By the light of the Northern Star: Helsinki, Part 2

Beating the Humdrum

A gloriously sunny and unseasonally toasty Saturday made for the perfect day to explore another of Helsinki’s highlights. Suomenlinna is a sea fortress on a series of islands some 15 minutes offshore by ferry. It was built in the mid-1700s to protect against Russian expansionism – clearly this is what Crimea would have needed! As in Japan, the well-trodden PATH was in evidence at this popular tourist site, but fortunately the place is practically an open invitation to stray from it and explore. Indeed, a fort proved to be far from all this miniature archipelago has to offer!

En route to Suomenlinna. The tourist market is strategically located at the pier where tourists wait for the half-hourly ferry... Traditional-style houses contrast with a massive ferry bound for Estonia. The tourist market is strategically located at the pier where one waits for the half-hourly transfer to Suomenlinna.

Disembarking on the first island, we left behind the boatload of people obediently shuffling along the PATH and followed the coastline. The many benches installed here gave the fort a…

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