23.04.2018

Restaurant Backas – A charming 200-year-old manor offers Arctic flavors and beautiful views

We visited in April 2018 this magnificent manor in Vantaa, Southern Finland that has opened its doors again to the public as Restaurant Backas. We explored the beautiful surrounding garden area and the other buildings that can be found near the main building.

 

The main entrance of Restaurant Backas.

The main entrance of Restaurant Backas. Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

 

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

Restaurant Backas and the surrounding area is full of history: the main 200-year-old building's interior design style is absolutely beautiful in its historical references from the floors and colors to shape of the fork and knife.

 

Photos: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

The lunch appetizers for the day. Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

 

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

Appetizers. Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

In addition the lunch served at the main 200-year-old building is phenomenal. The food selection is very Finnish and full of Arctic flavors and decorative details. For example the coffee is served from a traditional northern Scandinavish wooden mug called "kuksa" in Finnish or guksi in English. The selection is mainly quarry (forest animal) and fish oriented but there is also a possibility to eat vegetarian there.

 

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

For main course whitefish from Inari, Finnish Lapland. Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

 

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

For dessert was served coffee in a guksi and pannacotta with berries. Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

We enjoyed a delicious three course meal from the appetizers and the main course to the dessert. The view from the multiple windows is a beautiful sight to look at while enjoying the diverse dishes from different locations in Finland.

 

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

Old buildings surround the manor. Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

There are big plans for the area and the other buildings also for the international tourists. The plans to lure international and 'stop-over' guests to visit this beautiful place include opening a spot in one of the old barns where the tourists can enjoy all things Finnish.

 

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

In spring 2018 a cafe called Backas' "Olohuone" (living room) is opened for business in an old style barn.

 

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

There is also a newly renovated and decorated sauna building!

 

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

This area in Vantaa, Southern Finland, is a must-visit. It feels like your in the countryside. Hard to believe by looking at these amazing views that the Helsinki-Vantaa airport and Helsinki City Center are literally right around the corner!

 

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

Photo: LikeFinland.com/Johanna Hurtig

Read more about the services Restaurant Backas has to offer on their website: https://ravintolabackas.fi/en/

*****

Text: Johanna Hurtig

Restaurant Backas is one of our Star Destinations.

LikeFinland.com is a nationwide leisure time media and search service of Finnish destinations. You can like us in Facebook or follow in Twitter and Instagram.

Our main website in Finnish is KivaaTekemista.fi.

09.04.2018

Haltia - Beautiful Finnish nature, modern architecture, and nature related exhibitions combined

 

We visited one of our Star Destinations called Haltia in March. This architechically outstanding exhibition and event center surrounded by beautiful Finnish nature is located in Southern Finland in a city called Espoo.

 

Photo: LikeFinland.com

Photo: LikeFinland.com

Even though you are not that far away from the city center you can enjoy the freshness and calmness the Finnish nature has to offer along with great exhibitions and food. It really feels like you’re in Lapland! There are hiking paths, beautiful views of Nuuksio and Lake Nuuksio Pitkäjärvi, and Nuuksio National park to enjoy.

 

Photo: LikeFinland.com

Haltia’s customer advisor Mari Valtonen showed us Jussi TwoSeven’s work through which we entered Luonto 2.17 -exhibition. Photo: LikeFinland

 

It is not just about the spectacular nature outside. Haltia offers a wide range of indoor multimedia exhibitions all year round. Nature related exhibitions range from to the more permanent such as the Main Exhibition and Green Belt exhibition to alternating exhibitions. There are also theme days which include for example lectures.

At the Main Exhibition we were able to listen the sounds of air, water, soil, and also wind. This art piece was designed by a Finnish artist Kirsi Ihalainen.

 

Photo: LikeFinland.com

Photo: LikeFinland.com

 

There are also art the kids can enjoy. For example there is no age limit for crawling into a bear’s nest. Don’t worry, the bear is not real! Just a teddy. But it really does resemble the real one.

We also enjoyed the food in Haltia Restaurant. The buffet included seasonal foods and foods straight from the Finnish nature such as wild herbs. There is always a possibility to eat vegetarian.

 

Photo: LikeFinland.com

Photo: LikeFinland.com

 

Haltia’s marketing manager, Katja Määttä, praises Haltia by saying that Haltia’s main goal is to make people more interested in nature by offering alternating exhibitions and art.

