Just got back from my trip so sharing some of my snaps ❤
I had couple of days around a business event so aimed to exhaust the best bits of the Finnish capital with my limited time. Here’s what I got up to!
Getting Hygge with it
(side note: does anyone else want to pronounce this as Higgie?)
So not only did I learn how to properly pronounce it ”Hoo-gah” I also learnt what it actually means. Before Helsinki, my perception of Hygge was a #trendy Nordic term that encapsulated being snug and cosy in brutal weather, and so in my mind had become synonymous with all things such as hot chocolate (fave <3), big blankets and oversized knits. On the face of it, all things I love (albeit not exactly what I wish to embrace in the height of summer)
I got hygge all wrong.
It’s much more about embodying a ”wellness” mindset. Before your mind jumps to the thought of ”super-green-squeaky-clean”, think again. It’s actually about prioritising feeling good, happy and stress free. Nourishing yourself and putting yourself first by taking care of your mind, body and soul. For example, did you realise that a lot of Finnish people have a sauna in their own house? Now that is something I could get on board with.
In true Nordic style I fully embraced those Hygge vibes & aimed for a stress free couple of days (OK conference aside).
Being a tourist
Helsinki is surrounded by small Islands, one of which, Suomenlinna, is often sited as being the number one tourist site since it’s a UNESCO heritage Island. So in true tourist style our first stop was hopping on a boat and crossing over the sea. One thing that struck me was how incredibly eerie this place felt. Almost peaceful and relaxing; and so far removed from it’s former prison of war status.
Enjoying the food
Eating canal side at the gorgeous and very hipster restaurant Holiday. The salmon poke bowl was great.
Manala. This place was great, with tons of different breads to try (Sourdough will always be my fave!) and my first time trying Artic Char. The fish is just on another level here, so fresh and flavoursome.
Exploring the sights
The majority of the buildings seemed to be reminiscent of those often found in other large cities like London, Brussels or Paris – tall, block like and pretty nondescript. But a few standout sights for me was the Uspenski Cathedral (it reminded me of Russian architecture), and the outside of the Design Museum, a very futuristic abstract looking bunker(!).
A church underground? It was pretty and quaint, and probably how I’d actually describe the majority of Helsinki.
Overall I had a short but sweet break. Helsinki was everything a city yearns to be: clean, safe and relaxed. For sure the quality of life for residents seems incredible.
It’s really made me want to explore more scandi places, where have you been?
Recommendations please! ❤ x