Our first impressions of Helsinki are......... fabulous!!! We arrived from Rome yesterday afternoon fully prepared for temperatures to drop to mid teens but actually it is perfect mid 20's. We have this great little apartment near the city centre, fully self contained... including a washing machine (yay! ). Grabbed ourselves some supplies for breakfast etc. and then walked into the city centre - about 15 minutes - as we had to collect our Helsinki Card in the morning and wanted to find where the ticket office was. (The Helsinki Card gives us access to all public transport, 2 bus tours, a boat tour plus other discounts for entry etc. ) This city is beautiful - it was 10.30pm and still light - and clean, except for the ever present cigarette butt- yuk!
Good sleep in this morning, beautiful sunny day again, and walked into town to get Helsinki Card. Started with the Panorama bus tour which orientated us with the city. It only makes one stop at the Rock Church (has a long name) which has been built into a blasted out rock and the ceiling is a mixture of copper and glass. Looks amazing. After our drive around the city we had lunch by the waterfront and dined on a bit of Rudolf and Bullwinkle - yep! Reindeer burger and moose meat pie. Actually tasted pretty good (No, not like chicken!)
We checked out two of the large churches in the area - the large white Lutheran Helsinki Cathedral and the equally large red brick with shiny golden orbs Russian Orthodox church - before going on the boat cruise around the many islands around Helsinki harbour. Very enjoyable day with a other one tomorrow and the weather promising to be sunny and warm again.Read more