Our Trip to Europe
April 29 - June 26 2005
Lynda Edris and Pete Grant

Page 26 - Helsinki (part 2 - Olavinlinna)

Thursday, June 9th.

We decided to take a tour of Suomenlinna (Finland's Castle), located about a 20-minute ferry ride from Helsinki.

Boarding... ...and on the ferry. Port of Helsinki.
Port from the ferry right after we took off. An interesting (Green Peace) ship.
Right:  An old submarine we passed on the way to Suomenlinn.

Suomenlinna is an old fort, originally constructed in 1748 to protect Helsinki from the Russians, and later the Swedes.  It was given its present name in 1918 and served as a prison camp for a while.  In 1919 it became a military garrison until 1973 when it was handed over to civilian control.  For more info, see Suomenlinna's web site.

We opted for a guided walking tour of the park.  At left is our guide who gave us an excellent description of everything we saw.

One strange story he told us was about the fortress being under attack by the Anglo-French navy back in 1855.  The naval ships had guns with far greater range than those of the fort and they were able to bombard the fort in impunity -- which they did.  For four days the bombardment continued causing heavy damage.  But then the ships just left instead of landing and taking over.

Distances and drections to various places. One of the many guns.
An odd-looking cannon. Idunno - gun hole?
A cannon. There's a couple of restaurants. Entry tunnels.
More cannons. One of the permanent residents.
Tomb of Augustin Ehrensvärd Silja Line Ferry on its way to St Petesburg, Russia.  We contemplated taking that cruise instead of the train trip to Moscow. Leaving Suomenlinna behind.
Cruise ship Aida - destination unknown. View of the port and The Cathedral.
The cathedral (left) is unusual in that it has no other name -- It's just "The Cathedral"  ("Tuomiokirkko" in Finnish).  We did not visit the Cathedral on this trip.

Right:  Hey!  Are we in Finland or Germany??  BTW, Stockmann is the largest retail chain in Finland --Finnish Walmart??

Speaking of chains, McDonald's are widely spread throughout Finland.

Well, it's time to leave Helsinki and continue our trip. At right Lynda passes time waiting for the train as we were at the station much too early.  (What else is new?)

Next, we go to Tampere to visit relatives.

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