Skip navigation

Top 5 Summer Cities

Article published
22.6.2014 at 08:17
Get to these summer cities quickly and easily from Helsinki Airport.

PISA – a lot more than just a leaning tower

It is a ʻmustʼ if you travel to the charming Tuscan city of Pisa: the famous leaning tower, which appears to lean much more in real life than in photos! The leaning tower is a cathedral bell tower. It leans because of the unstable ground – just like each and every building in Pisa, in fact, although most lean just a few millimetres. Near the tower is the baptistery, where you can enjoy the magnificent acoustics every half an hour when the doors are closed and the choir starts to sing. There are lots of other places worth visiting beyond the Square of Miracles. In the side street cafés and attractive parks you rarely meet tourists and you can find yourself slipping into the local way of life. Pisa is also famous for its university, the history and natural sciences departments of which are particularly valued. There are over 50,000 university students in this city of 86,000.

Direct flights from Helsinki Airport twice a week: Finnair.

BIARRITZ – for bohemians, surfers and golfers

The French themselves have taken their holidays in Biarritz, on the Bay of Biscay, for a century now. The city once attracted artists and authors in particular. Nowadays, modern bohemians can enjoy the cafés, restaurants and bakeries in the small and attractive centre of Biarritz. In addition to bohemians, many surfers have discovered Biarritz; many of them consider the waves here to be the best in Europe and the sea bed is comfortable. For those who prefer their scenery in green rather than blue, Biarritz is a wonderful destination: the city surroundings boast ten golf courses.

Direct flights from Helsinki Airport twice a week: Finnair.


ALANYA – for the energetic beach-loving city tripper

Alanya in Turkey is a city which is best known for its beaches and spas. The beach is divided by the 200 metre-high Kale Hill. Cleopatra Beach, to the west of the hill, is lively and the sea bed drops sharply. Keykubat, to the eastern side, is a gentle beach more suitable for children. Alanya’s great atmosphere can be experienced in the hundreds of trendy boutiques and traditional Turkish shops: in the bazaar area, bargaining comes with the territory and before closing the deal, customer and vendor usually share a cup of apple tea. Spices and leather products are typical gifts from Alanya. The variety of restaurants is as diverse as that of shops. At nightfall, the harbour area comes to life when the sun-worshippers move to the restaurants and discos.

Direct flights from Helsinki Airport to Gazipasa Airport 2–3 times a week: Finnair.


 DUBLIN – for the joyful tourist

If the occasional rain shower doesn’t bother you and the goal of the trip is to relax, look no further than Dublin. The Irish are cheerful people. Ireland's most popular attraction can be found in Dublin: Guinness Storehouse. The exhibition in an old warehouse tells you everything you need to know about this world-famous dark beer. The tour is rounded off perfectly with a pint included in the fee. The next pint can be enjoyed in one of the numerous pubs that are known as the living rooms of the Irish. Most of the time there is live music to enjoy. If you are travelling with a child, you should visit the library of the famous Trinity College: its wooden shelves reaching to the ceiling support the weight of over 200,000 books, resembling that of Hogwarts, from the Harry Potter stories.

Direct flights from Helsinki Airport twice a week: Norwegian.

ZURICH – for the quality-conscious shopper

Zurich, the largest city in Switzerland, holds position 5 in Lonely Planet's list of the best city destinations in 2014. Trendy Zurich is a small, clean city destination for friends of art, parks and gardens – and for those who enjoy the chance to do some high-quality shopping. Bahnhofstrasse in the centre offers a multitude of Swiss watches, chocolate, top fashion and high-quality decor. The most extraordinary of all gardens is the one received as a gift from the Chinese city of Kunming: it is considered to be one of the finest Chinese gardens outside China. For children, the highlight of a trip to Zurich might just be the zoo, with its very own rainforest!

Several filghts from Helsinki Airport every day: Finnair, Air Berlin.

Text: Tiia Soininen