Princesses and Knights at the Sandcastle

Sandcastle is open 11 June31 August from 10am - 9pm in summer 2016

The 2016 Sandcastle turned into exciting medieval Knight Castle where 3 million kilos of sand was used to create princesses, princes, knights and royals. While enjoying this medieval atmosphere you can also experience theatre and music performances. In the amusement area you also find small train, carousel and bouncy castle for children as well as minigolf, kayaks and rowing boats for rent in the nearby.

Read more about: Street train, Tourist information, Sculptures, Sculptors, FAQ

Upon arrival at Lappeenranta from the direction of Lake Saimaa, a castle made of sand protecting the city bay unfolds on the horizon against the walls of the Fortress. This summer, the sculptures at the Sandcastle depict a medieval tournament. You can enjoy theatre and music performances in the area as well. Entertainment for children also includes a small train, a carousel, a bouncy castle as well as fancy dress parties and story-telling sessions around the theme. Various theme days are held at the Sandcastle and there is a miniature golf course nearby, among other things.

About three million kilos of sand are used in the building of the castle. The sand is bound for moulding with a glue mixture and skilful sculptors work their magic on it to build an impressive castle with towers and a chapel. Some of the Sandcastle sculptors are local artists and some come from the Netherlands, Latvia and Russia.

From the street train stop at the Sandcastle, you can easily embark on a nice tour of Lappeenranta city centre. The guided headphone tour has four language options (Finnish, English, Russian, German.)



Street train runs 11 June – 14 August, 20–21 August and 27–28 August

Departures every hour from the Sandcastle Mon 12.00–17.00 and Tue–Sun 11.00–17.00

Please note! The Street Train drives a detour on Saturday 30th of July:
- Street Train carries Carnival crowd at 11-13 on a different and shorter route
- Street Train returns to its normal route at 13 o'clock from Sandcastle

Click for bigger image!


Adults €5

Children €2

Family ticket €10 (2 adults + 2 children)

Day ticket €7 adult / €3 Children

Street Train Lappeenranta 2016

You can hop on or off the train at any stop!

You can also hire Street Train to privat use. Please contact Terhi Jantunen at Wirma Lappeenranta, terhi.jantunen@wirma.fi



Lappeenranta Tourist Information serves visitors at the Sandcastle

11–26 June and 1–31 August: Mon–Sun 10.00–18.00

27 June – 31 July: Mon–Sun 10.00–20.00


Bicycles, kayaks and rowing boat are available for rent at the Sandcastle tourist information point.



A total of 18 sculptors, including 10 artists from abroad, are involved in the creation of the Sandcastle’s magnificent sculptures. Three million kilos of sand is used to sculpt princesses, princes, royals and knights. The sculptures of the castle depict a medieval tournament and you can enjoy theatre and music performances in the courtyards. The sculptures are expected to be completed in ten days.

Explore the Sandcastle’s magnificent sculptures and the skilled sculptors below!


The Royal Family

The king and queen of the Sandcastle sit on their thrones surrounded by the prince and two princesses. The older of the two princesses is looking for her future spouse among the guests arriving at the court. Could it be you?

The Jester, i.e. the Joker from a deck of cards

The court jester’s job was to entertain the royals and their guests with tricks. The jester also had the important task of teaching history and lore to the often illiterate public through stories and songs.

The Knight Templar in his worn battle armour

The royal family’s bodyguard and a sworn defender of the first church in Jerusalem. The Knights Templar were a brotherhood established during the medieval crusades which had a large influence in Europe and the Middle East between the years 1119 and 1307. The Knights Templar were the first religious order and their rules and organisation served as a model for several other orders. Originally, the Knights Templar were modest warrior monks. However, their order quickly grew into one of the most financially influential organisations in medieval Europe.

The Village Blacksmith

The blacksmith is forging a new sword for the jousting knights. The blacksmith was important in the kingdom for the forging of weapons as well as everyday items. Training to be a blacksmith involved serving an assistant, or a journeyman, of the master blacksmith for several years. It was hard work in the glowing heat of the forge and the days were long.

Catapult Ready to Fire

This medieval wooden weapon was heavy to move along in the battles, but a very good weapon for breaking walls and gates.