 

Photo:LikeFinland.com

Triic and Liahh came all the way from Viet Nam to study information technology at a Finnish university called Aalto. They often enjoy taking hikes, cycling, and fishing in Nuuksio. Photo: LikeFinland.com

 

OPENING HOURS

Winter opening hours, October 1–April 30

10 AM–5 PM, Tue–Sat (Closed on Mondays)

Summer opening hours, May 1–September 30

10 AM–6 PM, Daily

 

TICKETS TO EXHIBITIONS IN HALTIA 2018

Free entrance to the lobby, nature shop and to the restaurant.

Adults                                              13  € (incl. all exhibitions and audio guide)
Discount ticket                                  8 € (pensioners, students, military servicemen, non-military servicemen, unemployed. Ticket includes audio guide)
Children  (7–17-years-old)                 6 € + 2 € audio guide
Children under 7 years of age            No entrance fee
Family ticket                                     25 € + 5 € audio guides (incl. 1–2 adults + 1–4 children)              
Annual ticket                                    25 € (personal)
Group ticket  (min. 10 persons)          9 € / person (on reservation)

Guided tours (max. 25 persons/group) 95 € / h

Free entrance with:

ICOM card

PRESS card

Opas-GUIDE card

Museum card

Kaiku card

HelsinkiCard

Teachers together with daycare and school groups

Personal assistance

 

Text: Johanna Hurtig, Henri Elo

Haltia is one of our Star Destinations.

LikeFinland.com is a nationwide leisure time media and search service of Finnish destinations. You can like us in Facebook or follow in Twitter and Instagram.

Our main website in Finnish is www.KivaaTekemista.fi.

 

23.01.2018

Kierinki Village - a hidden pearl of Finnish Lapland

We visited a small Kierinki village in Finnish Lapland at the beginning of January. Kierinki is located in the municipality of Sodankylä in Northern Finland.

We had visited Kierinki once before, but at that time the weather was extremely cold, almost -40 degrees Celsius. This time the weather was on our side. We were very happy about it because we could get to know the small Lappish village even better.

We visited Kierinki during a polar night season ("kaamos" in Finnish) when there are only a few hours of daylight.


Photo: LikeFinland.com 


We got a warm welcome from Teija Raaterova, who has played a key role in revitalizing this small village - together with her fellow entrepeneur Paavo Holopainen, and other active people in Kierinki like Airi Kangas and restaurant entrepeneur Pekka Hakola.

In Kierinki you don’t see large number of other travellers, and that is one of the reasons why we like Kierinki so much. In Kierinki you have a chance to be in peace and spend your vacation at your own pace or in activities with the locals. Kierinki is also a very snow-sure place in Finland.

 


Ready to go! Photo: LikeFinland.com

KIERINKI SHOP & CAFE

The heart of the village is Kierinki Shop & Cafe, re-opened in 2011. The shop offers a wide range of services: groceries, fishing permits, as well as local art and souvenirs, not to forget a restaurant that offers breakfast and lunch. There is also a petrol station in connection with the shop.


A beautiful, yellow Hietala building operates as a restaurant ans as a grand venue for parties, meetings and events. Photo: LikeFinland.com 

Hietala's treasures include art, handicrafts and hunting trophies that tell about the mysticism and tradition of Lapland. Photo: LikeFinland.com

ACCOMODATION

There are different kinds of accomodation alternatives in Kierinki: a brand new guesthouse, opened in Christmas 2016, holiday apartments, Grandma Cabins, a caravan area and a tent village. 

We stayed in one of the cosy holiday apartments. It is a good choice for families with children. The apartments have a private sauna, kitchen and lounge, and they are equipped with bed linen, towels and kitchenware as well as a TV.

The charming and traditional Grandma Cabins are popular during the summer.

Places to stay are needed, as there are annual popular Lappish events taking place in Kierinki. The Theater Festival is held in July and the Rural Market, with merchants from all over the Lapland, is held in the first week of September.

 
Holiday apartment. Photo: LikeFinland.com

REINDEER FARM & ICE FISHING

A special thing about Kierinki is that guests, if they want, have an opportunity to experience activities truly together with the locals. We sat down on a sleights pulled by snowmobiles and went to check the fishing nets on the frozen Miskisjärvi lake together with Teija, Airi and Esko.

Along the way we stopped by one of Kierinki's reindeer farms. There were not only a couple of reindeers, but there were dozens of them.  

It is important to walk calmly at the farm, because the reindeers are quite sensitive. We had a chance to feed them together with the owner. The kids were excited.

