I visited Helsinki for a first time in my life, and it instantly became my favourite city. I loved the atmosphere of the city, and the fact that it was not so busy as other capital cities I have visited.
I was travelling with my boss because we decided to go on trip together one beautiful evening during March this year Short story about why I’m going to Scandinavia in May The truth is, we got a little drunk that evening, and thought this trip will be such a brilliant idea. Well, in the end, it was.
During this evening we booked absolutely everything because we found out the flight tickets from Prague to Helsinki, Helsinki – Oslo and Oslo to Prague were all together only 160 euros! It would be almost a crime not to buy it. We checked the tickets on skyscanner, and were lucky to find such a good deal.
When we arrived to the airport we took a train to the main train station. It’s very easy to find, and very convenient. The train is called HSL train, and cost 10 euros one way. Metro system is also very easy to understand, and you can use it all the time if you buy a travel day ticket. The ticket is also valid for all transportation within the city.
Hint – it’s always good to check the right street address, because sometimes they can be quiet similar, and you can end up, at the different side of the city, as we did. But with the metro, it’s not a problem to get back where you need to be.
Eventually we arrived to our SATO HotelHome apartment on Kristianinkatu. We were very pleased with the apartment because it is in the city centre, and we could walk (almost) everywhere. The cost of the apartment was just under 300 euros for two people for 4 nights, and I found it through booking.com
The first evening we went for a stroll around our neighbourhood, and it was so charming I didn’t want to get back, and sleep. What a waste of time that was (sleeping).
Short story time – We couldn’t find our way back to the apartment, and looked quiet lost. One man stopped us and asked if we needed any help. Then he walked up the street with us, to show us where his apartment was, and he offered us to go for a coffee to his place. It was 10pm in the evening so we kindly refused.
The architecture of the churches is breathtaking. Uspenski Cathedral is one of them which we visited and it is located on Kavanakatu, and you can see it from every side when you walk around the harbour. It is the largest Orthodox church in Western Europe.
The next day we explored the whole city centre by foot. We also visited Helsinki Cathedral which was built during 1824 – 1826. This church is suppose to look like is all made from snow. When we were in the city there was a festival of gospel music going on there. Many people were on the square, and on the stairs of the building, and were singing gospel songs. I’m not much of a fan of churches or gospel music, but even I had to admit it was nice.
We were so lucky later that day because there was a restaurant day going on, and we could taste some Finish streetfood. Saying that, we ate a chinese food because it just looked too delicious.
Restaurant day was an event where all the owners could have a stand anywhere on the street of Helsinki, and people could try their food. It was brilliant.
During the same day we also visited Hiataniemi beach, which is not as small as I thought. It was nice to feel the sand under my feet after a long time. I think I liked it more when it was 20 degrees outside, and not so many people. We were also quite tired of all day walking, and busy city centre, so it was a nice break.
Helsinki is definitely very different from other capital cities I have visited. I think that it is not the typical big capital city where everyone is rushing to get somewhere, streets are full of people, garbage everywhere, and noise. This was much more calmer, and much more nicer. There is something for everybody. Culture, and history, many galleries, but also a part of the city called Kallio where I heard are good parties.