Avianca
Topic Author
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What To Do In Helsinki?

Tue Dec 26, 2006 3:47 am

I just saw a very low fare from MUC to HEL next July with LH just under 100 EURO return ticket including taxes.... I will be visiting my country germany next july I now I am asking me if I should book the flights to HEL for a short 2 day trip .... now the question what can be done in Helsinki and is it worth for a short 2 day trip?

thank you and regards
Avianca
Colombia es el Mundo Y el Mundo es Colombia
 
andz
Posts: 7628
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2004 7:49 pm

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Tue Dec 26, 2006 4:19 am

I have been to Helsinki 3 times in the last 2 years and always when the city is knee deep in snow, so it is not the best time for sightseeing! But, I get the impression that in summer it is a beautiful place to visit. Ask fellow a.netter Joge, he lives there, you might find him in the chat room.
After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
 
gunsontheroof
Posts: 3226
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2006 8:30 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Tue Dec 26, 2006 2:31 pm

The market at Senator's Square is definately worth checking out, as is the academic bookstore downtown. I only got to spend a few days there myself, so I can't say much more than that. It's a pretty easy city to get around on foot, so I'm sure you'll be able to find plenty to do.
 
ZRHnerd
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Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2005 8:20 pm

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Tue Dec 26, 2006 4:59 pm

I'd say definately go for it. 100€ is a bargain and there's always something to do in Helsinki. It's a nice city with lots to see, good shopping opportunities and the best burgers ever (yes, thats right - Hesburger Big grin )

And if you get bored, just sit in a coffee shop and check out the ladies, or go to HEL to see some MD11s, that should keep you entertained  Wink
 
gunsontheroof
Posts: 3226
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Tue Dec 26, 2006 5:20 pm

Quoting ZRHnerd (Reply 3):
the best burgers ever (yes, thats right - Hesburger Big grin )

Jesus...no. Easily the grossest thing I ate during my time there.

Quoting ZRHnerd (Reply 3):
sit in a coffee shop and check out the ladies

Yeah. Finnish women are gorgeous...not sure how I came from my mom!

Quoting ZRHnerd (Reply 3):
go to HEL to see some MD11s, that should keep you entertained Wink

Show up at HEL a few hours early, have some Lapin Kultas (pre-security even!) and watch traffic from the terminal or pre-security observation deck. Great airport for spotting!
 
kaddyuk
Posts: 3697
Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2001 1:04 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Tue Dec 26, 2006 11:01 pm

Quoting Gunsontheroof (Reply 4):
Great airport for spotting!

And reindeer with creamed potatoes!
Whoever said "laughter is the best medicine" never had Gonorrhea
 
WSOY
Posts: 822
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2006 10:24 pm

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 1:34 am

Quoting Avianca (Thread starter):
now the question what can be done in Helsinki and is it worth for a short 2 day trip

July in Finland in bearable. You'll have 19-21 hours of daylight out of 24. July is the vacation month in Finland so you'll need to book rooms well in time.
"Nukkuessa tulee nälkä" (Nipsu)
 
ZRHnerd
Posts: 830
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2005 8:20 pm

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 1:35 am

Quoting Gunsontheroof (Reply 4):
Jesus...no. Easily the grossest thing I ate during my time there

Yes, i know the Americans have their "very own" ideas of how a hamburger is supposed to taste. But as a Euro i can say they are truely great, better than the junk you get here at mcdonalds or burger king.

Quoting Gunsontheroof (Reply 4):
Lapin Kultas

Ouch. Lapin Kulta is about the worst choice, smells like errr... reindeer p*ss Big grin I highly recommend Karjala and Karhu.
 
WSOY
Posts: 822
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2006 10:24 pm

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 1:58 am

Lapin Kulta and Karjala are nondescript lagers from the Scottish & Newcastle corporation. Karhu is the same from the Carlsberg camp.
"Nukkuessa tulee nälkä" (Nipsu)
 
Joge
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 2:06 am

Quoting Avianca (Thread starter):
what can be done in Helsinki and is it worth for a short 2 day trip?

Sure it is worth! And July should be a good pick, although the weather is usually at its best from begin of August all the way till the end of September. But you can never guarantee this. Get prepared however, that during those two days, it may be rainy and cloudy most of the times. However, I don't want to scare you, the weather can be unpredictable in many other places too.

You didn't mention, where you plan to stay?

