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Finland

Few places on the earth remain as unspoiled yet as cosmopolitan as Finland. Those looking for outdoor adventure should head north to Finland’s Lapland region; those wanting the amenities of a modern city should visit Helsinki.

Travel to Finland

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Founded in the mid 1500’s, Helsinki has been appropriately nicknamed the “Daughter of the Baltic” and was named the capital city in 1812. The Russian czar again built the city to resemble St. Petersburg. A cosmopolitan city that still retains the old-world charm, it is a tourist destination. Aside from the architecture, culture, dining venues, and shopping venues, one of the main tourist attractions are Helsinki’s most visited museums. The following will give you an idea of the better ones to visit while vacationing in the city.

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Helsinki is guilty of hiding its light under a bushel as its main attractions are little known outside Finland itself. However, the city is becoming more and more popular with visitors due to its easy transport links with the rest of Europe.

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Helsinki is the beautiful cultural, economic, and political capital of Finland. There are a wide variety of things to do and see while visiting the city. Here are the top 5 things to do/see, although be aware that some things are seasonal.

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Most of Helsinki’s best shopping malls can be found in the city centre, often a short walk from each other. Many of the shops in the biggest shopping centres are open until late in the evening, most are open all day on Saturday, and some also open on Sundays between 12 and 6 pm. If you have come to Finland from outside the European Union, look for the Tax Free sign for tax free shopping.

Helsinki Finland Mall

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Helsinki, Finland has a busy nightclub scene, an enthusiastic salsa scene, and even places for good old ballroom dancing.

Dancing Venues Helsinki

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Helsinki is famous for its huge selection of pubs and bars and for the late opening hours. New stylish cocktail bars have appeared in recent years and for beer connoisseurs Helsinki has several interesting microbreweries. The downside is that drinking in Helsinki is rarely cheap.

Dancing Helsinki

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Aside from spiralling national debt and the inability of anyone earning a normal wage to get a mortgage, one of the main problems with the global economic downturn, for intrepid travellers at least, is having less money to spend on exploring far away places.

Helsinki

But being a bit strapped for cash doesn’t mean you have to miss out on visiting those places you’ve always dreamed about. As long as you can afford the price of your airfare, the creative traveller will always find a way to make what little money they have last.

Finland is one of the cheaper destinations among the Scandinavian countries and there are plenty of things to do in its charming capital city, Helsinki, that will cost you absolutely nothing. read full article

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Pampering is a relatively new concept in Helsinki. Saunas, swimming pools and health resorts have always existed in Finland, but international-style day spas have only recently appeared in Helsinki.

Spa

Via Spa at Helsinki Airport

The Via Spa serves passengers at the Helsinki-Vantaa international airport and is created especially for passengers in transfer and on long-haul flights. The Via Spa has several saunas including a steam room and a traditional Finnish sauna with views of airport runways, a Turkish hammam bath and a pool. read full article

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Ice skating is one of the most popular wintertime activities in Helsinki. Skating in Helsinki is easy and fun, as most of the ice skating rinks in Helsinki are free or very cheap. As well as the free and low-cost local ice skating rinks, you can try skating in the Helsinki Ice Park on the Railway Station square (right by the main train station).

helsinki ice skating

The Helsinki Ice Park

The centrally located Ice Park has been an annual event in Helsinki ever since 2006. The Ice Park takes over the railway station square in late November and stays open until March. The €5 ticket (or €2 for kids) gives you access to the ice for a whole day. Skates can be hired and if you have never skated before, skating lessons are offered too. You can even borrow a helmet for the kids (for free). The Ice Park also has a café for hot drinks and snacks. read full article

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Helsinki is a small city but has a vibrant nightlife. Most pubs, bars, clubs in Helsinki stay open until 2 to 4 am, and there are late night clubs, concerts, events and gigs almost every night of the week.

nightlife in helsinki

The age limit to enter Helsinki’s bars and clubs can be anywhere between 18 and 24. On weekends many clubs have a minimum age of at least 20. Ordinary bars and pubs generally keep the age limit at 18. read full article

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The variety and quality of Helsinki restaurants has increased in recent years and there are now several restaurants in Helsinki with Michelin Stars. Helsinki restaurants include traditional Finnish and Russian restaurants, as well as excellent seafood restaurants and surprisingly good international cuisine.

eat in helsinki

Fine Dining in Finland

Chez Dominique is the only restaurant in Finland to receive two precious Michelin stars. read full article

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Helsinki has several well-maintained public indoor pools, and popular outdoor pools open in the summer months. Most pools have one or more saunas, and many also have professional massage therapists in the premises for sports massages. Entrance fees are generally around 3 to 4 Euros. Here are some of the best swimming pools in Helsinki.

Helsinki beaches

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In the land of the Midnight Sun, 24 hours of daylight means round the clock partying.

Ruisrock 2007

Summer in Finland is short but filled with festivals from the smallest local events to the big rock festivals that attract tens of thousands of visitors. There is tango, there… read full article

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Scandinavia is a collective name for Norway, Sweden and Denmark – the countries located in the Scandinavian Peninsula. Some reports also include Finland and Iceland in the list.

Originally a Viking region, Scandinavia slowly converted to Christianity around 1000 AD. With Christianity came the celebration of Christmas… read full article

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