Photo: LikeFinland.com

We continued our journey to Miskisjärvi lake where the first nets were. Unfortunately, we didn’t get any fish from there, but luckily Esko and Airi had nets also in Riipijoki river, right next to the village. And then it finally happened, we got a huge pike!


Esko checking a fishing net on lake Miskisjärvi. Photo: LikeFinland.com


What a catch! Photo: LikeFinland.com


At the end of the day we sat down by the open fire and grilled some sausages. The trip was a thrilling and relaxing experience both for children and adults!


PRICES AND OTHER ACTIVITIES

Ice fishing: 80 €/ person

Visit to a reindeer farm: 80 €/ person

Trip to wilderness: 179 €/ person

Evening trip to see the Northern Lights: 80 €/ person

Finnish sauna and swimming in the snow: 130 €/ person

Guided tour on snow shoes: 40 €/ person

Renting the snow shoes: for a day 20 €/ person

The rates are minimum 2 full paying adults. Children with 2 adults -50%. 

More information and bookings

Teija Raaterova, tel. +358 40 809 1610, e-mail: teija.raaterova(a)kieringinloma.fi

Kierinki Village in Booking.com

Airi Kangas, tel. +358 40 823 9291, e-mail: airi.kangas(a)gmail.com (activities and history)

Pekka Hakola, tel. +358 400 696 061, e-mail: hakolapekka(a)gmail.com (activities and special food)

Kierinki is a perfect place for a pilates retreat. Photo: LikeFinland.com


CROSS-COUNTRY SKIING

Before returning home we still wanted to enjoy the snow and at the same time test Kierinki’s cross-country skiing tracks. The weather was nice, the sky was bright and the temperature was -5 degrees celsius. The sun was still not visible, but the sky was full of beautiful colours.

To get to the skiing track, we had to drive 1 km of Raaterovantie. The track that leads you near the border of Kittilä municipality can be found on the left side of the road.


Photo: LikeFinland.com 

What a pleasure it was to ski in all the silence along the track surrounded by snowy trees. Because of a flat terrain, it was nice to ski, especially with children. 

If you do not have your own sled with you, you can borrow it from the Kierinki Shop & Cafe or from the Guesthouse. Kicksleds can also be borrowed freely. 


Reindeer farmer Ilpo Kumpula from one of the Kierinki's reindeer farms had saved a reindeer fawn that had got lost from it's doe. Photo: LikeFinland.com

 
HIGHLAND CATTLE

In Kierinki you have also a chance to get acquainted with the highland cattle. The animals seem calm and are eager to come to you if you've got bread with you to taste.

However, be careful when feeding the cattle. On arrival, the animals came so enthusiastically to us that it felt like the fence almost crashed. So we continued feeding by throwing the bread for them.

Highland products can be purchased at the Kierinki Shop & Cafe, or they can be enjoyed at the restaurant.


Photo: LikeFinland.com

 

FEELINGS AFTER VISIT

Kierinki brings us warm memories, especially because of the friendly people. We felt welcome and we found Kierinki more fascinating than a year ago due to the longer visit.

The Polar night period (Kaamos) brought its own spice to our visit. A headlamp was one of the most important tools during our visit.

It was great to be able to see and experience the winter activities of Kierinki - winter fishing and reindeer feeding. According to our children, the best part of our holiday was sitting on a sled pulled by a snowmobile. That really is something different than at home.

Eetu (6 years) also liked our nice "cottage" there. It was surprising that there's so much to experience in Kierinki. 


Photo: LikeFinland.com

Our article about Kierinki from last year: Destination of the month: Adorable Kierinki Village in Lapland (published 14.2.2017) 

"Although Kierinki is located in the middle of nowhere, from the village it is easy to go for a day trip to skiing resorts like Ylläs, Levi or Luosto, or to the capital of Finnish Lapland, Rovaniemi. All of them are slightly over one hour's drive away by car."


CONTACT INFORMATION

Kierinki Village
Tuirantie 4
97390 KIERINKI (Sodankylä)
FINLAND

Tel. + 358 40 809 1610
E-mail. teija.raaterova(a)kieringinloma.fi

Website - Facebook

Kierinki Village in Booking.com

 


Raaterovantie road. Photo: LikeFinland.com

Text: Sari Särkijärvi, Henri Elo

LikeFinland.com is a nationwide leisure time media and search service of Finnish destinations. You can like us in Facebook or follow in Twitter and Instagram.

