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Without a doubt, my favourite area of Helsinki was the Esplanadi. It is a beautiful stretch of two streets known as Pohjoisesplanadi (North Esplanade) and Eteläesplanadi (South Esplanade), separated by luscious greenery and a cute, little water fountain served by 2 open-mouthed seals (you'll see). The buildings that are found on the right hand side walking north are an architectural wet dream. So much so, you could easily be in Paris, Milan, Barcelona, etc. The Cafe Kappeli found near the water fountain, adds to the chilled atmosphere which is great place to unwind and just watch people go by on a hot summer's day (yes, it can get hot in Helsinki!). I wish my girlfriend and I had had a chance to try it out, but unfortunately we didn't have time.
As a bonus, the eastern ends leads you to the Market Square which is great place to buy fresh fish, homemade jams and other local delights by the port. From here, you can catch boats to the little islands which are dotted about and can be seen from the Market Square itself.
Why not buy a nice little treat, then head back to the Esplanadi to chill out, soaking up the southern European atmosphere, coupled with the charm of being a stone's throw from the Baltic Sea? That's hopefully what I'll be doing this summer!
- National/State Park
Great For Window Shopping
We walked along the park which parallels this ...a nice break for the feet ,to walk on a gravel path .. Then we crossed the street to walk along this upscale road and do some window shopping.I especially loved taking a look at the 2000.00 euro. hand bags at Louis Vuitton .
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The Esplanade Park & Boulevard
It is said that the Esplanade, constructed in the 1800's, served as a political dividing line of sorts when certain inhabitants of the country could not decide whether the Finnish or Swedish language should dominate!!
Proponents of the Finnish viewpoint ambled on the south side (Etelaesplanadi) while the Swedish-speaking Finns did so on the north side (Pohjoisesplanadi). Happily, this is no longer the case. This beautiful park runs between the north & south sides of the boulevard, beginning at the harbor and ending at the Swedish Theatre and today the park is a joy to those fortunate enough to visit it. We visited some of the market stalls near the harbor end before taking a stroll along the Esplanade's length. With its excellent location putting it within walking distance of some of Helsinki's favorite tourist attractions, it is a very popular place.
The Esplanade itself is a very wide, pea-gravel walkway lined with trees, foliage, flowers and seating areas. At night elegant street lamps illuminate the walk way and statuary in this beautiful area. In the Summer there are free jazz concerts and in December the traditional Christmas Market appears.
The Esplanade is not only a grand place for a beautiful afternoon stroll but also is adjacent to some of the finest hotels, restaurants and shops in Helsinki. Marimekko alone has 3 shops on the boulevard and Scandinavia's largest department store, Stockmann's will more than delight all true shoppers. You'll also find the upscale Savoy restaurant, and the historic "Kappeli" restaurant which is famous for its "Sibelius" menu featuring smoked artic char and beetroot mousse. For a little nightlife, try the hip Teatteri restaurant, bar and nightclub occupying the same building as the Swedish Theater. Don't forget the upscale Finnish souvenir shops along the way, but bring plenty of Euros for any shop you might slip into.
Esplanadi (and Havis Amanda)
The Champs Elysee of Helsinki with a park area in the middle, flanked by neo-renaissance buildings on both sides, containing some of the most expensive shops and cafés. You wil find ice cream parlours and cafés in this park as well as a couple of fountains and monuments. One of them is dedicated to the poet Johan Ludvig Runeberg who wrote the text later used in the Finnish national anthem („Maamme“). A fountain, showing a mermaid, is known as Havis Amanda (1908) and is regarded as a sylmbol of the city. She receives a graduation hat when the students of nearby Helsinki University celebrate their graduation. Kids love to ride the seals on each square of the fountain.
Stretching between Pohjoisesplanadi (North Esplanade) and Eteläesplanadi (South Esplanade) streets, Esplanadi Park is THE place where everyone seems to gather when the weather is nice. It runs from Erottaja Square (at Mannerheimintie) to the Market Square and is host to outdoor concerts, special events and exhibitions, as well as hundreds of people lazing around picnicking and eating ice cream.
At its eastern extremity, near the Market Square, you will find Helsinki's most famous statue: Havis Amanda, a charming naked mermaid surrounded by four sea lions. She is said to increase men's sexual performance; all you have to do is wash your face with water from the fountain and shout "Rakastaa!" (Finnish word for "Love") three times.
You will also find many cafes, shops and restaurants on either side of Esplanadi Park. If you want to beat to the rhythm of Helsinki, this is certainly a good place to start.
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Esplanade Park was a really nice park, located between two main streets and surrounded by beautiful Neo-Renaissance buildings, which replaced the old wooden houses in the latter half of the 19th century. One of the best, is the Kamp Hotel on the corner of Kluuvikatu.
