Visiting Helsinki

Helsinki Travel Blog

 › entry 12 of 15 › view all entries
Exciting day! Today we had to visit the entire city in a few hours so we left the hotel around 8.30am after having breakfast in our hotel. We are located in Kanavakatu, next to Viking Line, so we started visiting the Uspenski Cathedral. In the morning is not the best time to take photos of it, but we spent some time visiting the interior. This church was built in 1868 and it is the largest Orthodox Church in Western Europe! On top you find these golden cupolas reminding the Russian impact on Finnish history!  

Next to it you find Kauppatori, the busiest market in Helsinki.  There you find small kiosks selling all sorts of stuff, basically souvenirs, vegetable and fruits and also some dishes you can have right on some tables they set up.
If you are looking for magnets and things alike, they have the best prices! West of this traditional market you will find a building next to the water with some other stores inside. The Old Market Hall if first opened in 1889 and there you can taste all kind of traditional dishes. By the way, we found a sushi place there! Imagine how fresh everything is!  

From the market we followed Sofiankatu until we reached the Senate Square! The main point of interest is the Helsinki Cathedral (Tuomiokirkko). I took some photos from it but it took me so loooong! There was a bus parked right in front of it (shouldn´t be allowed! J) so we had to wait until it left. It seems to be that an old lady got lost, so we had to wait until they found her! As you can see some times we go nuts trying to get a nice photo! :) We also visited the inside of the Cathedral and next we went to the Crypta Café! It is behind the cathedral in the basement and even if you are not planning to go for a coffee, check it out! Then we walked back Sofiankatu until the Esplanade Park.
There you find the Tourism Information Office and also a famous bronze fountain named Havis Amanda. They say this girl´s figure symbolizes Helsinki and its birth.  

When Esplanade Park ends you reach one of the main roads in the city, Mannerheimintie. If you follow this street you find several buildings such as the Parliament, Kasnallismuseo, Finlandiatalo (auditorium) and the Opera. Next to the opera there was a dog festival going on and at the time they were celebrating some kind of contest! When we reached the Olimpic Stadium we found a bar-restaurant where we stopped to have something to eat and a couple of beers! Yeah! We needed some vitamins to keep walking! There is when the waiter explained something that was bothering me since we arrived to Helsinki! For some reason everybody was looking at me and not in a good way! Do you know why? Well, I had been wearing a jacket with flags from Russia, Sweden and Germany.
Shit! Finland had been fighting with them during all its history! On my chest I had a big flag from Sweden!  I already bought a patch with the Finnish flag! :)   In the stadium you find a 72 meters high tower offering a great view over the city.  I believe the ticket was 2 euros per person.

Our next mission was the Temppeliaukio Church. Quite impressive if you are not expecting to find a concert playing inside! It is a church quarried out of the natural bedrock. From the outside does not look attractive at all but the inside is quite amazing. Then we followed Fredrinkatu until we reached Kaivopuisto Brunnsparken. At the time we got there it was already sunset so we stopped in Ursula Cafe to enjoy a nice cappuccino. My girlfriend is next to me and she laughed when I wrote “nice cappuccino”.
Well, she is right, there are no nice cappuccinos in Helsinki! J Coffee is not one of the city´s specialties! It is not tasty and very expensive. The standard price is 3 euros for an expresso coffee…   Around 9pm we went back to the hotel (hasta aquí puedo escribir) :)
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
photo by: portia