Our main website in Finnish is www.KivaaTekemista.fi.

20.12.2017

Fun things to do in Helsinki region on Christmas time

If you are heading to Helsinki on Christmas Time, we made you a list of interesting places to visit.

Suomenlinna Sea Fortress
Helsinki

Suomenlinna, The sea fortress, founded in 1748, is a Unesco World Heritage site and one of the most popular tourist attractions in Finland. Visitors are not charged an admission fee – you only need to pay for the ferry crossing. Suomenlinna is also a borough of Helsinki. 

Christmas at the fortress is full of experiences and cosy atmosphere from 2 December 2017 to 7 January 2018. Restaurants, museums and galleries are open with special opening hours and Christmas themed program is available around the islands. Read more

How to get there?
Suomenlinna is accessible only by water. A ferry service runs from the Market Square to Suomenlinna throughout the year. 
The trip to Suomenlinna takes 15–20 minutes and offers magnificent views of Helsinki and the surroundings from the sea. During the cold winter months, the trip through the ice-covered waters is a unique experience. More information



The photo archives of the Governing Body of Suomenlinna/Arttu Kokkonen

Kiipeily Areena Climbing Centre
Salmisaari Sports Center (K1st floor)
Energiakatu 3, Helsinki

KiipeilyAreena in Salmisaari, Helsinki is the Scandinavia's biggest and highest indoor climbing centre! Here you will find the perfect level of difficultiness. KiipeilyAreena suits also for groups and children's birthday parties incl. climbing instructor.

Opening hours
Mon-Fri 9-22
Sat 10-19
Sun 10-21

Exceptions
24.12. closed
25.12. closed
26.12. 9-22
31.12. 10-18
1.1. 13-22

Ticket prices
Adult 14 € (with equipment 20€)
10 € Mon-Fri before 16 (with equipment 16€)
Child 10 € (with equipment 15€)
Bouldering 11€

***

Prison Island Helsinki
Salmisaari Sports Center
Energiakatu 3, Helsinki

Prison Island is a destination with adventure for all in ages 9-99 years old. It’s a lot like the successful TV-show “Fort Boyard” where you use team-work to solve tricky challenges in cells and collect points. All while the clock is ticking…. Gather your friends, form a team and solve the challenging tasks in the prison cells together. Cooperate, collect points and have lots of fun. 

Key card 60 min. 18€ / person
Key card 90 min. 25€ / person
Key card 120 min. 32€ / person

Opening hours
Mon-Sun 12-19
Closed 24.-25.12. and 1.1.

Please make a reservation in advance: tel. +358 50 596 5017


Prison Island Helsinki. Photo by LikeFinland.com


Megazone Laser Game
Salmisaari Sports Center
Energiakatu 3, Helsinki

Megazone laser tag is a fun, futuristic and exciting game that is suitable for all ages. Laser tag is played in a dimly lit, fog-filled, multi-level arena where players are provided with high tech vests and awesome but harmless laser guns. Players then try to score points by deactivating other players’ vests and destroying their bases.

1 game 10€
2 games 18€
3 games 25€

Opening hours
Mon-Sun 12-19
Closed 24.-25.12. and 1.1.

Please make a reservation in advance: tel. + 358 50 595 4094 or helsinki(a)megazone.fi.

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Exit Room Helsinki
Eurantie 2, Helsinki

At EXIT ROOM HELSINKI you have 66 minutes to explore a mysterious room full of surprises and to find the key for the exit. ESCAPE ROOMS are the perfect freetime activity for friends, families, colleagues… Search the room, turn it upside down. Be clever and solve all the puzzles. The rooms in a very special atmosphere are suitable for groups of 2 – 5 people. Read more

Prices
2 players 80€
3 players 90€
4 players 100€
5 players 120€
6 players 135€

Prices are valid from Monday to Saturday. On Sundays and Finnish National Holidays all games cost 135 €. Book a game!

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Ice Park
Rautatientori, Helsinki

The Ice Park is centrally located in the heart of Helsinki, right next to the central railway station.
Enjoy the urban culture with skates on. Relax with a hot drink in the atmospheric café, listen to music or meet friends. Come as you are – with or without the kids, straight from work, with your special someone under your arm, or on your way to a night out with friends. The award winning Ice Park is the perfect meeting spot! Read more

Opening hours
24.12. – Closed
23.12. - 6.1. – Open from 10 until 21

Tickets and prices
Adults 6 €
Children (under 18 years-old) 3 €
Skate rental 6 €

The ticket is valid all day. Before skating you will buy a ticket from the ticket booth and put it on your jacket. If you need skates, you can rent them from the Ice Park. Helmets and helping sleds can be borrowed free of charge.

