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Helsinki weekend at the end of October

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London, United...
posts: 29
reviews: 37
Helsinki weekend at the end of October

Hi! I'm planning a city break for the end of October, are there any special recommendations for a restaurant in town that serves definitive Finnish/Lapland food?

Any restaurant/location we should avoid?

Also is it going to be cheaper to buy wine/spirits in duty free, or is it ok value locally?

We're also planning on visiting the island fortress - any other 'must see' attractions? We're thinking more along the lines of landmarks rather than museums/galleries.

I've shortlisted the Hilton Kalastajatorppa or the Hotel Kamp to stay - which is better, given the weather at that time of year?

All replies much appreciated!

Gordon

Helsinki
posts: 39
reviews: 2
1. Re: Helsinki weekend at the end of October

Hi Gordon!

Between those two hotels I would definitely recommend you to choose Hotel Kamp. It has a perfect location. In the same block there is also a new modern hotel called Glo that belongs to the same Kamp group.

Kalastajatorppa is about 5 km from the city center.

Here are some restaurants specialized in Finnish food:

Aino

www.marcante.fi/aino/index_english.html

Savotta

www.asrestaurants.com/savotta/index.asp…

Savoy

www.royalravintolat.com/savoy/index_eng.asp

and a nice Lappish one:

Lappi

http://www.lappires.com/info/english.html

See also the website of Helsinki Tourist Office:

http://www.hel2.fi/Tourism/EN/matko.asp

> Services > Restaurants

There are lots of restaurant recommendations in other threads of this forum. I would recommend you to read them too.

Welcome to Helsinki and have a nice time!

Finland
posts: 174
reviews: 38
2. Re: Helsinki weekend at the end of October

To add to the previous post.

Duty free is cheaper but as you're from London Helsinki price level should be more than tolerable.

To must see attractions, other than museums/galleries, I would add

- Temppeliaukio chuch

- Senate Square area for architecture

- tram tour 3T/3B

I also second hotel Kamp. The location is excellent.

London, United...
posts: 29
reviews: 37
3. Re: Helsinki weekend at the end of October

Thank you both for your recommendations - will check out those links. Will confirm Hotel Kamp too thanks to your kind advice. Getting excited already!

Cheers

Gordon

USA
posts: 6
4. Re: Helsinki weekend at the end of October

Hi Gordon,

I also recommend Lappi restaurant for Lapland food.

http://www.lappires.com/info/english.html

My expereince also has been that going out for a few beers in Finland is really expensive!!

Hotel Kamp is the only High Class hotel in Finland, but is also expensive. I have stayed at the Radisson SAS Royal and I thought it was good (although in general Finnish people don't make very good service people....)

I don't know what you are in too, but if you have a couple days to spare and want to try out something a little different, I recently went on a day tour called Turku and Archipelago experience and I though it was really cool.

One note of warning, I've heard that the weather in Helsinki in October is not always very nice!

Frank

Well educated biter...
posts: 234
reviews: 37
5. Re: Helsinki weekend at the end of October

Frank, that was nice an polite way of saying it. "... is not always very nice!" Lets be honest and say that in late october and november even sea gulls at marketplace choose to walking, because of the weather. :)

London, United...
posts: 29
reviews: 37
6. Re: Helsinki weekend at the end of October

Thank you both for the above comments - It's all going into my dossier of things to see/do. Just checked out the tour site too - looks like a cool day trip for the Sunday, though perhaps one better for a summer visit...

Yes the weather was a bit of a concern but just figured that if it was blowing an artic gale or something we'd keep to nearby restaurants, cafes and bars - a culinary tour of Helsinki if nothing else...Otherwise I understand that you can organise a local guide for Helsinki through the tourism office. Can't wait to try my first reindeer/elk/bear steak!

Cheers

Gordon

USA
posts: 6
7. Re: Helsinki weekend at the end of October

Actually despite what the French president said about Finnish food, there are some really nice restaurants in Helsinki! Also if you want to try russian, I can recommend Saslik. You can try your bear there :-).

About the tour, I don't know what they do in winter, but you could ask them.

I guess if it's really cold you could try a Finnish Sauna. I saw a clip on YouTube where Conan O'brian visited a place where there were Finnish guys going from a sauna to swim in a hole in the ice.....

Frank

Helsinki
posts: 39
reviews: 2
8. Re: Helsinki weekend at the end of October

About the ice swimming

I'm quite sure there won't be ice in October, but the sea water is almost as cold as in winter.

West London
posts: 1
reviews: 3
9. Re: Helsinki weekend at the end of October

Although it's not a tourist/finnish food restaurant you might want to have a look at Salve down in the West Harbour area (Tram 6 will take you there). It has a very local feel to it and served what I would describe as hearty local food (i.e not reindeer steaks). The service and food was very good and it was a nice relaxed atmosphere - lots of locals in there rather than tourists.

Lappi Restauarant is more of a touristy place and has Reindeer, Snow Grouse etc on the menu, feels quite authentic, inside, but doesn't look much from the outside. I far preferred Salve's as a restaurant.

Wine in restaurants is considerably more expensive than in the UK (cheapest bottle around €30), but beer seems similar price to London.

For getting around the 3 day €12 Helsinki Travel Pass is great value and includes the ferry over to the island fortress - there is also the more expensive Helsinki card which may be good if you're planning to go into lots of museums etc.

The Yellow Taxi (shared minibus) service is a good option for to/from the airport, cost us €22 for two of us to the city centre.

London, United...
posts: 29
reviews: 37
10. Re: Helsinki weekend at the end of October

Thank you Trav77 for your recommendations and info - The travel pass is 12 euros for 3 days? That's just incredible value. I'd been reading about the 3B/T tram elsewhere too - seems like a good option, especially if its a bit chilly and we're walking about in the gloaming. Otherwise, are all the main attractions in the city within walkable distance of each other?

Thank you too Pirus re the icey swim thing - As they might say, "It'd be a cold day in Hel(sinki) before you catch me doing that". Seriously though, what can I expect temp wise? 0-5c? Warmer? Colder? My friend's planning wardrobe and she wants an excuse to buy furry boots.