Russia opens tourism office in Helsinki, first in world

The tourism office of Russia, Visit Russia, opened on July 10 in central Helsinki and its task is to advertise Russia's tourism potential and inform Finnish tourists about the most interesting routes in the country, an Interfax correspondent reported from the opening ceremony.

The sunrise over the Neva River. Source: Elena Kim

The tourism office of Russia, Visit Russia, opened on July 10 in central Helsinki and its task is to advertise Russia's tourism potential and inform Finnish tourists about the most interesting routes in the country, an Interfax correspondent reported from the opening ceremony.

The office is located in a historical building in central Helsinki at a crossing of main touristic routes - at Etelaesplanadi 2.

It was opened without budget financing on the basis of an office of the St. Peter Line cruise company, which carries out ferry trips between St. Petersburg and Helsinki. The tourism office will cooperate actively with Russian tourism businesses and regions. It plans to work with mass media outlets and the tourism market - to hold introductory tours for reporters and travel agencies and to organize news conferences and roundtables dedicated to tourism development in Russia and new routes.

Russian Deputy Culture Minister Alla Manilova and Federal Tourism Agency Deputy Head Sergei Korneyev attended the official office opening.

"We open the national tourism office of Russia for the first time not just in Finland and Scandinavia but the first national tourism office of Russia worldwide," Manilova said.

About 50 national tourism centers of foreign countries operate in Russia, while there was no Russian tourism office before, Manilova said.

"Offices in Dubai and Berlin were test-launched but not opened this year. We will open the Berlin office in the fall. The first of the Chinese offices in Beijing and the first of the Italian offices in Rome will open this year as well," the deputy minister said.

It is planned to open Visit Russia offices in Milan and Madrid in 2016, Manilova said.

"We are absolutely certain of the tremendous success of this project, or we would not start it," she said.

Read more: Could now be the time to visit Russia?

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