The capital city of the Scandinavian Finland is generally very modern, but you can also find a number of historic sights. This makes Helsinki well worth visiting!
The lovely Lutheran Cathedral is one of the most beautiful sights in Helsinki. The German architect Carl Ludwig Engel worked on it until his death in 1840, and it took another 12 years before the cathedral was opened. What makes this cathedral so special? Among other things, the exceptional dome, the small dome-shape towers and the statues of the twelve apostles. The steps in front of the cathedral are very popular among students and others for enjoying the view.
Senate Square is the most important square in Helsinki. Beside the cathedral you will find the university, the national library and the Senate building there. So with a visit to the Senate Square you will get to see a number of sights in one go! A statue of Tsar Alexander II of Russia stands in the middle of the square. This statue was unveiled in 1894, 13 years after his death.
If you are interested in finding out about Finland’s history, then visit the National Museum. The museum is located in a wonderful building on the Mannerheimintie. Inside you will find an extensive collection of objects from various periods, from the Stone Age to the present. It also looks at the period from independence in 1918 to now. There is also a gallery focusing on the life of the Finnish people prior to industrialisation.
The Kiasma is a completely different type of museum, a museum of modern art. This futuristic building houses work by mainly Finnish and Scandinavian artists. The Kiasma also regularly holds photo exhibitions, music and dance performances and organises debate evenings. So something for everyone!
If you want a break from all the sights in Helsinki, then take the ferry to the island of Suomenlinna, which means ‘Finnish fortress’. There is a fortress on the island which was built by the Swedish centuries ago to keep Russia out. To no avail unfortunately, as the Russians captured Helsinki in the end. Nowadays, the fortress houses six museums. You can also see a submarine on the island. A great day trip!