In case of rainy weather, you could probably go walk around in the city. Visit Forum (a big mall right in the city center) or Stockmann (a huge department store, worth of visit!) and get some souvenirs. Try reindeer or elk meat. Go have a beer at the top of Torni restaurant. You can have a great view from here over the city! Go to Senaatintori, the "Senator's Square" (the one Gunsontheroof mentioned already). Near that spot you can find another market square, Kauppatori. It's by the sea and from here you can have a view to most of the ferries leaving to Stockholm and Tallinn. A small food market can be found here. Visit Suomenlinna, which is an island and old fortress not too far away from Kauppatori. Here's also where you can catch the ferries. Suomenlinna is a place, however, where one should go on a sunny day.

Have a look:

Kauppatori in Wikipedia


Suomenlinna in Wikipedia

A photo of the market squares, Kauppatori in the front, Senaatintori at the back (right in front of the church).



If you have something specific on your mind, let me know and I can see how I can help you. There are lots of parks and other things to see and do. If you decide to come, I'll try to get those days free and guide you around.  Big grin

Quoting Andz (Reply 1):
you might find him in the chat room.

Sorry Andz, not anymore. The Java applet just keeps on crashing my web browsers.

-Joge
Bula!
 
WSOY
Posts: 822
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2006 10:24 pm

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 2:52 am

Quoting Joge (Reply 9):
And July should be a good pick, although the weather is usually at its best from begin of August all the way till the end of September

Is "best" is "the warmest and the driest", then July is clearly better than August. In July Helsinki typically sees 12-14 rainy days, in August 14-16.
http://www.fmi.fi/saa/tilastot.html


(Variation of mean monthly temps in downtown Helsinki with the mean of the means mark)

[Edited 2006-12-26 19:06:29]
"Nukkuessa tulee nälkä" (Nipsu)
 
ZRHnerd
Posts: 830
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 2:54 am

Quoting Joge (Reply 9):
Visit Forum (a big mall right in the city center) or Stockmann

I second that. Highly recommendable, aswell as kamppi (which is adjacent to Forum) and Itäkeskus, which is however a bit off center, but easily accessable by metro.
 
Joge
Posts: 1386
Joined: Tue Feb 22, 2000 3:26 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 3:44 am

Quoting WSOY (Reply 10):
Is "best" is "the warmest and the driest", then July is clearly better than August. In July Helsinki typically sees 12-14 rainy days, in August 14-16.

I've never really thought about it. August has been more summer for me than July.  Smile

-Joge
Bula!
 
WSOY
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 4:27 am

It's surprising that nobody you know prefers to have their vacations in July. Did you know that many Finnish industries close completely for the month of July?
"Nukkuessa tulee nälkä" (Nipsu)
 
gunsontheroof
Posts: 3226
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 6:46 am

Quoting ZRHnerd (Reply 7):

Yes, i know the Americans have their "very own" ideas of how a hamburger is supposed to taste. But as a Euro i can say they are truely great, better than the junk you get here at mcdonalds or burger king.

I don't think I'd use McDonalds or Burger King as measuring sticks for burger quality!  Wink

Quoting ZRHnerd (Reply 7):
Ouch. Lapin Kulta is about the worst choice, smells like errr... reindeer p*ss Big grin I highly recommend Karjala and Karhu.

Karhu is probably my favorite Finnish beer. I wish they'd sell it in the U.S. as "Bear"...
 
andaman
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 6:48 am

July is a good month to visit Helsinki, lot of happenings, the city is very living, outdoor cafes and bars are open, outdoor conserts in parks etc.

Some of my favourite summer spots in Helsinki:

The Esplanadi with cafes


The Kappeli/Chappel restaurang in Esplanadi park:


The Spårakoff Pub Tram, take a beer and enjoy the sightseeing  


The harbour:


[Edited 2006-12-26 22:53:36]
Chinese cookie in SFO: "You're doomed to a life of forever travelling abroad and to be able to afford it!"
 
gunsontheroof
Posts: 3226
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2006 8:30 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 6:51 am

Quoting Andaman (Reply 15):
The Kappeli/Chappel restaurang in Espalnade park:

I had some pastries/beers there my first day in Helsinki. Great spot to sit back, relax and enjoy the surroundings.
 
