- This itinerary is the perfect introduction to Helsinki.
- It includes 3-days of the best sights in and around the city, helping you see the best of the city and experience real Finnish culture.
- Visit the places the locals love.
- Eat and drink where the locals go.
- Includes maps and pictures of the main sights to help prevent you getting lost.
Sights and places you'll see with this itinerary
- See the main sights in Helsinki: Senator square, Market Square, Train Station Square, Sibelius park, and much more.
- Visit the stunning Temple Church carved into the rock underground
- Ride the trams like a local
- Eat amazing Finnish food; some street food, some in sit-down restaurants
- Visit a real Finnish sauna
- Have a drink on board the pub tram
- Drink and eat where the locals go
- Visit the sea fortress of Suomenlinna, a fortification on an island of the coast of Helsinki
- Try some of the non-Finnish, eastern block cuisines such as Russian and Ukrainian that Helsinki is famous for
- Visit the beautiful inner city Kaivopuisto Park with stunning ocean views that the locals adore
- Stroll and shop on the Esplanade, Helsinki's high-end shopping street where Finland's top design shops can be found
- Visit Porvoo, a picturesque traditional Finnish village with winding cobbled streets and old wooden houses
- Go ice skating in the centre of Helsinki
- Tips for travelling in the different seasons
- Ideas for further places to visit if you have more time in Helsinki
- Plus much more!
The Main Focus of this itinerary:
- Laying out the exact details of what to do in Helsinki.
- Clear maps and instructions for walking or using public transport.
- Clear and specific directions to each of the destinations. What to see when there and places to explore.
- The directions are supplemented with pictures and maps as well to further reduce your chances of getting lost!
- Recommendations on where to eat and drink, with recommendations on foods to try and establishments clearly marked on maps.
Why You Should Buy The Guide
- Saves you time by not needing to do additional research on Helsinki!
- Helps you see the top destinations without wasting time wandering around lost and confused.
- Gives you a good all round experience of Helsinki with some tourist destinations, some out of city must see destinations and some places loved by the locals.
- Helps you experience real Finnish and eastern block food without paying ridiculous prices.
What does the itinerary include?
- 53-page PDF document
- Numerous pictures pointing to key landmarks to help you get where you need to go, as well as maps with walking routes clearly marked.
- Seasonal tips to make Helsinki enjoyable in both summer and winter.
Itinerary Table of Contents:
- How to Use This Guide
- The 3-days in Helsinki itinerary -- I provide a detailed itinerary with activities, times and specific instructions.
- Transportation Tips on getting around Helsinki.
- Helpful Finnish phrases
- Other Place to See -- If you've got extra time in Helsinki, I highlight and recommend different places that didn't make the cut into the 3-day itinerary.
Sample From the Itinerary This is a sample of the itinerary. The actual itinerary includes additional pictures and maps.
Suomenlinna Sea Fortress
Finland has just under 180,000 islands and Suomenlinna is probably the most popular of them all. Located a few kilometres off the coast of Helsinki, Suomenlinna Sea Fortress is an eighteenth century fortress built across five islands and accessible by frequent ferry all year round.
Suomenlinna is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and as well as visitor attraction is home to around 850 inhabitants. As well as the fortress itself there are museums, a prison, a submarine, gardens, shops, cafes and restaurants, as well as lots of places to wander and explore. It even has its own brewery producing tasty, if a little pricey, beer.
- There is a lot of walking involved in a visit to Suomenlinna and the fortress itself is cobbled and be quite steep in places; comfortable shoes are recommended, high heels are not.
Tips for summer visiting
- The ferry leaves from Market Square and if it's a nice day it's a good idea to visit the market beforehand and buy a picnic to take with you. There are plenty of picnic tables and open green spaces to eat outside with wonderful ocean views.
- On warm days there are plenty of opportunities to get in the sea for a swim or splash about. Take a swimming suit and towels.
Tips for winter visiting
- Many of the museum and attractions are closed or operate under shortened opening hours during the winter but even when the museums are closed, the island and the fortress itself are still worth visiting. It is advisable to check what is and isn't open before leaving at the following link (link added to itinerary).
- Dress warm. It can get quite cold out there in the winter.
- Bring a bottle of water. During the winter months some of the cafes are closed and with all the walking involved you can get quite dehydrated. The map that can be bought from the tourist office on the island (marked on map below) for 2€ shows which cafes and restaurants are open out of season. That information is not included here due to possible changes.
Getting to Suomenlinna
Price: 3.50€ return ferry ticket
Duration: 15 minutes
Address: Market Square
Website: (link included in itinerary).
(map of market square with tram and ferry stops marked)
A frequent ferry runs from the port at Market Square (#1 on map) to Suomenlinna. There are two boats that leave from the market square to Suomenlinna, for the purposes of this guide it is better to get the Ferry that leaves from #2 on the map and not the Water Bus that leaves from #3.
Time tables can be found at the link above. Monday to Friday, the ferry leaves at 10.00, and Saturday and Sunday at 10.10. It takes 15 minutes and runs frequently, if you miss one ferry don't worry, there will be another along soon.
You need to buy your ticket before boarding the ferry. You can get them either from the machines at Market Square or (during the summer between 9am and 6pm) from the kiosk next to the ferry quay (#2 on map).
Ferries run year round, in the winter months a channel is cut through the ice on the frozen sea to allow to ferry to pass. Tip for winter visiting
During the winter why not take the ferry over and walk back across the frozen sea like many of the locals do. It's not a very long walk, a couple of kilometers, and walking over a frozen sea is certainly an unusual experience.
Who is this guide for?
First (maybe second) time visitors to Helsinki.
Don't Forget: Have an amazing vacation, guaranteed! -- If you're not happy with the tour itinerary, Unanchor will gladly refund your money. (See below for additional details.)
Photo Credit: Timo_w2s (http://www.flickr.com/photos/timo_w2s/3741668621/)