Day 1.  My Journey to Helsinki

The start of our summer holidays and whilst most Britsh families head south to the Mediterranean we always head north to Finland.  You may find this somewhat strange but actually southern Finland generally enjoys warm sunny weather during the summer months, warm enough for trips to the beach and for swimming in the crystal clear …

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Day 2.   Tapiola the Garden City

A leisurely start to the day after arriving here late last night.  Waking to warm sunshine after so many cold days at home was just what was needed.  Our holiday home overlooks a sheltered bay where the air is fresh and all around it's so peaceful and green.  I call it my 'summer paradise' as …

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Day 3.  A Day in Tallinn, Estonia

During the night we experienced a thunderstorm with heavy rain but thankfully it had passed by morning although it was a dull start to the day.  After an early breakfast we travelled into Helsinki in order to take the 8.30 am Eckerö Line ferry across to Tallinn in Estonia.  Over the years we've made many …

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Day 4.  A Nature Trail from Oulunkylä to Arabianranta

After taking the bus into Helsinki this morning we walked across to the Central Railway Station and travelled the short distance to Oulunkylä from where we started our nature trail (local trains are included in the regional travel pass).  The gravel path passes the ornate pink Oulunkylä Seurahuone (a cafe, but currently closed for renovation) …

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Day 5. Exploring Helsinki

A brighter start to the day so after breakfast we took a bus into Kamppi and our first stop this morning was to the Laituri museum just across the square from the bus station.  This museum houses Helsinki City Planning Department's exhibitions and on display at the moment is an exhibition on cycling in the city so …

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Day 6.  Lauttasaari – Ferry Island

Back to sunshine this morning so we decided to take a walk around Lauttaasaari Island which lies between Espoo and Helsinki.  Lauttasaari means 'ferry island' but nowadays the island is connected to the mainland by a series of bridges and causeways. Today is National Poet's Day, and whenever it's a National Day in Finland, Finnish …

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Day 7.  Helsinki Rocks !

A sunny day in the capital so our first stop this morning was to the Helsinki University Botanical Garden in Kaisaniemi not far from the city's Central Railway Station.   Since our last visit two years ago the gardens have been undergoing a large rebuilding programme which is yet to be completed.  I was surprised …

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Day 8.  Waffles and Frisbees at Keilaniemi 

A short walk from our holiday apartment lies Keilaniemi.  Located here overlooking the bay are the headquarters of some large companies including Kone and Neste Oil.  There is a pleasant promenade to walk or cycle along and towards the far end you will find a lunch restaurant with an outside terrace called Keilalahden Ranta where we sometimes like …

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Day 9.  Beside the sea at Vuosaari

Another sunny day so we planned a trip  to Helsinki's eastern suburb of Vuosaari.  To get there we caught a bus into Kamppi from where we connected to the metro for our journey, Vuosaari being the final stop on the line taking just 20 minutes. Leaving the metro station we glanced in the Columbus shopping …

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Day 10.  A Walk to Katajanokka

The day began with a farewell to my older son who was leaving on a Finnair flight to Rome this morning  to meet up with his friends and embark on a sailing holiday along the Italian coast.  This meant I had most of the day to myself before my husband was due to arrive later. …

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