Travel photography and stock images by Stephen Bay
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Helsinki Photos

Helsinki, Finland
Helsinki is the largest city in Finland with over 500,000 inhabitants. It was founded in 1550 by King Gustavus Vasa of Sweden as a trading town and port to compete with the Hanseatic city of Tallinn located on the opposite shore of the Gulf of Finland. The original city site was at the mouth of the River Vantaa (Vantaanjoki), but in 1640 it was moved to the Vironniemi headland which is near the present day city center. In 1812, Helsinki became the capital of the Grand Duchy of Finland and has since remained the capital city. Street signs in Helsinki are written in both Finnish and Swedish as Finland is officially bilingual. Additionally, many people in Helsinki speak English and when I visited I had no communication problems.

This page contains seven galleries with a total of 142 photos of Helsinki. There is extensive coverage of Helsinki's architecture with many pictures of Cathedrals and other buildings.

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