TURKU WAS FINLAND’S former capital until famine, poverty, and three massive fires destroyed the city. The government packed it all up and moved to Helsinki. “They took everything, even the door knobs!” our tour guide explained.
But while some might say Turku harbors a bit of jealousy against the shiny new capital, Turkulainens are truly proud of their history. Our guide bitterly highlighted Turku’s former glory days through the relics that were left behind: the Turku Cathedral, Turku Castle, and restaurant boats bobbing along the Aura River. But I wanted to step into 21st-century Turku. Sure, history has its place, but Turku felt stuck in the 1700s.