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An Architectural Tour of Helsinki

Whether it be classical, art nouveau or cutting-edge contemporary, this architecturally endowed city is bound to impress
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Difficulty: Easy
Length: 2 miles
Duration: Half day

Overview :  Though most visitors are familiar with Senate Square, and Helsinki's art nouveau central train station, the city has an astonishing... more »

Tips:  This tour is designed to be a visual/structural tour that explores the design of the buildings featured rather than their contents ... more »

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Points of Interest

Centrally located, you can either walk here from the downtown (it is located just a few minutes past the Helsinki Music Centre) or the central train station or take Trams 4, 7, and 10, which stop at Mannerheimintie (National Museum stop).

Built in 1967, this is one of the city's best known modern architectural gems. It was designed by Finland's ... More

2. Church in the Rock

The Church in the Rock is about a 10 minute walk. Head northwest on Mannerheimintie/ Mannerheimvägen/E12 then turn left onto Cygnaeuksenkatu/ Cygnaeusgatan.
Turn left briefly onto Tölögatan/ Töölönkatu and continue right once again onto Cygnaeuksenkatu/ Cygnaeusgatan for about 200 meters (past Museokatu).... More

About a 10 minute walk from the church is this unconventional chapel. Head northeast on Luthergatan/ Lutherinkatu and turn right on Fredrikinkatu/ Fredriksgatan. After about 600 meters, turn left onto Urho Kekkonens gata/Urho Kekkosen katu and walk for about 150 meters. Turn left onto Simonkatu/ Simonsgatan.

One of Helsinki's newest additions to ... More

About a five minute walk northeast just past Mannerheiminaukio/ Mannerheimplatsen is the Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art.

Opened in 1998, the museum was built by American architect Steven Holl. The play of glass, light and curves on both the exterior and interior speak to the architect's renowned use of light. The imposing building itself is as... More

5. Helsinki Central Railway Station

About a three minute walk east of Kiasma is the Helsinki Central Railway Station.

The clock-tower and light-bearers of this art nouveau masterpiece are among the most recognizable landmarks in Helsinki. Consistently making top 10 lists of the world's most remarkable train stations, it was designed by architect Eliel Saarinen and opened in 1919.

... More

Helsinki's best-known architectural treasures are just a 10 minute walk away. Head east on Kaivokatu and turn right onto Centralgatan/ Keskuskatu. Turn left onto Ateneumgränden/ Ateneuminkuja and continue onto Yliopistonkatu for about 300 meters until you reach the square.

This is the historic (and some would say architectural) heart of the ... More

Head south on Unioninkatu/ Unionsgatan and turn right onto Esplanaden/ Pohjoisesplanadi and left onto Fabianinkatu/ Fabiansgatan. Turn right at Kapellesplanaden/ Kappeliesplanadi and left onto Kasarmikatu/ Kaserngatan and walk for about 450 meters.

This museum is a Mecca for anyone interested in Finnish architecture. What better illustrates the ... More