How to Spend 2 Days in Helsinki
Whether you’re planning a romantic weekend away or an action-packed city break, two days in Helsinki is plenty of time to take in the city’s highlights. Save time and money seeing the sights with a 48-hour Helsinki Card, or dive deep into Helsinki’s food or architecture on a guided tour. Here’s how to relish two days in the Finnish capital.
Day 1: Shopping and Sightseeing
**Morning:**A hop-on hop-off bus tour will take you to all of Helsinki’s top sights, including Kaivopuisto (the city’s oldest park), the Temppeliaukio (Rock Church), and the Olympic stadium. Listen to the onboard commentary, then jump off to visit the Sibelius Monument and stroll around Senate Square.
**Afternoon:**Shop for souvenirs at the daily market in the Market Square, where you can also purchase a tasty lunch—salmon soup is a local favorite. Nearby, the Hakaniemi Market Hall sells everything from traditional handicrafts to fresh fruit and veg, while for more upmarket shopping, the Kamppi Shopping Mall is the largest in the city.
**Night:**The Kallio district is the most atmospheric place to spend the evening hours. Arrive early to browse the many shops and art galleries, then relax with a cocktail at a bar on Hämeentie or Helsinginkatu. The area is crammed with restaurants, bars, nightclubs, and live music venues, so you’ll find something for all tastes.
Day 2: Monuments and Museums
**Morning:**Ride the ferry to the 18th-century Suomenlinna Fortress, a historic sea fortress spread across six small islands in the Helsinki Archipelago. Take a guided tour of the UNESCO World Heritage Site and visit the Suomenlinna Museum and military museum. Ferries and entrance fees are free with a Helsinki Card.
**Afternoon:**Helsinki has more than 80 museums, but with just one afternoon, it’s best to pick one or two. Visit the National Museum or Helsinki City Museum to learn more about Finnish history, admire fine art at the Ateneum Art Museum, or discover Helsinki’s cutting-edge art scene at the Kiasma contemporary art museum, the Design Museum, or the Finnish Museum of Photography.
**Night:**Spend your final night in Helsinki attending an unforgettable performance at one of the city’s most prestigious venues. Perhaps watch a play at the Finnish National Theatre, catch a concert at Finlandia Hall, or enjoy a ballet or opera at the Finnish National Opera.