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Helsinki sightseeing tour on your own - by tram 2 and 3 (former 3T/3B)
An easy and inexpensive sightseeing tour in Helsinki can be done by tram 2 and 3. The route passes many of the interesting sights, and it's a way to travel among the locals. The route and the numbering (formerly 3T/3B) was changed in the summer of 2013.
A map of the tram routes (including the new lines 2 and 3) is avaliable online.
There's a free HSL brochure available from the Tourist Informations at the Airport and in Helsinki city explaining the sights along the route of tram 2 and 3.
The entire route of trams 2 and 3 is a number-8 shaped loop. Trams 2 and 3 go to both directions - the letter changes depending on where the tram is along its route (see below).
- Please note that the current route 2 AND 3 was changed in 2013. Old brochures and audioguides published before that are explaining the old route that went from Aleksanterinkatu via Stockmann's to Manneheimintie and continued to Arkadiankatu. Now it turns to Mikonkatu and goes via Rautatientori (Railway Station Square) and Shopping Center Kamppi. - The brochure in above link shows the current route.
Audio guide for the old 3T route now available for free
There's a handy audioguide for any mp3-player or phone available now for free at http://www.dewhurstdesigns.co.uk/hels... . - Besides mp3 also a free illustrated mp4 (M4A or MPEG-4) file available for the devices like iPod or smartphones doing that format.
The narrated tour starts at Kauppatori (The Market Square). Please note that to follow the route narrated in the audio guide, you need to take the 2 tram towards Eläintarha. (The tram stop, which is closer to the main part of the Market Square).
The audio guide narrates the old route. You won't miss any of the sights mentioned in the recording, if you step off the tram at stop Aleksanterinkatu, and walk a bit.
- Follow the street Aleksanterinkatu straight forward to Stockmann's department store.
- At the Three Smiths' statue in front of Stockmann's turn right to Mannerheimintie and walk to the yellow Main Post Office, and turn left to Arkadiankatu.
- Walk by Luonnontieteellinen museo (Museum of Natural Science) and continue along Arkadiankatu to tram stop Kauppakorkeakoulut.
- Continue with the tram again at the stop Kauppakorkeakoulut. (Before that you can take the opportunity to visit the Church in the Rock, which can be seen in the end of the street to the right, when you cross Fredrikinkatu)
However, if you decided not to walk but stay on the tram, please note that route is different from the narration between Aleksanterinkatu and Kauppakorkeakoulut.
A single tram ticket costs 2.20 €. It's valid for one hour and you can transfer to another tram only. You can buy a tram ticket with a travel card or from the multi-ticket machines in the city centre - not from the driver.
- The only multi-ticket machine at Kauppatori is at the Suomenlinna ferry terminal.
The driver sells normal tickets (valid for one hour on all Helsinki public transportation) for 3 € (from a ticket vending machine 2.50 €) and one-day tourist tickets (valid for 24 hours on all internal Helsinki public tranportation) for 8.00 €.
Two-hour tickets (4.00 €), day tickets (available from 1 to 7 days, from 8 € to 32 € respectively) and travel cards (5 €) you can buy (and load value/money them) in advance in any R-kiosks, Tourist Information Offices at Pohjoisesplanadi 19, Central Railway Station and Helsinki-Vantaa Airport, HSL Service Points (e.g. in the Station Tunnel in the basement of the Central Railway Station), booking offices of VR train stations, Stockmann Department Stores, Citymarkets and Prisma supermarkets. With Travel Card's value the single ticket costs only 1.95 € and tram ticket 1.46 €, but the Travel Card's value tickets are worthwhile only if you stay a bit longer in Helsinki (the card itself costs 5 €). For further information on tickets and fares, please see the HSL website.
- With the normal ticket you can, after the full tour with tram 2 and 3, continue within the validitty of the ticket (usually 60 min) e.g. to the Suomenlinna using the same ticket with the ferry that starts from the terminal located in the far end corner of the Market Square. (The cheaper tram ticket isn't valid on the ferry.)
All fares above are valid in June 2014. - - For current ticket fares please check this link.