Top 7 Things To Do In Helsinki
Helsinki is the largest city of Finland and its capital. It is also the most populated urban area in Finland. It has proximate historical ties with three of its neighboring cities – Tallinn, Stockholm and Saint Petersburg. Helsinki is the major city of Finland in different aspects like politics, education, culture and finance. Most importantly Helsinki was selected by International Council of Societies of Industrial Design as a World Design Capital for 2012. The city also hosted 1952 summer Olympics. Initially, the city was established as a trade center by King Gustav I in 1550 and was intended to act as a rival to the nearby city of Tallinn.
Helsinki didn’t prosper and was haunted by poverty, wars, and diseases. Most of the population was killed during the plague of 1710. It was only after the defeat of Sweden by Russia in the Finnish war that the town began to prosper predominantly. Helsinki once served as a Finnish Capital because Russians wanted to reduce Swedish influence in it and they also wanted the Capital as near as possible to Saint Petersburg. The city also had the Royal Academy of Turku which is now known as the University of Helsinki. Most of the downtown area of the city was rebuilt in a neoclassical style to make it look like Saint Petersburg. Helsinki is also considered a global gateway to and from Finland and is representative of more than 140 nationalities.
Here is a list of top seven things when you are visiting Helsinki:
Finnish National Museum of Art (Ateneum)
Ateneum – Finnish national museum of art – is located in the south of Station Square. It is called Ateneum because of the neo-classical building which it occupies. This is the same building which houses Finnish Academy of Arts. It was designed by Theodore Hoiger and was completed in 1887. It contains one of the best collections of different historical artworks as well as contemporary. The museum contains works of many giants like Rembrandt’s Monk Reading and Vincent Van Gogh’s Street in Auvers-sur-Oise. Apart from these the museum also contains 650 other international works of art. At the entrance, there is a big bronze statue of Albert Adelfelt made by V. Vallgren. Make sure to check the website of the museum because there are many days when entry is free. Apart from paintings it also contains different graphic designs and sculptures from 17th, 18th and 19th century. The overall collection including paintings and other things is said to be more than 20000.
Finland hall is located on the shores of Toolo bay. It is a hootenannies hall designed by Albert Aalto and was completed in 1971. White marble is used inside and outside the structure. The main focus of the hall is concert auditorium which is famous for its acoustics. Another notability is a staircase which leads from ground to both music hall and auditorium. This is the place where final act of the Conference on Security and Cooperation was signed in 1975. In the north, there is a large park which contains varied chess pieces and boards.
Alesanterinkatu Street is famous for its shopping centers and is present in the heart of the city. It is a commercial street with lots of cafes, shopping centers, Stockholm Department and restaurants all available in a single place. If you are looking for a discount on any of these checkout Groupon.
It is located on the south haven where Esplanade Park starts. This is one of the most famous open-aired tourists’ spots in Helsinki and is known for its local craftsmanship. This place is also known for Souvenirs which most people buy as a remembrance of a visit to this place.
Helsinki has more than 310 islands with a coastline more than 100 kilometers. Hietaniemi is the most famous beach; both visitors and native alike frequently visit this place during summers. It is a good calm place also known as “Copacabana of Helsinki”. People come here for the enjoyment of warm summer days, volleyball, and other picnic trips.
Temppeliaukio Church also known as “the rock church” was built in 1969 and was designed by two brothers Timo and Tuomo Suomalainen. It is one of the most famous architectural sights in Finland. It is an underground church built from a massive granite rock in the middle of an ordinary residential area. The church has a copper roof which shines when the sun rays appear. This church is also used for concerts because of the best quality of its acoustics.
This is one of the biggest fortresses of the world and was built during the Swedish rule to protect the city from Russia. Nowadays it is a famous tourist spot in Helsinki with lots of cafes and restaurants. The visitor center located in the middle of the fortress is the point where information regarding museum is available and one can explore museum starting from this point.
Note: This is a guest post from Frank on the Top 7 Things to do in Helsinki. This blog was recently included in the Top 50 Travel Blogs To Follow by Frank, thank you again. Hope you readers enjoy the post! Safe travels.