Helsinki Guide

I'm leaving for Porto on Monday but before I go I want to give my best tips for exploring Helsinki. I'm still not satisfied with this list because there is costantly something new to discover in Helsinki. But anyways, here goes.

For coffee:

Café Artist (where I used to work)
Kaffa Roastery
Made in Kallio
Brooklyn Café
Good Life Coffee
Ihana Kahvila
Café Ursula
And yellow kioskques around the city, only open during summer

Café Artist

For beer or wine:

Pub Magneetti
Bar Molotov
Musta Kissa
Café Talo
Bar Bhangra
Los Cojones
Bar Llamas

Late bars and clubs:

We Got Beef
Grotesk Backyard
(Kaiku & Ääniwalli, never tried these places but heard lots of good things)

We got beef

For brunch:
Moko Café
Fazer Café
Tin Tin Tango

Moko Café Sörnäinen

Take away:

Du Dii Thai

To eat:

Bar y Taqueria Pueblo
Bar Teos
Putte's Pizza
Hakaniemi area
Vaasankatu (you'll find lots of places to try out on this street)


Midhill Brgr
Roslund (Hietaniemen halli)
Bar Loose

Midhill brgr

Fine dine:
Social Boulevard
Gaijin & Farang
Muru (haven't tried the three last restaurants on this list, but they have a good reputation, also everytime I pass these places I want to go in for a bite)




Eiranranta, this is a calmer and smaller beach
Hietaniemenranta, this is the main beach but a bit ''touristy''
Suomenlinna, you find a couple of swim spots on this fortress island
Kumpulan maa-uimala, open-air swimming pool, this one is also smaller and calmer than the main one called Uimastadion
Yrjönkadunuimahalli, a nude indoor swimming pool, seperate days for men and women


Other things to see or do:

See the view from Torni
Buy fresh berries and food at the Market Square
Discover Suomenlinna
Visit The Botanical Garden
Find bargains at the fleamarket at Hietaniemi (only june-august)
Try food on the street during Restaurant Day
Iceskate at the Central Railwaystation Square in winter
Play Beer Bingo in We got beef, Linko or Pueblo


Beer Bingo with these fellows

All photos in this post are by Astrid Lindroos.

04.01.2014 kl. 10:32


The difference between the amount of sunlight in winter and summer in Helsinki!

17.12.2013 kl. 13:34

Helsinki guide?

I miss this blog! But a travel blog ain't a travel blog without travels. But I'm planning a trip for March. Meanwhile I thought I could write about things to do/see/eat/drink in Helsinki. Stay tuned.


26.11.2013 kl. 16:03


Two weeks since my latest update. How does time run so fast. I'm already back in Finland. Had a nice last couple of weeks in Porto, spent a lot of time with my closest friends.

Felt weird leaving that temporary life behind and going back to my old one. So far I've been happy since I arrived, met a lot of friends, done a lot of stuff and getting the last bit of finnish summer.

But thanks to all who made my stay in Portugal so special! I'll be back soon.

Oh, and I still have some photos and videos to post, sometime, soon.

10.08.2013 kl. 13:00


Last but not least, did another roadtrip, right after the festival. This time with my friends Pedro, Rui and Ramona (who came to visit us from Germany).

Our first stop was in Sao Pedro de Moel. A small town by the ocean, half way from Porto to Lisbon.

We set our stuff up at a camping area and conquered the water stand for dinner cooking.

Following day we went to Nazaré to spend the day, amazing views.

Compulsory jump picture!

Later that night we went to Sines for the World Music Festival, huge international hippie gathering.

Actually we went there because Miguel was hanging out there and we wanted to spend time with him.

General advice: cover your head or you will fry and die.

But some of the concerts were surprisingly good.

After Sines we ended up going to Lisbon for half a day, here with rui doing an impression of the Cristo-Rei statue (you can barely see the real one in the background).

And by the end of the day we were in Ericeira, absolutely beautiful camping spot with a view to the ocean.

Our camping team.

Pedro infront of this sign with the quote of his life.

And then back in the roadtrip car and back to Porto!

A happy video from the trip:


Roadtrip Summer 2013 from Inka Hietala Sadian on Vimeo.

28.07.2013 kl. 23:20

Curtas Vila do Conde

And now, to the highlight of my stay in portugal, the reason I ended up here at last, Curtas Vila do Conde! An international short film festival held in the beginning of July for about a week.

I couldn't have asked for a better internship. The poeple, the vibe and the fact my portuguese is non-existing and it all still worked out!

I even had time to go to a lot of screenings.

My friends rui and miguel came for a visit one night, here posing as producer and director - highly v.i.p.

Opposite to the guest office, my creation, a board of pictures and names of the proffessionals attending the festival.

After one of those nights, I only slept three hours and had to be one of the first to attend the guest office - hence the bed head.

Love the venue, the municipal theatre of Vila do Conde.

Women of Curtas, not all of us though.

Guys of Curtas, again, not nearly all of them.

And on the day after the last day, packing up the office.

Didn't take much pictures, but it was an exciting week. Meeting wonderful guests at the office, working with amazing people, watching interesting films and concerts and unforgettable nights out at the festival after parties.

