What to do in Helsinki?

 Written 19 oktober, 2017

By now you have probably already signed up for the conference. If you find the time and courage to venture out of the NTIF venue, here are my Top 3 tips for visitors to Helsinki.

1. Take a sauna

There are nearly three million saunas in Finland, an average of one per household. When visiting Finland, you don’t want to miss the opportunity to experience this national pastime. The new favourites among locals and visitors alike are Löyly and Allas Sea Pool. Both offer a public sauna, restaurant and bar to chill and sip a refreshing drink.

A more historic and authentic option would be the traditional Kotiharjun sauna in the Kallio district, in the neighbourhood of Paasitorni.

If swimming is your thing, head to the beautiful Yrjönkadun uimahalli, which dates back to 1928.

2. Hop on a tram or take a walk

An easy and inexpensive sightseeing tour of Helsinki can be done by boarding trams 2, 3 and 7. Trams 3 and 7 stop at Hakaniemi square, close to Paasitorni. The route will take you past many of the main sights and it’s a great way to travel among locals. If you follow the route all the way round, you’ll see the many faces of Helsinki, from the hipster district of Kallio, passing through the city centre, and all the way to the Jugend style quarter of Eira.

This year’s NTIF venue is Paasitorni, a historic Workers’ House located close to Pitkäsilta bridge, which connects the traditional working class areas of the city with the more bourgeois centre. The city centre can be easily accessed by foot in about 15–20 minutes by crossing the bridge.

For joggers, head to Säästöpankinranta and from there to Töölö Bay (Töölönlahti). A path circles the bay and there are some lovely cafes along the route as well.

You may also want to explore the vibrant neighbourhoods of the nearby Kallio district. Known for being Helsinki’s most bohemian district, there are numerous trendy cafes, small boutiques and hip bars.

3. Visit a market hall

One of three remaining old central market halls, Hakaniemen halli, is situated only a few hundred metres from Paasitorni. With everything from fresh food to souvenirs and handicrafts, this two-storey market hall is a good option for visitors interested in authentic Finnish food.

The oldest food market hall (Vanha Kauppahalli), dating back to 1888, was recently renovated and can be found in the city centre next to the market square.

The most delicious and warming fish soup in Helsinki can be found in both halls.

On behalf of the Finnish LSPs, Tervetuloa Suomeen!






Katja Virtanen
President, Association of Finnish Translation Companies SKTOL ry

PS. Did you know that this year the World Economic Forum ranked Finland as the safest country in the world for tourists to visit? Also, according to the UNSDSN 2017 report, Finland is the fifth happiest nation in the world. Just in case you’re still undecided.


Why Helsinki? Insights from a local!

 Written 15 augusti, 2017

By now you’ve probably already started planning to attend the next NTIF conference which will be held in Helsinki on 22–24 November. And why wouldn’t you? Surely you’re interested in some up-to-date, Nordics-focused industry news—and also some good fun with fellow professionals. As many of you know, the organisers, Anne-Marie and Cecilia, are renowned for throwing some of the best parties in the industry. No pressure, girls, but we have high expectations!

Let’s be honest, weather-wise, November is probably the worst month to visit Finland. So, don’t expect any of our famous nightless nights or any sort of winter wonderland. Instead, be prepared for only a few hours of daylight, biting winds and lots of slush on the ground. Luckily, NTIF is no Woodstock and will be held in the ruggedly beautiful, recently renovated granite building Paasitorni. Indoors, that is.

Ignoring the weather, Helsinki has been recently officially proclaimed by many important fashion leaders as hip. Indeed, my previously rather dull hometown has become a cool city with lots of energy and bustle. Vogue Magazine suggested earlier this year that Helsinki might even be the Next Capital of Cool.

This year, Finland is celebrating the 100th anniversary of its independence. In case you skipped your history lessons, Finland used to be a part of Russia, and before that a part of Sweden. We take a lot of pride in being an independent country with a rather small population and a weird and difficult language.

The anniversary year has been a banner for Finland. A wide range of fun events and festivals have been organised throughout the year, and a host of new hotels, bars and restaurants are opening. Suddenly, Helsinki seems to have become a foodie paradise, too. Furthermore, the proximity of events like Nordic Business Forum and Slush will make the late autumn an even more vibrant season—despite the weather.

I’ve attended all but one of the great NTIF conferences. For years, along with many others, I’ve been hoping that Anne-Marie and Cecilia would choose Helsinki to host the event. It took some time and persuasion, but in the end they couldn’t have chosen a better year. The best is yet to come in Helsinki, November 22–24.

See you there!





On behalf of the Finnish LSPs, Tervetuloa Suomeen!

Katja Virtanen
Association of Finnish Translation Companies SKTOL ry

Nähdään Helsingissä!

 Written 23 februari, 2017

Welcome to Helsinki for NTIF 2017!

Prepare your visit by checking out Visit Helsinkis website:



NTIF 2016 Destination Malmö

 Written 9 september, 2016

by Matthew Ogden, NTIF 2016 moderator


How does an already happily productive and inspiring day get even better?

Well, taking part in a conference call with the very lovely Anne-Marie and Cecilia, and being asked if I would be remotely interested in being the NTIF 2016 conference moderator for starters!

Interested? Ladies, I’d be absolutely delighted!

This year, I’m looking forward very much to being even more closely involved in an event at which I have been fortunate enough to speak as a corporate user of language solutions in the past.

As a passionate advocate of honesty and excellence in communication, I find the aims and objectives of NTIF events to be absolutely “on the money” in this regard. The mix of industry specific specialists, their customers, and thought provoking providers of inspiration, make, I believe, for a genuinely valuable and insightful couple of days. And in this instance I see my job very much as the bearded and benevolent “stick-poker”, there to prod and chivvy everyone along, should it be necessary, to ensure that value is actually delivered for everyone in attendance.

I have worked over many years (the beard is greying now) in what, looking back on it, basically resembles something of a portfolio career – stints with Bestseller Group, LEGO, the BBC, Endemol, and the Financial Times, have been interspersed with various forays into work as a session musician (I can tell you more about that over a glass of wine in the evening).

But, whatever, and wherever I have been, from the service and solutions provider, to being the demanding and engaged client, I have always been driven by a passion for sharing. Enabling, engaging, and inspiring ALL of those involved in the communications process, every step of the way. Remembering, that regardless of the language and the social and cultural context, one should always remember to speak in a way that demonstrates your desire to be understood.

When you are the coal face, as it were, it can sometimes be easy to forget this simple fact. The “day-to-day” can sometimes cloud the longer view towards the horizon. Of course, this is perfectly understandable, invoices need to be paid, deadlines need to be met. But it is important not to lose sight of the reason why we do the day-to-day in the first place.

The spark. The joy.

That’s why events such as NTIF are so important. It’s an opportunity to meet, to mingle, to share ideas, inspiration, and innovations. And, hopefully, it’s also a way to recharge a bit, and return home with at least a little spring in your step.

I do hope to be able to meet as many of you as I can over the duration of the event, whether you attend as a delegate, exhibitor or speaker. It is always a pleasure for me to hear what motivates and inspires you, and indeed what challenges and opportunities you face. Together I hope we can ensure that your time at NTIF is truly meaningful. Oh, and fun – let’s not forget that!

Until November then!

(Oh, and about the “pokey-stick” stuff I mentioned earlier? Don’t worry, I don’t really prod that hard. Scouts honour.)





Welcome to Malmö!

 Written 11 mars, 2016

Log in to one of these sites to prepare for your visit to Malmö!

Malmö Town

The Local

Looking forward to seeing you 24-25 November!