Day 15-16: Helsinki and Homebound

How time flies. After looking forward to this trip for so long, it’s strange and a little sad to think that my Bucket List Trip to Russia has come to an end. What can I say? The post-travel blues are real, and I’ve got ’em bad.

That’s part of the reason it’s taken me a good two, encroaching on three, weeks to post about our travels in the Baltics. (The other part is laziness.) Post-travel blah-dom aside, I’m a big fan of tying up loose ends, so here’s the last chapter of our journey. Helsinki, we’ve come full circle to meet you again.

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Sailing across the Gulf of Finland. Tallinn is behind us, and that’s Helsinki looming in the distance.

We didn’t stay in Helsinki long enough to fully appreciate the city, but the parts I did see made me smile. Our hotel was actually on a little island. Sure, all that separated us from the rest of Helsinki was a narrow canal, but the waterfront sure was pretty!

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There wasn’t much time for a whole lot of sightseeing, but here’s a brief stop that was well worth our time.

The Sibelius Monument is dedicated to a Finnish composer, Jean Sibelius. (There's me with a pipe over my head to give you a sense of scale.)
The Sibelius Monument is dedicated to a Finnish composer, Jean Sibelius. (That’s me with a pipe over my head to give you a sense of scale.)
HKI Sebellius 1
No one knows exactly what it is, but isn’t that part of the magic of abstract art?
HKI Sebellius 2
It’s supposed to capture the essence of the composer’s music. I’m getting hints of … organ pipes?

Bonus: On the one night we stayed in the city, Helsinki happened to be hosting the Midnight Run.

HKI run 2
The 10K course passed right in front of our hotel!
HKI Senate Square
The Midnight Run started and ended in Senate Square. Helsinki Cathedral was all decked out in lights for the occasion. How cool is that?

I couldn’t have asked for a better way to spend our last official vacation night before diving back into the pool of reality. The last 16 days have been better than I ever imagined. As to what new adventures lie ahead, it’s still too soon to say. Give it a couple years (to let my bank account recuperate), and I’m sure I’ll be ready for more!

HKI night
Good night and goodbye, Helsinki.
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