Head here to see snaps and some fun details from our flight over and a “get-to-know-Helsinki” walking tour. We’ve moved along to the Lahti region now, but have a few Helsinki museum spots to share.
Amos Rex Art Museum
Helsinki’s Amos Rex art museum occupies the site of a former bus station and has a popular public square up top and a sunken gallery below.
To give you an idea of the type of art the curators are thrilling the city with, here’s an image of a cacophony of reclaimed chairs flowing over the roof of the building that’s one part of a site-specific piece titled The Nest, by Japanese contemporary artist Tadashi Kawamata.
Finnish Museum of Natural History
Our museum team loves natural history museums, so we made sure to visit the Finnish Museum of Natural History, which has five permanent exhibitions, including Finnish Nature, World Nature, and The Story of the Bones.
We were delighted to spot a rare two-headed calf on display as well as skeletons and specimens galore.
And, yes, we love that we can tell people we can now fly directly from Seattle to HEL(L).
Flights to SEA to HEL now operate three times a week: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, using an Airbus A330.
Here are a few more snaps from the gate celebration on June 1, some of the inflight amenities, and a few places we visited early in our Helsinki visit.
Thanks to Finnair for taking us along.
Souvenirs from the inaugural flight include cookies and luggage tags. For some passengers we met in the gate area before the flight, these were the only clues that they had booked seats on new service from SEA.
Combined with the champagne or blueberry juice welcome drink and the Marimekko amenity kit for business class passengers, this was a very festive welcome.
SEA airport sent off this inaugural flight with two congratulatory cakes for the crew, which they generously shared with passengers.
We’ll have more time to explore the airport on our way home but we are encouraged to see bright spaces and artwork greeting passengers on arrival at the recently-upgraded terminal.
Licorice in Finland
Salted licorice (salmiakki) is a popular treat in many Nordic countries and a ‘you love it or you hate it’ treat for visitors from other countries. The StuckatTheAirport.com team loves it. And we were pleased to find a candy store not far from our hotel filled with licorice varieties we’d never seen or tasted before.
We’ll share more photos over the next few days, but with charming guides from Visit Helsinki, a group of Seattle-area journalists has been roving around the town.
Temppeliaukio Church is, understandably, one of Helsinki’s major tourist destinations because this Lutheran Church was carved out of solid rock, lined with copper, and covered with a UFO-like dome.
Helsinki’s central library – Oodi
Helsinki’s Central Library – Oodi – has books, of course. But this sprawling, welcoming space also serves as a community center and resource palace with everything from an outdoor terrace and cafes, to work and meeting spaces, recording studios with loaner instruments, play areas for kids, 3-D printing stations, sewing machines, and seemingly anything you might want to use or try out.
We love the spiral staircase, a work of art decorated with hundreds of words describing the wide variety of users that the public suggested the library should be dedicated to.
HELSINKI ART MUSEUM – HAM
The Helsinki Art Museum – HAM – is hard to miss with this giant seagull head outside. We’ve yet to make our way inside the building. But because about half of the 9,000 works of art in HAM’s collection are located in public spaces, we’re able to enjoy the museum’s offerings as we walk around town.
We’ll be back with more sites and spottings from Helsinki tomorrow.