Finland

Fly Me Away...

Another one of my jaunts to Finland, and unfortunately British Airways didn't offer me the best price.  That's no great problem because the national flag carrier, Finnair is pretty good value.  Over the years I've used many airlines including some of the low cost carriers such as Ryanair, EazyJet and FlyBe.  I have no issues with these outfits as they have their uses, but I dislike the pricing model where luggage, check-in, food on board etc are seen as extras.  I was disappointed last time with Finnair to find that they had reduced the food offering down to a sandwich however for an extra £8 or so I could buy the meal 'perk' back.  I also saw that they were doing some hand luggage only deals which reminded me of the low cost cowboys.

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Matt's Guide to Helsinki... Part 4

An island off Helsinki

After managing to get from the airport, finding some digs, going out all day, and having some fabulous food, you want to while away the evenings in style.  Helsinki, like any decent European capital has a shed load of entertainment on offer to keep you occupied into the early hours.  A word of warning: alcohol in Finland tends to be taxed heavily and costs an arm and a leg.  As a result, most Finns will tend to start their evenings at home with a couple of beers and head out later on; this means that bars and nightclubs tend to look like ghost towns until around 10pm when things start to warm up.  The upside to this is that most drinking establishments continue on into the early hours so you can party all night if you want. 

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Matt's Guide to Helsinki... Part 1

Getting around Helsinki is a doodle with the trams

Undoubtedly my favourite city for a week away from it all is Helsinki.  You may laugh that when others head for warmer climes I head north, but between May and September, Helsinki, and Finland can be pleasantly warm, and a very enjoyable place to visit.  Over the last ten years, I have regularly been to Finland, a country where I always feel welcome, rested and relaxed; I consider it a bit of a home from home.  So what have I learned over the last decade and what would I recommend for the discerning traveller?...

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