ZRHnerd
Posts: 830
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2005 8:20 pm

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 9:22 am

Quoting Gunsontheroof (Reply 14):
I don't think I'd use McDonalds or Burger King as measuring sticks for burger quality!

haha, you're actually right Big grin I hope you agree that In'N'out is just great!
 
legoguy
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 9:26 am

Quoting Avianca (Thread starter):
What To Do In Helsinki?



Quoting Andz (Reply 1):
city is knee deep in snow,

Make Snow Angels!

The HArbor also looks quite good. Surely the kids would love to see the cruise ships..... or are you just planning the trip for you and your wife, leaving the kiddies behind?
Can you say 'Beer Can' without sounding like a Jamaican saying 'Bacon'?
 
gunsontheroof
Posts: 3226
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2006 8:30 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 9:37 am

Quoting ZRHnerd (Reply 17):
I hope you agree that In'N'out is just great!

Well of course! I have some friends who actually spent a day driving from Seattle to Northern California just to eat at In N Out. They got a standing ovation when they got there!

That said, I think Dick's Drive-In in Seattle is still my favorite burger joint. Strangely, (perhaps I'm only including this to add relevance to the thread) I've actually taken Finns to eat there in the past!
 
willo
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Wed Dec 27, 2006 9:27 pm

Helsinki is a great place to visit for the weekend. There's not much in the way of sights there though. The circular route 3T tram goes past most of the important places and is a cheap way of seeing the city. We had an excellent meal at the garlic restaurant. One point, it may be cheap to get there but the cost of things once in Finland (like the other Scandinavian countries) is eye-watering  Wow!
 
ZRHnerd
Posts: 830
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2005 8:20 pm

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Thu Dec 28, 2006 1:27 am

Quoting Willo (Reply 20):
One point, it may be cheap to get there but the cost of things once in Finland (like the other Scandinavian countries) is eye-watering

errrrrrrr  Confused I found it to be rather cheap.
 
andaman
Posts: 2271
Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2005 5:29 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Thu Dec 28, 2006 5:23 am

Quoting Willo (Reply 20):
Helsinki is a great place to visit for the weekend. There's not much in the way of sights there though. The circular route 3T tram goes past most of the important places and is a cheap way of seeing the city. We had an excellent meal at the garlic restaurant. One point, it may be cheap to get there but the cost of things once in Finland (like the other Scandinavian countries) is eye-watering

Expensive for someone coming from England?? Helsinki sure is less expensive than London for example.
I have noticed tourists coming from the same European 'beer zone' like to party in Helsinki  Smile
Chinese cookie in SFO: "You're doomed to a life of forever travelling abroad and to be able to afford it!"
 
VonRichtofen
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Thu Dec 28, 2006 5:35 am

What about Feb? Hehehe a buddy of mine are planning on stopping in HEL for a day or so before heading to Tallinn. I'm Canadian so I can handle the cold, how bad are HEL's winters?


Kris
 
WSOY
Posts: 822
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2006 10:24 pm

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Thu Dec 28, 2006 6:04 am

Here's what I think is an quintessential Helsinki view and sentiment (well Espoo to be hair-splitting, but just across a bay)
http://www-us.flickr.com/photos/matt...iainen/106356585/in/pool-views111/

[Edited 2006-12-27 22:08:56]
"Nukkuessa tulee nälkä" (Nipsu)
 
Joge
Posts: 1386
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Thu Dec 28, 2006 6:08 am

Quoting VonRichtofen (Reply 23):
how bad are HEL's winters?

Have a look at the chart WSOY posted. Mean cold is around -14C, but the warm is above zero. Normally there should be lots of snow that time, but there's none at the moment. Everything can change in 2 months, though.

-Joge
Bula!
 
WSOY
Posts: 822
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Thu Dec 28, 2006 6:31 am

Joge thank's for mentioning my chart, but I think you regrettably misinterpret it. Look closer, you'll see the most typical temp for a day in Feb is -5,7 C. The upper and lower ends are the record mean values for a given month.

The absolute maximum temp record in Helsinki is 31,6 C (July, 1945), and the minimum one -34,3 C (Jan, 1987)
http://www.fmi.fi/saa/tilastot_4.html#6

[Edited 2006-12-27 22:36:09]
"Nukkuessa tulee nälkä" (Nipsu)
 
Joge
Posts: 1386
Joined: Tue Feb 22, 2000 3:26 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Thu Dec 28, 2006 6:53 am

Quoting WSOY (Reply 26):
The upper and lower ends are the record mean values for a given month.

