Saturday 14 January 2012

Vaasa-The Sunniest City Of Finland

Statue Of Liberty,Vaasa,Finland
Founded in 1606 on the West Coast of what is now Finland, by King Charles of Sweden, Vassa was renamed several times because of language change(Swedish-Finnish), political decisions(Sweden-Russia-Finland), alternate spelling etc(Vasa-Vaasa). From1855 to 1918 when Finland was under Russian domination,Vaasa was named Nikolainkapunki. In1918 Finland gained independence and Nikolainpunki promptly became Vaasa and a Statue Of Liberty was erected in the Main Square of the City Centre.
Sculpture In Vaasa,Finland

The Sculpture in the City centre with the Vaasa Church in the background.The church was consecrated in 1869 and is built in the British Neo Gothic style with a seating capacity of 900.Vaasa has recently developed into a tourist attraction with tourists from all parts of the world coming to The Sunniest City of Finland. Vaasa offers several sporting and outdoor activities.

City Centre,Vaasa Finland

The City Centre is the centre of city life in Vaasa. The Market Square in the City Centre is a major shopping center with several super stores offerring the best and top selling brands of garments, cosmetics, fashion accessories and electronic gizmos. There are military bands playing and marching in the market square to add to the gaiety of the place. market Square also has many restaurants offerring Finnish cuisine and there is a McDonalds also which serves its combo meals for 8 Euro. For comparison the McDonalds in India sell the same meal for 2.6 Euro.

Gulf Of Bothnia,Vaasa, Finland
Vaasa is a sea side city located at the narrowest point of the Gulf Of Bothnia making it an important between Sweden and Finland.The population of is mainly Swedish and Finnish and so is the language giving the city its Nordic culture. Since there are many international tourists visiting Vaasa at all times, the city also has an international flavour to it with tourists being welcomes wholeheartedly. 

Kvarken Archipelago,Finland
Outside of Vasa on the sea you will find many islands. That is the Kvarken Archipelago, which is set on the list of World Nature Heritages of the UNESCO.This unique stony archipelago has been created by continuing land uplift after the melting of the continental ice sheet 10,000 to 24,000 years ago. Numbering some 5,600 islands and islets, the area extends approximately 70 km in an east-west direction, and 60 km in a north south direction.The guide told us that sometimes when a new island appears ,there is some confusion whether it is in Sweden or Finland.

Kalaranta Passenger Quay,Vaasa,Finland
This is the Kalaranta Passenger Quay from where the MS Tiira starts its 3 hour cruise of the Kvarken Archipelago.

Ms TIIRA cruising in Kvarken Archipelago,Finland
MS TIIRA Cruising in Kvarken Archilelago,Finland
The Rocks are growing at the rate of 10mm per year and it needs a thorough knowledge of the water to steer the boat between the rocks. Finns take to the water naturally. There are more boats in Finland than the number of cars.All households have at least one.

While sailing in the  the archipelago one can admire the typical Finnish Summer Cottages, including their unique  local architecture.There is also a very well preserved fishing village.The children can be seen jumping and swimming in the icy water and thoroughly enjoying themselves.
Kuusisaari Island, Kvarken, Finland
Midway through the cruise MS Tiira stopped at Kuusisaari island,one of the bigger ones out of 5600 in the Kvarken Archipelago. It appeared to be a popular place judging from the number of water scooters tied all around the place. In winter when the water freezes,snow scooters/snow mobiles are used to visit Kuusisaari Island.  
Janne's Saloon Restaurant at Kuusisaari Island,Kvarken,Finland.

At Kuusisaari island there is an excellent restaurant ,Janne's Saloon. It has facility for hosting conferences,training and business meetings also.There is a tub for hot water bathing in the open.The menu at the restaurant has all kinds of salads,vegetables, shrimp, herring etc with the main courses being White Fish-fried or raw salted, Pan Fried salmon, Fillet steak and Sauteed Reindeer.

Ms TIIRA,Kvarken,Finland

After an hour at Kuusisaari island the M/s TIIRA started back to the Kalantara Quay but following a different route which was crowded with boats of all kinds-most notable were the speed boats moving at really high speeds ,invariably with a couple of dogs also enjoying the ride.

The Heseburger Outlet at Vaasa. Heseburger is the local competetion to McDonalds and with  more than 200  outlets in Finland,it has a larger presence in Finland as compared to the US McDonalds. Known by the name Hese its menu offerrings are the same as McDonalds but the flavor is different, I would say Nordic.

We just managed to reach the Vaasa Railway station to board the last train to Seinajoki at 830PM . Just note the absence of passengers at the railway station of the 3rd largest city of the region.


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