After exhausting ourselves with the nightlife and shopping in Turku, we wanted an easy day checking out some of the city's cultural attractions. The good people at Turku Touring provided us with a couple of Turku Cards, which allow for free entry to the museums, free travel on the local buses and discounts for shopping, food, hotels, travel and activities around town. We began our day at the magnificent Turku Castle (Turun Linna, Linnankatu 80, turunmuseokeskus.fi).
This incredible building has been around since the end of the 13th century and offered us hours of exploration. We didn't really know what to expect from the castle but were happy to find such a wide array of things to see there. We walked along the pre-determined route through the castle, stopping to chat with the guides who pointed us in the right direction and gave us little tidbits of information about each section along the way.
Turku has several interesting museums, including the Biological Museum (Biologinen Museo, Neitsytpolku 1, www.turunmuseokeskus.fi), the Maritime Centre (Forum Marinum, Linnankatu 72, www.forum-marinum.fi), the Handicrafts Museum (Vartiovuorenkatu 2, www.turunmuseokeskus.fi) and a few art museums. Out of sheer curiosity, we selected the Pharmacy Museum (Apteekimuseo, Läntinen Rantakatu 13, www.turunmuseokeskus.fi) for a visit.
The building housing the Apteekkimuseo has ironically never been a pharmacy. The Qwensel House is Turku's oldest 1700's bourgeois home that is still standing. On display here is an enormous collection of pharmacy paraphernalia, which has been sent to the museum from all over Finland.
We received a lovely guided tour from one of the museum staff members. It was interesting to see the different ways that medicine has changed throughout the ages. In the end we spent about an hour here just examining all the details, like this "antihysteric" medicine that she informed us used to be given to women (I wonder what the ingredients were!):
The house is much larger than it looks from the outside and features two laboratories, an office and an herb room.
We thank Turku Touring and the Radisson Blu Marina Palace Hotel for such a lovely stay in Turku.
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