Exactly. Didn't I say that?  Smile Maybe I didn't explain it well enough.

-Joge
Bula!
 
WSOY
Posts: 822
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2006 10:24 pm

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Fri Dec 29, 2006 4:43 am

Well be it the -5 or the -15, it's cold anyway. Add the typical SW wind from the open Baltic to it, and you'll be hoping for a swift relocation.

[Edited 2006-12-28 21:02:06]
"Nukkuessa tulee nälkä" (Nipsu)
 
BigOrange
Posts: 2291
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Sat Dec 30, 2006 12:20 am

Quoting Gunsontheroof (Reply 4):
have some Lapin Kultas

Damn..thanks for reminding me of 1998 my only visit to Finland

Quoting VonRichtofen (Reply 23):
before heading to Tallinn

Hope you're not planning on taking the ferry to Tallinn? If you are I hope it's a good weather day. The one and only time I've got seasick was on the catamaran. I've done some rough crossings on the North Sea and English Channel, but never felt so ill! It was so bad, I refused to go back. My wife and I went to the airport and bought tickets back on Estonian Airlines!
 
andaman
Posts: 2271
Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2005 5:29 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Sat Dec 30, 2006 3:12 am

Quoting BigOrange (Reply 29):

Hope you're not planning on taking the ferry to Tallinn? If you are I hope it's a good weather day. The one and only time I've got seasick was on the catamaran. I've done some rough crossings on the North Sea and English Channel, but never felt so ill! It was so bad, I refused to go back. My wife and I went to the airport and bought tickets back on Estonian Airlines!

The same happened to me  boggled those catamarans and windy weather is not a good combination. The new fast catamarans are better though.
Estonian Air wouldn't help you any more, only Finnair's Aero flying to route nowadays.
Chinese cookie in SFO: "You're doomed to a life of forever travelling abroad and to be able to afford it!"
 
WSOY
Posts: 822
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2006 10:24 pm

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Sat Dec 30, 2006 4:10 am

There are also hydrofoils operating between Tallinn and Helsinki. (Not sure of the coming 2007 season though.) They'd be both very fast (1h 30) and typically very bumpy to ride. Here's the data for one of them:
http://www.faktaomfartyg.se/jaanika_1994.htm
http://www.lindaliini.ee/index.php?lang=eng
"The stabilization of the vessel foilborne is guaranteed by the BRIIS system."

Here's the current maritime connection timetable (sorry couldn't find an English version)
http://www.viroweb.com/linkit/aikataulut.asp?print=print

[Edited 2006-12-29 20:14:31]
"Nukkuessa tulee nälkä" (Nipsu)
 
aloges
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Sat Dec 30, 2006 7:14 am

I just booked tickets... will be there between March 27th and 31st and bring warm clothing. What can I do that time of the year?  Silly
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
 
andaman
Posts: 2271
Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2005 5:29 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Sun Dec 31, 2006 12:08 pm

Quoting Aloges (Reply 32):
I just booked tickets... will be there between March 27th and 31st and bring warm clothing. What can I do that time of the year?

Still winter that time, warm clothing needed.
You should have wait till May and experience the Eurovision Contest weekend,
a BIG fiesta expected in the city  Smile perhaps hard to get a hotel room though.
Chinese cookie in SFO: "You're doomed to a life of forever travelling abroad and to be able to afford it!"
 
aloges
Posts: 14842
Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2006 3:38 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Sun Dec 31, 2006 11:58 pm

Quoting Andaman (Reply 33):
You should have wait till May and experience the Eurovision Contest weekend

Goodness, NO!  Silly
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
 
LHMark
Posts: 7048
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Mon Jan 01, 2007 1:12 am

While you're there, try to find Sahti. It's the last of the European primitive beers, made from rye, with few or no hops, and flavored with juniper twigs and berries.

It's not commercially common, but it's definitely worth a shot if you can dig some up.
"Sympathy is something that shouldn't be bestowed on the Yankees. Apparently it angers them." - Bob Feller
 
User avatar
Coal
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Mon Jan 01, 2007 1:24 am

Of all the capitals in Nordic Europe, I found Helsinki to be the most bleak and least interesting. I spent about 4 days there, which was about enough to see the sights.