The Fat Market Seller

The seller sits on sacks of grain, trading in food supplies, everyday items as well as special and aromatic spices brought by seafarers from distant lands.

The Market Customer

Mrs Strand focuses on haggling over the prices at the medieval market and does not notice the young pickpocket who surprises her from behind. Poverty was common in the Middle Ages and beggar boys tried to steal to survive.

The Old Wizard

At the court, the wizard acted as a doctor and a magician as well as an advisor to the king and the officers. He also advised the people regarding agriculture and the use of herbs and food found in nature. There were often shortages of food in the Middle Ages, so everything possible was used to fill the stomach.

Dramatic Tournament Atmosphere

Tournaments were popular public events, but also intense sports competitions for the knights wearing heavy armour and the large battle horses.

Joan of Arc, i.e. the Maid of Orléans

Joan of Arc, i.e. “the Maid of Orléans” (La Pucelle d’Orléans), 1412–1431, is a national heroine of France and a saint of the Catholic Church. Joan became famous for her religious visions in which she was urged to save France. In 1429, she led French soldiers in the siege of Orléans and participated in the coronation of King Charles VII at Reims. She was later convicted of witchcraft and burned at the stake by the English.

The Champion of Lappeenranta, knight Sir William Strand

The name of the knight has been adapted from the city’s name in Swedish, Villmanstrand. The Wildman coat of arms, estimated to date back to the 1800s, has been carved on the shield. The coat of arms, painted on tin plate, was discovered in the attic of Lappeenranta City Hall in the 1990s during renovation. Today, the coat of arms is part of the collection of the South Karelia Museum.

The Captured Dragon

Sir William Strand and his armies captured the dragon that has been tormenting the city and he plans to teach it to behave. Our knight just needs to learn the language of dragons.

The Theatre

The set at the children’s theatre takes the story of the play Ritari ja Kettu (The Knight and the Fox) from the forest to the city. The Sandcastle is also visited by a real fox at night. The paw prints can be seen at the top corner of the theatre’s auditorium.

The Chapel

The chapel was built by Juuso Partanen, Petri Monto and Mika Tauschi from Lappeeranta according to the designs of Kimmo Frosti. The copy of a stained glass window in the chapel’s ceiling is titled The Good Shepherd. The angel on the chapel’s altar wall was sculpted by Andrey Vadhynskyy from Ukraine.

The sculpture at Teerenpeli

All sculptures are not at the Sandcastle. This sculpture is located at Kauppakatu.

Siege Tower (coming soon)

During battles, the opponent trying to breach the castle walls pushes a wooden siege tower ahead of the charge with soldiers ready to attack inside.

Medieval Weaponry (coming soon)

Weaponsmiths were very skilled at forging various weapons for hunting and battles. In times of peace, the smith was needed to make ploughs and other necessary metal items.



Andrey Vazhynskyi, Ukraine

David Billings, Canada
More information: sandemons.com

Donatas Mockus, Latvia

Eeva Karhu, Finland
More information: eevakarhu.fi

Inese Valtere-Ulande, Latvia

Ivan Savenkov, Russia

Karlis Ile, Latvia

Kimmo Frosti, Finland

Marike van der Meer, the Netherlands

Vadim Gryadov, Russia



Who creates the sand sculptures?

This year the sand sculptors are all professionals. They come from Finland, Canada, Holland, Latvia, Lithuania and Russia.

How are the sand sculputers made?

First the sand is packed into molds using water and compactor. After the packing the sculputre is made from top to botoom. The molds are removed as the sculpting progresses.

Is there something mixed with the sand?

There is nothing but water mixed with the sand. The sand is particular type of sand that fits into creating sculptures. The scultpure is finished by spraying it with Finnish Kiilto 66 yleis-/puuliima glue-water mixture to get its hard surface.

What happens when it rains?

Normal rain does not hurt the sculptures. It here is a continued heavy rain, the surface of the sculptures may be hurt and the we will make repairs on them.

What kind of tools are used in making the sculptures?

The sculptors use different kinds of spatulas and splints, shovels and so on. Many of them have also created theri own tools that they like to use.

How long does the sculpture last?
Sculptures last a long time weather permitting. If the surface is broken, the sculpture breaks.

Please do not touch the sculptures :)