Helsinki: the nature capital of the world. Today’s Image of the Day from the European Space Agency features Helsinki – the capital city of Finland and an archipelago that consists of more than 300 islands.
The archipelago is located on the shores of the Gulf of Finland, which stretches all the way to St. Petersburg, Russia, in the eastern part of the Baltic Sea.
The city is not as densely populated as other European capitals, and is often referred to as the nature capital of the world.
Helsinki is home to more than 40 national parks and has an abundance of green space, which is visible in the image. Across Helsinki, even urban areas are completely surrounded by nature reserves.
On 23 April 1920 the Grand National Assembly of Turkey was established in Ankara, which became the headquarters of the Turkish National Movement during the Turkish War of Independence. Ankara became the new Turkish capital upon the establishment of the Republic on 29 October 1923, succeeding in this role the former Turkish capital Istanbul (Constantinople) following the fall of the Ottoman Empire. The government is a prominent employer, but Ankara is also an important commercial and industrial city, located at the centre of Turkey’s road and railway networks. The city gave its name to the Angora wool shorn from Angora rabbits, the long-haired Angora goat (the source of mohair), and the Angora cat. The area is also known for its pears, honey and muscat grapes. Although situated in one of the driest regions of Turkey and surrounded mostly by steppe vegetation (except for the forested areas on the southern periphery), Ankara can be considered a green city in terms of green areas per inhabitant, at 72 square metres (775 square feet) per head.
Image Credit: ESA