Helsinki – Finland
With over 620 thousand inhabitants, it is the capital of the Republic of Finland and the largest city in the country. It is located in the southern part of the country, on the Gulf coast of Finland, and is one of the most livable and socially developed capitals in the world.
I simply loved getting to know Helsinki; it is small, cold even in summer, nice and beautiful.
How to get there!
I went from Estonia to Finland via ferry, it’s 2 hours and 15 minutes by ferry, and it’s the most practical way to travel between the two countries.
The ferry route Helsinki Tallinn connects Finland with Estonia and is currently operated by 3 ferry companies.
- Tallink Silja with crossing up to 6 times a day.
- Viking Line and Eckerö Line are available up to 3 times a day.
- So I advise you to compare everything to ensure that you have the best rate at the time you want to travel.
I chose the Viking Company, because at the time I got a round trip promotion of 20 Euros.
Usually you will find prices with a maximum of 60 Euros round trip. Travelling by ferry is an incredible option, within the ferry have pubs, free shopping, and restaurant and if you plan your trip for the summer, you can take advantage of the ferry deck and go enjoying the view by taking a sunbath. The two hours pass and you do not even know you arrived in Helsinki and for those who want to travel with your pet, entrance is allowed.
WHAT TO DO
As soon as I arrived in Helsinki I was walking around the city, just next to the port already have several interesting places to visit. Walk through the city, there is no better way to get to know and feel the local culture.
I will tell you a little about the places I found interesting and worthwhile.
- Allas Sea Pool
The complex is equipped with three swimming pools built on the sea, one of warm water and one of salt water, as well as sauna and coffee. The complex is open all year round and in winter the pools are covered by sea water and freeze.
Access is free, and there is a beautiful rooftop bar that provides a beautiful view of the Gulf of Finland. For swimming you must pay for the day use or the monthly fee. It’s a nice place to sit on the sun loungers at the bar / cafe.
- Uspenski Cathedral
Uspenski Cathedral is the largest Orthodox Church in Western Europe. By its style of construction, the church is one of the clearest symbols on the impact of Russia on the history of Finland.
- Market Square
It is a central square with several stalls that exposes various products for sale, such as souvenirs from Helsinki, fruits, vegetables and you find there many typical foods and many smoked fish.
- Old Market Hall
Open since 1889, merchants sell everything from cheese, fish, molluscs, vegetables, fruits, cakes and spices.
- Esplanadi Park
Known as Espa, it is an esplanade and urban park in the center of Helsinki, located between the Erottaja square and the Market Square.
- Senate Square
It is the most important tourist spot in the Finnish capital. From it, the main streets and monuments are oriented. The square was designed by the architect Carl Ludvig Engel and houses an architectural complex, which was built between 1822 and 1852, where some of the most important institutions of the city and country take place: the Cathedral, the State Council, the University and the Library National.
- Helsinki Cathedral
It is an Evangelical Lutheran cathedral of the Diocese of Helsinki. Originally built as a tribute to Tsar Nicholas I of Russia, known as St. Nicholas Church until Finland’s independence in 1917.
- Kamppi Chapel
It is also known as the “Chapel of Silence” as it is intended to be a place to calm down and have a moment of silence. It has a super curious architecture.
- Helsinki Museum of Design
Dedicated to the exhibition of Finnish and foreign design, including industrial design, fashion and graphic design. It is in a beautiful building in the neighborhood of Punavuori, which is the design district in Helsinki.
- Sibelius Monument
It is dedicated to the Finnish composer Jean Sibelius, built in 1967 by the Finnish sculptor Eila Hiltunen, the abstract monument resembles a sound wave made up of clusters of organ pipes. The cut-out monument consists of more than 600 steel pipes unevenly grouped at various heights. The landmark was designed to embody the spirit of Sibelius’ music, but its abstract nature made many critics of the statue note that it did not directly honor the composer. To this end, a large bust of Sibelius was added at the foot of the monument so that the spectators were not confused.
- Coffee Regatta
The Regatta is a beautiful little cottage right next to the sea, reminded me of a small farm, its internal area is tiny, but the outside area is inviting to sit.
There you will find typical Finnish food. The place itself seems to have come out of a fairy tale. A few steps from the Sibelius monument.
IMPORTANT POINTS ABOUT THE CITY:
Because the city is small you can get around easily, it’s not worth to take transportation. But If you need to has a simple and extremely efficient public transport system though, classified as one of the best in Europe.
I felt safe all the time through the city. I walked without fear for the city that is very comfortable.
Prepare the pocket, because anything you think about eating will be expensive, not just food but also the drink is expensive too.