Some days after we had a relaxing team day in a natural park in Gerês.

Everyone brought picnic food.

It suddenly started raining.

After hysterically packing the cars again with all the stuff it stopped raining.

This place is amazing, with fresh spring water.

And after rain comes sunshine. We swam, sunbathed and played ball the rest of the day.

Compulsory jump picture.

Time to go back.

Preparing for a last group photo.

Then I got in to a car with these bad asses and headed back.

Promised myself to come back to work with the festival again next year - até o próximo ano!

28.07.2013 kl. 22:46

Sao Miguel de Poiares

One weekend we went to Marcio's home village, Sao Miguel de Poiares, in the countryside of Coimbra.

It was so hot that weekend, nearly 40 degrees.

We went swimming to this amazing bathing place, a small river by these high cliffs.

Climbed through a cave.. get up on the cliffs.

Came back the next day with Marcio's brother, friend and cousin.

And then headed back to Porto.

28.07.2013 kl. 22:32

When Enrique came to Porto

Here goes. Posts that took weeks to be posted.

Before the festival started a friend of mine, Enrique, came to Porto. I couchsurfed at his place in Granada, Spain (he's actually from Puerto Rico) while he was studying there and now he came to travel around Portugal. It's funny how the people you meet while travelling feel like old friends, though you only knew them for a couple of intense days.

Walked down to the river.

Went to the beach.

Ate Picanha (a traditional brasilian dish which is very popular here) in my favourite dinner restaurant.

Then we went out with Marcio and Goncalo..

..The Greek and Pinar and had the most epic night out!

We had an after party with lots of wine and the greek singing and playing traditional greek music til' the neighbour started complaining.

Another day we went with my roommates and their friends to the river to jump off the bridge. Maybe one of the craziest things I've done so far..

Not sure if this is before or after the jump.. probably before, since afterwards we were all a bit chocked after jumping from a height of 15 meters right in to a pretty strong river stream and pulling yourself up shore with disgusting sea weed.

On Enrique's last night we had a bbq at our place.

Hosted by my czhec roommate as usual, here in his natural habitat - shirtless, always shirtless!

And a nice farewell picture. Although, Enrique came back to Porto a week or so later, but I was busy working at the festival, so he came to visit me in Vila do Conde.

Hopefully, next time we'll reunite in Puerto Rico!

28.07.2013 kl. 22:06

The office

Spending all my days at the festival. Working, going to screenings and partying all night. Next week I'll be suffering from some serious post-festival depression.

Say hello to the office.

13.07.2013 kl. 13:38

Vila do Conde, Susanna & Sao Joao

One day after work I stayed in Vila do Conde and explored it a bit more.

It's like a small Porto with a small river.

They where preparing for Sao Joao everywhere with these snack stands.

The beach was beautiful and mystical due to the cloudy day.

Found this viewing balcony and watched some fisherman doing their thing on the cliffs.

Passed this scary dog that was posing for me perfectly with this absurd huge jesus garden statue.

The next day, one of my best friends Susanna arrived to Porto. Walked over the bridge to Gaia to have Francesinha.

Visited Sandeman Port Wine cellar.

Walk through Parque de Cidade to the beach.

Had some free beers at Galerias de Paris.

The street was so pretty with lights.

Next day we had Sunday afternoon tea at Rota de Chá.

Hung out in the Crystal Palace Park.

And Susanna got her last glimpse of the river before heading to a 30 minute barbeque and then catch a flight back to Finland.

People where gathering in our home for Sao Joao, a catholich holiday celebrated with barbequing and a huge party on the streets.

Chillax on the balcony.

Its a tradition to use these plastic hammers and hit people in the head.

Hanging in our windows, my roommates and an italian in the middle.

Found my friend Miguel upstairs at my neighbour's.

Walked down to the river to see amazing fireworks at midnight.

The ribeira was packed!


Rave at the main square.

Next day was perfect for having a picnic at the pool.

It's called Piscina das Marés and it's a pool with salt water just next to the ocean.

Perfect way to end an extended weekend.

26.06.2013 kl. 22:09


Oh and I started my internship. It's for a short film festival called Curtas Vila do Conde. I have to take the metro out to this small but pretty town 45 minutes from the center of Porto.

So far I've been filing films but as soon as the festival starts I'll be working at the guest office. Gaah, can't wait.


21x Curtas Vila do Conde from Curtas CRL on Vimeo.

19.06.2013 kl. 01:21

Past two weeks

Again, just an update on what I've been up to lately.

Bought this armchair from a thrift store and it converts to a bed, perfect for visitors, like Astrid.

Then I went to the hairdresser and dip dyed my hair. Photo by Astrid.

Visited this crazy free art festival in the contemporary art museum park.

Took a Sunday walk in one of my favourite areas Fontinha, and caught all these graffiti skeletons on photos.

Dancing Skeletons.

More skeletons.

The next day Astrid arrived and I took her on an alternative tour runned by an unemployed architect. We checked out my dream house, it's been empty atleast 8 years (probably longer) and costs 3 million euros.

