Helsinki is a wonderful city to explore by foot, bike, tram and ferry. Here are the top things to do in Helsinki, a designated UNESCO City of Design.
Top things to do in Helsinki
- Marvel at the architectural splendor of Helsinki.
- Take a walking tour of Old Helsinki’s Art Nouveau architecture in the Katajanokka area.
- Wander through the Market Square. The outdoor market is filled with a variety of offerings. Shop for handmade jewelry, crafts, souvenirs, foods and more. Pick up traditional Finnish dishes. Try the reindeer or grilled salmon. Find out more about traditional foods of Finland.
- Discover foods of Finland.
- Explore the Uspenski Orthodox Cathedral. Its striking Byzantine Revival architecture can be seen from Helsinki’s harbour. The cathedral was built from 1862-1868 and has 13 onion domes. It was designed by Russian architect Aleksei Gornostayev, who died before seeing it built.
- Visit the Kauppatori market hall. It is beside Helsinki’s harbour near Market Square. The hall’s architecture is byzantine revival. The market is usually open every day except Sunday. Discover local delicious foods. Everything is so tempting and you will want to try a few items. See more photos of traditional foods of Helsinki, Finland.
- Marvel at the splendor of the 19th century neoclassical-designed Senate Square, Helsinki Lutheran Cathedral and similar buildings in the area. The cathedral was built during the time of the Russian rule and originally named St. Nicholas Cathedral.
- Explore the ‘Castle of Finland’ at the historic fortress at Suomenlina. Built in the 1700s, it was used by the Swedish, Finnish and Russians as a southeastern defence. The designated UNESCO World Heritage Site is easily accessible by taking public ferry from Helsinki’s market square.
- Browse the Design District, the centre of Finnish design or take a Design District Walking Tour.
- Visit the old customs warehouse in Helsinki, Katajanokka.
- Enjoy a summer concert in Esplanade Park.
- Experience a 90 minute canal tour.
- Take a harbour cruise through the archipelago among a few of the almost 300 islands.
- Take a day trip to one of the popular islands. Korkeasaari Island is the location of Finland’s largest zoo. Pihlajasaari Island has sandy beaches.
Visit the official travel guide to Finland.
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