Helsinki Travel Guide

  • Helsinki
    by akkipaa
  • Suomenlinna Island & Fortress
    by smirnofforiginal
  • Suomenlinna
    Suomenlinna
    by Andrew_W_K

Helsinki Highlights

  • Pro
    sabsi profile photo

    sabsi says…

     Great architecture, nice port, exotic atmosphere, great nightlife 

  • Con
    Scandic profile photo

    Scandic says…

     Beware, in the winter time, there can be even -30 celcius, I really mean MINUS 

  • In a nutshell
    travelingdanna profile photo

    travelingdanna says…

     cute city, a breath of fresh air after Russia 

Helsinki Things to Do

  • Kauppatori (Market Square & Market Hall)

    Town hall Next to the Market square this is a good restroom spot and they have several fast terminals with free WiFi. Great for us as Internet was 12 euro. Beside making use of the facilities , they have some very interesting art/ photography on display.

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  • Suomenlinna Island & Fortress

    It was Monday and most museums were closed so we decided to take the ferry from Market Square and visit Suomenlinna island (it is actually a group of small islands). It was high on our list anyway. The ferry ride was quick (15’ ride) and surprisingly not very crowded, you just need a regular bus ticket. We got out a bit confused of what to do but...

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  • Tuomiokirkko (The Lutheran Cathedral)

    Lutheran Cathedral It is worth to walk to Senate Square just to see this Cathedral . Finished in 1852 ,It's green dome and 12 apostles look over the square. it is quite simple inside , unlike the Catholic chase deals we are more familiar with. We are sure to take pictures from every side.

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Helsinki Hotels

See all 87 Hotels in Helsinki

Helsinki Restaurants

  • Zetor

    Zetor Mannerheimintie 3 -5 We read about this in our guide book and couldn't resist trying it out. It is indeed touristy but fun and gave us a chance to try some Finnish country food. The place decorated with stuffed deer , and cowsmand a tractor or two and lots of farm house gear from long ago . I had the venison with mashed potatoes and a thin...

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  • Kappeli

    Kappeli (The Chapel) is probably one of the most well known restaurants in Helsinki and it has been operating since 1867. The restaurant's past is full of nationally well-known clientèle including writer Juhani Aho, poet Eino Leino, composer Jean Sibelius as well as artist Akseli Gallen-Kallela. The restaurant still houses the table where Eino...

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  • Lappi

    If you are looking for a traditional Lapland restaurant in Central Helsinki, then look no further. If you could imagine a log cabin in Lapland with excellent service and great food, then Lappi is the place to be. I had personally never been to a restaurant like this before and it was a wonderful experience. I decided that when in Finland, eat like...

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Helsinki Nightlife

See all 273 Nightlife in Helsinki
  • Molly Malones

    Paid 2.50 euro for them to lose my coat, and then swear at me and physically abuse me and a friend when I questioned them about it. A man who wasn't working when I handed over the coat insisted I only gave them a bag, and then when I pointed out that I paid for two of us, he said that we gave them two bags and a coat. After pointing out that he...

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  • Kaarle XII

    This place is really crowded on Thursday nights. The age of the crowd is mostly 30+ and well dressed. The place has 2 levels and the bottom is more of a bar. You can easily make friends here but I found it too crowded to even walk around. Would recommend the place. Well dressed but I think you can wear whatever you like

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  • Tavastia

    Tavastia is the most famous rock-club in Finland.This is the place,where young bands would love to play.It´s so small anyway,that these days there are also spome small young bands playing. Tavastia is kind of home to HIM,one of best (or even the most) known Finnish rock/metal-bands.This is where they began.Every yaer,just before new year-and at new...

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Helsinki Transportation

  • City Public Transport

    Helsinki local transport tickets are valid on trams, buses, metro and local trains that operate within the city limits, as well as the HKL Suomenlinna ferry. Single ticket can be bought from the driver (€2.80), in ticket machines (€2,20, except for tram which is €2). Children's tickets are half of the price of adult tickets. All tickets can be...

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  • Boats & Ferries

    We used the ferry from Stokholm to Helsinki. What a fantastic trip with that big lady making her aay through tge largest archipelago in the world. Entertainment on board was good. Food was fantastic at the buffet dinner. Cabin was nice with great sea view

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  • Helsinki-Vantaa Airport

    WARNING: If you are flying from Helsinki with British Airways you have to print your boarding pass before coming to the airport or you will end up queuing to the TWO (!) check-in desks BA operates at the airport (Terminal 2, last two desks on the right, next to the toilets). I didn't have access to a printer and was in the queue for 45 minutes...

