Sunday, September 02, 2012

Helsinki - sightseeing and boat tour

The conference is over, so today was a day off and I had a closer look at Helsinki. I passed St. John's church, a Lutheran church, which at that moment held mass, so I couldn't see the inside.

I passed Atlas (?) holding not the celestial sphere, but a balcony
and, as you all know, Hercules took over Atlas' job, so Atlas could help him get the golden apples from Hera's garden:

Then I went back to the National Museum since last time I had no time to visit the Finnish Sami folk section. I loved the 'grandmother' clock :)

A shaman's grave with magic drum, but also a Christian cross:

A fashionable handbag made from a waterfowl foot
If you need to buy wedding rings, why not consider some rings made from svan's trachea; eco-sensitive, natural materials, fashionable, and endurable - although not exactly suitable for vegetarians:
On the way back to the city centre I ran over some art (which is not too difficult in Helsinki). Some art is outdoors:
Others is indoors:
There inevitably comes a time when you get hungry (especially if you missed the breakfast time at the hotel). Finland is about as bad for vegans as Germany. In the city centre there are only two vegan coffee shops/bistros and only one is open on Sundays. So I went to Vegemesta which is an all vegetarian fast food restaurant and has some vegan options. It had a bit of a rancid smell about it and the tiny place looked a bit scruffy, but you can't be picky in Helsinki and the hot dog with sweet potato fries I had were yummy enough :)

Well fed, I went to the harbour and made a boat tour (the 'beautiful canal route') through the many islands that lie before Helsinki.
Where there are beaches, there are also little saunas lining the beach; this is one of the larger ones:
Some islands are connected to the mainland via bridges, others are not and the inhabitants need boats ... or even better a waterplane:
A small channel with a traffic light:
The summer residence of Helsinki's fleet of icebreakers:
Towards evening it got cold and windy on the boat and a warm pulla (cardamom bun) with coffee saved me from freezing:
After being back it quickly became dark and I will have to end my Helsinki tour with a look at the central railway station; here you can see the 'Stone Men' by Emil Wikström, erected 1914. 
And a last look at the cathedral:



  1. Looks a wonderful place to explore, I really must get out more! Do love Atlas holding that balcony and the GrandMother clock is new to me also. The Stone Men are beautiful too. x

    1. I thought you would like the grandmother clock :)
      put it in just for you *hehe*