Posted by: Debra Kolkka | February 17, 2016

Sunny Helsinki

It was a toasty 2 degrees in Helsinki this morning when I set out. The sun was shining and I almost went back to the hotel for my lighter jacket. Just as well I didn’t. Despite the fact that the temperature zoomed all the way up to 4 degrees, there was a sneaky little wind whistling around my ears.

You can see the gorgeous blue sky behind Tuomiokirkko in its lofty position.


The Russian Church also put on a good show.

Russian Church Helsinki

Cafes in Helsinki now serve flat whites, just to make me feel at home.

Helsinki cafe

It was gorgeous around the harbour this morning.

…little children rugged up for a morning walk. Helsinki residents don’t let cold weather keep them indoors.

Helsinki harbour

The naked blacksmiths were enjoying the sunshine.

Naked blacksmiths Helsinki

The giant like outside the music centre was gleaming in the sunshine too.

Giant Pike Helsinki

A walk around Toolonlahti is always delightful, especially on a sunny winter day.


Some gentlemen gathered for a game.

Finnish gentlemen in the park

The surface of the water is frozen, but there are patches where the ice has melted.

Melting ice Tooloonlahti

I think this is a fishing hole.


These were all roses once.


The ducks managed to find a bit of unfrozen water to splash in, and some sunshine to bask in.

Helsinki ducks

Look at the glorious colour on the drake’s head.

Helsinki duck

Helsinki duck

From another angle it looks purple.

Helsinki duck

I think this one was just showing off.

The females have a tiny patch of lilac on their wings.

Helsinki duck

There was a lone white duck.

Helsinki duck

…and a couple of young Barnacle geese. Maybe they were left behind when their parents flew south.

Barnacle geese

There were tiny birds eating the food left out for them to help them get through the winter.

Helsinki bird

Helsinki bird

I love Helsinki, especially when the sun shines…next stop Germany.


  1. This morning we woke up and it was 0 degrees outside, in San Sebastián! So a temperature between 2 and 4 degrees for Helsinki is not bad at all. Enjoy your stay!

    • Minus 8 was forecast so I was very happy with 4 degrees.

  2. It’s always great to go on your travels; so unselfishly you provide all that beauty, places never seen, exceptional through the eyes of your lens. And now, your progressive journey culminating in Bella Italia; how exciting. You must love the anticipation; it’ll almost be Primavera; can’t wait for photos of those lovely first flowers popping up. Grazie di nuovo!

    • I am staying with a lovely friend in Germany. It will be great to catch up.

  3. It’s beautiful. Cold and clean. Lovely birdies.

    • Helsinki is a gorgeous city.

  4. Do you speak Finnish?

    • A few words only, fortunately for me everyone speaks very good English

  5. Love the Bird Pics.

    • The ducks seem quite used to people and let you come quite close.

  6. Such a beautiful place. A welcome change from the Australian heat no doubt.

    • Give me cold any day.

  7. Lovely photos of Helsinki Debra – glad you got some crisp weather as that was what you were wishing for! Did you realize that you managed to take a photo of the most photographed bird in Finland at the moment? Everyone is flocking to see it. It’s the white duck (ie white mallard). Don’t mistake it an albino thought because it’s eyes are not red – in fact it’s leucistic. Well done 🙂

    • There was quite a crowd around the ducks. I have certainly never seen a white one here before.

  8. Your favourite colours Deb – purple and green

    • Yes, both in one duck.

  9. Good to see you enjoying yourself Deb.
    Lots of love Russell. I have to put up with Northcliffe Beach to day and it is only 30 + degrees .
    see you when you return

    • 30+ is OK if you are at the beach.

  10. Oh, I can almost smell the cold, crisp air. It’s so hot and muggy in Brisbane even though we are the beneficiaries of the Bay’s breezes; the garden is drooping disconsolately. I’m very much looking forward to seeing the garden at Vergemolli. Whilst I was ironing at the weekend I watched an old episode of Grand Design Abroad about a couple who faithfully rebuilt a castle in Tuscany – I think it was Brancillio, something like that – and the scenery from their eyrie of the Tuscan countryside was breathtakingly beautiful.

    • I am most keen to get to my Vergemoli garden to see how it is surviving the winter.

  11. I can’t imagine two degrees being “toasty”…!!…yet, I love your tour of your favourite spots. Love the little family on a brisk walk, a good way to soak up the winter sun. I recall a family walk we did in Ft Wayne one very cold February morning, and found ourselves the only family doing the walk around the neighbourhood at that time. I think it lasted 15 minutes before we felt our noses ‘snapping off’ and our lips sticking together. They must breed these children tough in Finland.

    • There are always people out and about in Helsinki, regardless of the weather. There is no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong clothes.

  12. Especially like the photos of Toolonlahti

    • It is a beautiful area. I always try to walk around the water regardless of the weather.

  13. Love your shots of the ducks — their expression is priceless! I think I could use some of Helsinki’s chill here; so hot and humid at the moment.

    • I left 36degress behind in Australia happily. Give me cool weather any day.

  14. Beautiful variety of shots for a beautiful location. Are they playing chess?

    • I’m not sure what they were playing. I don’t speak Finnish and some of the older people don’t speak English, so I was reluctant to question them.

  15. Helsinki looks lovely, but too cold for me. I love heat and sun. Good on you for venturing out with the hardy locals.

    • There was sun, but not much heat…I love it.

  16. I didn’t know that about ducks – that you can tell mail from female by that simple coloring. So interesting! Beautiful pics – I especially love the second one of the church. So dramatic!

    • With birds the male is often the more decorative and colourful.

  17. […] long after I headed off to Italy, via Helsinki, of course. I had a couple of snowy days before making my way south. There a white duck had made […]

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