Active life in Helsinki’s eastern growth centre

Modern and pleasant rental homes in Herttoniemi

Herttoniemi (or Hertsika as the locals call it) has been hailed as the trendiest part of Helsinki along the metro line. The vast variety of areas and very long history of this modern and urban district may come as a surprise to you. Herttoniemi features many styles of living and lots of things to do and see. Let’s take a look at some examples!

From Bronze Age to today’s growth centre

Herttoniemi is one of the oldest settlements in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area: the first permanent Finnish settlers probably made the area their home as early as in the 1100s. Evidence of people living here even much earlier is provided by burial cairns dating back to around 1500–500 Before the Common Era, and one of these monuments is accessible for a close look in Sorsapuisto park.

By the way, the name Herttoniemi is believed to come either from the Old Swedish word härtoghe, which means ‘duke’, or from the name of one of the 1400s residents, Laurens Herthoge. Present-day Herttoniemi originates from the estates of a 1700s manor house extending all the way to Puotila, Malmi, Viikki and Myllypuro.

Excellent everyday services

Home to 26,000 residents, Herttoniemi has all the shops you need for your everyday life. The local service centre Hertsi is where you will find a library, fitness facilities, restaurants and shops as well as many everyday services from nail care to car washing. City of Helsinki Youth Services organises activities at the Hertsi Youth Club, where young people can hang out, cook, make music or play games.

In addition to Hertsi, the range of grocery shopping is extended by Lidl, K- and S-market stores also located close to the metro. Also take a look at the Marimekko factory outlet located in the Herttoniemi industrial area. And of course you cannot talk about Herttoniemi without mentioning the most famous local restaurant, Treffi Pub, which serves classics such as a hamburger that has a solid fan base.

Growing your own vegetables and dipping in the summer sea

Herttoniemi-seura is the local residents’ association that publishes a local magazine called Herttoniemeläinen (https://issuu.com/herttoniemiseura). The association also promotes living comfort and local culture in the district and rents out allotment garden plots. Interested in winter swimming? The association provides opportunities for icy dips too.

Spot a woodpecker!

Around half of old Herttoniemi (West Herttoniemi) consists of forests and parks. Most of the residential buildings here are atmospheric apartment and low-rise buildings from the 1950s.

Starting from Kivinokka, the Viikki-Vanhankaupunginlahti nature reserve extends all to way to the Saunalahti side. The protected park has stunning paths, sandy roads, coastal herb-rich forests and a vast variety of tree species. To explore the park, you can follow the accessible nature trail or perhaps climb up the Fastholma birdwatching tower to see how many species you can spot.

All sorts of summer fun in Kivinokka

When wandering around the protected site on the Kivinokka side, you can check out the giant’s kettles formed by the Ice Age in the rock. Kivinokka also features the Kulosaari Manor built in the 1800s, and for culture there is the Kivinokka summer theatre. How about cabin life in the middle of the city? Look no further than the Herttoniemi Allotment Garden, which is an easy walk from the metro. In the summer, those into swimming and sunbathing will find kindred spirits on the sandy beach of Kivinokka.

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Sunsets in Herttoniemenranta

Formerly an oil harbour, the transformation of Herttoniemenranta into a residential district began in the 1990s. Herttoniemenranta boasts long stretches of seafront, a splendid sandy beach in Tuorinniemi (including a fenced-off swimming spot designated for dogs) and cosy local restaurants. There are also several light-filled SATO rental homes in Herttoniemenranta located close to the sea, metro, shops, playparks and children’s daycare centres.

If skateboarding is your thing, the Tuorinniemenranta skateboard park is excellent for beginners as well as more experienced riders. There is also another skateboard park, Hilleri, on the old Herttoniemi side.

And the sunsets? Perfect spots for feasting your eyes on the sky can be found on the exposed bedrock along the coast, the Tuorinniemi beach or the breakwater, which provides a tranquil view over the sea towards Kulosaari and Tullisaari.

Manor life through the centuries

And to finish, let’s go back to where the story of present-day Herttoniemi began.
Now part of Herttoniemenranta, the Hertonäs Manor and its park is the jewel of Herttoniemi. The site was once planned to become an outdoor museum of the culture of Finland’s Swedish-speaking population. For this purpose, several buildings such as the windmill that is now a local landmark and the Knusbacka Farmstead were relocated to the site. Today, the Hertonäs Manor is open to the public in the summer as a museum, and one of the buildings houses the atmospheric Wanha Mylly restaurant serving fabulous food around the year. The Hertonäs Manor park is also open to all, including dogs, around the year.

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