Helsinki was founded by the King Gustavus Vasa of Sweden in 1550, when Finland was under the Swedish rule. It was proclaimed the Finnish capital in 1812, three years after Russia had conquered Finland. In 1917 Finland became independent and continued as the capital.
Helsinki is an ideal setting for travelling. It’s a rich mix, where traditional eastern exotica meets contemporary western ways, where untouched nature blends in with a vibrant European capital and where colourful history enriches the dynamic urban centre of tomorrow.
Helsinki Central Railway Station is a must see landmark located right in the centre of Helsinki. About 200,00 passengers use the station daily, making it the most visited building in Finland. The station was designed by Eliel Saarinen and was opened in 1919.
Helsinki is well known for its design, food culture and maritime appeal. The symbol of Helsinki is Tuomiokirkko, a beautiful white cathedral located in Senate Square. The square and its surroundings form a unique example of neoclassical architecture. This is dominated by four buildings, which were all designed by Carl Ludvig Engel between 1822 and 1852: the Helsinki Cathedral, the Government Palace, the University of Helsinki’s main building and the National Library of Finland.
Helsinki’s maritime appeal is part of the national Finnish landscape. In Helsinki, the sea is an essential part of everyday life. Many of the surrounding islands are accessible for recreational use, with a number of idyllic island restaurants helping to make up a vital part of Helsinki’s unique restaurant culture. The archipelago of Helsinki provides a beautiful setting for summer dining. Suomenlinna is one of Helsinki’s best-known recreational areas/tourist attractions.
Helsinki was chosen as the World’s Design Capital in 2012. Finland is also known for its authentic design shops: Marimekko, Iittala, Arabia and Artek. These and other world famous boutiques can be found on the elegant and rather posh Esplanadi. This all starts with Stockmann, continuing with the luxurious Kämp Hotel. Then comes the beautiful Katajanokka area, with its amazing view of the Gulf of Finland, its open-air market and the Helsinki Panoramic Wheel.
Source: Visit Helsinki (2016)
For further information on all of Helsinki’s sights, please visit Visit Helsinki-webpage!