I would strongly suggest to take the ferry to Tallinn. Well worth the trip. I spent a full day there and wouldn't have minded staying there another day or two, maybe even going to Riga as well.

Cheers,
Coal
Nxt Flts: MI RGN-SIN | SQ SIN-RGN-SIN | CX SIN-HKG-PVG | SQ PVG-SIN
 
andaman
Posts: 2271
Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2005 5:29 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Mon Jan 01, 2007 2:02 am

Quoting LHMARK (Reply 35):
While you're there, try to find Sahti. It's the last of the European primitive beers, made from rye, with few or no hops, and flavored with juniper twigs and berries.

It's not commercially common, but it's definitely worth a shot if you can dig some up.

I have had Sahti in a countyside wedding, dangerous stuff! It's coming back in fashion.

Quoting Coal (Reply 36):
Of all the capitals in Nordic Europe, I found Helsinki to be the most bleak and least interesting.

Cheers,
Coal

You didn't drink enough  Smile

Cheers
Andaman

[Edited 2006-12-31 18:03:08]
Chinese cookie in SFO: "You're doomed to a life of forever travelling abroad and to be able to afford it!"
 
aloges
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Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2006 3:38 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Mon Jan 01, 2007 3:19 am

Quoting Coal (Reply 36):
I would strongly suggest to take the ferry to Tallinn.

I've been thinking about that - time-wise, a day-trip would be easily possible.

Quoting LHMARK (Reply 35):
While you're there, try to find Sahti.

I'll try to get my hands on some of it!  Silly
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
 
User avatar
Coal
Posts: 2299
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RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Mon Jan 01, 2007 3:01 pm

Quoting Andaman (Reply 37):
You didn't drink enough

Lol, true. We also arrived there the day after the Finnish band won the Eurovision contest, so there were a lot of interesting characters out and about in the streets  wink 

Cheers,
Coal
Nxt Flts: MI RGN-SIN | SQ SIN-RGN-SIN | CX SIN-HKG-PVG | SQ PVG-SIN
 
andz
Posts: 7628
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2004 7:49 pm

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Mon Jan 01, 2007 6:35 pm

Quoting WSOY (Reply 13):
many Finnish industries close completely for the month of July

It is extremely frustrating! My biggest supplier is in Helsinki and getting information in summer can be almost impossible!

Quoting VonRichtofen (Reply 23):
What about Feb? Hehehe a buddy of mine are planning on stopping in HEL for a day or so before heading to Tallinn. I'm Canadian so I can handle the cold, how bad are HEL's winters?

Take a look:






http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v155/andzz/frozenriver.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v155/andzz/IMG_1223.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v155/andzz/IMG_1201.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v155/andzz/IMG_1202.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v155/andzz/IMG_1217.jpg
After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
 
Joge
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Joined: Tue Feb 22, 2000 3:26 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Mon Jan 01, 2007 8:32 pm

Quoting Andz (Reply 40):

Nice pics, Andz!  bigthumbsup 

When was your last visit here? And when's the next one?

-Joge
Bula!
 
aloges
Posts: 14842
Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2006 3:38 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Mon Jan 01, 2007 9:06 pm

Quoting Andz (Reply 40):
Take a look:

That's exactly the kind of weather I'm looking for!  bigthumbsup 
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
 
andz
Posts: 7628
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2004 7:49 pm

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Tue Jan 02, 2007 2:00 am

Joge I was last in Helsinki from March 6-9 last year, not sure when I will be there again!
After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
 
andaman
Posts: 2271
Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2005 5:29 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Tue Jan 02, 2007 2:31 am

Quoting Aloges (Reply 42):

That's exactly the kind of weather I'm looking for!

Still no snow in Helsinki  Sad Snow would bring light to the mid winter darkness.
My Irish friend living in Finland said this strange dark wet winter looks very Irish.
Chinese cookie in SFO: "You're doomed to a life of forever travelling abroad and to be able to afford it!"
 
Joge
Posts: 1386
Joined: Tue Feb 22, 2000 3:26 am

RE: What To Do In Helsinki?

Tue Jan 02, 2007 3:23 am

Quoting Andaman (Reply 44):
My Irish friend living in Finland said this strange dark wet winter looks very Irish.

Indeed! The lawn at the backyard is all green.

And Andz, next time you come here, let me know well in advance for a meet up!  Big grin

-Joge

[Edited 2007-01-01 19:24:58]
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