Coordinates: 62°47.5′N 022°50.5′E / 62.7917°N 22.8417°E / 62.7917; 22.8417
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Seinäjoen kaupunki
Seinäjoki stad
Coat of arms of Seinäjoki
Location of Seinäjoki in Finland
Location of Seinäjoki in Finland
Coordinates: 62°47.5′N 022°50.5′E / 62.7917°N 22.8417°E / 62.7917; 22.8417
Country Finland
RegionSouth Ostrobothnia
Sub-regionSeinäjoki sub-region
Market town1931
 • City managerJaakko Kiiskilä
 • City1,469.23 km2 (567.27 sq mi)
 • Land1,431.64 km2 (552.76 sq mi)
 • Water37.59 km2 (14.51 sq mi)
 • Urban
52.78 km2 (20.38 sq mi)
 • Rank48th largest in Finland
 • City65,377
 • Rank16th largest in Finland
 • Density45.67/km2 (118.3/sq mi)
 • Urban
 • Urban density883.6/km2 (2,289/sq mi)
Population by native language
 • Finnish96.3% (official)
 • Swedish0.2%
 • Others3.5%
Population by age
 • 0 to 1417.1%
 • 15 to 6462.5%
 • 65 or older20.4%
Time zoneUTC+02:00 (EET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+03:00 (EEST)

Seinäjoki (Finnish: [ˈsei̯næˌjoki] ; lit. "Wall River"; Latin: Wegelia, formerly Swedish: Östermyra) is a city located in South Ostrobothnia, Finland; 80 kilometres (50 mi) east of Vaasa, 178 kilometres (111 mi) north of Tampere, 193 kilometres (120 mi) west of Jyväskylä and 324 kilometres (201 mi) southwest of Oulu. Seinäjoki originated around the Östermyra bruk iron and gunpowder factories founded in 1798. Seinäjoki became a municipality in 1868, market town in 1931 and town in 1960. In 2005, the municipality of Peräseinäjoki was merged into Seinäjoki, and in the beginning of 2009, the neighbouring municipalities of Nurmo and Ylistaro were consolidated with Seinäjoki. Seinäjoki is one of the fastest growing regional centers in Finland.[6]

The city hall, city library, Lakeuden Risti Church and other public buildings were designed by Alvar Aalto. Seinäjoki was historically called Östermyra in Swedish. Today this name, which never was official, is very seldom used even among the Swedish speakers. Seinäjoki Airport is located in the neighbouring municipality of Ilmajoki, 11 kilometres (10 mi) south of the Seinäjoki city centre. Seinäjoki railway station in city center was opened in 1883 and until 1897 it carried the name Östermyra station.


The settlement spread in the area of the present Seinäjoki during the first half of the 16th century. During the 1550s, there is said to have been three houses in Seinäjoki: the houses of Marttila, Jouppi and Uppa. The house of Jouppila, which separated from the house of Jouppi, was established during the same century. All of the houses were located on the shore of the river.

Seinäjoki belonged to the church parish of Ilmajoki like Kurikka, Kauhajoki, Jalasjärvi and Alavus. However, in the 18th century the roads from Seinäjoki to the Church of Ilmajoki were generally in poor condition. Therefore, the inhabitants of Seinäjoki and the neighbouring Nurmo built a new chapel together in 1725, which in 1765 led to the formation of the chapel town of Nurmo. Seinäjoki, which was called Alaseinäjoki since the Greater Wrath, became a part of the chapel town. The chapel parish of Peräseinäjoki was founded in 1798, and the village of Alaseinäjoki began to be called Seinäjoki again. The very same year, the Östermyra steel mill was founded on the shore of the Seinäjoki river.

Illustration in Finland framstäldt i teckningar edited by Zacharias Topelius and published 1845-1852.

In the 1850s, actions were taken to separate Seinäjoki from the church parish of Nurmo. Ilmajoki wanted to connect Seinäjoki back to its own parish. In spite of strong objections from the inhabitants of Nurmo, the Senate of Finland accepted the petition from the inhabitants of Seinäjoki in 1863, to form a chapel congregation of their own. Seinäjoki got an independent local government in 1868. In 1900, Seinäjoki became an independent municipality.

Seinäjoki has grown around a few important railroad crossings. The TampereVaasa railway, which passes through Seinäjoki, was inaugurated in 1883. The track, along with the Kokkola track that was opened for rail service in 1885, and the Kristinestad track which had been completed in 1913, raised Seinäjoki as an important railway crossing section in Finland. In the early 1970s, a direct railway between Tampere and Seinäjoki was opened, and the services of Seinäjoki improved further.

