“ City: Helsinki / Country: Finland / World Region: Europe „
The final museum that I visited while in Helsinki was the National Museum of Finland. The museum is relatively easy to get to and only about a 15 minute walk from the train station. Behind the Kiasma museum is a main road and to get to the National Museum of Finland all you need to do is walk about half way down that road and it is on the left hand side. The museum is also within walking distance of the Rock Church so it might be a good idea to do both of these attractions on the same day.
Something that I noticed about Helsinki is that although you have to pay to get into museums, they aren't too expensive. This museum charges adults 8 euros to get in and photography is allowed which was something I took particular notice of. Some other museums forbid photography so I was glad that this one didn't do that. On the ground floor are a ticket desk, a shop and lockers where you can keep your bags for a small fee of 2 euros if you don't want to carry them around.
Also on the ground floor is the permanent exhibition 'Treasure Troves'. Unfortunately, this is not nearly as exciting as it sounds. Mostly, this exhibition consisted of a hell of a lot of old coins which wasn't very interesting to see. As well as the coins you can see medals, gold and silver items as well as some armour. The armour section was by far the most interesting of this area and I loved seeing all of the different kinds that there had been throughout history. This floor also hosts a temporary exhibition which changes frequently.
On the first floor are two exhibitions, 'Pre History' and 'The Realm'. There is also a large third room but it was closed when I visited as the museum is getting ready to host a new permanent collection here. Pre History consists of many religious items like chains with crosses on, bronze items and any other artefacts that have been found from this time. The Realm was much better to see than Pre History as the collection was so much bigger. Spanning the 12th to 16th centuries, this collection has a lot of art work revolving around royal families, religious men and a lot of items about the change of power in Finland. Due to this, there is a mix of both Russian and Finnish items and the journey along this section explains what has happened to the country over numerous years. I loved this section of the museum as there were so many different things to see and so much to learn about the history of the country.
The second floor also hosts 'The Realm' but this time from the 17th to 19th centuries as well as 'A Land and its People'. This floor is more about furniture and costume compared with the lower floor which has more art and specific items. The clothes were very interesting to look at and you could clearly see the difference is class from one item to the next. The more upper class people had clothes which were rich looking and colourful while the lower classes had clothes which were quite drab and boring. The second floor is also home to my one favourite room of the whole museums, the throne room. This room had an actual throne as well as a lot of jewellery from leaders of Finland and Russia and it was all quite amazing to see. This floor also has a collection ending in September this year called 'Dream Homes' which is a collection of crazy little doll houses.
The top floor of the museum has a workshop (mostly for children) where you can get a bit more hands on with some of the things that you have seen in the museum. Obviously, they are all recreations in the workshop. We took a quick peek into the workshop and had a little play around with some of the things to do but really, it wasn't very fun as adults as most of it is aimed at children.
The museum has a small shop on the ground floor where you can buy all of the normal things a museum gift shop sells. However, you can also buy something a little different here like replicas of Viking ornaments, jewellery reminiscent of what can be seen in the museum as well as beads and glass. The shop was great to look around but many of the items were either extremely overpriced or the books were too heavy to take back on the plane. The museum has lifts to each floor as well as the stairs so it is very accessible. There are only two sets of toilets, one on the ground floor and one on the first floor.
Overall, I really enjoyed this museum and it was my favourite out of everything we saw in Helsinki. There is a lot to learn at this museum and really interesting things to see. Highly recommended.
Tue-Sun 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Adults 8 euros.
Reduced 6 euros (students, senior citizens over 65 years, conscripts and groups more than 10 persons).
Entry is free for those under 18 years.
1 euro off full admission fee with S Priviledge Card.
Free admission on Friday from 4 p.m. till 6 p.m.
Free admission on International Museum Day 18 May and Helsinki Day 12 June.
Free admission with Helsinki Card
Nervanderinkatu 13 P.O. Box 913, FI-00101 Helsinki, FINLAND Tel + 358 9 40 501, Fax + 358 9 4050 9300.The National Museum of Finland presents Finnish life from prehistoric times to the present. The permanent exhibition is divided into six departments. The Treasure Troves present the museums collections of coins, medals, orders, decorations, silver and weapons. The Prehistory of Finland is Finlands largest archaeological exhibition. The Realm tells of the history of Finnish culture and society from the Middle Ages until the beginning of the 20th century. A Land and Its People presents rural life in Finland before industrialisation.