Not exactly sure how I managed to wake up today in time for breakfast since I had to JUST HAD TO stay up to watch the sun rise over the harbor at 3 a.m. but the siren song of smorgasbord lured me down to the hotel restaurant.
If you have not had a Scandinavian breakfast buffet, I suggest you book a flight post haste and get thee to a muesli bar STAT.
After breakfast, I headed outside to poke around and kill time until my True Desination (“yarn shop”) opened. My hotel is just across from the harbor and you can see the stalls of the open air market from my room window. Last time I was here this was a highlight and it did not disappoint this year. The colors and smells and sounds of the harbor and the market make me very happy.
Here you will find stalls of fresh berries, fruit, potatoes, onions, flowers, and rhubarb. There are stalls of souvenirs and sweaters and weird little postcards printed on pieces of balsa wood. It’s a tourist heaven, basically.
The rest of my day had a pretty rigorous schedule:
- Yarn shop
Tough, I know. But even the tightest plans can go by the wayside. When I left the yarn shop I discovered I was only steps from the Helsinki Design Museum. Even though I had only eaten breakfast a mere two hours ago, I decided I could tough it out to spend a little time wandering the halls dedicated to design. It was one of the highlights of my day, man I loved this place. If you also sometimes fly into an existential panic over the fonts used by coworkers, you MUST visit this shrine to good choices.
I only intended to stay at the museum for a an hour or two but when I opened the door it was POURING RAIN. Never mind that it had been sunny and warm when I entered, never mind that rain wasn’t in the forecast. Luckily for me the museum gift shop sells umbrellas… designer marimekko umbrellas, natch, so I was stylish in the downpour. Also the museum has great wifi so I took a break to update Instagram like a normal person. But it was still CRAZY RAINING. What about my serious cheeseburger plans?
Many less intrepid travelers might have retreated to the safety of the hotel but I was determined to walk to NaughtyBRGR. I had only learned of their existence yesterday yet my desire for a bacon bacon burger was strong. Apparently this place is the brainchild of Akseli Herlevi, Top Chef winner of Finland. The internet called it “perhaps the best burger joint in Finland” and I am not one to be dissuaded by words like “perhaps.”
Umbrella in hand, I walked about ten minutes until I found the home of NaughtyBRGR. In Los Angles, this would be some hipster nirvana filled with young dudes rocking suspect facial hair, but hipster culture hasn’t quite pervaded Europe and I was free to order without fear of being judged and found to be tragically unhip. The ladies at the counter were very helpful and even suggested a beer pairing for my meal. This burger did not disappoint!! It was juicy and tasty and excellent in every way. I love cheeseburgers, they are a perfect food, and Helsinki has burgers on lock.
While I was eating lunch the weather cleared up again and the city returned to sparkling sunny summer skies. We don’t get weather in any meaningful way in Los Angeles so I am obsessed/amazed/enthralled by real weather. What a city — yarn, design, burgers and insane weather! I am in love.
Helsinki Design Museum
Korkeavuorenkatu 23, 00130 Helsinki
Open 11 am – 6 pm
Lankaliike Menita Oy
Naughty BRGR Helsinki
040 516 4040