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Six themed images from the archives at www.timbirdphotography.com.

This week I wish it was 12 picks, not just six. The summer in Helsinki – when it finally arrives in earnest – is, well, more summery than just about any other city I know. The sun barely sets, there are mountains of berries in the market places, there’s a continentally European feel to the cafes and bars spilling out onto the pavements, and the Baltic horizon is dotted with sails, cruise ships and tourist boats. This week we’re in holiday mood, so here is a quick photo tour – almost as quick as the summer itself – on this magical July evening in the Finnish capital. Not just a run-through of the main tourist sights.

New potatoes in the market places are a sure sign that the Helsinki summer has arrived.

New potatoes in the market places are a sure sign that the Helsinki summer has arrived.

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Get on your bike and cycle around the Helsinki shoreline and you’ll come across plenty of small, sometimes quirky cafes and ice cream kiosks. This one, Regatta, isn’t far from the Sibelius monument but thankfully off the itinerary for the bus loads of Japanese tourists that make a beeline for this tribute to Finland’s most famous composer.

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The classic harbour view of the Neo-Classical centre of Helsinki, dominated by the Lutheran cathedral. The quayside market square is in the foreground.

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The summer climaxes with the Helsinki Festival in August. The 2013 festival included the Harmonic Fields installation along the shore front close to Eira and Hernesaari – literally, wind instruments.

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If I could do it all again… Helsinki is a great place to be young.

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Traditional hay making in full swing in the fields near the manor at Tapaninvainio, close to the Vantaa River. Anyone can join in.

If you’ve enjoyed these quick glimpses from my photo archives, please share and follow this weekly blog. And take a look at my substantial photo galleries from Finland and around the world at www.timbirdphotography.com

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