Sun 03/22/09 (Day 50) - Porvoo & Hameelinna

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March 22nd 2009
Published: April 24th 2009
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A good view of Porvoo from the foot bridge.
Rising early, relatively, Liz and I grabbed breakfast at the hotel whilst plotting out our course for the day. On the agenda is the town of Porvoo and the castle in Hämeenlinna. So, plan of attack in-hand we jumped in the Prius and hit the road.

We rolled into Porvoo around lunchtime, grabbed a tourist guide and headed to the closest cafe. Over coffee and pastries we decided to take the walking tour of the town. Porvoo is an old town, mention of it in documents begins in the early 14th century, with sufficient history. Taking it's name from a nearby Swedish riverside fortress, Porvoo gained notoriety in the 18th century when Sweden lost land to Russia and the town became the episcopal seat and eventually housed the Diet of Porvoo. It's a quaint town with many boutique shops; a B&B type of town. This Sunday was quiet as most shops were closed, but Liz and I enjoyed our walk nonetheless.

Satisfied with our tour of Porvoo we sought the Prius for our return North to Hämeenlinna. Unable to find a good restaurant open on Sunday we settled on the McDonald's in Hämeenlinna for a quick snack. Starving appeased,
Treacherous StairsTreacherous StairsTreacherous Stairs

Liz and I had to navigate these stairs for a great view across the river from Porvoo.
we made our way to the castle and, guidebook in hand, we started our tour. Häme Castle, or Hämeenlinna, has its construction reportedly connected to the legendary Second Swedish Crusade which would date the castle in the mid-13th century. Regardless of its origins the castle is impressive and includes far more history than I can present here. Instead you get a few pictures 😉

Since some of us, i.e. me, have to work in the morning we Prius'd it back to Tampere at a reasonable hour. Arriving in time for dinner I suggested the Viking Restaurant, Harald. I figured it's an experience Liz would appreciate. Plus, who can say no to food on a sword?

Additional photos below
Photos: 10, Displayed: 10


Porvoo CathedralPorvoo Cathedral
Porvoo Cathedral

This church was sadly destroyed by an arson's fire and has just reopened after significant repair.
Porvoo CathedralPorvoo Cathedral
Porvoo Cathedral

The original bell tower, parts of which date to the 13th century.
Tour GuideTour Guide
Tour Guide

The faithful guide reading about the strong hold he's standing in.
Royal LatrineRoyal Latrine
Royal Latrine

The "can" in the King's quarters.
Häme CastleHäme Castle
Häme Castle

A lovely view from the frozen moat.
Viking ChowViking Chow
Viking Chow

Last night our own private dining room, today our own sword. Livin' the dream!
Don't Feed the BearsDon't Feed the Bears
Don't Feed the Bears

I think the Finnish beer may have gone to her head.

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