He took us to a secret rooftop garden in Fontinha.

And through narrow streets of Miragaia.

Another day we went for tea in rota de chá.

Ate a traditional Francesinha.

Hung out a whole evening down at the beach.

Had a spontaneous photo shoot while waiting for a surfing friend.

And when then sun set and it got dark our friend came out of the water and made us dinner.

The following night we made traditional finnish salmon soup to some friends. This is a boring picture of a rather fun night!

Had hungover sushi at Edificio Transparente next morning.

And spent a whole day on the beach.

And skated, with my brand new Riviera cruiser!

Met my roommate and his friends on the beach bar terrace.

It was perfect beach weather. Then we skated a bit and caught the bus back to the center, went out for supper and drinks and early sunday morning Astrid flew back to Geneve.

17.06.2013 kl. 23:07


Var kommer du att spendera din sommar?

I Porto, Portugal.

Har du några sommar-måsten?

Att tillbringa en riktig finländsk sommarhelg i Ekenäs på Kråkholmen med Astrid och familjen.

Alla har någon favoritdel med sommarmånaderna, vad är din?

Varma nätter!

Kommer du att jobba under sommaren, eller kommer du att ha semester?

Skall ha praktik här under sommaren för några veckor.


Kanske, har kollat in en festival i Lissabon och sen borde det hända ett och annat här i Porto också.

Kommer du att göra någon resa?

Har rest senaste två månaderna så tänker nog ta det riktigt lungt här i Porto resten av sommaren.

Bästa platsen att ta ett dopp på?

Utforskar ännu min nya sommarstad, men skulle säga att stranden i Matosinhos är den bästa.

Vad är den, enligt dig, bästa grillmaten?

Grillkorv! Hamburgare.. grönsaker med fyllning..

Vet du redan vad din sommarplåga kommer att vara?

Brasiliensk musik, portugiserna är galna i brasiliensk musik..

Några inplanerade dagsutflykter?

Har ju Astrid här på besök idag och har en hel del utflykter på programmet.

Var är det störst sannolikhet att man hittar dig en solig sommarkväll?

På en terass nere vid ån Douro.

Vad är din favoritglass och varifrån köper du den helst?

Jag äter inte glass.

Har du någon inplanerad sommarlektyr?

Håller på att läsa Vindens skugga av Carlos Ruiz Zafón och till näst tänkte jag läsa Här ligger jag och blöder av Jenny Jägerfeld.

Kommer du att göra något den här sommaren, som du inte gjort tidigare?

Gör ganska mycket jag inte gjort tidigare, t.ex tillbringar sommaren utomlands, smakar på nya rätter, intoduceras till nya kulturvanor!

Hur ser din ultimata sommardag ut?

Stor hemmagjord frukost på balkongen med några vänner, rulla hela vägen ner med min nya bräda till stranden och hänga där en hel dag, simma, sola och kanske pröva surfa lite med hjälp av någon smidig surflärare. Sedan rulla längs havet och ån hem, ta metron sista biten, dra på en klänning och gå på barrunda, från baren nedanför min lägenhet till Galerias do Paris. Såklart under en olidlig sommarhetta.


English ''translation'': A list of things to do this summer. Maybe I'll make an english version later. Or just google translate it.

10.06.2013 kl. 22:44

Porto Life III

Stuff I've done lately.

I spent my 23rd birthday with friends, dinner and drinks in my new home.

Smoked shisha with Pinar and Giorgio down at the river.

Woke up early one morning to go to this huge outdoor flea market by the river with Jorge, the retro shop owner.

Walked around for hours and watched the sun rise.

Explored second hand stores around the city.

Hung out with Márcio a whole weekend.

He makes the best flamed chorizo!

And yesterday we went to a Sunday picnic in the Crystal Palace Park.

03.06.2013 kl. 17:05

Porto life II

Porto feels like home more and more for every day. Not even the language is making me feel unwelcome. But I wish I could speak more than three words.

People here are kind and helpful, but a little bit more shy than their spanish cousins. The food is amazing and drinks are cheap.

My room is a bit empty though, so today I went in to a retro shop and we started chatting with the owner. His daughter used to study in Turku, Finland and he invited me to go to a huge outdoor fleamarket tomorrow morning at 6.00. Can't wait, I need to get something to hang on the wall.

Anywho, just so you know, I'm happy and healthy, hope you are too!

31.05.2013 kl. 15:51

This blog started as a travel diary in spring 2013. Now I continue writing about my stay in Porto during spring 2014.


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Places visited April-August 2013:

  • Faro
  • Portimão
  • Albufeira
  • Lagos
  • Sagres
  • Vila Nova de Milfontes
  • Sines
  • Lisbon
  • Cascais
  • Sintra
  • Peniche
  • Berlengas Island
  • Porto
  • Vila do Conde
  • Madrid
  • Toledo
  • Granada
  • Valencia
  • Barcelona
  • Coimbra
  • Sao Miguel de Poiares
  • Gerês
  • Sao Pedro de Moel
  • Nazaré
  • Ericeira
  • Barcelos
  • Santa Maria da Feira


Profile and background photo by Astrid Lindroos

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