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Local's guide to Helsinki - by Ida Hanhiniemi

Hi everyone! My name is Ida. I live in Helsinki, the capital of Finland. I've been living in Helsinki for two years so I've been adventuring a lot on the streets of my fairly new hometown. As a blogger I'm always trying out new places, and now I want to share some tips with you.

Let me virtually take you  to some of my favourite places in Helsinki! If you're planning your first visit to Helsinki, I recommend travelling in July or August - that is my favourite time of the year. Those are the warmest months of the year and even when there are lot of happenings in the city during the summer, you can find peaceful places. If you're travelling to Helsinki during the winter time just make sure to take your warmest coat and a big warm scarf with you!

My favourite areas to wander around are Punavuori (there are a lot of nice boutiques, restaurants and cafés) and Kruununhaka. Helsinki Cathedral is so beautiful and on the sunny days the stairs are full of people having lunch, meeting up and taking pictures. It's a cliché but I like it. Near the cathedral you can eat one of the best pizzas in town (Via Tribunali, Sofiankatu 4) and have drinks at Chapter (Aleksanterinkatu 22). When I'm travelling to a new town, I always want to know some good places to eat (because it’s horrible to try to find something when you're starving) and have a cup of coffee and just watch people pass by, so I'll start with some nice restaurants:

THE BEST BREAKFAST IN HELSINKI: Kuuma (Albertinkatu 6, Punavuori Area), no doubt, it's the best! I always order chia pudding, avocado toast (yummm!) and freshly squeezed apple lemon ginger juice. And coffee, of course! Kuuma is a cozy and popular cafe so go in early if you don't want to queue. I bet the breakfast is also the most Instagrammed one in Helsinki.

LUNCH: Levain (Kankurinkatu 6, Punavuori area) is the one I can always count on. Try soups with fresh bread, it's heavenly good. If you are not hungry yet, choose a nice salty or sweet pastry with coffee or a glass of wine.

BEST RAW CAKES IN TOWN: Roots (Vaasankatu 14, Kallio area) is the best vegan café in Helsinki. Try a cake called Berry me (lingonberry & caramel) or enjoy a healthy vegan lunch with a ginger shot. There's also a yoga studio at Roots!

LUNCH + BREAKFAST + BRUNCH + WINE: El Fant (Katariinankatu 3, Torikorttelit). El Fant serves healthy and delicious lunch from Monday to Friday, and on weekends you can enjoy brunch. El Fant swears in the name of professionally crafted small roastery coffee and selected quality wines.

TRE Helsinki (Mikonkatu 6, city center). A Finnish design shop with wide range of design, furniture, lifestyle products, cosmetics and fashion.
Jolie (Uudenmaankatu 26). Jolie shop is a natural cosmetic heaven where staff specialized in natural cosmetics will help you find the right products. They also offer beauty treatments at Jolie Spa (Kalevankatu 17 B). And when in Finland, check out my favourite Finnish natural cosmetic brands Mia Höytö, Flow Cosmetics, Frantsila and Supermood, too!
Samuji House (Erottajankatu 9 B, courtyard). Samuji House is the most beautiful store in Helsinki. You'll find both fashion and homeware products and also the most sophisticated clothing and luxury souvenirs at Samuji.
Proloque Shop (Iso-Roobertinkatu 9, Punavuori Area). At Proloque you'll find nice treasures such as scented candles, cute brooches, sea shells, handpicked vintage items and other mystically beautiful items.

Want more Helsinki tips? Go follow my Instagram account @ida365 and if you’re visiting Helsinki, send me a DM and I'll promise to share you more tips.

See you soon in Helsinki! x
Ida Hanhiniemi / 365 days with Ida