 
Image source: Jääpuisto - Ice Park, Helsinki

**

LikeFinland.com is a nationwide leisure time media and search service of Finnish destinations. Would you like us to write about your destination for tourists. Please let us know.

**

Helsinki City Museum
Aleksanterinkatu 16, Helsinki

2.12.–10.1. ”Shadows of the Past” light installation

Helsinki City Museum at Aleksanterinkatu 16 will again create a peaceful winter oasis of light installations in its outdoor courtyards. This year, Alexander Reichstein, the creator of last winter’s immensely popular historic light sculptures, will bring Shadows of the Past to the historic Govinius’ courtyard. In this installation, ghostly silhouettes walk in an endless procession. The procession marches to the strong rhythms of Shostakovich’s music, which conveys the drama of time passing by.

Falkman’s courtyard will be filled by Willem Heeffer and Jussi Karjalainen’s light installation Around Helsinki, based on shadow theatre techniques. The installation features familiar and less familiar landmarks of Helsinki, including Hotel Torni, a kiosk and an old street lamp, alongside iconic urban transport vehicles ranging from a tram to a Zeppelin. Both light installations can be admired during the museum’s opening hours from 2 December 2017 to 10 January 2018. Read more

Smell

What does the nose remember? What does the city smell like? Can a museum experience be built on a single smell? The Helsinki City Museum at Aleksanterinkatu 16 will offer a new sensory experience starting from Friday, 7 October 2016 when Smell opens on the fourth floor of the museum. Read more

Time Machine

The Helsinki City Museum whisks visitors away on a time-travelling expedition one hundred years into the past. The Time Machine makes the photographs of famous Helsinki photographer Signe Brander come to life with a little bit of help from new technology. Time travellers can also visit the courtyards and streets of 1960s, 1970s and 1980s Helsinki. Historical VR experience! Read more

Children's Town

In Children’s Town, Helsinki’s past is illustrated by means of play and joint activities. Entrance to Children’s Town is always free of charge. Read more

Helsinki Bites

The Helsinki Bites exhibition dives into the past of Helsinki, bringing up common memories about the city’s history. Miniature Helsinki about the city in the 1870s, a thoroughly decorated 1950s apartment, and the interactive panorama experience are just some parts of Helsinki Bites. Read more

Helsexinki

The freedom to be yourself is not something all of us can take for granted. The Helsexinki-exhibition in the Helsinki City Museum, is based on the everyday experiences of city folk. It’s about sexuality, gender and sex – and about the freedom to choose how to express them. Read more


Opening hours
mon – fri 11–19
sat –sun 11–17

Closed
24.-26.12. and 1.1. More information

Helsinki City Museum exhibitions can be enjoyed free of charge.


Helsinki Bites. Image source: Helsinki City Museum


Löyly - un urban oasis
Hernesaarenranta 4, Helsinki

Löyly, an urban oasis, offers exceptional architecture in a unique location. The sauna is open to the public and has separate locker rooms and showers for men and women – however the sauna rooms and other facilities are open to everyone. Please remember that appropriate swimwear must be worn in the shared sauna room. If you would like to enjoy a private sauna visit, a smaller wood-fired sauna is available for exclusive hire. Read more

Prices
The admission fee for a two-hour sauna visit is EUR 19.00. The price includes a towel, seat liner and shampoo and shower gel. Additional hours are charged at EUR 10.00 per hour.

Opening hours
Mon-Wed 16-22
Thu 13-22
Fri-Sat 13-23 (morning sauna on Saturday at 8-10)
Sun 13-21

Exceptions
Sat 24.12. closed
Sun 25.12. closed

More information


Image source: Löyly. Photo by Pekka Keränen


Allas Sea Pool

Katajanokanlaituri 2 A, Helsinki

Allas Sea Pool is a gardenlike oasis in the heart of Helsinki with a large pool area and magnificent saunas. In addition to swimming, bathing in the saunas and good food, Allas Sea Pool offers many options for wellness. Allas is full of events and things to do - good modern life right at the shore of the Baltic Sea! Read more

