Visiting Helsinki had been on my bucket list for a long time, but I never thought it would come true so quickly. During my Sweden trip, I had a weekend to spare, so I just bought an overnight Viking Line ferry ticket for Helsinki. I am not sure why I am referring to it as a ferry instead of a cruise, even though I had a cabin with a bed and shower room.

Traveling to Helsinki by ferry is like having fun for locals and an excuse to buy tax-free booze, gamble in the casino, have good food in one of those on-board restaurants, hang out in the clubs, and spend most of the time on the dance floor.

Helsinki, finland
A view of Helsinki Ferry Terminal from the market square

Our ship left the Stockholm port at 4:30 pm, right before dawn, so the light was perfect for a spectacular view of Stockholm from the deck. On board, the experience was excellent, and I did not have much sleep as after dinner, we mostly spent time at the Casino and the dance club. We caused about 16 hours and 30 minutes, and the following day, right after a fabulous breakfast, we arrived in Helsinki.

I took the tram line 4 from the Viking Line Ferry Terminal and got off at Lasipalatsi station, about an 8-10 minutes walk to Forenom Aparthotel. After checked-in to my room, I had the entire day to explore the city. 

Ships, yachts and other boats in the Old Town of Helsinki
Helsinki, Finland
Helsinki South Harbor and Market Square Kauppatori , Finland

Top Things To Do In Helsinki

Visit Temppeliaukion Church

This church is in the heart of Helsinki; get off at the Sammonkatu stop if you are taking tram line 2. This church is one of the main attractions of Helsinki and is very popular among tourists. The extraordinary architecture makes it unique, especially for its copper-lined dome and rocky interior walls. This 1960’s church was excavated directly into the solid rock. Pay a visit. I highly recommend it.

Helsinki, Finland
Interior of the Temple Square Church in the center of the Helsinki City

Visit Senate Square

The Senate Square is the most exciting place to visit in Helsinki; it is a wide open square surrounded by beautiful Neoclassical architectural buildings like Helsinki Cathedral, Government Palace, the National Library of Finland, and the main building of the University of Helsinki. One of the most is the statue of Alexander II (1894) stands in the middle of Senate Square. In addition, the famous Market Square is just a block away from here—a great place to hang out.

Helsinki, Finland
Most visited site in Helsinki The Senate Square

Visit Uspenski Cathedral

The Finnish Orthodox Cathedral, with an ornate exterior and Lavish interior decoration, is located on a hilltop Hilltop and is worth a visit. The architectural design represents the Russian impact on Finnish history.
Uspenski Cathedral, Helsinki

Helsinki, Finland
Uspenski Cathedral, Helsinki
Helsinki, Finland
Helsinki, Finland

Explore Market Square, Helsinki

Helsinki’s open-air harborside market is one of the places you can’t miss; no matter where you are heading, you may have passed through this most visited area. The market is open year-round with food stalls, handicrafts, and many more. However, in summer, this place gets exceptionally crowded and turns into a fun place to be. People shop in a relaxing atmosphere, sit back, and soak up the sun. The stalls in the Market Square sell traditional foods and treats, as well as handicrafts and souvenirs.

Helsinki, Finland
Helsinki’s open-air harbor side Market Square
Helsinki, finland
Street activities in Helsinki

Check Out Sibelius Monument

It was terrific to see 600+ steel pipes forming a wave-like shape representing music, a 1960s monument by Eila Hiltunen. It was unveiled on 7 September 1967. The Sibelius Monument, resembling organ pipes, is made of welded steel with over 600 pipes. The monument is one of Helsinki’s most famous statues and one of the most well-known tourist attractions.

Helsinki, Finland
The Sibelius Monument in Helsinki

Visit Helsinki Cathedral

This Cathedral is the most prominent landmark of Helsinki and the most photographed building in Senate Square. It was designed by Tsar’s favorite architect Carl Ludwig Engel in 1852. Just one block from Market Square and the harbor.

Helsinki, Finland
Helsinki Cathedral at Senate Square

Finnish National Theatre

It is an iconic building designed by Omni Tornqvist-Tarjanne. The impressive 20th-century landmark is located in Helsinki’s Railway Square.

Finnish National Theatre, Helsinki
Finnish National Theatre, Helsinki

How To Get To The Airport From City Center

After a fabulous trip, time for me to return to Stockholm. I needed to catch an early Finnair flight. The commute to the airport was easy. I was reluctant to spend €50.00 by taxi, so I just walked to the nearest tram station from my hotel, then took the line to the Helsinki Railway station. Bus Line 615 and Finnair City Bus frequently operate between Railway Station and the airport. Alternatively, a train service connection was between Helsinki city center and Helsinki Airport.

Finnair Flight
Taking a Finnair flight to Stockholm

Try Delicious Scandinavian Food

I always love Scandinavian cuisine, especially Finish, which is delicious and healthy, perfect for someone like me who wants to enjoy authentic food without gaining a few pounds on the road. There are plenty of restaurants to choose from for typical Finish dishes. One of the everyday items is smoked fish, like salmon, perch, and pike, and Baltic herring are my favorites.

The food we tried during Helsinki Trip

Where to stay in Helsinki, Finland

Forenom Aparthotel Helsinki

Forenom Aparthotel Helsinki City is located in Helsinki and offers self-catering accommodations with an easy, keyless entry system. Free WiFi access is available. The property is 1,000 feet from Helsinki Bus Terminal and Kamppi Shopping Center. Each studio apartment includes a microwave, fridge, and electric kettle. There are also rooms with a kitchenette available. In addition, you can enjoy the city view from Helsinki City Forenom Aparthotel. Helsinki Central Station is within 0.6 mi, and Helsinki-Vantaa Airport is 11 mi away.

Hotel Rivoli Jardin, Helsinki

The stylish Hotel Rivoli Jardin offers accommodations next to the Esplanadi shopping streets, about 10 minutes from Helsinki Central Station. It provides an on-site gym, business center, and bookable sauna. WiFi is free. The central location offers easy access to culture, shopping, and entertainment.

My Opinion and Last Word

Have you been to Helsinki, Finland? Any cool tips to share?

loved being in Helsinki, Finland, and want to go back again. I hope my story has motivated you to visit Finland.

Please leave a comment below! I’d love to hear from you to improve my knowledge. 

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Hasan Mahmud

Traveler, Blogger, and Travel Photographer!

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