Helsinki: Top things to do and see

Helsinki is the capital of Finland and known for turning into a winter wonderland in the cold months of the year. However, nature is worth admiring in the other seasons as well how locals emphasize a lot. Whether it is an Open Air Museum, religious buildings, places of the government, cultural and sportive sights – there are a lot great things to do and see in Helsinki!

  1. Helsinki Cathedral and Senate Square

Helsinki Cathedral is the best-known landmark of the Finnish capital.

Helsinki Cathedral

Helsinki Cathedral

Indeed, it is very impressive! In front of Helsinki Cathedral is the so-called Senate Square of Helsinki. Great to enjoy views of the cathedral, but also to relax. Side note: one of the old buildings around is home of the Finnish government, another one is known for being the university. A lot to see around!

  1. Spend some time at the harbor

This is not supposed to be stalking, but watching small ferries carrying locals to their home island is kind of interesting.


Not to forget about the ships in general and the fact that the maritime feeling is undeniable awesome!

  1. Stroll around in the Pedestrian zone

Once having seen the harbor, inner city and thus pedestrian zone are just a stone throw away!

Building 2

Small streets, huge malls, cute little restaurants, impressive buildings. Everything one whishes to glance at combined at one place!

  1. Admire Finlandia

Finlandia in Helsinki is an elegantly designed concert hall.

But not just concerts, but also other cultural events take place there. If you have the time and the money, consider to join something in there.

  1. Walk around the stadium

Admittedly, Finland is not known for being a soccer nation, but there do exist some clubs.

Olympic Stadium Helsinki

Olympic Stadium Helsinki

This is no request to watch their training, but walking around the old Olympic Stadium may be interesting nevertheless. Nature around is lovely and the calm unbeatable as not many people are there.

  1. Opera of Helsinki

When we went back to the hotel after having visited the stadium, we were blessed enough to discover the Opera!

Opera of Helsinki

Opera of Helsinki

Not the most impressive building in winter, but it’s always interesting how different architects solve the puzzle of perfect acoustic!

  1. Parliament of Finland

As the government represents a country, the parliament is worth having a look at.

Parliament of Finland

Parliament of Finland

Personally, I loved the fact that this is one of the older buildings!

  1. Visit Seurasaari, an Open Air Museum

Seurasaari is an island on which several exciting buildings can be seen. They represent the style of architecture which was typical for Finland in the provinces and of past centuries.


If you’re interested, you might check it out through Moritz’ running guide for Helsinki!

  1. Indulge into nature in the Finnish capital

To our surprise, there is a lot of green (or white in winter) due to nature in the city!


So if you have a few minutes, indulge into one of the parks. Whether it is joggers, ducks or dogs – you’ll meet someone there.


About to visit Helsinki? Find more guides and reviews about the Finnish capital!


12 Comments on “Helsinki: Top things to do and see”

  1. While I love Helsinki I have to politely disagree that there is a lot to see and do there. There is certainly a lot to see and do if you only have one day. If you have two days you can REALLY take your time! Still, a nice post about a wonderful city.

    • Yes, it’s quite perfect for a day trip, you’re right. Honestly, nobody plans too much time for a city trip. But we visited in winter which means really short days! If the sun rises at about nine and sets before 4 pm, it’s good to have two days 🙂

      • I’ll add for anybody who reads the comments: Suomenlina (especially in the summer) and dinner at Sea Horse are my two must dos.

      • Thanks a lot! When we come back, we’ll try that out. Again for someone who reads the comments: If you have “too much” time, invest it in exploring the city by foot and save the money you would have spent on public transport!

    • To golddh.

      People think that Helsinki is all the Finland; it is only the part of it! There is life outside Helsinki and I have proved in my blog in which I have more 20000 photos from it. Welcome someday to real Finland to find its secrets!

      About me.

      Happy weekend!

      • Thanks for sharing! I lived in Finland for a year and love the country – and Helsinki! The tourist sites in the city are a bit lacking, but there is so much else to discover both within Helsinki and across the rest of the country.

    • I would recommend to stay in Helsinki at least 3-4 days if you wish to see a bit more than just the main tourist sights in the city centre as there is a lot more to see than that, especially in the summer time.

  2. Lovely, I was there. And have a picture with that big word FINLANDIA in the back. Helsinki is so nice. I cannot wait to go back there soon. Beautiful pictures. Greetings, Roberto

  3. Good post! You really should experience Helsinki during the summertime when the city really is green and vibrant. Helsinki has so much more to offer during the summer when you can enjoy the seaside and outdoor activities in a totally different way. Suomenlinna Sea Fortress, a Unesco World Heritage Site is a must when visiting Helsinki!

  4. Pingback: Looking back on week 45 | travelux

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