Prices

Swimming ticket 12€
Children’s ticket (children 3-11) 6€
Children 0-2 for free

Opening hours in December:
Mon-Fri: 7am-9pm
Sat: 9am-9pm
Sun: 10am-8pm

Exceptional opening hours:
24-25 December: 10am-8pm
26 December: 10am-9pm (Special event until 23:00)
31 December: 10am-1am

 


Image source: Allas Sea Pool


Korkeasaari Zoo
Mustikkamaanpolku 12, Helsinki

Helsinki Zoo is home to 150 animal species and almost 1000 plant species that show the diversity of nature. Helsinki Zoo is one of the few zoos located on an island. It is the perfect place to visit due to its natural environment, animals and history. The zoo was established already in 1889 and this makes it one of the oldest zoos in the world. Helsinki Zoo also participates in the work to protect the habitats in the original homes of the various species. Helsinki Zoo´s mission is to work towards preserving biodiversity. Read more

How to get there?
Bus number 16 runs from the Central Railway Station to Helsinki Zoo every day all year round, except on Christmas Eve. The platform at the Railway Station is no. 17. The estimated travel time is 21-23 minutes.

Opening Hours
Every day at 10-16. Closed on Christmas Eve 24.12.
Please note that the ticket office and entrance closes one hour before the Zoo closes.

Ticket prices
Adult 12€
Child 4-17 years 6€
Child under 4 years Free of charge

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Manta Christmas market

Manta Christmas market (Mantan markkinat) will be brightening the darkest time of the year at the beautiful Havis Amanda square from November 18th until January 9th. The market will be open from 10am to 8pm every day, except on Christmas Day, when we will remain closed.

There are about 20 stalls at the market, and they will be selling everything from Christmassy food and beverages to traditional Finnish bakery products, various delicacies and beautiful crafts - for yourself or for your loved ones! 


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Market Halls in Helsinki

Helsinki’s adjacent indoor market halls are homes of great food. Hakaniemi Market Hall, Hietalahti Market Hall and the Old Market Hall are full of friendly family enterprises selling unique local delicacies. Many loyal customers come in to town regularly from the countryside and even from overseas to stock up on items you won’t find anywhere else. Read more

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TOP 5 CAFÉS IN HELSINKI

Café Esplanad
Pohjois-Esplanadi 37, Helsinki

Café Esplanad is well known for its central European atmosphere and style and especially for its huge cinnamon rolls (a Finnish sweet pastry called Korvapuusti) that are baked in the cafés own bakery. On the outdoor terrace one can also enjoy the sun. Restaurant Bistro in the back of the café offers inexpensive lunch.

Café Ekberg
Bulevardi 9, Helsinki

With a history dating back to the 1850s, Ekberg is considered a beloved veteran of the Finnish café and confectionary culture. The classic café Ekberg still serves the Napoleon cake and the Champagne Cork, favourite to many of its customers. 

Café – Restaurant Ursula
Ehrenströmintie 3, Helsinki

Ursula was founded on the seaside the same year 1952 as the first Olympic Games took place in Helsinki. The profit of Ursula has been used since the beginning for the benefit of poor people.

Café Regatta
Merikannontie 8, Helsinki

Outdoor café by the sea in Töölö with funky vintage interior and decoration.

Fazer Café
Kluuvikatu 3, Helsinki

Karl Fazers French-Russian café&cake shop was opened in Kluuvikatu 17.9.1891. As years have passed by the building, designed by Juslen, has been renovated and the interior of the café has been changed many times. The design of the cupola salon has been designed by interior designor Kaisa Blomstedt, who's well acquainted especially with interiors in functionalistic style. A part of the café&cake shops goodies are still made in Kluuvikatu, and it is possible to see the confectioners at work behind glass.

Read more about Cafés in Helsinki

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MUST SEE DESTINATIONS OUTSIDE HELSINKI

Flamingo Spa for adults & Aqua Park Flamingo
Tasetie 8, 01510 Vantaa

In the Spa, you can enjoy the relaxing warm water pool, the therapeutic mineral water pool, the six different saunas, the relaxation divans, and the treats at our pool side restaurant, Spa Café, which is licensed to serve alcohol. In addition to all this, the adult spa has over 20 luxurious treatment rooms where you can savor our Spa-treatments or luxuriate in an oriental steam sauna together with a group of friends or your beloved. Read more

