Suomenlinna, the military fortress of Helsinki: all the info

byVerónica Crocitti

A few leagues away from the port of Helsinki, on an archipelago of six islets, stands the sea fortress ofSuomenlinna, a real cultural jewel. Declared by UnescoWorld Heritage Sitein 1991, Suomenlinna was founded in 1748 (when Finland was under the domination of Sweden) with the aim of protecting the country from Russian expansion. It is considered the only example ofmilitary architectureof the 18th century.

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Suomenlinna fortress archipelago is about 15-20 minutes by ferry from the port of Helsinki. The departure is located exactly on the east side of theMarket Square, in front of the Presidential Palace. It is possible to buy the ticket directly in the office located next to the docks or in the automatic machines.

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Ferry - Suomenlinna

For non-residents (neither Helsinki residents nor Finns), the price is 2.70 euros per ride. There is the possibility of purchasing a single ticket, for 5 euros, which includes the outward and return journeys from Suomenlinna within 12 hours (recommended!).


The fortress is a real landscape and cultural spectacle. The main road (Blue Route), which can be traveled on foot, crosses the entire Suomenlinna from north to south, passing through the major points of interest. Next to theBlue Route, other small paths branch off which allow you to arrive in more particular places, from which it is possible to admire breathtaking views.

To visit the entire fortress on foot (along both the main avenue and some neighboring paths) you need at least1 hour and a half. In the archipelago you will find several characteristic cafés, a hostel (with 40 beds), a church (very popular for weddings and concerts) and a bookshop.


Inside Sumenlinna there are six museums (each usable with its own ticket). During the summer season it is possible to purchase a single pass or combined tickets (valid from 1 May to 30 September).Hereyou will find all the detailed information.

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The main museum is theSuomenlinna Museum, which contains the history of the fortress from its foundation to the present day. Then there are the Military Museum (with its famous Manage), the Toy Museum (Toy Museum), the Ehrensvärd Museum, the Customs Museum and the Museum ofVesikko submarine.


Besides being one of the main attractions in all of Finland, Suomenlinna is home to a community of800 residents. Le fortificazioni, infatti, sono state restaurate e convertite in proprietà residenziali, studi, uffici, ristoranti e musei.

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