Helsinki Introduction

Publish Time:2016-05-11 14:49:39Source:WTCF

【Introduction】:Helsinki is the capital and largest city of Finland It is in the region of Uusimaa, in southern Finland, on the shore of the Gulf of Finland.

City Introduction

Helsinki is the capital and largest city of Finland. It is in the region of Uusimaa, in southern Finland, on the shore of the Gulf of Finland. It is the most populous municipality and urban area in Finland. Helsinki is located some 80 kilometers north of Tallinn, Estonia, 400 km east of Stockholm, Sweden, and 388 km west of Saint Petersburg, Russia. Helsinki has close historical connections with these three cities.

Helsinki
(Image source: www.visithelsinki.fi)

The Helsinki metropolitan area includes the urban core of Helsinki, Espoo, Vantaa, Kauniainen, and surrounding commuter towns. It is the world's northernmost metropolitan area of over one million people, and the city is the northernmost capital of an EU member state.

Helsinki is Finland's major political, educational, financial, cultural, and research center as well as one of northern Europe's major city. Approximately 75% of foreign companies operating in Finland have settled in the Helsinki region.

In 2009, Helsinki was chosen to be the World Design Capital for 2012 by the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design, narrowly beating Eindhoven for the title. The city was the venue for the 1952 Summer Olympics and the 52nd Eurovision Song Contest 2007.

History

Sweden’s King, Gustavus Vasa founded Helsinki on the mouth of Vantaanjoki River in 1550 to compete with Tallinn for the Baltic Sea trade. The town grew slowly however, and the center of Helsinki was moved to its current location in the 1600’s.

In 1748 Sweden began construction of the Suomenlinna Maritime Fortress off the coast of Helsinki to counter the growing threat from Russia. The massive project brought additional wealth, inhabitants, and merchants to the town.

Russia conquered Finland in 1809. The status of Helsinki was raised to capital of the autonomous Grand Duchy of Finland three years later. A monumental Empire-style city plan was drawn up to reflect the power of Russia and the Tsar.

Finland became independent in 1917, and Helsinki assumed the demanding new role of capital of the young republic. City planning was characterized by Classicism and Functionalism.

Recovering from the hardships of war, Helsinki hosted the Summer Olympics in 1952. The games created an international reputation for Helsinki as an efficient and friendly host city.

Helsinki is recognized as a city in which many differing views can interact in a constructive atmosphere. The Finlandia Hall has hosted many international summit meetings, including the Conference for Security and Co-operation in Europe in 1975. Finland became an EU Member State in 1995. Finland has held the EU Presidency in 1999 and 2006. Also in 2006 Helsinki hosted the ASEM6 Summit, the largest meeting held in Finland to date.

Helsinki was one of nine European Cities of Culture in 2000. Helsinki received additional international cultural visibility when it successfully hosted the Eurovision Song Contest in 2007. A couple of years later, Helsinki was chosen as World Design Capital for the year of 2012. In 2014 Helsinki was awarded City of Design status as part of the Creative Cities Network established by UNESCO.

Natural Environment

Called the "Daughter of the Baltic," Helsinki is located on the tip of a peninsula and on 315 islands. The inner city area occupies a southern peninsula, which is rarely referred to by its actual name Vironniemi. Much of Helsinki outside the inner city area consists of postwar suburbs separated from each other by patches of forest. A narrow 10 kilometers long, Helsinki Central Park, stretching from the inner city to the northern border of Helsinki, is an important recreational area for residents. The City of Helsinki has about 11,000 boat berths and possesses over 14,000 hectares of marine fishing waters adjacent to the Capital Region.

Climate

Helsinki’s climate is typical of its northerly situation. Its intermediate climate combines characteristics of both a maritime and a continental climate. The city’s proximity to the Arctic Ocean and the North Atlantic creates cold weather, while the Gulf Stream brings in warmer air.

Holidays:

New Year's Day 1 January

Epiphany 6 January

Good Friday The Friday before Easter Sunday

Easter Sunday

Easter Monday The day after Easter Sunday

May Day 1 May

Ascension Day 40 days after Easter Sunday

Pentecost 49 days after Easter Sunday

Midsummer Eve Friday between 19 June and 25 June

Midsummer Day Saturday between 20 June and 26 June

All Saints' Day Saturday between 31 October and 6 November

Independence Day 6 December

Christmas Eve 24 December

Christmas Day 25 December

St Stephen's Day 26 December

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