Helsinki is a compact, relaxed and friendly city, chosen as 3rd best city to live in by Metropolis Magazine in 2016 and ranked 9th most liveable city by the Economist. With an abundance of daily direct flights, Helsinki can be easily reached from all corners of Asia.
Sea, Sauna and Urban Nature
Helsinki is a city of contrasts that create unique experiences for visitors looking for both peace and excitement. The sea, brand new design saunas and the timeless beauty of the urban nature and archipelago offer visitors a unique stopover experience. Historical layers of fine architecture, functional design, a playful and often surprising food culture, and a great range of events, both large and small, intertwine to form a fascinating capital that offers experiences in all seasons of the year.
Add the Finnish sauna to your bucket list Saunas are an integral part of the Finnish culture and national identity and a must when visiting Finland. Helsinki has a number of impressive new public saunas where foreign visitors can enjoy the sauna experience all year round. We promise relaxing moments that you’ll never forget!
The new Löyly design sauna is situated just a short distance from the city centre on the southern tip of the Helsinki peninsula. The modern complex houses a restaurant serving the finest Finnish cuisine, which visitors can enjoy while admiring the stunning views from a large terrace that stretches out over the sea.
The recently opened Allas Sea Pool (cover photo) next to SkyWheel Helsinki and the Market Square in the city centre also offers swimming, saunas and relaxation all year round. Designed using Finnish spruce and the latest cleantech technology, the complex encourages sustainable development and the preservation of the Baltic Sea.
Helsinki breathes the sea with a shoreline that stretches 130 kilometres. Being the capital of the World’s Greenest Country (Environmental Performance Index EPI 2016), Helsinki is a green city where nature is ever present, even in the heart of the city. Green areas account for one-third of the
total area, and parks can be found everywhere.
Helsinki is also characterised by its maritime landscape, boasting over 130 kilometres of shoreline. The sea is all around and offers visitors a vast range of experiences, such as the Suomenlinna Sea Fortress, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the stunning archipelago, which can be admired aboard relaxing cruises. New islands have been opened to the public in recent years, including the idyllic islands of Lonna and Vallisaari where visitors can enjoy a combination of unspoilt nature and historical fortifications.
Christmas City Helsinki
The Christmas season begins in Helsinki on Sunday 22 November with the opening of the Christmas Street, the arrival of Santa Claus to greet the kids and the turning on of the Christmas lights. During the run-up to the holidays, shoppers flock to the Christmas markets throughout the city.
Helsinki Christmas Market is the oldest and largest event of its kind in Helsinki. The market attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors each year. The Huffington Post (2015) ranked Helsinki Christmas Market among the 15 European Christmas markets we love to love.
The Christmas season culminates with the spectacular New Year’s Eve celebrations in the Kansalaistori square and Töölönlahti surroundings. This year the event will open the centennial celebrations of Finland’s independence in 2017.
Helsinki – City of Design
In Finland, design has always belonged to everyone. We have plenty of gorgeous objects and buildings, but design runs much deeper in Finnish society, too. In this corner of the world, designers have always worked towards meeting the everyday needs of ordinary citizens.
Design is everywhere in Helsinki and traditional design is showcased throughout the city, especially in the Design District and the Arabia district, but also in the flagship stores of famous Finnish design brands – such as Marimekko, Iittala and Fiskars – and in numerous smaller design boutiques. Helsinki also stands out in the fields of urban design and service design, which are guiding the development of the city and its services.
More stopover ideas:
Submitted by Roderick Eime for EGTM who travelled to Helsinki as a guest of Finnair and Visit Finland