My expectations for the Moominworld were high since there was an entrance fee of 26 euros (online price, 27 euros if bought at the gate) for everybody over 2 years. I was sure that with that price tag would come a whole day of fun for all of us. Unfortunately, I was a bit let down.
The idea of a Moominworld has been brilliant and I’m sure that it is bringing in a lot of tourists to Naantali. Even though we consider Tove Jansson (the creator of Moomins) to be our national treasure, in my opinion Moominworld at its present state is not worth the entrance fee. By no means do I mean to say that it would be a worthless visit. On the plus side this is finally a recreational park designed truly for 3-4-yearolds. It does not include any difficult or dangerous elements and is almost completely stroller/wheelchair accessible. On the downside, most of the amusements are made out of wood which means that they would demand very careful up keeping in the Finnish weather conditions. As the park has been open for some years now, the time is starting to show. In addition, the area is quite small and you go through it easily in about 3-4 hours, even with two small kids. So my main point is that taking this into consideration the entrance fee should be much lower – 10 euros would be reasonable. At this price (or lower) you can visit much nicer amusement parks in Finland which bring as much joy to your kids (Linnanmäki, Puuhamaa etc.) More of these will follow later.
However, if you are heading to Moominworld here is what you should know and how you should prepare.
The Moominworld is located on a small island right next to the center of Naantali. We arrived there by bus which takes app. 2 hours from Helsinki. From the bus there was a 500 metres (app. 0,35 miles) of walking to the main gate). If the weather prognosis shows any kind of possibility for rain or cold wind, remember to bring suitable gear with you. The park is almost completely outside whit the exception of 2 quite small restaurants where you of course have to eat if you want to sit there. The Finnish summer weather can be quite cold especially by the seaside so remember to bring warm clothes and hats with you so you do not end up being forced to buy expensive items from the Moominshop as many were on our visit. If you plan on bying them anyway, pack lightly – there are all kinds of things with the Moomin-logo on them just waiting for you. However, be prepared to pay extra.
All the amusements are suitable for a 3-4 year-olds and can be accessed by a stroller if you have a smaller child with you. There are giant Moomin characters roaming around the area which were the favorite of my 3,5 year-old. However, many of them do not speak so there cannot be that much of interaction. The characters also hold many short shows every day which is an ok addition to the day. Including a few shows it took us about 3-4 hours to go through the whole area. Remember to bring your own toy boat with you since there is a possibility to let it swim in the stream.
There are two restaurants which have indoor seating and a few cafes with ice-cream etc. Prices aren’t unreasonable. For example, Mamma’s kitchen offers a buffet for 15,50 eur/over 12-year-olds and children 2-5 years old 3,50 eur. For snacks the prices are at least double to grocery store prices. The Moomin candy store is definitely worth a visit – although I didn’t notice any healthy snacks in there which could be a nice add.
However, if you want bring your own lunch (which we of course did) it gets a bit trickier. The Moominworld does not encourage eating your own lunch in any way which is exceptional compared with almost any other park in Finland (this is one thing which I did not appreciate). Via email the staff guided us to a nearby beach which does not belong to the Moominworld but is accessible by following the shoreline from the bathing hut. It is a nice picnic spot with some benches on it and there is an outdoor café with toilets as well. It is only a hundred meters from the bathing hut. It is marked by number 40 Children’s beach on the map. If it’s a hot day – take a dip in the ocean. It is also possible to eat your own lunch by the amusements but there is not really a suitable place for it. So I recommend the beach.
If your tour in the Moominworld ends before your ride home is ready to leave check out the beautiful wooden house blocks by the church and Moominworld. There isn’t anything special except a few cafes and hotels but it is a nice walk.
– to bring your own toy boat with you since there is a possibility to let it swim in the stream
– to check weather prognosis carefully and bring warm and rain protecting clothes if necessary or bring hats and swimming gear if the weather is hot
– to buy bottles of soda and juice as well as snacks (if not luch as well) from a grocery store before entering the gate (tab water is available from all the bathrooms – Finnish tab water is totally safe)
– if you take your own lunch, pack it into a cooler and it will be safe from the heat plus bring a picnic blanket because there is nowhere else to sit and eat