Last Sunday the weather was so lovely, that Brigitte and I decided to take a walk through our old neighbourhood: Töölö.

From our church in Appollonkatu, we headed through the Hesperia park to the seashore, then up through Sibelius park, turning back to Töölönlahti. One of the first interesting things to see is the little Swedish school and church on the corner of Apollo and Minerva streets. It’s a lovely little area with a leafy little park.

Just as a side note: Swedish is the second official language in Finland (the Sami language is the official minority language), and is a compulsory subject for all school kids (and even university students, I think), despite less than 6% of the population having Swedish  as their mother tongue. You can read a bit about the interesting social and political tensions caused by this “mandatory Swedish” for example, herehere and here (and an interesting survey about the future of English in Finland here).


The Sibelius park (named after the famous Finnish composer Jean Sibelius) was lush green, and we were warm enough this time to give the controversial monument a close inspection.


Summer in the Helsinki is a great experience – so many interesting things to see…


It was nice to visit the area again now in late summer – and a bit strange to remember what it was like when we arrived (less snow… definitely less snow). We ended our walk at Töölönlahti -but we did not have the opportunity to take the short-cut home across the ice at this time of the year (we walked across the frozen lake when we first arrived – you can compare the photo below with the one here).

Töölönlahti - a really lovely spot in the city.

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