A friend and I decided to visit Porvoo this year for some Christmas cheer. It was a great decision, as the town was busy with all things Christmassy.
However, before I tell you more about it, I would like to wish you all Happy Holidays! I’ve been away for a while but I’ve now caught up on everyone’s blog posts and have an idea of what’s been going on. It’s great to be back. ❤
Back to our day in Porvoo. After driving for around 50 minutes, we arrived and found a parking spot right by the Old Town. The weather was quite bleak but that’s often expected in Finland, so it did not put us off. We arrived before noon and after strolling around for a bit, we decided it was time for coffee.
We chose to visit Café Helmi, as it has lovely cakes and pies and is known by locals and visitors alike. We managed to slip in right before a huge tourist group entered.
Inside you’ll find a rotating cake rack laden with goodies but don’t stop there, as there’s more by the cashier. You can also get Porvoo’s famous pastry here – the Runeberg cake.
We decided to be sensible and split a salmon pie and a gingerbread mousse cake. Yum!
After our small break, we continued our stroll towards some of the cute shops that came our way.
The shopkeepers in Porvoo really have an eye for beauty. Everywhere you can find small details that make you feel all cosy inside.
Doesn’t this look inviting to you?
Those of you who like to make your own crafts, may get some ideas below. These are so cute!
I’m in love that glittery dress and bag in the corner, the perfect outfit for a Christmas party!
Okay, so we didn’t just shop the whole time. We also visited some museums. The museums in the Old Town were free of charge on the day. We tried to visit them earlier but the doors were locked and we thought I’d been mistaken about them being open. Lucky for us, Porvoo is so small that we strolled by the museums again and found the doors open!
Our first museum was the Holm House. Back in the day, it was the house of a wealthy merchant family. The building was built in 1763 and it’s quite interesting to see how a family lived in that time. Now, we got to see what they ate for Christmas.
The second museum in the close vicinity, was the Town Hall Museum. Among other things, you will find works of art there like paintings and sculptures. The floors are old, creaky and crooked!
Upstairs you can explore memories of the inhabitants of Porvoo in the early 19th century.
Being in Finland, we found the Moomins to be in the mood for Christmas too!
After lunch (which was not worth mentioning), we took some time to walk to the Runeberg house museum which had also been decorated for Christmas. This is the oldest home museum in Finland, open to the public in 1882. In case you are wondering, Runeberg is Finland’s national poet. His wife Fredrika created the Runeberg cake. The house has a beautiful garden (thanks to Fredrika) which is a definite must-see in the summer. Now it was too dark to make out anything.
For our final snack we went to Café Cabriole. The café is a stone’s throw away from the Old Town. Btw, it’s difficult to get good cakes in Helsinki but I believe that Porvoo rivals Tallinn on the cake front. Also, this café has the best macarons in Finland, as they are big, full, fluffy and delicious.
Last but not least, we visited an indoor Christmas market at the Taidetehdas venue. I found some really cool earrings by pausekorut but as I’ve already bought several earrings in December, I had to give them a miss.
If you didn’t have a chance to visit Porvoo this Christmas, never mind, it’s a lovely place to visit any time of the year. If you go with a friend, there are plenty of cafés if you want to just sit down, relax and catch up.
Have you been to Porvoo? Did you visit any Christmas Markets this year?