On a summer’s day the parks along the eastern shore of the Töölönlahti bay are filled with joggers, friends picnicking, parents pushing strollers, and people playing frisbee, football, chess and more exotic games, such as tai chi and capoeira. Birdwatchers with binoculars around the necks are also a common sight.
In fact, this 8.5-hectare green area is popular all year round. It comprises two parks and one esplanade. The southern quarter is taken up by Hakasalmi Park, the garden of Hakasalmi Villa that once belonged to renowned philanthropist Aurora Karamzin and is now part of Helsinki City Museum. The northernmost three quarters is known as Hesperia Park. Hesperia Esplanade in turn is a tree-lined boulevard that connects two main avenues: Mannerheimintie and Runeberginkatu. The Winter Garden is fenced area with a public park in the front and the City Garden in the back. The City Garden cultivates summer flowers for the city parks and is closed to the public.