Pori is a small, quiet town on the Bothnian coast that might have gone unnoticed if it weren't for the Pori Jazz Festival held each July. For one week this town of 76,000 residents plays host to some of the world's best known jazz musicians and 150,000 of their fans. Pori is also popular as a vacation spot because of its sandy beaches. If jazz isn't your type of music, rent a car in Finland and explore the coast.
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Questions about touring Pori? Learn the rules of the road and other rental related info on our Finland driving information page.
Pori was established in 1558 and soon became a busy trade port. Fish and lumber were the main exports, and spices, wine and fine fabrics were imported. The town was a booming commercial center until the mid-19th century when a series of misfortunes culminated in an 1852 fire that incinerated almost the entire town. Ironically, a match factory established a year earlier led the move to industrialization and the revitalization of the town. It is unknown if any of their products were responsible for the disaster from which the factory emerged as an economic power in the rebuilt city. During the rebuilding planners took advantage of the opportunity to remodel the city with spacious avenues and brick buildings. The Satakunta Museum traces the life of Pori and its inhabitants from medieval times to the present with pictures, dioramas and artifacts.
With some of the best beaches in Finland it's not surprising that the greater Pori area is a destination for Finnish vacationers. Yyteri is one of the most popular and its 6 kilometers of fine sand dunes hold facilities for beach volleyball, mini golf, tennis, etc., there's even a naturist beach for those who forgot their swimsuit. Yyteri is only 20 km from the city center and easily reached by public transportation or rental car.