Aqua Park Flamingo offers thrilling moments to all lovers of action- packed water games. Inside the water park, you will find different kinds of pools and slides, as well as our pool side restaurant, Spa Café, which is licensed to serve alcohol. In connection with the showers, there is also a Finnish sauna. Read more


Image source: Flamingo Spa

Pikseli Arcade
Tasetie 8, Vantaa / Piispansilta 11, Espoo

Pikseli is Scandinavia's first virtual reality park. Our great selection of games and short films takes you around the world, to the mountains and up to space. Experience everything that you have ever wanted – experiences and adventures are waiting for you in virtual reality! Read more

Heureka - The Finnish Science Centre
Kuninkaalantie 7, Vantaa

The Finnish Science Centre Heureka intro- duces the public to science and technology in an engaging and interactive way. Visitors can experience the joy of discovery through spectacular exhibitions, planetarium films and events. Read more

Fazer Experience Visitor Centre
Fazerintie 6, Vantaa 

The journey of Karl Fazer’s French-Russian café started on Helsinki’s Kluuvikatu, and on 17 September, it will have been going on for 125 taste bud-inspiring years. To commemorate our anniversary, we opened a new, unique visitor centre in October that have a memorable exhibition, a Fazer Café and a store. Read more

Talma Ski
Talmantie 341, Sipoo

Talma Ski is a high-class ski resort and snow playground for the whole family in Sipoo, near Helsinki. Alpine skiing, snowboarding, snow park, ski school and also Werneri Park for small children. Read more

Haltia - The Finnish Nature Centre
Nuuksiontie 84, Espoo

The Finnish Nature Centre Haltia presents all of Finland's nature under one roof. Haltia is also a modern and ecologically designed Conference and Event Center. The main exhibition will fascinate the visitor with its enthralling visualization of the Finnish nature. Read more


Haltia - The Finnish Nature Cantre, Espoo. Image source: LikeFinland.com



DAY TRIPS

Fiskars Village
Fiskars, Raseborg

You can sense already at first sight that Fiskars Village enjoys a unique setting beyond compare. Fiskars was built on the banks of the river and architecturally is completely unlike other places in Finland. Forget the rush of everyday life as you let the verdant surroundings inspire you. Read more

Svartå Manor
Hållsnäsintie 89, Raseborg

Svartå Manor is one of the most precious manor houses in Finland with a history of more than two hundred years. The Manor is situated about 80km west of Helsinki along the Finnish coast. Today it is a museum and is opening its doors to the public with guided tours. Read more

Tytyri Mine Experience
Kuilukatu 42, Lohja

The Tytyri Mine Experience is a unique and multi-faceted travel destination 110 metres below ground level, combining the Nordkalk mining industry, Kone’s top-class technological development, and the adventure and thrills of a travel destination. Read more

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USEFUL LINKS

Visit Helsinki

My Helsinki - Your local guide to the best of Helsinki

Helsinki365
What does Helsinki look like? How does it feel? Finnish photographer Jussi Hellsten in co-operation with Visit Helsinki has captured local moments in Helsinki for one year.

Helsinki Secret
Discover the best kept secrets and places where you can enjoy the most genuine atmosphere as recommended by the locals themselves.

Helsinki Region Journey Planner

Hel Yeah! Food Helsinki brochure (including map)



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Sources used in this article: Visit Helsinki, MyHelsinki, Suomenlinna, Flamingo Spa, Löyly, Allas Sea Pool, Helsinki City Museum, Ice Park, Haltia, Fazer, Heureka, Korkeasaari Zoo, Megazone, Exit Room Helsinki and Prison Island -websites.

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LikeFinland.com is a nationwide leisure time media and search service of Finnish destinations. You can like us in Facebook or follow in Twitter and Instagram.

Our main website in Finnish is www.KivaaTekemista.fi.



 

 

 

 

 

22.09.2017

Destination of the Month: Beautiful Aulanko in Hämeenlinna

LikeFinland team visited Aulanko in Hämeenlinna few weeks ago in September. Hämeenlinna is located just an hour's drive from the Helsinki Metropolitan Area, which makes it a nice mini holiday destination.

As a nature-loving family, we wanted to find out what kind of outdoor activities Aulanko offers.

 

WHAT IS AULANKO?

Surrounded by two waters, Vanajavesi in the west and Aulangonjärvi in the east, Aulanko is not only a beautiful but historically significant area. We were surprised by its versatility.

Aulanko was formerly known as Karlberg and was originally built for a Polish Countess, to whom Aulanko's founder, Colonel Hugo Standertskjöld (1844-1931) was in love. However, the countess never arrived in Finland.