We walked the whole length of the street, and saw many statues of Finnish Poets.
There were plenty of Cafes and shops, and when we were there, they were setting up for a concert. The park has plenty of lawn and benches to sit on, plus ice-cream kiosks.
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Referred to as Esplanadi, this wide avenue with a park in the middle is the living heart of Helsinki. In fact, it consists of two avenues, Pohjoisesplanadi, (i.e., "North Esplanade") and Eteläesplanadi ("South Esplanade") and they run east-west from Market Square ( Kauppatori) to Erottaja Square. The park and the avenues were created during the 19th century urban development that turned Helsinki into the city it is today. Belle Epoque buildings thus line the sides of the Esplanade and include some of the city's most expensive real estate and shopping. As one would expect, the park becomes alive with activity during the short warmer months in Helsinki.
In summer the Esplanadi is a long pedestrian garden where everyone seems to be: it’s full of people and buzzing with activities: concerts, mimes, people having a chat, a picnic and/or a beer… It also has a couple of cafès and restaurants. The park was originally opened in 1812 and officially it is made of two gardens. The Pohjoisesplanadi (Finnish for the North Esplanade Street) and Eteläesplanadi (Finnish for the South Esplanade street).
In the park there is a statue and a fountain: the statue is that of Johan Ludwig Runeberg, a well-known Finnish poet who wrote in Swedish verses about life in rural Finland whereas the fountain is the Havis Amanda fountain, was sculpted by Ville Vallgren, which represents a bronze maiden who standing on seaweed surrounded by four spouting sea lions (or seals)
Laid out by Engel in 1812 Esplanadi consists of 2 broad parallel streets separated by a green area. This is a popular promenade, it is a great place to sit & relax too. In the summer months there are plenty of concerts & open-air shows here. The area is surrounded by bars, restaurants & shops.
As I visited Helsinki in mid summer I especially enjoyed being here late at night when it just didn't get totally dark.
The Esplanadi park is located in the centre of Helsinki, between two streets the northern Esplanadi and the southern Esplanadi. The park is opened in 1812.
In the middle of the park, you can find a statue of Johan Ludwig Runeberg. His name can´t be found on the statue, but you find the lyrics to our national anthem. Runebergs famous work was an epic poem Vänrikki Stoolin tarinat, it tells of the Finnish war with Russia in 1808-1809. The first poem "Maamme" (Our land), became the Finnish national anthem.
In summer time Esplanadi park is filled with people sitting on the grass having picnic or just enjoying the sun.
Helsinki harbour and the market square are just 10-15 min walk from the statue of Runeberg.
- Arts and Culture
- Family Travel
Enjoy a Beautiful Summer Day at Esplanad Park
Perfect way to start is to go to Kauppatori and buy some fresh, sweet Finnish strawberries, peas, cherries or an ice cream and go to sit on a bench in Esplanadi Park and just watch to world go by. There is a statue of a lady called Havis Amanda just next to Kauppatori so you know that you are going to right direction. After a while you can have a class of beer or wine either in Kappeli or Teatteri terrace.
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This is the place to go if you're after luxury shopping, people watching or just going for a leisurely stroll.
The Esplanade park stretches from Kauppatori westwards to the busy Mannerheimintie street and is flanked by two streets with expensive shops, restaurants and cafés.
In summer concerts are frequently held in the park.
- Luxury Travel
Esplanadi Park (Esplanadipuisto)
Esplanadi Park (Esplanadipuisto) is located to the West from the Kauppatori square. The park is framed with streets Pohjoisesplanadi and Etalasesplanadi, built up with buildings in style of the neo-Renaissance in the second half of the XIX century. K.Engel and J.Erenstryom were the authors of a lay-out of the park in 1812.
The park accepted the modern view in 1831. The oldest lindens were planted in 1840. The park is a favourite place of walks of the townspeople and tourists. The restaurant "Chapel " (ravintola Kapeli) with a summer terrace is located in the east part of the park. There are many small ponds decorated by figures of boys of fishers and nymphs.
- Arts and Culture
Esplanadi, or Esplanaden in Swedish is actually the name for two streets and the park between them. The two streets which make up the Esplanadi are Pohjoisesplanadi (the northern street), and Eteläesplanadi (the southern street).
I have read that the boulevard was once a political dividing line, with Finnish-speaking Finns walking on the south side and Swedish-speaking Finns on the north side.
There are plenty of cafes lining Esplanadi, allowing you plenty of choice as to where you want to sit and watch the world go by.
One of the enjoyable parts of our time in Helsinki was wandering down Esplandi. There were plenty of places to sit, lot's of street entertainers for the kids, and this fountain to cool off from the hot sun. At the end of the street, near the water, there is some fantastic food stands with fresh food.
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