next door and the river Loimijoki running through the center of town. It is home to a population of around 16.500 mostly Finnish-speaking inhabitants.

It should not be mistaken for the small settlement of Forssa in the Swedish province of Södermanland.

A Short History of Forssa

Forssa received its name from the rapids of the river Loimijoki, with “fors” being rapid in Swedish. The industrialist Axel Wilhelm Wahren established a spinning mill at the rapids in 1847. Forssa has since developed into an industrial center and became the seat of its own municipality in 1923 when the area was separated from Tammela Municipality. The city status was granted in 1964. Many of the industries struggled during the depression in the 1990s and job opportunities within industrial manufacturing have declined. The textile industry has today been mostly replaced and it is especially the food processing industry that has found its way to Forssa. This includes companies such as HK Ruokatalo and Atria.

Things to Do and See

This small town in the center of southern Finland does display a rich industrial heritage with the spinning and weaving industries being an important part of its history. It is a fairly young town with modern squares and urban parks.

Forssan Tori

Forssan Tori is the main square and a large concrete field in the center of Forssa. It has several restaurants and smaller shops in its vicinity but it is best known as the location of the local market with stands being put up on specific days of the week.


Ankkalammi is a park area right next to the main square. It consists of a small green area with a pond at its center.

Forssan Kirkko

The Church of Forssa was inaugurated in 1918 and was designed by the architect Josef Stenbäck. It has an impressive tower that rises to a height of 45 meters above the ground. The church is a part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland.

Forssan Museo

The Forssa Museum is housed in the old spinning mill area, an area that has become the cultural center of Forssa. The museum tells the story of the textile heritage and the history of the local textile industry that has formed the town into what it is today.

How to Get to Forssa

  • Flights: Helsinki Airport (HEL) is 108 kilometers to the southeast. There is also Turku Airport (TKU) 95 kilometers away and Tampere-Pirkkala Airport (TMP) 83 kilometers away.
  • Car: Forssa is at the intersection between Road 2 and Roat 10, in the center of the triangle between Helsinki, Tampere, and Turku.

The driving distance from 5 major Finnish cities, according to Google Maps:

  • Helsinki – 119 kilometers (1 h 22 min)
  • Turku – 89 kilometers (1 h 18 min)
  • Vaasa – 322 kilometers (3 h 47 min)
  • Oulu – 579 kilometers (6 h 33 min)
  • Joensuu – 468 kilometers (5 h 31 min)

Looking to Explore more of Finland and Europe?

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