Catch the aurora AGAIN - Day 1 in Helsinki & Iceland

Click here to read day 1day 2day 3day 4day 6day 7, day 9 & 10 trip report

Day 1

It's actually a 8 hours transit in Helsinki before I moved on to Iceland. My flight touched down 6 o'clock early in the morning and the next flight to Iceland would be at 3:30pm, so why waste time in airport? Make a trip down to Helsinki town lah.


Both HSL bus 615 and Finnair city bus offer transfer service between Helsinki airport and city centre. Train service is available however direct entrance to airport terminal will only be ready after 2015.

Click here for more airport transfer information. Finnair bus schedule

What to do in Helsinki

To me, Helsinki is a boring city. Nothing much can be done there. There are a few places can visit if you happen to be there.

Market square (Kauppatori, open from 8am - 4pm Monday - Saturday)

It's a big empty space beside Vanha Kauppahalli. There were many vendors selling fresh fruits and fresh vegetables. There were food stalls, handicraft, jewelry and some handmade touristy stuff.

Salmon soup (with a lot of salmon and potato) with bread and coffee

Old market hall (Vanha Kauppahalli, open from 8am - 6pm Monday- Saturday)

It's an indoor market hall. A great place to try out Finnish treats and savories. I had seen Vietnamese cuisine in there too.

Uspenskin Cathedral (10 am - 4pm)

Orthodox church on the hill, amazing architecture. It was only a short walk from market place.

Senate Square (Senaatintori) and Lutheran Cathedral (8am - 4pm, weekday)


As soon as I reached Iceland, I headed to Blue Lagoon after collecting my rental car from Thrifty car rental.

Blue Lagoon is a major attraction and one of the must visit place in Iceland. Due to its popularity, it's always packed with tourists, so advanced booking is highly recommended.

I ordered the comfort package at 50 euro which came with towel and first drinks. I ordered bathrobe when I was there as the weather was too cold, so the total cost I paid was almost equivalent to their premium package at 65 euro. Slippers is also included in premium package which I would highly recommend this option, you definitely need a pair of slippers there! It's pretty cold outside of water during October time. The floor was wet and too cold to stand on it.

Water temperature is very pleasant, 37 to 40 degree Celsius and maximum water depth is probably 100 - 120 cm. The water will make your hair brittle so do remember to apply plenty of hair conditioner before you swim in.

Spent around 2 hours there (I wish I could stay longer there), it's a beautiful and lovely place. Entrance ticket is not cheap, so must spend more time here and make full use of it. Must try their mud mask!

Tip! Buy their product at Iceland airport as it's cheaper than from Blue Lagoon.

There is a bar counter where you can get your first free drink (if you bought the package), you could enjoy your drink while soaking in warm water.

Where to eat if you are feeling hungry after indulging in the warm thermal water? Lava restaurant is a fine dining restaurant located at the ground floor of Blue Lagoon. If you don't want to spend so much, you can also grab a sandwich, sushi or some simple food from the café beside Blue Lagoon souvenir shop.

I didn't dine in Blue Lagoon but I choose to cook in the airbnb which I stayed in the first night in Iceland. The owner was so kind to offer us pancake she made.

Here is our Iceland trip video.

Interested to visit Iceland? Check out my itinerary and click here to read day 1day 2day 3day 4day 6day 7, day 9 & 10 trip report

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  1. Hellos. Which airline did u take from sg and do u need special arrangements to leave the Helsinki during transit?

    1. I took Finnair direct flight from SG to Helsinki. I'm holding Singapore passport therefore I do not need to apply visa and I was allowed to leave Helsinki to Helsinki town before my next flight leaving Helsinki to Reykjavik.

  2. hi iva. i'm from SG too. trying to plan a finland+iceland trip over CNY with a focus on northern lights. when will your iceland trip reports be up? hope to get some tips in the planning from u!

    1. Hi Jane, you may want to refer to my last year Finland trip itinerary here -
      Trip report links are at the bottom of this itinerary post.

      As for Iceland trip itinerary you can read from -

      I will try to finish remaining Iceland trip report asap. Thanks for visiting my blog.

  3. Hi Jane, can i ask why do you choose to fly from SG to Helsinki first instead of flying straight to Reykjavik? Is it much cheaper that way? :)

    1. Hi, there is no direct flight between SG and Reykjavik. You can fly to Iceland from many other European cities -

  4. Hi, what do you pack for Finland trip? Snow pants essential?

    1. Hi I did not bring snow pants. I don't have it and I don't find it nice on me also. I wear 2 layers of heatech leggings under my jeans, not a very good choice though. Overall suit was given to us from excursion company during some of the activities such as husky sledge.