4 Helsinki Design Museum If theres one thing the


center_img 6. Uspenski CathedralWant to see Helsinki from on high? Head to this Eastern Orthodox Church set on a hilltop overlooking the city, harbour and the Baltic Sea beyond. It’s a pretty sight itself, decked out in the ornate architectural style and capped with gold domes that give more than a hint of Finland’s past as a Russian outpost. Look inside to admire the richly decorated and colourful vaults, altars and cupolas, and Byzantine detailing, unlike anything you’ll see in Western Europe.Opening times: Mon to Fri 9:30am – 4pm, Sat & Sun 12pm – 3pm, closed on Mondays between Oct and AprilLocation: Pormestarinrinne 1, Katajanokka peninsulaPrice: Free 12. Seurasaari Open-Air MuseumOne of many islands that make up Helsinki’s archipelago, Seurasaari is a gorgeous oasis of green in the Baltic Sea. Though it’s a beautiful spot to explore on your own, visitors tend to come for the open-air museum dedicated to preserving traditional Finnish life, featuring farm and cottage buildings taken from all over the country, and demonstrating architectural styles spanning four centuries. *Opening times:** (15 to 31 May & 1 to 15 Sept) Mon to Fri 9am – 3pm, Sat & Sun 11am – 5pm. (June to Aug) Mon to Sun 11am – 5pmLocation: SeurasaariPrice: Adults (summer) €9, (May & Sept) €6. Children 7-17yrs €3 Search for flights to Helsinki1. Eat a reindeerReindeer have been a staple part of the traditional Finnish diet since time immemorial, along with fish, game and berries. And they’re delicious, too. In fact Finnish cuisine is delicious full stop, and the standard of food in restaurants across the city is top-notch… along with the prices. That said, it’s generally no more expensive to eat out here than in an upscale London restaurant; a particular recommendation is Ravintola Aino, which serves traditional Finnish food, including reindeer, with a modern twist. 14. AteneumThis elegant white building on Rautatientori Square houses part of the Finnish National Gallery’s collection of national and international art. The Ateneum is the best place to get a handle on the accomplished back catalogue of Finnish art, often overlooked in European art circles, with more than 4300 paintings and 750 sculptures, as well as special exhibitions on graphic artists, architects and designers.*Opening times:** Tue/Fri 10am – 6pm; Weds/Thurs 10am – 8pm, Sat/Sun 10am – 5pm; closed MondaysLocation: Rautatientori Square, Kaivokatu 2Price: Adults €15, Concessions €13, Under 18s free 2. Suomenlinna FortressSuomenlinna is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that makes for a fun day trip. For a start, it’s a sea fortress, spread across five islands and only reachable by ferry (don’t worry, it’s only ten minutes from the city!). Construction on the fortress was begun in 1758 by the Swedes (who occupied Finland at the time) as a defence against the Russians. Nowadays, it’s a popular picnicking spot for Finns, as well as the location for a number of artists’ studios, an arts centre and even a theatre. Clambering around the canons, tunnels and fortifications is enormous fun for the young at heart…and did we mention that there’s a WWII submarine you can go inside? Guided walks are offered in English on Saturday and Sunday so it’s perfect for weekend breaks in Helsinki. See the website for opening times of individual museums. 13. Sibelius MonumentHelsinki’s unusual attractions continue, with this abstract sculpture dedicated to Finnish composer Jean Sibelius, created in 1967. It’s worth a look to marvel at more than 600 steel pipes constructed in a light, organic form by artist Eila Hiltunen, mirroring the nearby trees in Sibelius Park.last_img

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