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  1. #1

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    Must see in Helsinki?

    Mr. NC and I will be heading off to Helsinki for a quick trip the first week of October. We're going over to watch the season opener of the Carolina Hurricanes vs Minnesota Wild. (And before you hockey naysayers ask, yes, we do consider flying overseas to watch two hockey games a good use of our time and money. )

    This is going to be a REALLY fast trip with not much free time, but what would you consider a "must see" in Helsinki? Shopping suggestions are always welcome in addition to more educational ideas.

    I saw something about the Arctic Ice Bar which looked kind of cool, but is it really worth 10 Euros?

    And woo-hoo, we will be there during the Baltic Herring Fair.

    Thanks in advance for any and all ideas!

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    Quote Originally Posted by NancyNC View Post
    I saw something about the Arctic Ice Bar which looked kind of cool, but is it really worth 10 Euros?
    I didn't go to the one in Helsinki, but I went to a similar bar in New Zealand and I paid over $20 USD for 30 minutes and a drink in a ice-sculptured cup. It was fun to hang out in a cold room with a parka, surrounded by ice sculptures. Even the furniture is made of ice! Vodka tastes so much better when it's in an ice-container. There are ice bars everywhere, like in Iceland and Sweden. So it's not unique to Helsinki. I was only in Helsinki for 2 days, so I can't give you much advice. My fondest memory of Helsinki is hanging out in Esplandi Park in downtown Helsinki and just people watch and hanging out in the huge bookstore also in downtown Helsinki. And since I'm a big Radiohead fan, I picked up a free copy of their music zine in their local record shop which featured Thom Yorke. I don't know a lick of Finnish, but it was cool to have an article of Thom Yorke in Finnish.

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    I've only stayed one night after visiting Russia so I don't know what there is to see but I would so pay ten Euros to go to that ice bar!!! How many people get to do that?! The pics alone would be worth it! You are allowed to do that, aren't you?

    Plus, I live in NC too, feels like one of the levels of hell here, temp wise so I would pay even more, right now!angryfire Think I'm going to have some icy-cold vodka something this weekend!

    Have fun!!!

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    Well, I really love Kiasma, Museum of Contemporary Art. I think many people would consider it as one of the Helsinki's must-see. But antway, you can check it out here: http://www.kiasma.fi/index.php?id=11&L=1

    About shopping, I have no idea what kind of clothes you like, but I would recemmend you to visit Ivana Helsinki shop in Punavuori. It is a Finnish brand, and their clothes look very unique and are very comfortable to wear. The ones I own are definitely my favorite clothes. You can check their collections at their website. http://www.ivanahelsinki.com/

    And for shoes, I would recommend Tizziana at Fredrikinkatu street at Punavuori. They have fabulous selection of Spanish shoes and the owner is really great: she knows a lot about shoes and is very helpful. I have been hookes since the first time I bought a pair of shoes from there. And Fredrikinkatu is a good street for shopping anyway: lots of small, interesting shops. Punavuori is a beautiful city area and recommend to walk around there a bit.

    Oh, and the Temppelinaukin kirkko church in Töölö is great. It is very unique because it has been build inside a rock.

    I hope that you will have a great trip in Helsinki!

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by zhenya271 View Post
    Plus, I live in NC too, feels like one of the levels of hell here, temp wise so I would pay even more, right now!angryfire Think I'm going to have some icy-cold vodka something this weekend!Have fun!!!
    You have a very good point there - I'm sure it will still be unbearably hot here the first week of October so I should go just to enjoy some cold!

    Quote Originally Posted by moebius View Post
    My fondest memory of Helsinki is hanging out in Esplandi Park in downtown Helsinki and just people watch and hanging out in the huge bookstore also in downtown Helsinki.
    Both of those sound like activities I would love!

    Quote Originally Posted by Nekatiivi View Post
    Well, I really love Kiasma, Museum of Contemporary Art...<snip>...I would recemmend you to visit Ivana Helsinki shop in Punavuori. It is a Finnish brand, and their clothes look very unique and are very comfortable to wear.

    And for shoes, I would recommend Tizziana at Fredrikinkatu street at Punavuori. They have fabulous selection of Spanish shoes and the owner is really great: she knows a lot about shoes and is very helpful. I have been hookes since the first time I bought a pair of shoes from there. And Fredrikinkatu is a good street for shopping anyway: lots of small, interesting shops. Punavuori is a beautiful city area and recommend to walk around there a bit.

    Oh, and the Temppelinaukin kirkko church in Töölö is great. It is very unique because it has been build inside a rock.

    I hope that you will have a great trip in Helsinki!
    Thanks for all of these suggestions - I will try to make it to all of them!

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    I second the church in the rock. That was kinda cool.

    My sister and I walked up the Olympic park, but didn't go up the tower. I think it was closed.

    Oh, don't forget to go out to the island fortress! I'm totally blanking on the name, but it's nice to walk around. And you can see Russia from it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PrincessLeppard View Post
    Oh, don't forget to go out to the island fortress! I'm totally blanking on the name, but it's nice to walk around. And you can see Russia from it.
    Was it Alaska?

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    Quote Originally Posted by PrincessLeppard View Post
    I second the church in the rock. That was kinda cool.

    My sister and I walked up the Olympic park, but didn't go up the tower. I think it was closed.

    Oh, don't forget to go out to the island fortress! I'm totally blanking on the name, but it's nice to walk around. And you can see Russia from it.
    Soumenlinna (or "Sveaborg")

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    Didn't notice the thread until now.

    Quote Originally Posted by Evilynn View Post
    Soumenlinna (or "Sveaborg")
    Suomenlinna is definitely beautiful in summertime. October - in Finland - is not summertime. If it's a clear and sunny day I'd recommend Suomenlinna even in October. But if it rains etc., you'll probably be better off doing something indoors.

    How much time do you have? The Helsinki city centre is not that big so you can cover most of it just by walking or taking the tram.
    I'd also recommend the Kiasma museum - it's pretty cool. Of course you also need to pose by the Helsinki Cathedral like all proper tourists.

    Also Finlandia Trophy, the international skating competition, will be skated not far from Helsinki city centre on October 8th-10th, if you're still here.
    Rockin' Finnish commentator: "And that was supposed to be a flip but it turned out to be a flop."

  10. #10

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    Well, we are just back from Helsinki and we had a fabulous time! Not only did the Hurricanes win both games , the weather was amazing. Temps in the low 50's (degrees F) and clear blue skies all but one day that we were there. We hit most of the major sites in the center part of the city. Senate Square and the Helsinki Cathedral (and got to see the UN Buddy Bears that are display in the square), the Rock Church, Sibelius monument, Baltic Herring Fair. We went to the Uspenski Cathedral, but it was unfortunately closed when we were there so couldn't enjoy the inside. We went to Suomenlinna on one of the beautiful days and really enjoyed it. The Arctic Ice Bar was more of a small ice room , but we did the touristy thing and went anyway. We also took a day trip to Porvoo - it was nice getting out of Helsinki and seeing one of the smaller cities. We didn't make it to any museums - simply ran out of time. All in all, a beautiful place with extremely friendly people - I would love to go back and see more of the country, especially would like to venture up towards Lapland. Thanks again to everyone for all of their suggestions!

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