Finland: Helsinki (Revisited)

Beautiful sunshine in Helsinki and the capital of Finland appeared in all its glory (it was a rainy and gloomy day first time I was here and the impression was similarly depressing then). Helsinki is by far the largest city in the country, founded in 1550 by the Swedish King Gustavus Vasa. In 1808, it became part of Russia and significant investment was made by the Russian tsars in making it the western outpost of the empire – the town center with neoclassical architecture and a large harbor area. Towering above the city, stands the 1868 Uspenski Russian Orthodox Catgedral – a magnificent red brick building with golden onion cupola on top of its many towers. The interior is equally impressive with altars, icons, and crosses. Even grander is the Helsinki Cathedral, built in 1830–1852 in tribute to Nicholas I of Russia. Plenty of other historic buildings and squares to explore around as well.