Dear person reading this,
After speaking to a couple of locals (As I always ask the “What would you recommend to do?” question), I came up with the conclusion that: There is not much to do in Helsinki.
I’m just kidding. (Or am I?)
But if you do find yourself in this Scandinavian city, here are a couple things that you should check out.
Free Walking Tour
No contest, the free walking tour we did in Helsinki was the busiest one we’ve both ever been on. We must have been around 50 tourists following around this Chilean tour guide wearing a viking hat.
We walked around for a good two hours covering the most basic stops for visitors like us.
They have their own “London Eye” mini version, and if you look at the top, there’s one in a different color- it’s a sauna that friends can rent out for an hour for 220 euros. (No thanks. Ha.)
Kalewala is a famous folklore in Finland and is said to have inspired JRR Tolkien for his works of art. If you look at this statue, you can almost see Gandalf!
It’s basically a church inside a rock. After being inside so many churches, we all weren’t too sure about going to this one. (Even if it is number two on TripAdvisor). But because the tour guide highly recommended we went inside, we thought, why not? It didn’t disappoint though. This was Sam’s number two for the trip.
Fortress of Suomenlinna
For five euros and a fifteen minute ferry ride, you’ll get transported to this beautiful island.
This fortress is part of UNESCO’s World Heritage List. It’s divided into different parts but if you walk towards the end of a certain trail you’ll find yourself looking at this.
The picture doesn’t really do it justice (mostly because Sam took it) but it was nice just standing there in the freezing cold and just looking out.
The Senate Square and its surroundings are very important in the city and make up the oldest part of central Helsinki. The cool thing about being there on that May holiday weekend was that everyone was hanging about in the square celebrating and getting pissed off their faces.
Traditionally, on May Day eve students and graduates of University of Helsinki would wear their graduation caps (which looks like sailor caps) and wear jumpsuits with different patches on it and just go crazy on the streets- Nordic style. So basically, everyone on that day looked like this..
Wild Card – Estonia
Tallin is only a two and a half hour ferry ride from Helsinki. And its definitely one to check out when you’ve ran out of things to do. But please don’t make the same mistake we did and arriving at the port 15 minutes before the ferry leaves because otherwise, they won’t let you in and you miss going to another country and end up going back to your AirBnb looking at this..
Looking forward to our next Scandinavian experience,