Experience Helsinki’s enchanting nature digitally and responsibly

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Due to coronavirus, the nature hikes organised by the City of Helsinki have been cancelled along with all the activities at the nature centre on the island of Harakka. Instead, city residents are being offered remote nature excursions that they can enjoy from their home sofa. These excursions offer tips for enjoying nature and ideas for when you visit Helsinki’s nature attractions.

Remote nature hikes and live cameras 

Employees at the City of Helsinki’s environmental services department along with nature guides from Environmental Research Yrjölä are leading remote nature hikes at Helsinki’s diverse nature attractions. Their videos are being released throughout the spring and summer and let you experience the beautiful nature, witness the progress of spring and learn more about the unique natural features at each location. The videos are part of the Helsinki Central Library Oodi’s “Into Helsinki’s Nature” video series, which you can watch on the Helsinki-kanava video channel and the Helsinki Urban Environment YouTube channel.

You can also observe a pair of white-tailed eagles up close thanks to a live camera at the Old Town Bay. The couple has already achieved celebrity fame and have been named Nadi and Amalia after a legendary fishing couple that lived by the bay a century ago. In addition to observing the couple’s family life, you can also watch the grey herons and great cormorant nesting on the island of Loppi.

Another live camera is located on the island of Vasikkasaari, allowing you to enjoy the relaxing maritime scenery and see whether the tits have begun nesting.

Top 200 natural attractions in Helsinki

The City of Helsinki’s book Helsinki’s Green Treasures – 200 Natural Attractions can now be downloaded for 25€ in pdf-format in Finnish, Swedish and English! Edited by Jussi Helimäki and published by Edita, the book presents a wide range of the natural attractions that can be found in and around Helsinki, serving as your guide to the local nature and offering lots of great ideas for exploring all the natural attractions.

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More tips and ideas for exploring the local nature

The City of Helsinki’s Experience Helsinki Nature webpage offers a series of downloadable brochures and other materials to help families with children enjoy the urban nature. There are tips for how to start birdwatching, how to play nature bingo and how to make your own nature trail. There are also instructions for how to identify different species using a mobile app and tips for observing nature along the seashore. You can find all of Helsinki’s nature sites using the kartta.hel.fi online map.

Urban nature in social media

The Facebook group Kaupunkiluonto Helsingissä reports on what is happening in nature right now, from city parks to nature reserves. The information is updated by experts from the City of Helsinki’s Urban Environment department. You can also follow the team at the Harakka Nature Centre on Facebook and Instagram.

Outdoors in nature

Helsinki is one of the few capital cities in the world where the real nature is so close to its inhabitants. The local nature offers lots of attractions, each one prettier than the next, that all visitors to Helsinki should experience. You can find the ten best nature sites easily on the citynature.eu/en/helsinki/ website using your mobile device. The service offers directions for how to get to the nature attractions, as well as route recommendations and lots of information about the nature, species and history. You can also download the Explore Helsinki Nature brochure in pdf-format.

The Experience Helsinki Nature brochure series makes it easy to discover Helsinki’s best recreational areas and nature reserves. The brochures have been compiled by both nature and tourism experts and cover the following areas: Seurasaari and Meilahti, Vartiosaari, Viikki, Kallahdenniemi, Uutela, Lauttasaari, Vantaanjoki and Mustavuori.

Please pay attention to outdoor recommendations during the corona crisis. Suomen Latu, the Outdoor Association of Finland, has compiled a code of ethics for enjoying the outdoors responsibly (in Finnish). The Finnish Nature Centre Haltia has also published useful information with a link to the coronavirus guidelines posted by Metsähallitus Parks and Wildlife Finland.

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City residents are being offered remote nature excursions that they can enjoy from their home sofa. These excursions offer tips for enjoying nature and ideas for when you visit Helsinki’s nature attractions.