Whilst Helsinki can proudly boast a fusion atmosphere of new and edgy lifestyles and design with a traditional flair; Helsinki leaves a lot to be desired in the ‘consistent summer weather’ department. In the case that you’re after sun-laden bikini photos amongst other tanned holiday-goers, perhaps Helsinki shouldn’t be at the top of the ‘to travel‘ list.
For all that Helsinki is not (primarily not being a sunny nation), Helsinki offers many unconventional attractions.
An attraction with plenty of charm is the distinct means of popular public transport when travelling between Estonia to Finland (arguably was a worthwhile adventure in itself). Cruising between the two nations allowed me to experience some of the most awe-inspiring sunrises and sundown I have been blessed enough to experience. Cruising is a notoriously common means of travel for residents and tourists alike, so much so that many workers of Finland reside in Estonia and rely on cruise ships as a means of daily transportation to and from work (talk about a rough day in the office?!). These cruises depart at consistent intervals and feature services that appeal to everyone and anyone, including live karaoke shows, casinos, sports bars, buffet breakfasts and duty-free shopping.
Once land is reached, it becomes apparent why the Finnish are known to be peaceful people – appreciatiors of solitude and personal reflection. This sentiment is evident through various venues the Finns frequent where silence is mandated to ensure personal and religious reflections can be facilitated, practiced within the Kamppi Chapel of Silence. Whilst these attractions are divisive with tourists, the Finns are unapologetic about the introverted individuality of the nation’s capital.
In the evenings the streets of Market Square on the South Harbour of Helsinki is illuminated with lights and enthusiasms of business operators along the pictureesque harbour. Market square is a handling place for souveneirs, leathers, furs and regional foods. Merely a couple hundred metres up the street trade international designer brands before a picturesque park – and that is exactly what Helsinki Finland is; a melting pot of vast differences that somehow works harmoniously to shape the aura and identity of the nation’s capital.
While Helsinki can seem a younger sibling to the Scandinavian capitals, it’s the one that went to art school, scorns pop music and works in a cutting-edge studio. The design scene here is one of the most electrifying in the world today, with boutiques, workshops and galleries proliferating in the Design District, Helsinki’s thoroughfares and intriguing backstreets. The city’s foodie scene is also flourishing, with hip eateries offering locally sourced tasting menus, craft-beer bars, coffee roasteries and microdistilleries popping up at dizzying speed.