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Helsinki Shopping

See all 208 Shopping in Helsinki
  • Stockmann

    Stockmann is the oldest and biggest department store in Helsinki. It is part of a chain with branches in Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Russia. You get almost everything at Stockmannns, from Finnish souvenirs to cars. There is even a 4-storey Academic bookstore of Stockmann next to the department store.

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  • Forum

    Forum is one of the most famous shopping center in downtown Helsinki. It's big and a renovation has started. They're going to build it bigger and more beautiful inside the building. More shops and restaurants are going to fit in. Forum was established 1985 so it's pretty old. The location is perfect and I really recommend this shopping center for...

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  • Kamppi

    Ruohonjuuri is a lovely shop selling organic fruits and veggies, as well perfumes, candles, juices and so on... If you are traveling with ababy and want to cook him food (like I did) this shop is perfect. Ruohonjuuri is open during the week 10.00 to 21.00. On Saturday it closes at 18.00. SUnday opening times are: 12.00-18.00 Veggies and fruits are...

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Helsinki Local Customs

  • No tipping in Finland (but you can leave...

    I don't actually agree with the 'no tipping' custom. Finnish people might not tip very often, but when they do tip, they show that they liked the food, the place and the service - just like anywhere else in the world. You are not obliged to tip a certain amount (e.g. 10-20%), but as a general rule, I leave about 10% tip, if I am happy with the...

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  • Vappu (1st. of May)

    This is to tell you a little bit about a Finnish tradition called Vappu (the 1st of May). We have big Vappu celebrations over here with dancing in the streets, lots of balloons and funny masks etc. And it's always been a students' day in this country even though workers tried to take over at some point and claim it their day. You can still see the...

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  • Sauna (The Finnish Sauna Society)

    We deliberately chose a hotel with a swimming pool in Helsinki and were shocked to find the pool only opened around 2 hours per day. This is because the pool is part of the sauna experience. Finnish people love relaxing and cleaning themselves in the sauna. The sauna is expensive to run so will only be warmed up for a couple of hours each day....

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Helsinki Warnings and Dangers

  • The Finnish drivers

    Having just returned from Helsinki I didn't realize cars driving extraordinarily fast, and I felt safe on pedestrian crossings. I really don't understand what the people below experienced. Only the bicycle lanes are a bit confusing sometimes and you might find yourself blocking them. Also quite frequently cyclists drive on the sidewalks. That was...

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  • Toilets

    Having a bowel disease, sometimes I need to get the toilet in a rush. Whilst Helsinki is a vibrant, modern city, it's a bit annoying that for some toilets you need to pay (the train station and at least one of the shopping centres) or more commonly, you need a code to access the toilet! This isn't ideal if you desperately need to go, so the safest...

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  • All I can think of them part 1 of 2

    In addition to my general Finland warnings or dangers here's all I can add concerning Helsinki.Animals, insects etc. are no problem except very seldom some pet dog which newer means any harm if you ask the owner (even if it has already bitten and it tries to eat you). Sometimes a lonely moose can be found wondering near the Centrum but that is a...

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Helsinki Tourist Traps

  • Kiasma (The Museum of Contemporary Art)

    This might be a nice modern building, but a waste of money and time if you will get to the exhibitions inside. In the summer, just sit at the terrace café, nice and peaceful place pointing to the west and there fore, lots of sunshine in the afternoon. Any of the other exhibitions in any of the other museums in Helsinki

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  • Linnanmaki Amusement Park

    Okay, it's an attractionpark and it's very close to the city. But that's about it. It's mind of rundown, no atmosphere andn no special attractions. Though not cheap. If you want to go to an attractionpark, better go to some other place (Germany, France, the Netherlands). If you want to do sightseeing in Helsinki, better spend your time enjoying...

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  • Water bus/ferry services to Suomenlinna

    In summertime, you find loads of sightseeing looking like boats (water busses) docked right in front of the Market Square ready to take you to Suomenlinna for a day. Nice you might think - except that they charge you much more than what you would get charged if you took the ferry that the locals take, run by the island's public utility company and...

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Helsinki What to Pack

  • In winter bring warm clothes &...

