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On the third day of Christmas... visit Helsinki

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Looking for a post-Christmas getaway before the New Year kicks in? In the run up to December 25th and beyond, we'll be counting down the best spots for a festive break - so go on, soak up the atmosphere whilst the lights are still sparkling and the festivities are still in full swing... 


Helsinki is a spectacular sight during the festive period - here are just a few of the highlights.

Christmas Market

The Helsinki Christmas Market is one of the oldest and largest events on the Finnish calendar, attracting thousands of tourists and locals every year. It usually runs throughout December and oozes relaxation, overindulgence and good times.

 

Overlooked by a beautiful 19th Century cathedral, the market is filled to the brim with around 100 different stalls offering an abundance of hand-crafted gifts, festive ornaments, and locally produced food and drink.

Buying gifts from the market will also support local Finnish artists and shops. 

Winter warmer

Whilst you’re wandering around the market, stop off for a quick tipple.

Glögi is one of the traditions of Finnish Christmas; hot red wine, mulled together with spices such as cinnamon, sugar, clove.

Sounds pretty similar to the classic European mulled wine, right? The Scandinavians add a little twist: almonds and raisins to give a little bite at the bottom of your cup, and optional (Haha, yeah right. Chuck it in!) vodka or rum to give it that extra kick.

Grab a bite

Do yourself a favour, and find something to soak up some of that glögi.

Joulutorttu, literally meaning in Finnish “Christmas tart”, is star-shaped puff pastry filled with prune jam and covered in icing sugar. The ultimate Christmas dream, am I right?  

These sweet treats are mainly made in Finland, but also pop up in Sweden. Fun fact: the Swedish media actually accused the Finnish pastry-makers of shaping their joulutorttu like swastikas. Hmm…

Ice Skating

The ultimate romantic festive activity or a complete disaster. Either way, you’ll have a laugh at one of Helsinki’s seven artificial ice rinks dotted around the city.

Ice Park in the centre of the city gives you the choice of spectating from the warmth of the indoor café with a cup of hot chocolate, or competing with the pros in the rink.

Rent skates or bring your own, and enjoy the lively atmosphere in one of the top ten ice rinks in the world.

The Winter Circus

A trip to Helsinki over the festive period wouldn’t be complete without visiting the Winter Circus.

 

Bringing together acrobats, magicians, dancers, musicians, and virtuosos of every kind, the Winter Circus has become a winter time tradition for many Finnish families.

Enjoy the video art, magic shows, trapeze artists, live music, and professional circus stars from around the globe at this terribly affordable, family-friendly show.

 

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