Welcome back to the fourth edition of Baltic 6. Today we are transporting to Helsinki, Finland’s capital! Helsinki is a coastal city made up of small islands and large expanses of green parkland. It’s an active but small city with some incredible views!
I travelled through Helsinki on a bike – my family and I decided to try something new and sign up for a guided cycling tour. Cycling through the city was incredible! We started our Sunday morning by trailing through parkland, across islands and past holiday homes or, “weekend cabins.” It was very serene and we were occasionally joined by locals jogging or taking a ride in their yachts.
Sundays are still in Finland. Even the coffee shop on the Seurasaari Island (an open air museum) refused to serve until 11am! I actually love this fact – Sundays are sacred in Scandinavia. In England, the country rarely stops – even on Christmas day, citizens work or busy themselves travelling. Finland has it right – it’s the perfect place for a retreat!
Towards midday we headed back towards the city centre, past the Sibelius Monument and Olympic stadium, over the cobbled square containing the cathedral and to the quayside. We then set free on foot to wander the centre and browse quayside markets selling postcards, fresh cooked salmon, vegetables, nuts, crafts and other souvenirs.
In total we covered about 20 miles. It was the best bike ride I’ve ever been on and it’s definitely inspired me to think about cycling when travelling in the future. You are able to see so much more and there’s something adventurous about exploring the terrain and wider landscape of a city!
I never imagined a city built over a series of islands, which is not only architecturally interesting in the way that it functions but is also very adventurous! Thank you for joining me – if you love the outdoors, Helsinki is definitely for you!