Helsinki wins EU Capital of Smart Tourism 2019

Helsinki wins EU Capital of Smart Tourism 2019
Helsinki – taking smart to new heights



Helsinki has taken first place in the European Commission’s new European Capital of Smart Tourism 2019 competition. The title for 2019 was awarded to two cities: Helsinki and Lyon. The final selection took place on 24 September 2018 in Brussels, where Pia Pakarinen, Deputy Mayor of Helsinki, and Laura Aalto, CEO of Helsinki Marketing, presented Helsinki’s winning entry under the theme “Helsinki – taking smart to new heights”.

Helsinki wins EU Capital of Smart Tourism 2019
image: @myhelsinki Instagram


”Helsinki as a city is committed to promoting sustainable development and is showing the way in this regard also within the tourism sector in Europe. Over the coming year we will formulate a sustainable tourism action plan that will further strengthen our role as a pioneer in this joint project,” says Deputy Mayor Pia Pakarinen.



Factors that were evaluated in choosing the European Capital of Smart Tourism included city image, accessibility, sustainable tourism, digitalization in tourism services, cultural heritage and innovativeness in tourism offerings.

Helsinki wins EU Capital of Smart Tourism 2019
image: @myhelsinki Instagram


“Helsinki is showing the way internationally. Helsinki’s success in this competition was made possible by our reinforced image as an attractive and functional city destination. In addition, our long-term work in offering and utilising open data has clearly become one of our leading success factors. For example, our award-winning city marketing website Myhelsinki.fi demonstrates Helsinki’s digital leadership,” says Laura Aalto, CEO of Helsinki Marketing.



In the second half of next year, when Finland will hold the EU Presidency, Helsinki will have an excellent opportunity to present its expertise also in sustainable tourism. In addition, Helsinki will host the World Tourism Cities Federation Summit in August 2019, when the eyes of the international travel media and global tourism experts will be firmly on our city.

Helsinki wins EU Capital of Smart Tourism 2019
image: @myhelsinki Instagram


About European Capital of Smart Tourism 2019 competition


The European Capital of Smart Tourism competition is a new initiative by the European Union that aims to promote smart tourism in the EU, network and strengthen destinations, and facilitate the exchange of best practices.

Altogether 38 cities from 19 EU Member States participate in the inaugural competition. Helsinki competed in the final selection with Brussels, Ljubljana, Lyon, Malaga, Nantes, Palma, Poznań, Tallinn and Valencia.

The award ceremony will take place in connection with European Tourism Day in Brussels on 7 November 2018.


Time to get our passports and visa ready for next year and let's go to Helsinki!



44 LOVES AND COMMENTS:

  1. I miss that city and good to know about this selection. Can't wait to go back :)

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  2. Helsinki looks absolutely amazing. I haven't visited yet but will do so this winter and this post made me even more excited :)

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    1. This make me want to visit Helsinki and experience what it has to offer :D

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  3. smart tourism is a very nice concept. Helsinki looks amazing. Definitely on my list for next eurotrip

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    1. I admire how their government and people do it! They are awesome. I want to visit as well.

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  4. I’ve been to Helsinki twice, and even though it’s not my favorite city, I can definitely see why it won this award. The tech/digital piece was very apparent to me while I was there, and even more so in neighboring Estonia. I love that sustainability is one of the criteria in deciding this award - sustainable tourism is something I’ve been paying a lot more attention to recently and I’m just glad to see big players paying attention to it as well.

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    1. I see that they invested a lot in making their city eco-friendly. Estonia also promotes e-residency!

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  5. Well, congrats to Helsinki. I should add this place to my list.

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  6. This is a well deserved award. We would love to visit this place in the future and hopefully get to learn from them more. :)

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    1. I agree. I would like to know how they do it, and making their people accept it.

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  7. I haven't yet made it to Helsinki, but it's only 1.30 hour away so I should really go! I'm glad it won the award, it's such a green city with so much to see and do!

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    1. That's cool! Oh you should visit and share us your experience.

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  8. These are facts I didn't know about Helsinki. I didn't imagine it as a digitally developed place, but well, havinet been there. It's already on my list to visit!

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    1. That's awesome Anita, more reason to visit Helsinki!

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  9. Quite interesting to read about the Smart tourist contest. Did not know so much about it. And Helsinki - well you unveiled a lot of facts that I did not know. After this read, I am checking up more on this city. It definitely appeals.

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  10. So it is worth a visit I guess. That is what I understand after reading it. Good 1 as usual.

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    1. Yes it it! I wish to visit this place. Shoutout for Helsinki Tourism Board, please sponsor my visit!! LOL

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  11. Oh wow I didn't know about any of this and it was so interesting to read more about Helsinki and their achievements! it's somewhere I'd love to visit!

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    1. If Helsinki can do this, I bet the other cities can do as well. They just need to learn how Helsinki people values and attitude towards this progress.

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  12. Helsinki looks great! I've never been there before so I'll need to add that to my list of places I need to visit. Some very interesting facts here that make it quite that bit tempting to go!

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    1. Wow I am excited to read your future Helsinki story!

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  13. I love the initiative of their government to promote tourism. I'm adding Helsinki in my bucket list!

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  14. I have never been there and Helsinki looks really a nice city to visit with my family and I am glad that it won the award.

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    1. I need to save a lot, coz Helsinki is also expensive to visit :D

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  15. Oh that’s lovely that it is a great tourist spot. I would love to see the place for myself one day.

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  16. I never been to any places in Europe, Helsinki Finland will definitely be my first choice, hearing that the price level over there is quite high. Gonna save more for the trip.

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  17. congratulations Helsinki. I don't know much about Helsinki but after reading this I definitely eager to visit it one day

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    1. Hope many cities will follow the concept of Helsinki.

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  18. Helsinki looks amazing, definitely a place I would love to go. I hadn't heard of the smart tourism contest but it sounds like a title that you'd definitely want to earn!

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  19. Helsinki is for sure on my travel list. It looks absolutely beautiful! I love the little facts you scattered through too!

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  20. Cool to hear about the Smart Tourism Contest. Makes sense in our developed world to have this award, though.

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  21. I did not know these facts! Thank you for sharing!

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  22. I've never visited Helsinki before but love this idea! I'm currently teaching my students about the importance of food sustainability and would love to explore more ideas of sustainability with them.

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    1. Their methods are inspiring! Great that you also promote sustainability.

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