Helsinki Life and Visitor Travel Tips

(Helsinki, Uusimaa, Southern Finland, Finland)

Picture of the harbourfrontFamed as an international meeting point, Helsinki is an important city in terms of administration, finance and culture, around which much of city life is based. Many tall and towering buildings dominate the skyline, with grand church spires contrasting with the more modern architecture.

Tourists visiting the city should consider purchasing the money saving Helsinki Card, which provides free entry to the majority of all the city's museums, along with free use of public transport and discounted meals at various participating restaurants. However, if you really wish to make the most of the Helsinki Card, you will have to sightsee and travel in a big way to make any considerable savings, so do bear this in mind.

Photo showing the heart of the city

Useful Contact Details

Visitors arriving in Helsinki will find that the centrally located City Tourist and Convention Bureau is always a good first port of call and offers all the latest information in the way of seasonal events and sporting activities. If you have not yet found a room for the night, then pay a visit to the Huonevaraustoimisto (Hotel Booking Centre), which is located at the Helsinki Central Railway Station and will usually be able to help find you suitable, available accommodation. Those planning to venture outside of Helsinki should pay a visit to the Matkailuneuvonta (Finnish Tourist Board), in the Kaartinkaupunki area of the city, where you can learn all about Finland and the many neighbouring Finnish attractions close by.

Helsinki City Tourist and Convention Bureau
Address: Pohjoisesplanadi 19, Helsinki, FI-00099, Finland, FI
Tel: +358 09 3101 3300
Fax: +358 09 3101 3301
Open hours: May to September, Monday to Friday - 09:00 to 20:00, Saturday and Sunday - 09:00 to 18:00; October to April, Monday to Friday - 09:00 to 18:00, Saturday and Sunday - 10:00 to 16:00

Huonevaraustoimisto (Hotel Booking Centre)
Address: Asema-aukio, Helsinki, FI-00100, Finland, FI
Tel: +358 09 2288 1400
Fax: +358 09 2288 1499

Matkailuneuvonta (Finnish Tourist Board)
Address: 4 Eteläesplanadi, Töölönkatu 11, Helsinki, FI-00100, Finland, FI
Tel: +358 010 605 8000
Fax: +358 010 605 8333

Picture of the university

Language and Dialect

The majority of people in Helsinki and throughout Finland speak the native language of Finnish, although a small proportion do speak Swedish. All signposts in Helsinki are written in Finnish, although some restaurants will also provide English versions of their menus, especially for tourists. Bring a Finnish phrase book and try to communicate with the locals in their native tongue. You may well be surprised how well it goes. Here are some simple Finnish phrases for you to practice:

Dos and Don'ts / Tourist Traps