Helsinki Journals

To Helsinki and Back

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A September 2008 trip to Helsinki by MojoGoes

Tuomiokirkko Photo, Helsinki, Finland More Photos
Quote: Helsinki is a friendly and modern city not without historic charm. It serves well as an entry and exit city on extended travels around the Baltic.

Where

Hotel GLO

Best Of IgoUgo

Hotel | "Hotel GLO - A GLO-ing Review"

Hotel GLO Photo, Helsinki, Finland
Quote:
Situated just a block from Esplanade Park (where a seagull is perpetually perched atop the statue of Runeberg), Hotel GLO is the smaller, boutique hotel owned by the more luxurious and expensive Hotel Kamp around the corner. The street itself is conducive to walking and shopping as there is little vehicular traffic and the area is a central shopping district. In fact, connected through the lobby of the hotel is a sort of mall. That is, there is a long corridor connecting the storefronts so, I assume, one can shop freely during the winter months when Finland gets bitterly cold.As you enter the GLO, you are greeted by dark, warm colors. To your left is a large bar with tables and waiter-service. T...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on November 7, 2008

Hotel GLO
Kluuvikatu 4
Helsinki 00100
+358 10 3444 400

La Cocina

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Restaurant | "La Cocina Restaurant and Bar - Great Breakfast, Strong Drinks"

La Cocina Photo, Helsinki, Finland
Quote:
The restaurant and bar in the Hotel GLO are both under the name La Cocina. The bar is in the hotel lobby, easily accessible from the elevators and stairs, the street, or from the shops behind the hotel. The bar is quite large, with an extensive wine list and great deal of choice among just about all other types of grog. While I never ate at the bar, they claim the food has a Catalonian influence. With a grand selection of wine and cava, it's believable. The only real problem with the bar is that the seating is a bit limited and hard to navigate. When chairs get moved around, you find yourself partially trapped by the large (though comfortable) red velvet chairs. However, the table service is excellent...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on November 7, 2008

La Cocina
Kluuvikatu 4
Helsinki 00100
+358 9 1345 6749

What

Helsinki Harborfront

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Story/Tip

Tuomiokirkko Photo, Helsinki, Finland
Quote:
Helsinki sits on a small peninsula of Finland, in amongst hundreds of tiny islands that dot the water. The town is easily navigable and it seems that most roads lead to water. The quay is home to the berths of a few major ships including Viking Line Cruises, Nordic Jet Lines, and the SuperSeaCat. Likewise, the seafront is faced by shops and restaurants and supports the daily flea- and farmers' market that sets up shop at the top of the quay. The busiest day seems to be Saturday when many more vendors come out to hawk handmade local souvenirs and wares. On most other days, t-shirts are sold from tents, while food, drink, and produce carts cater to passers-by, tourists, and regular everyday shoppers....Read More

Suomenlinna

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Attraction | "Fortress of Solitude"

Suomenlinna Photo, Helsinki, Finland
Quote:
The Suomenlinna is one of the most popular attractions in Helsinki, though technically, I suppose it is not actually in Helsinki. A few companies run ferry service to and from the island fortress and ferries leave virtually constantly all day long. Find a boat that suits your time and enjoy a cup of tea, coffee, or beer as you pull out into the harbor. The boat is the only fee you need to pay to see the islands. Some of the indoor sights (museums and such) require a nominal fee for admittance, but strolling the grounds is free.The boat trip takes about 15 minutes and is a calm trip, albeit a cool one outside of the summer months. You are treated to great views of waterfront Helsinki and the smal...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 7, 2008

Suomenlinna
Suomenlinna (sea Fortress)
Helsinki, Finland

How

SuperSeaCat

Story/Tip

SuperSeaCat Photo, Helsinki, Finland
Quote:
The SuperSeaCat was the large sea-going ferry that ran between Helsinki and Tallinn. I managed to take it from Helsinki to Tallinn almost exactly one month before it went bankrupt and terminated service. While not actually a catamaran, the SeaCat name still stuck. The ride was not a smooth one, at least not in September. The Baltic has a reputation to uphold, and it upheld it when I went. We'd had a lot to drink the night before leaving Finland, so that, coupled with the earlyish morning departure was enough to make my stomach surge every time the boat lurched. I had not been seasick in probably 10 or 12 years, but the pitching and yawing of the SeaCat nearly did me in. That said, it was a quick and e...Read More