- Location: Located in the six islands, surrounding Helsinki in Finland.
- Attraction Type: Fortress.
- Significance: It is a 260-year old sea fortress built on six islands and also a World Heritage Site.
- Best time to Visit: June through September.
- Visiting Hours: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (may vary a bit from season to season).
- How to Reach: If you are coming down from abroad, land at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport. Take HKL ferries from the passenger quay at the Kauppatori in Helsinki to reach Suomenlinna.
- Nearest Airport: Helsinki-Vantaa Airport (HEL).
An amazing picturesque site, a 260-year old sea fortress built on six islands, a world heritage site and a suburb inhabited by around 850 people — Suomenlinna is full of characters and a major attraction for thousands of visitors from all parts of the world. A major monument of military architecture, Suomenlinna was one of the biggest dry docks in the world when it was completed. The wonderful architecture, panoramic views of the sea and the lush green fort area have made it a paradise for the visitors.
Located in the six islands viz. Kustaanmiekka, Iso-Mustasaari, Susisaari, Lí¥ngíören, Lí¤nsi-Mustasaari, and Pikku-Mustasaari, surrounding Helsinki in Finland, Suomenlinna, also known as Sveaborg or Viapori is known to the whole world for its wonderful sea-facing fortifications. It was Sweden that started building the fortress in the year 1748. It took about 40 years to complete the construction work of the fortress. In 1808, it went to the hands of the Russians. The Russians ruled it for 110 years before the Finnish got independence from Russia in 1918 and the fortress was renamed as Suomenlinna.
Things to Do
The beauty of the fortress and its surroundings are just amazing. Besides the fortress, you will also enjoy the parks and the natural beauties of the sea. Other attractions include the six museums of Suomenlinna. Guided walking tours are available. You may also go for some exhibitions here. It is pretty hard for you to overlook the high-quality handicrafts available here. Suomenlinna is also the place of various cultural activities. Events like Viapori Jazz, summer theatre and children’s summer theater are quite popular there.
Start your tour, especially the walking tours, from the Visitor Centre, located in the middle of the fortress at Tykistíölahti bay. You will also find the Suomenlinna Museum exhibition here. While visiting the fortification, you may find the restoration work still going on. Due to this, some parts of the fort may remain closed for the visitors as well.
And don’t forget to gather at Suomenlinna’s main quay to wave to see the ferries sailing through the narrow strait. It’s really a treat to watch.
Suomenlinna Museum: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Monday through Sunday)
(Closed on 6th, 24th & 25th December, 1st January, and 10th April)
Ehrensví¤rd Museum: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Sat-Sun during April)
10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (May to August)
11 a.m. to 4 p.m. (September)
There are plenty of options for accommodation in Helsinki. Some of the hotels can be listed as below:
Suomenlinna C9, Iso Mustasaari
Helsinki 00190, Finland
Tel: 09 684 7471
Best Western Premier Hotel Katajanokka
Helsinki, Etelae-Suomen Laeaeni 00160