Goodbye Lapland > Helsinki Stopover

Only the northern people seem to understand the concept Helsinki Stopover by Finnair. Flying there in the evening, lay over, and continue flying the next day. Or in my case, to take the train, since the flights KUO-RVN-KUO (200€) were cheaper than HEL-RVN-HEL (400€) + the train ticket HEL-Kuopio ‘central’ was cheaper (25€) than the taxi (40€) from KUO to Kuopio city center, aka current home.

Sounds and is absurd, traveling in Finland I mean. But this time it’s ok, the stopover I mean, since I have the opportunity to see some of my friends after a long time and to catch one of the last changes to see the Henri Cartier-Bresson exhibition in Ateneum. A good deal I’d say. Helsinki is so tiny, that one day is most of the times enough for seeing what there’s to see right then. And I’ve heard it’s kinda extra cold these days. The seaside -20’C really is worse than inland -20’C. It creeps into your bones and stays there and that’s not nice, even in girl from the north country -standards.

It’s also kinda funny how in Helsinki they need these artificial lights by Lux Helsinki to light up the polar night.  You know, in Lapland we have this kaamos thing.. In other words, one night stopover in Helsinki is enough for me.  Somehow it hasn’t proved to be worth more, but maybe some day.


Siperia Helsinki calling. Lappi oli kylmä, kaunis ja kiva. Mutta nyt on taas aika moikata kavereita Helsingissä ja nähdä kehuttu Henri Cartier-Bresson Ateneumissa.  Olisi siellä myös  LUX Helsinki, mutta Lapin kaamoksen luonnollisten värien ja valojen jälkeen ei keinovalo helposti iske… Helsingissä on kiva käydä, mutta vain lyhyesti, ainakin kunnes toisin todistetaan.


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Tiina Kivelä

Finnish escapades, as a friend once described.

2 thoughts on “Goodbye Lapland > Helsinki Stopover”

    1. Hi! Nice to hears some other comments. Yes, I also like Helsinki for transfers, especially international ones. Paris on the comparison is just awful. But an airport with as marvelous “extra” services as Helsinki has (free WiFi, new shiny tax-free and decor), it unfortunately (too) many times performs poorly when it comes to domestic transfers and if/when originally departing from Helsinki. In example, the opening hours of the cafés, long and slow security check queues, the fact that you can’t buy from most of the shops when traveling in/arriving in Finland (those last minute souvernirs!), poor selection of magazines and not so easily readable signs (especially the new train connection to Helsinki City Center is quite a challenging task for a visitor) do not really help the pleasant experience. But I hope it gets better and the on going development programmes will bring good results. -Tiina


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