    The weather is getting more unpredictable everywhere, but traditionally the climate in Helsinki has been transitional between maritime and continental. Summers are mainly hot/warm, with temperatures ranging from cool to hot (15-30°C). The warmest month is July, but in general summer days are mild and sunny, with up to 19 hrs of daylight. It is...

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  • Hot summers, cold winters

    The winter is pretty cold in Helsinki. It doesn't need to be that cold, but colder than in many other countries. The temperature is though warmer in Helsinki than if you go to eastern and northern Finland. The same thing summertime, the coasts are a bit colder. This is because the warmness and coldness is coming from the Asian continent. Finland...

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  • Cold in winter, not that cold in...

    Depending on the length of your stay, bring a comfortable bag with you! In winter: lots and maybe even more of warm clothes, the temperature in Helsinki might get as low as -30... In summer : the temperature isn't necesarrily that high in summer either.. so a couple of long trousers and gardigans could be good. Umbrella is a must in Helsinki as...

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Helsinki Off The Beaten Path

  • The Sibelius Monument

    This monument was created to honour the Finnish composer Jean Sibelius (1865-1957). The designer of the monument was Eila Hiltunen. This monument (called 'Passio Musicae') was one of the first abstract monuments in Finland. The monument lies in the middle of a beautiful green park, and the good thing about this monument is that it is open to...

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  • Vanhankaupunki (old city)

    The city of Helsinki is was founded by Gustavus Vasa, the king of Sweden, more than 450 years ago. He needed the city as a new trading post in southern Finland and a competitor to Tallinn in Estonia. People from Rauma, Ulvila, Porvoo and Tammisaari had to move to Helsinki on the king's request. The date on which this order was issued, 12.6.1550,...

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  • Bodom lake

    Probably the best moment for us in Helsinki was the evening we went for fishing at the Bodom lake!Bodom Lake(Bodominjärvi ) located at north suburbs of Espoo, 25km NW from Helsinki. Although there must be public transport a local friend took us there with his car. It was so relaxing looking at the beautiful landscape, having fun and of course...

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Helsinki Sports & Outdoors

  • Swimming Stadium

    This is my 'must go' place every time I visit Helsinki between the beginning of May and mid-September. It really is unique and I cannot think of anything better to do than start your day by dipping into this awesome heated pool outdoors when the sun is shining... To be honest I'd go there if it wasn't sunny.The Helsinki Swimming Stadium features a...

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  • Hietsu - the place to be on!

    Hietaniemi Beach (Hietsu) is a big beach in Helsinki. The City of Helsinki has a lot of coast lines and also many beaches. Summertime, when it's really hot, the best thing you can do is spending time on a beach, eating ice cream and chilling out with people and friends. Hietsu is the most famous beach in Helsinki and during hot days there is a lot...

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  • Hietaniemi beach

    The beach (also known as 'Hietsu') is one of the few sandy beaches located near the centre of the town. It is rather disappointing place if you expect fine golden sand since the sand on the main beach is mainly coarse whereas some fine sand has been brought over to the part of the beach where local beach volley ball club has set up its beach volley...

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Helsinki Favorites

See all 194 Favorites in Helsinki
  • Internet Cafe Facilities

    There are many locations where the visitor can check his or her email. These range from clothes/fashion shops, book stores, museums and the main post office. Generally these are free of charge facilities, with a time limit of between 15-20 minutes.However my preference is to pay for a computer at MBAR.check out: http://mbar.fi/(phone) +358 9...

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  • Around the Market Square

    One of my fondest and earliest memories of the city is that I'm sat down on the steps next the Helsinki Cathedral on a beautiful summer day, snacking on sweet sugar snaps and strawberries that my parent had just bought at the outdoor market next to the sea. I must have been under 5. Every time I visit Helsinki in summer, I still go and buy these...

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  • AN UP AND DOWN DAY - BUT AT LEAST I GOT...

    I knew I was going to end up here, I just didn’t realise the rest of the story!I was looking for a flight from England to Tallinn, Estonia. I was new to the internet, but a ridiculously low price came up with a telephone number to ring of a travel agent. Not only was it really that price, but on Finnair as well! I could not believe my luck. I gave...

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Explore Deeper into Helsinki
Uspenski Orthodox Church
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Temppeliaukio (Rock) Church
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Linnanmaki Amusement Park
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City Bikes
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Olympic stadium
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Finnair
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