Espoo and Nuuksio

“It [Espoo] doesn’t have a centre. Well it does have a place called the centre but I hope you are not going there! It is a ghetto!”.

We were given advice, and can say Espoo certainly does not have a centre and so requires a bit of preplanning.

We did not stay in the centre area but apparently where we stay is stayed is sometimes referred to as a ghetto but it was perfectly safe although not the easiest place to navigate if you are not familiar with your surroundings.
We had a kind host Marina, who prepared a fresh blueberry pie for Valeria’s birthday. She also prepared a nice meal for us and gave us our bearings on a map. The area near Maria’s home is nice, with a nice coastal view and beach. A great place to watch sunset and probably an even better place to watch sunrise. The lake and surroundings were beautiful.

Espoo is a leafy suburb, or city on the outskirts of Helsinki. It can be as little as 30 minutes or so away depending where you are going but if you stay there as I mentioned plan ahead. From Espoo we went to Nuuksio.

Finnish inventions #2 Nokia
Nokia is one of the best known brands in the world. If you want an inexpensive phone that is much more durable than a smart phone and acts like a phone then a Nokia is likely to do what you need. However Nokia are also in the smart phone mark and its Lumia range is making a mark. Chances are you will know not just one person but several with Nokia. A great Finnish success story

Valeria and I decided to visit the Nuuksio National park situated in Espoo’s regional boundaries.
Wikitravel says (as of 24/07/13) ” There are plenty of quiet spots of beauty, but don’t expect jaw-dropping gorges or soaring mountains (good advice for travelling anywhere in Finland, that).” and it is true of Nuuksio at least.

We took bus no 85 from the centre (the place name) to Nuuksionpää and walked the 2km to Haukkalampi, where an information centre is. We followed along with an expat group that was going for hiking and swimming. Once reaching the information centre we went our separate ways. There is a choice of trails and Valeria and I chose the 4km blue trail as it goes close to the main lake. The trail is a nice walk passing a BBQ spot and having several places one might want to stop for a picnic. The views of the valley and lake were nice in parts but most of the trail was fairly standard. An interesting trail particularly if you live locally and want to enjoy your time with friends or family by doing some activity. There is no place to buy drink (or food) after passing the information centre so be prepared beforehand.
There are many ponds and lakes in the nature park, also vipers and bears but your chances of meeting them are remote. The park is also home to the Siberian squirrel but we didn’t see any while there,