Standertskjöld wanted the Karlberg to be open for everyone. His numerous creations that still remain consist of the Aulanko lookout tower, Ruusulaakso Pavilion, Temple of luck, Bear cave as well as artificial islands and artificial lakes. This all gives you an authentic historical and nature experience.

Many of the latest destinations in the area are named after Aulanko's most famous host and builder, including two golf courses in Aulanko Golf, Hugo and Eversti, and the adventure park HugoPark, opened last year.

 


Ruusulaakso Pavilion. Photo: LikeFinland.com

IN PEACE AND PRIVACY

Aulangon Rauha contains several accommodation units for rent by Aulangonjärvi lake. The accommodation company Evon Luonto - Peace & Privacy offers villas also near the Evo hiking area east of Hämeenlinna, and in Loppi, south of Hämeenlinna. (By the way, 'rauha' in Finnish means peace, and 'luonto' means nature.)

We stayed in a fully renovated Aulanko Grand Villa, opened in spring 2017. It is suitable both for families and for larger business and other groups. The Villa of 350 m2 includes several bed rooms, sauna facilities, and a large lounge with fully equipped kitchen.

 


Aulanko Grand Villa. Photo: LikeFinland.com

The Aulanko Grand Villa is a nice place to spend holidays, for example, with friends or to organize family reunions.

The villa's speciality is its own game room with billiards, air hockey and ping-pong tables, darts and table football. Children were very excited about it, and the best thing was that it made the kids forget about the smartphones!

 


Photo: LikeFinland.com

We would have liked to stay longer, as Aulanko offers plenty of nice things to do and places to see, for all ages. One weekend is not enough!

If you really want to be in peace and enjoy the nature of Aulanko, with no strangers, the villas of Aulangon Rauha is the right place! We were surprised that the villas are rented for only one family or group at a time.

More information:
Evon Luonto - Peace & Privacy (www)

Tel. + 358 207 300 888
Email: info[a]evonluonto.fi

 

BEAUTIFUL NATURE OF AULANKO

There are eight National Urban Parks in Finland, of which Hämeenlinna is the eldest, founded in 2001. The land area extends from the centre via Häme Castle to Aulanko.

We did not have a precise plan but after having explored the map we decided to head our nose to the scenic Lookout tower of Aulangonvuori Hill.

The trails were well marked and there were maps along the trails.

 


Photo: LikeFinland.com


Photo: LikeFinland.com

We felt once again: Are we really in Finland?

From the tower we continued to the Ruusulaakso pond and the lovely Ruusulaakso pavilion. What a great spot for a picnic!


Photo: LikeFinland.com


FUN THINGS TO DO IN AULANKO

HugoPark

HugoPark is an adventure park opened in summer 2016 near the Aulanko spa hotel. There are 7 tracks in the adventure park, and most of the courses are suitable also for children. The recommended hight limit is 120-140 cm depending on the course.

HugoPark has a continuously-assured ZAZA2 system, where the adventurer's harnesses are hooked in the safety wire all the way.

Eetu, 6yrs, was inspired by the course 1. Although the course runs low, there are points on the course, where the smallest children may not survive without a help of an adult. Aada, 10yrs, experienced the courses 2 and 3.

 


Photo: LikeFinland.com

None of the Hugo courses was physically extreme, but the courses 5-6 tracks certainly require more courage – especially in the jumps.

Other activities at Aulanko Park: mini golf (equipment rental from the hotel), disc golf and beach volley.

At the end of the climbing adventure we enjoyed a lunch buffet at Aulanko Golf's restaurant Eversti. The lunch was tasty and of high quality. Kids liked it too.

You can find restaurant services also at Hotel Aulanko.




Aulanko Golf & Restaurant Eversti. Photo: LikeFinland.com

Other destinations 

Spa Hotel Cumulus Resort Aulanko (Hotel Aulanko)
Aulanko Golf: 18-hole Kenraali & 9-hole Hugo + golf lessons
Aulanko Riding School
Aulanko Outdoors program services

 

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Evon Luonto is a Star Destination and a media customer of LikeFinland.com media. 

Text: Sari Särkijärvi, Henri Elo

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LikeFinland.com is a nationwide leisure time media and search service of Finnish destinations. You can like us in Facebook or follow in Twitter and Instagram.

Our main website in Finnish is www.KivaaTekemista.fi.

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