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Vaasa - aiming to be the happiest city in the world

Come and join the ride

In March Finland was chosen once again as the happiest country in the world, but what is the happiest city in the happiest country? We believe that Vaasa has the right to this title.

After all, we already have the Kvarken Archipelago UNESCO world heritage site, a bustling city centre, a super-wide range of leisure options, excellent job opportunities, comprehensive services and, of course, the best residents in the world. So, the foundation is perfect!

But now we also have something completely new: Vaasa’s very own happiness researcher. Professor Markku Ojanen, who has been studying happiness for decades and published numerous books on the subject, will be guiding the city and its residents along the road to happiness in many ways. For example, he will be distributing happiness tips, which can also be found on this page, and organise free happiness lectures for all residents. You can find more information about upcoming events on the Vaasa media channels and on the city’s website.

Our lunch is packed and the journey towards a happier tomorrow is about to begin. Welcome aboard!

Read the tips for happiness

We know that becoming the happiest place in the world is an extremely ambitious goal. However, we also know that happiness is found close by and contentment consists of many small things. Try to start with at least one of the tips below, for example. And remember to share these tips with your friends as well.


Use local services

1. Borrow a hula hoop from the library.
2. Buy bread from a local bakery for Saturday breakfast.
3. Learn to use a campfire coffee pot.

Public campfire sites

Help other people

1. Help distribute food aid.
2. Take a walk to collect litter from the environment.
3. Greet strangers with a smile.

Food aid

Take care of yourself

1. Take a 15-minute walk daily.
2. Don’t stress over efficiency speeches. Do your job well, that’s enough.
3. Hug someone every day.

Get to know Vaasa on foot


Suggest a happiness tip of your own!

Everyone has a special way to produce those successful feelings of well-being and contentment. What is your tip to give to others? Share your own tips to the delight of everyone else. By submitting a tip, you agree to the use of your first name when the tip is published.

My happiness tip

Onnellisuustutkija Markku Ojanen

Happiness researcher – Markku Ojanen

Markku Ojanen is a long-standing researcher of happiness. He is Professor Emeritus of Psychology at the University of Tampere. Markku has written 37 books on the subject, so he has a solid vision and knowledge of what makes a person happy and why and how people can invest in their own happiness.


Markku defines happiness:

“When a person is happy, they don’t have to remember the ‘good old days’ or think that the future will bring something better, since they are satisfied, grateful, and happy with what life brings right now."

Send a happiness greeting card! Sydän

Would it be time to cheer up a distant cousin or remind a schoolmate that in Vaasa we invest in happiness? Fill out the form, and we will send the right postcard to a friend on your behalf. We will mention to your acquaintance who the card came from. No addresses are collected on a mailing list.