Helsinki, Finland

Welcome to Finland!  Here are the highlights from the day.

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The Sibelius Monument is a unique piece of artwork that was created in tribute to Finland’s greatest composer.  It is all made of stainless-steel.  Each pipe was very unique and much bigger than we expected, which you can tell by Dad’s head in the one pipe.  This is just one of the many pieces of art that make up the design and architecture in the city.

Temppeliaukio Church or the Rock Church was something that I had been looking forward to seeing since a friend had been there a few years back and posted pictures of this amazing place.  At the time she was there, I put it on my bucket list not knowing that this day was in the future.  The church is carved into the rock in the earth.  The roof is at street level and bear rock makes up the walls of the church.  Wood and glass allow the sunshine to stream in between the walls and copper roof.  I would have loved to spend hours there watching the light dance on the rocks but we only had 15 minutes.

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Off to visit a few churches.  The Helsinki Cathedral and Uspenski Cathedral were both picture perfect.  Both so unique.  One was a modern style and the other was a Russian style.  It shows the diversity of the area.

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The train station was built by the father of the architect that designed the St. Louis Arch.  When we heard this we all went, “Yeah!”.  This train station is one of the famous landmarks of Helsinki.

Our last stop was Kamppi Chapel, also known as the Chapel of Silence.  This is a round wooden structure that was designed to give visitors a rest from the outside hussle and bussle of normal life.  After a busy day, it was just what I needed.  As soon as we walked in, I felt at peace.  At first we had to settle in and I felt very odd with every little rustle of my clothes or click of my shoes.  Then I was able to relax.  It was so so quiet.  I loved it.  I was able to clear my mind.  So neat and wonderful.  This is a place that I wish I had near where I lived.

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The night ended with a good dinner, walking around the boat and sitting and looking out the window as much as possible.  I can never take in enough of the view, even if it is water for as far as the eye can see.  Now to read a bit and see if I can wait until sunset again tonight!  :)

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