The population of Helsinki is a little over half a million; the city covers 686 km2 in total - just 27% of this area is land, the rest is water.
Finland has two official state languages - Finnish and Swedish. However, people here are equally well-versed in English: a local travel guide jokingly points out that films on Finnish TV are shown in their original language, with subtitles - you couldn't wish for a better way of practicing your foreign language skills.
The Yellow Taxi company offers a special price for rides to and from the airport (€25). The same route will cost you an average of €35 with any other carrier.
Helsinki is a particularly cyclist-friendly city, with bicycle paths stretching over 750 km in total. May is the beginning of the free Citybike season, when a €2 deposit will get you a bicycle at any of 26 locations in the city. The deposit is returned when the bicycle is turned in. Other popular bicycle rental services are Greenbike (Bulevardi 32, www.greenbike.fi) and Eco-bike (Savilankatu 1b).
Bars stay open till 2 a.m. in Helsinki, most nightclubs close at 4 a.m. The shop hours, however, are not very tourist-friendly, especially on Saturdays, when a number of shops close as early as 4-6 p.m.
Keywords: Helsinki, worth knowing