Thursday, June 05, 2008

A Day in Helsinki, Finland (June 2, 2008)

Everyone seems to be enjoying the cruise vacation. There are definitely things to like about this mode of transport – like waking up to a new city every day and never having to unpack. Austin gave us this quote: “What could be better than sitting around a pool, with pizza and ice cream, while watching an outdoor movie on a big screen, on cruise ship in Sweden!” The calm seas of the Baltic have also helped everyone avoid any symptoms of sea-sickness. Praise the Lord we are all in good health.

It was another near perfect day in Finland with temperatures in the high 60s maybe reaching low 70s by mid-afternoon. The boys chose to stay on the ship in the morning while Becky and I went exploring in town. We took a shuttle bus the few miles into town to save some time and explored churches, the palace and the market square.

Helsinki is a very clean town and not as large as Stockholm or Copenhagen. The fragrance of fresh lilac flowers permeated the city. Everywhere we turned there were fresh lilacs and other fruit trees blooming. The locals seemed warm and friendly and eagerly spoke English.

For the afternoon, we signed up for a “Jopo Bike” tour. Jopo bikes are bicycles made locally and are easy to ride single speed with wide tires and tall handle bars. The city was mostly flat and it made the 10 mile ride around town quite leisurely.

In order to streamline the on-line time I’ve simplified the blog entries to just text, but the photos will be still available on Flickr. I will also suspend the geotagging of the photos until I can get more bandwidth. I’ll give a link location to each new slide show.

The Helsinki photos can be found here:

The Helsinki GPS track-log for our walking tour can be seen here:

The Jobo bike tour GPS track-log can be seen here:

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