Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Finishing What I Started- Helsinki

I was going to combine this post with Russia but I am getting impatient, have a lot of work to do tonight, and really just want to get this up, so here is a brief summary of my experience in Helsinki, Finland!

There's really not much I can say about Helsinki, partly because I was only there for just over a day and partly because there's just not much TO Helsinki.
Now, if you have been to Helsinki and found it enrapturing, enchanting, intriguing, or even just alive- I would love to hear about your experience because we clearly saw a different city.
I found Helsinki to be...
  • Clean
  • Empty
  • Uniform
  • COLD
  • Plain
  • Boring
  • Rigid
  • Pretty 
  • Nice
  • Passive
That being said, I wouldn't say it's a bad place. My experience was just...well, that ^
The three bright spots of the city were:

 The beautiful Orthodox Cathedral                         

                                                                                           The Lutheran Helsinki Cathedral

And this little Nepalese restaurant around the corner from EuroHostel where we stayed that was the best I've ever had!(Nepalese is, to put it simply, kind of a blend between Indian and Chinese cuisines)

Helsinki wasn't a bad place, I just didn't see any vibrancy there. No life, no excitement. There weren't many people out (granted it was really cold), and the few that were walking were not very friendly. Everyone and everything seemed to be that kind of bland, cold, conformist Stepford kind of pretty- but it was pretty))
I think I'm really glad I went to Helsinki, though, because it gave me a city that I don't particularly like. In my opinion a tourist will say every place was "great" or "beautiful", but a real traveler is someone with enough experience and learned discernment to be able to say- "You know what? It just wasn't my kind of city, I didn't like it." and I think at this milestone I am slowly moving up the ladder to true traveler (or, as I like to say, tourista) status!
We hoped on a small bus to St. Petersburg around 6:00 at night and rolled on out of Finland...St. Petersburg is yet to come!