Time to learn more about Finnish history? The Finnish national museum (or Suomen kansallismuseo) of Helsinki is a great place to do so. It is not a boring history museum; it is immersive, playful, simply great. The exhibition shows all about Finnish history, from stone age to the 21st century and is presented in an amazing historical building from 1910.

The main exhibition divides into four sections that can be described as ethnologic, historical, pre-historic, and focused on seafaring, independency, and numismatic items. The entrance hall of the building is decorated with frescos by Finnish painter Akseli Gallen-Kallela. The frescos show scenes from the Finnish national epic poetry called Kalevala. The Kalevala was published in 1835 but it consists of stories connected to Finnish mythology that have been verbally transferred from generation to generation.

In the Kalevala the world was created from the seven eggs of a duck. Finnish mythology offers a whole world of heroes and demons to explore. As a combination of different tales it also included Christian elements like the story of Maria, here called Marjatta. She gets pregnant by a lingonberry and her son becomes king of Karelia – a very Finnish interpretation of the New Testament. If you want to have a look yourself: The Finnish national museum is located north of the city center and opposite to the Finlandia hall. Take tramway #4 or #10 to Kansallismuseo.

Suomen kansallismuseo
Finnish national museum
Mannerheimintie 34
00100 Helsinki


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