After the Winter War and Continuation War, some refugees from Jaakkima and Lumivaara were resettled to Seinäjoki.


A map of the Seinäjoki municipality with main roads and villages

The neighboring municipalities of Seinäjoki are Kauhava in the north, Lapua in the northeast, Kuortane and Alavus in the east, Virrat and Kihniö in the south, Ilmajoki and Kurikka in the west and Isokyrö in the northwest.

The proportion of water in the Seinäjoki landscape is small. Seinäjoki River flows through the city in a south-east-northwest direction and turns at the northern border of the city center, connecting with the Kyrönjoki River,[7] which flows into the Gulf of Bothnia in the Vaasa area.

The most significant road connections in Seinäjoki are highways 16, 18 (between cities of Vaasa and Jyväskylä), 19 and 67.


Climate data for Seinäjoki Pelmaa Weather Station, 1981-2010 normals, extremes 1971 - 2000
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) −3.7
Daily mean °C (°F) −6.9
Average low °C (°F) −10.9
Record low °C (°F) −40.5
Average precipitation mm (inches) 33.0
Source: FMI[8]



The city of Seinäjoki has 65,377 inhabitants, making it the 16th most populous municipality in Finland. The Seinäjoki region has a population of 131,160. In Seinäjoki, 3.6% of the population has a foreign background, which is below the national average.[9]

Population size of Seinäjoki (and merged municipalities) 1990–2020[9]
Year Population


Population by mother tongue (2022)[9]

  Finnish (96.3%)
  Russian (0.4%)
  English (0.3%)
  Arabic (0.3%)
  Estonian (0.3%)
  Swedish (0.2%)
  Turkish (0.2%)
  Other (2.0%)

Seinäjoki is a monolingual Finnish-speaking municipality. The majority of the population - 62,875 people or 96.3% - speak Finnish as their first language. In Seinäjoki, 143 people, or 0.2% of the population, speak Swedish.[9] 3.5% of the population of Seinäjoki have a mother tongue other than Finnish or Swedish.[9] As English and Swedish are compulsory school subjects, functional bilingualism or trilingualism acquired through language studies is not uncommon.

At least 30 different languages are spoken in Seinäjoki. The most common foreign languages are Russian (0.4%), English (0.3%), Arabic (0.3%) and Estonian (0.3%).[9]


Population by country of birth (2022)[9]
Nationality Population %
 Finland 62,819 96.2
 Sweden 308 0.5
 Thailand 164 0.3
 Estonia 159 0.2
 Soviet Union 142 0.2
 Russia 113 0.2
 Turkey 111 0.2
 Iraq 94 0.1
 Ukraine 87 0.1
 Sri Lanka 70 0.1
 Syria 64 0.1
Other 1,192 1.8

In 2022, there were 2,342 persons with a migrant background living in Seinäjoki, or 3.6% of the population.[note 1] The number of residents who were born abroad was 2,504, or 3.8% of the population. The number of persons with foreign citizenship living in Seinäjoki was 1,587.[11] Most foreign-born citizens came from the Sweden, Thailand, Estonia and former Soviet Union.[9]

The relative share of immigrants in Seinäjoki's population is below to the national average. However, the city's new residents are increasingly of foreign origin. This will increase the proportion of foreign residents in the coming years.


In 2022, the Evangelical Lutheran Church was the largest religious group with 78.3% of the population of Seinäjoki. Other religious groups accounted for 2.1% of the population. 19.6% of the population had no religious affiliation.[9]


Interior of the Torikeskus shopping center in the city center

Nordic Regional Airlines has its financial office in Seinäjoki.[12] Its predecessor, Finncomm Airlines, had its head office on the grounds of Seinäjoki Airport in nearby Ilmajoki.[13]

In terms of market area, Seinäjoki is the sixth largest city in the country.[14] Also Seinäjoki has a nationally and internationally significant food production and R&D industry. Headquartered in Seinäjoki food company Atria Corporation's net sales in 2009 were EUR 1316 million and it employed an average of 6,214 persons in several countries. According to a study published by the Economic Survey at the end of 2018, Seinäjoki has the best image among corporate leaders among the 36 largest Finnish cities and municipalities. The survey had asked the CEOs and CFOs of companies operating in the area about the municipality's affairs.[15]

Seinäjoki also is well known for having a large number of SME's and a big number of shops for its size. One of the most important shopping places in Seinäjoki is the Torikeskus shopping mall in the city center.


