Helsinki is a modem city. Here the tourist does not come face to face with the past as he does in many old European capitals. Yet there are areas in Helsinki which give a genuine and comprehensive picture of the atmosphere and architecture of the past. Helsinki had a population of 4,000 in 1812.
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At the turn of the century the figure was 79, 000 and it is half a million at present. It has been said of the Helsinki of the neoclassic period that it was the last European city designed as an entirely and created as work of art. The Historic Senate Square will always hold the place of honour in the capital.
It was founded in 1550 at the mouth of the River Vantaa and became Finland's capital in 1812.