Suomenlinna Fortress Island

The bastions of Suomenlinna are covered by wild flowers through the summer. This yellow plant originates from Siberia and it is called warty cabbage (Bunias orientalis). The seeds have arrived in Finland when hay was delivered to Russian horses.

The ferries to Suomenlinna Fortress depart frequently from the Market Place and it takes us 20 minutes to get to the islands.

We shall then walk along the stone paved roads through the history. Already the Vikings and other ancient sailors are known to have made their way between the East and the West via Finnish coast through the centuries. In 1703 Russia established a new capital St.Petersburg at the eastern end of the Gulf of Finland and the old Europe was changed. Sweden started to fortify the eastern part of the kingdom to protect Stockholm. The biggest effort was built in front of Helsinki, The Suomenlinna fortress is still the biggest investment in the national budget of Sweden. The fortress and the armies could not, however, keep the Russian troops away but the fortress surrendered to Alexander I in 1808. Finland became an autonomous part of Russia for 110 years until the declaration of independence of the Republic of Finland. The Suomenlinna fortress was in the use on the Finnish Defence Forces until the fortress was in 1973 made a civilian area and in 1991 it was included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage.

Now there are great walls and fortifications to be explored, guns and lilacs, five museums and several restaurants and cafés to enjoy a lovelu day. There is even a beach to take a dip in the sea. 

The Bastions of King Gustavs Sword. A narrow straid separates Vallisaari Island from Suomenlinna.
 

 

 

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