Saturday 9 September 2006.Sadly, last night was our last night in Tallinn, where we had been hearing about all the Tony Blair shenanigans on Radio 4.Tallinn will also be pleasurably remembered by an excellent meal at the African Kitchen - the African chicken curry was delish.Were supposed to be on the 8 am ferry to Helsinki this morning but thanks to text messaging were warned it had been cancelled.Still got up early to walk to the port (carrying 2 rucksacks each - well it's one way to get fit) to catch the one at 10 am.Bit of a wind blowing so a pretty roughish crossing, but thankfully no throwing up, not even from the Finns who had been on their version of a cheap booze cruise to Estonia and continued partying on board.Have agreed to make as much use as possible of public transport and not take the easy way out by jumping into taxis.So, still humping our bags around with us, took the bus and metro to the centre of town (met a couple from Edinburgh who were about to embark on a Baltic cruise) and then hopped on another bus to take us the 50 Km to Porvoo, a small coastal town east of Helsinki.We stayed at the Porvoo Hostel, a lovely old style wooden building on the edge of town with a very friendly and jolly concierge (a pleasant change from the rather dour Estonians).Very peaceful and atmospheric, with the autumnal wind blowing through the trees - and very glad of our fleeces and windproof jackets! Had a brief walk round part of the old town in the evening, stopping down by the riverside for some good dark beer at Porvoon Paahtimo, an old converted red brick warehouse. Sunday 10 September 2006. The hostel was so comfortable and quiet that we slept in and had to forego our breakfast.Everything is closed on Sunday mornings and breakfast was nowhere to be found.But a beautiful day, sunny and warm, and finding a Kioski open where we got coffee and a cheese pastry, more than made up for the bad start.So a leisurely breakfast was had sitting in the sun on a bench in Market Square.Spent the morning wandering along the shore of the river watching the locals take their boats for a Sunday outing, then walking around the cobbled streets of old Porvoo admiring the old wooden houses.Gorgeous wee town - very much well worth the visit.Unfortunately we didn't get to see the 14th century cathedral, which dominates the old town, as it had been badly damaged by a fire in May this year and was covered in scaffolding.It's had a pretty unlucky history - this is about the 4th time that it's been burnt down (unlucky or just careless?)! After a final walk along the river at the other end of town and up through the (now pine-forested) hill fortress, it was time to head for the bus to take us back to Helsinki. Carrying on with the tradition of using public transport or Shank's Pony, we hoofed it from the bus station to the hostel (the Erratajanpuisto) - about 1 km - wondering why there was such a lot of police and official looking car activity. It was only later we found out that this was the first night of a world trade summit being hosted in Helsinki!Anyway, the hostel is fine, if a bit more basic, but very centrally located (not clear to us why it seems to have one the 2005 Finland hostel of the year award!).Once we settled in, had a quick beer downstairs in Café Bar No 9 where we thought the food looked good so will probably eat here one night.Chatted with a couple from Australia (he was originally from Glasgow and her family was Hungarian).Monday 11 September 2006.Up early to avoid a scramble for the showers. Ate the breakfast that was meant for yesterday while chatting to a couple of young lads from Vancouver who're 'doing Europe' for three months or so.Another lovely, warm day - even better than yesterday.Took a wee ferryboat to Helsinki Korkeasaari Zoo, which is in a wonderful setting on a rocky and forested island on the Helsinki archipeligo.Now, we're not fans of seeing animals in captivity, but decided to go as Helsinki Zoo has good a reputation for conservation and many of the animals are part of breeding programmes.It was excellent.The big cats section in particular was wonderful - Asian lion, snow leopard, Siberian tiger - all looking magnificent.But mostly, the animals were not the usual ones you'd think of seeing in a zoo, for instance, bison, musk ox, Mongolian horse, red panda.There were also very good indoor exhibits of African, Asian and Amazonian reptiles, insects etc.Back on the ferry to Helsinki for quick visits to the Uspensky Russian Orthodox Cathedral then the enormous white Lutheran cathedral (St Nicholas) which dominates the skyline, the Market Hall (where we sampled a Finnish speciality, cheese bread with cloudberry jam - delicious), then shopping for a bigger rucksack - we now have five between the two of us! (Well, we did suspect it was a bit ambitious to get two years' worth of stuff into our existing rucksacks which were intended for a month's trip to India!)Jim's (Eric's brother) suspicions have been proved correct - but don't tell him we said that!