Helsinki had a devastating fire in 1808 and when it was rebuilt it was modelled on the Russian city of St Petersburg with Neoclassical buildings fronting wide boulevards. Some of this grandeur has endured, particularly around Senate Square and this is a great place to start a walking sightseeing tour. Places to see are the exquisite Tuomiokirkko or Helsinki Cathedral, Government Palace and Helsinki University all facing the square. Close by is Sederholm House, the oldest stone building in the city and City Museum with its interesting history of Helsinki.
Walk west and you reach Kauppatori or market square with its colorful stalls of fresh fruit and vegetables. From here Esplanadi leads to the shopping paradise of the Stockmann Department Store, Europe's largest department store and the close-by Forum shopping mall.
North from here is the Rautatieasema or the Railway Station designed by architect Eliel Saarinen. To the north-east is the imposing Suomen Kansallisteatteri or the National Theater, to the east the city bus terminal, and to the south-east is the Ateneumin Taidemuseo or the Art Museum. From here north along Mannerheimintie there is much to see. First there is the post office and postal museum. Further on are the Suomen Kansallismuseo or the National Museum, Finlandia Hall, the Opera House and the Olympic stadium.
A scenic highlight is the Sibelius Park with its fascinating monument. Then there is the Suomenlinna Maritime Fortress, the centuries-old fortress and its museums are well worth a visit.
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1 B Läntinen Teatterikuja
00250 Helsinki, Suomi
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Lönnrotinkatu 7 B
Lönnrotinkatu 7 B
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Suomenlinna C 66
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