Local Guides

Helsinki, Finland

Known to be a European city of art, design and sustainability – the capital city of the Nordic nation Finland since 1812 – Helsinki, is a lovely seaside urban metropolis. With a modest population of about 1 million in the capital region, it is relatively small. The city centre is a concentrated area and can get crowded, especially during summers when everyone is out. An entirely different atmosphere can be experienced in summer and in winter in Helsinki. It can get warm in the months of July and August with temperatures above 20°C, but the rest of the year it is cold and windy. Long daylight hours are enjoyed from the end of April until late September and the opposite in the winter months. Spring and Autumn seasons are distinct and can be experienced in Helsinki from April – May and September – October respectively.

This is the place I have called home since 2015, when I moved here to begin my Master’s degree studies at the University of Helsinki. I have also visited Helsinki in the summer of 2014 to attend a summer school, when I have been a full-on tourist and explored as much of the city as I could. I know the city well now, better than some locals I know 😉 I also understand Finnish quite ok and get by fine on the streets. You can also get by with English, so don’t worry. Some say Helsinki is very different from the rest of Finland – like how most capitals are unlike the rest of the country.

Below you will find links to blog posts related to Helsinki on Veganhaven.

(Under construction!)

  • Vegan Helsinki – Dine outs in the city
  • Cafes of Helsinki
  • My favourite hangouts and neighbourhoods
  • Green spaces and nature around Helsinki
  • Day trips and island hopping from Helsinki

There really is much more to Finland than just Helsinki. It has taken me several trips and some exploration to realize that. I like travelling within the country – mostly during summer. Not to forget the magical Lapland, where I have spent time during three winters so far. Although people tend to visit just the capital on short stays, you should definitely explore other parts of the country if you have the time. For nature lovers, there is a lot you could do here. The landscape and geology of Finland are pretty monotonous, one could say. This is true if you are on the road in the Southern and Central parts of the country – you will see fields and the countryside all around and there is not much difference until you are above the Arctic Circle or by the coast. It is thus good to have some knowledge of what different regions of Finland have to offer. For example, Eastern Finland has some amazing lakes and river gorges, on the Western coast you will find some great beaches and in Lapland – a different world in itself.

Posts related to Finland on Veganhaven:

  • Porvoo Old Town
  • Olavinlinna Castle
  • Coastal towns in Southern Finland – Lohja, Hanko
  • Western cities of Finland: Turku, Rauma
  • Imatra, a small town in Eastern Finland
  • National Parks in Finland
  • Finnish Lapland

If you come all the way up North, it makes sense to also visit some of these neighbouring countries and cities. Related posts on the blog (Coming soon!):

  • Don’t miss Tallinn, Estonia
  • A day in Stockholm, Sweden