There are many kinds of cultural events in Seinäjoki nowadays. For example, Seinäjoki is known for hosting three large summer events: Tangomarkkinat, which is a tango festival typically attracting more than 100,000 visitors annually, Vauhtiajot, which is a motor racing event/music festival, and Provinssirock, which is one of the largest and oldest rock festivals in Finland. Rytmikorjaamo is a popular rock club, wherein almost every weekend some Finnish or international artists perform. In Seinäjoki there are also several other bars and clubs offering live music and other entertainment. The city theatre of Seinäjoki has a wide, quality program throughout the year, offering plays for everyone. The city orchestra of Seinäjoki performs many concerts in the area and has had many tours in Finland and abroad.


Seinäjoki Arena [fi], a multi-purpose hall in Jouppila, Seinäjoki

Seinäjoki is home to a big number of sports clubs, such as SJK Seinäjoki, a professional football team that competes in the Finnish Veikkausliiga. SJK is one of the top football teams in Finland and it plays in the brand new OmaSp Stadion. Seinäjoki is also home to Seinäjoki Crocodiles, an American football team.


Other points of interest[edit]

  • Törnävä Museum Area
  • the Suviyö trotting-race
  • Törnävä summer theatre – Seinäjoki
  • Jouppi mountain winter sports centre
  • Seinäjoki City Theatre
  • Provinssirock
  • Tangomarkkinat
  • Vauhtiajot
Panorama image of Seinäjoki


Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences (SeAMK) is the local higher education institution, that also pursues an international profile.

Notable people[edit]

International relations[edit]

Twin towns — Sister cities[edit]

Seinäjoki is twinned with:[16]

See also[edit]



  • Reino Ala-Kulju (1963). Seinäjoen kirja (in Finnish). Seinäjoen seurakunta.
  • Aulis J. Alanen (1970). Seinäjoen historia I (in Finnish). Seinäjoen kaupunki.
  • Annikki Kyttä & Tenho Takalo (1977). Seinäjoen historia II (in Finnish). Seinäjoen kaupunki. ISBN 951-99131-5-7.


  1. ^ "Area of Finnish Municipalities 1.1.2018" (PDF). National Land Survey of Finland. Retrieved 30 January 2018.
  2. ^ "Preliminary population structure by area, 2022M01*-2023M02*". StatFin (in Finnish). Statistics Finland. Retrieved 4 April 2023.
  3. ^ "Demographic Structure by area as of 31 December 2022". Statistics Finland's PX-Web databases. Statistics Finland. Retrieved 6 September 2023.
  4. ^ "Population according to age (1-year) and sex by area and the regional division of each statistical reference year, 2003–2020". StatFin. Statistics Finland. Retrieved 2 May 2021.
  5. ^ a b "Luettelo kuntien ja seurakuntien tuloveroprosenteista vuonna 2023". Tax Administration of Finland. 14 November 2022. Retrieved 7 May 2023.
  6. ^ Knuuttila, Jussi (2005). "Maaseutuvirasto Seinäjoelle Hallintobyrokratia siirtyy keskelle vahvaa yrittäjäseutua" (in Finnish). Maatilan Pellervo. Retrieved November 16, 2020.
  7. ^ Reino Ala-Kulju (1963). Seinäjoen kirja (in Finnish). Seinäjoen seurakunta.
  8. ^ "Tilastoja Suomen ilmastosta 1981-2010 - Seinäjoki Pelmaa Weather Station" (PDF). FMI. Retrieved January 30, 2022.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Number of foreign-language speakers grew by nearly 38,000 persons". Statistics Finland. 31 May 2023. Retrieved 12 September 2023.
  10. ^ "Persons with foreign background". Statistics Finland. Retrieved 18 September 2023.
  11. ^ "Population structure 2000-2022, urban-rural classification". Statistics Finland. 26 May 2023. Retrieved 12 September 2023.
  12. ^ "About Us." Nordic Regional Airlines. Retrieved on October 25, 2016.
  13. ^ "Contact Information." Finncomm Airlines. Retrieved on 25 February 2010.
  14. ^ "Kauppa-Joupin asemakaavoitus, Kaupallisten ja sosiaalisten vaikutusten arviointi" (PDF). Entrecon (in Finnish). Seinäjoen kaupunki. May 10, 2010. Retrieved November 16, 2020.
  15. ^ "Seinäjoella on paras imago" (in Finnish). Taloustutkimus ( December 11, 2018. Retrieved November 16, 2020.
  16. ^ "Ystävyyskaupungit" (in Finnish). City of Seinäjoki. Retrieved 22 August 2019.


  1. ^ Statistics Finland classifies a person as having a "foreign background" if both parents or the only known parent were born abroad.[10]

External links[edit]

Media related to Seinäjoki at Wikimedia Commons