Posted by: Debra Kolkka | September 11, 2023

Cool Heksinki

It was wonderful to be in cool Helsinki after the heat of Japan. Helsinki is cool in ways other than temperature. The city is stylish, full of stunning architecture, great design…Marimekko, iitala, Arabia, Artek and much more. The people are stylish in an understated way, very cool.

We met friends in Helsinki so I covered more ground than I usually would in a couple of days. It was fun to show people around a city I love and feel at home in.

We went to Oodi, the new library, and the music centre beside it, with the giant pike statue. I watched both being built over the years.

There is a great view from the cafe at the top of the library.

A walk through, and past, the Helsinki railway station is always needed.


Followed by the Naked Blacksmiths in front of Stockmann, the excellent department store. It is said that if you can’t buy it at Stockmann you don’t need it.

The gardens along Esplanadi are still looking good at the end of summer.

Here is the statue in the centre without a pigeon.

It didn’t last long.

The Russian church looks over Helsinki.

There is an excellent view of Tuomiokirkko, Helsinki cathedral from the forecourt.

…from the front of the church.

The interior is elegant.

The National Library of Finland opposite the church has the most beautiful reading rooms.

We walked past beautiful buildings, and an interesting weather vane, to the seaside.

We had a delicious pot of salmon soup for lunch at Loyly, the stunning sauna and restaurant beside the Baltic Sea. It has a huge deck overlooking the sea. It is one of Time Magazine’s “World 100 Greatest Places. The photo of the exterior is not mine. It was quite overcast by the time we got to Loyly. The soup photo is all mine.

We took the ferry to Suomenlinna, the old fortress island in the harbour.

The old cannons and bunkers are still in place, though no longer in use.

We came across the Mikael Agricola church. It was designed by Lars Sonck and constructed between 1933 and 1935. The tower reaches 103 metres above sea level and can be retracted. This was done in the Winter War and the Continuation War so that the tower wouldn’t act as a navigational aid to enemy bombers.

The red brick exterior is quite stark, but altar is beautiful.

Later in the day we enjoyed an espresso martini in the lovely bar at Kamp Hotel on Esplanadi.

We had a delicious dinner at Ravintola Kuurna (Meritullinkatu 6) down by the sea. The service from our charming waiter was fun and made our evening even better.

Thank you Raffaela and Stephen for joining us in Helsinki. You encouraged me to cover lots of ground in this cool city.


  1. Such a beautiful city🤗

    • It is lovely, I enjoy all my visits there.

  2. Such a magnificent city. Only visited once on a Baltic cruise so would like to see it again.

    • It is a stunning city, so much to see and do.

  3. Great photos and post so much so a visit is needed – it would’ve been fun with Raeffela and Steve

    • It was fun to show them the city.

  4. Great photos Deb. Definitely must add Helsinki to our list of places to visit.

  5. Thank you for the wonderful photos. Great memories. You were actually in the street where our B&B apartment was on our visit.

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