Helsinki, Finland

Helsinki, with the highest urban standard of living in the world, is, not surprisingly, one of the most livable cities in the world. It is refreshingly clean; the architecture is magnificent; the city is very walkable and friendly to tourists. With its metropolitan area population of 1.25 million people it is the third largest municipality of the nordic countries after Stockholm and Oslo.  

The city was the site of the negotiations that led to the signing of the Helsinki Accords by then President Jerry Ford. Initially thought to be a sop given to the Soviet bloc, the Helsinki Accords, with their emphasis on human rights, turned out to be a powerful weapon in the hands of Soviet reformers and dissidents. 

Finland became a member of the European Union in 1995, and it is flirting with the idea of joining NATO in 2025. 

Anyway, we went on a walking tour of the city, during which we wound up at the Rock Church, so called because it was built into solid rock by Timo and Tuomo Suomalainen—brothers and architects. By denomination it is a Lutheran Church in the Toolo neighborhood of Helsinki. It opened in 1969. 

Below here are some photos from our walk around, including photos of the Rock Church.  
JFB

Helsinki, Finland — July 19, 2019. Photo of the Finnish National Theatre in Helsinki on a summer morning.
Helsinki, Finland — July 19, 2019. Photo of an outdoor cafe and coffee shop on a busy street in Helsinki, Finland.
Helsinki, Finland — July 19, 2019. Photo taken inside Rock Church in Helsinki, Finland, so called because the church is carved into a rock formation.
Helsinki, Finland — July 19, 2019. Photo of cyclists stopping for a rest outside the Rock Church in Helsinki, Finland.

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