Helsinki (capital of Finland) has been awarded city of design by UNESCO, is considered most honest and livable city in the world. When I heard we were going to Vienna and Helsinki in summer vacation, I was overjoyed and thrilled. I always prefer less commercial and close to nature places and Helsinki is one of the best cities of Europe (small country of just 5.3 million people). We went by Jet airways from Ahmedabad to Delhi and then to Helsinki.
Delhi International Airport above to below is the Helsinki Airport
View around Helsinki from the window of our bus taking us from airport to hotel. All sign boards etc have three languages – Finnish, Swedish and English.
Finnish education is considered one of the best in the world. Our guide gave a lots of details about the languages you need to learn, the way it works their and how they are the best in education in the whole world. Summing it up, it’s definitely worth trying school/college in Finland. There is a near absence of poverty. For residents, school lunch is free, preschool and college are free. Most students are healthy and know three languages (Finnish, Swedish and English). The best and the brightest want to become teachers in Finland. The teachers are given high respect and trust because they make the best human beings out of small kids. They don’t follow quick fixes but believe in strategic and permanent growth.
Reached our Hotel Kamp – is a 5-minute walk from shopping in the Market Square, a 6-minute walk from the Ateneum art museum and 2 km from Temppeliaukio Church. Breakfast was complimentary and they have an Asian kitchen also. Food was very good.
Below – World heritage site – Suomenlinna is a UNESCO World Heritage site and popular with tourists and locals. Originally named Sveaborg (Fortress of Svea), or Viapori as called by Finnish-speaking Finns, it was renamed in Finnish to Suomenlinna (Castle of Finland) in 1918 for patriotic and nationalistic reasons, though it is still known by its original name in Sweden and by Swedish-speaking Finns.
One of the Submarine of World War II time, below is the sleeping beds.
The island is beautiful and you can see people relaxing under the sun. It’s a poets and painters place.
Helsinki is a food heaven, mostly people prefer local and fresh food. If Japan has sushi, Finland has reindeer meat, which is processed and canned to last for months or even years. Take home a can of this specialty.
Our guide informed that people will not smile or be courteous, be in buses or shop, anywhere, but it’s not considered rude here. There is a level of trust.
Getting Around in Helsinki
The city is walkable and compact. Public transport is good, bus, trams and metro. It’s very economical to travel and goes on trust, so you don’t have to show ticket but if caught will have to pay fine.
A walk in the market square, buying some souvenirs (Cups in the pic- the double hole in the handle is for married and one is for single people )
Street artist on the corner left. Cycles are very common mode of transport in Finland.
Wishing locks I guess! Near market square.
We took a private cruise in the evening on Hudson River (from Market Square)
Winter World, Helsinki – Snow attractions and activities are available in any weather. Igloos, ice sculptures, toboggan hill, kick-sledding and tandem skiing. You have to take tickets and some group trips are also arranged. Below are some pics, we had a great time here and it’s a must visit.
We had a great time in winter world and I would love to visit it every year.
Some of the streets, park near our hotel, in the below picture they are preparing the street for some flower decor.