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Helsinki has been deemed one of the most livable cities in the world by various media outlets. Sure, it might be a little cold but other than that, it’s perfectly formed. Much of it is walkable if you don’t feel like using their excellent public transport, and if you’re on holiday, that’s exactly what you should do – the city is enchanting and there’s no better way to enjoy it than on your feet. Here are some walks we hugely recommend.

1. City Centre

This one’s easy-peasy. From the central rail station, walk a little south and you’ll inevitably hit the grand boulevard known as the Esplanade. Walk east along this pretty park area to the port and Market Square. After soaking up the sea air, walk north a few minutes to the impressive Russian architecture in Senate Square.

2. Kamppi

Ten minutes west of the very centre is Kamppi, much of which is pedestrianised. You can wander around the large shopping centre and bars, but make sure you pop into the two chapels around here. The Chapel of Silence is an oasis of peace smack bang in the middle of this shopping district, while the Temppeliaukio Chapel just to the north offers it’s own unusual atmosphere – it’s carved out of solid rock and you can climb all over the building, which is quite the bonus.

3. West Coast

For a longer walk away from the bustle of people, head to the Lapinlahti area to the west, starting around the beautiful Hietaniemi Cemetery. Follow the coast up to picturesque Hietaniemi Beach which is full of people during summer, or head on further north and enjoy the wooden quays. It won’t be long until you find Sibelius Park on the landside of the path where the beguiling Sibelius Monument can be found in commemoration of the country’s most famous composer. You might want to take a tram back into town at this point, but keener walkers should keep following the coast until they reach Seurasaari, a gorgeous island museum full of unusual sights, in particular the two beaches for nudists.

4. Interior Lake

Take a number 3 tram to the north side of the Olympic Village and head south towards the centre. You don’t have to think too much as you meander around the hilly green areas, inevitably passing by Linnanmaki amusement park, the Olympic stadium and the city’s aqua park before coming across Toolonlahti Lake. The lake has beautiful old villas on the east side and modern arts centres on the west.




Featured image by Ari-Pekka Darth/Visit Helsinki

About the author

Adam ZulawskiAdam is a freelance writer and Polish-to-English translator. He blogs passionately about travel for Cheapflights and runs Download his free e-book about Poland's capital after it was almost completely destroyed by the Nazis: 'In the Shadow of the Mechanised Apocalypse: Warsaw 1946'

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