Judith HodgsonUnited Kingdom
Johan managed to provide a last minute replacement due to unforeseen circumstances so we were very grateful for that. He had arranged to collect us from the airport so we could start our tour immediately. Our replacement guide was a lovely gentleman who shared a lot of interesting facts and anecdotes about this charming city.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you, nice. I let my colleague know this, he will be glad. Reg. Johan.
John MacLeodUnited States
This was by far one of the highlights of our trip. The guide and tour could not have been done any better. We highly recommend this guide and tour.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! Yes, we had a nice tour/ art and nature. The birch is a beautiful tree, ab. 10% of the Finnish forest is birch. Welcome again, Johan.
Barry R.New York, NEW YORK, United States
We spent a wonderful day with Johan. He was very informative and quite a lovely person to spend the day with. We wholeheartedly recommend him!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! Reg. Johan.
Ivor LeibertUnited Kingdom
Knows his town very well and communicates it well. A very nice personality and a great tour.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! J.
Hazem AkkilaUnited Kingdom
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! Yes, we had a great long day. Welcome back any time. Reg. Johan-
Sollena M.D. SunCanada
Johan was an excellent tour guide, he showed us everywhere that we wanted to visit. he was very knowledgeable and polite. We were so lucky to have him. Will recommend him to all of our friends.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! Yes, we had a nice time, the company makes it..... Reg. Johan.
Paul RaikunenUnited States
Johan, is very informative and knowledgeable. I would recommend this tour to everyone I know
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you!
Carl Powellfrisco, TX, United States
very personable and knowledgeable of the area: however, we had to run to the ship and almost missed our ship departure (by 2 minutes) because of late arrival at the end of the tour.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! J.
Johan is a great guide. We booked only three hours but learned a lot about the country and the town. Johan was very flexible and was able to adapt the tour according our interests. Always again and highly recommended
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Danke schön! Die Gesellschaft macht das! MfG. Johan.
Michael WalkerUnited States
Johan was a delight. We enjoyed his information on his city and the sights we saw. We truly enjoyed going to PorVoo to walk the cobbled street and eat local favorites. We would highly recommend Johan for a shore excursion off the ship.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! J.
Stacey SmithUnited States
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you. Johan.
Phyllis LowSingapore, Singapore
We ( four 70 year-olds from Singapore) had a great time with Johan touring attractions at Helsinki. Highlight of our tour was the drive to Porvoo, town with wooden houses and our lunch by the river. Johan was most informative and although our tour was for 6 hours, Johan was never in a hurry to meet the deadline. Definitely would recommend Johan.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you, niiice! Reg. J.
Kitty TollDanville, VERMONT, United States
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! Yes, nice tour, the company means a lot and can be very inspireing. Reg. Johan.
Dorothy AndrewsUnited Kingdom
Unfortunately the weather was not good and it rained throughout out tour. Despite the weather, Johan gave us a good tour of Helsinki, pointing out places of interest and stopping for us to see churches etc and do a little shopping. He made the best of a bad day for us.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! Yes, we had a nice day. Reg. Johan.
Marie MountUnited States
We really enjoyed our day with Johan in Helsinki - our group consisted of my husband and me (mid 30s) and our two daughters (2 and 7) for the 3 hour tour. Johan kept us all interested and engaged with my older daughter remembering facts that he told her far better than from any other tour we took along this vacation. I highly recommend Johan to any visitors to Helsinki.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! We had all the Queens and Kings from all Nordic countries with our president couple celebrating our 100th year (centennial) of independence these same days. So your daughters were our princesses........ Reg. Johan.
Richard SmithSarasota, FL, United States
Johan was an extremely knowledgeable and gracious host. He took the time to explain the background to what were seeing. He allowed enough time to see the sites and to take pictures. I would highly recommend Johan for an informative and fun overview of Helsinki! He was extremely helpful to the two ladies who had experienced injuries previously and limited their ability to navigate.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you, of course extremely nice to hear ! I love my job as a guide, appreciate this. I filled up my first aid kit with plaster, just in case for the future.... Reg. Johan.
Corinne KeeneUnited States
Johan met us on time on the dock, drove us all over beautiful Helsinki. He is knowledgeable about Helsinki's history, extra knowledge about its trees. We especially enjoyed the story around the wooden houses and having specific trees pointed out. The Rock Church is a highlight also. Perfect tour, perfect guide!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you ! Yes, we had a good time. It is always nice when guests are really interested in things, like you. Wishing you all good, reg. Johan.
Robert G.United States
Johan was a great guide. He is knowledgeable, interesting, and customized the tour for us. The trip to Por Voo was well worthwhile. The old Church is a must see, and is across from a fabulous restaurant that served the best roast duck. Due to physical limitations we did not take the forest walk. There were 5 in our party and the only detriment was the car was too small for large people, so if you are tall and/or large you need to make this clear to the guide before the trip. Otherwise, great trip.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you, great ! Yes, I know, my car is a smaller van but has been OK. Reg. Johan.
Jessica KipnesUnited States
The tour was wonderful and the guide had a great knowledge of many things discussed on the tour
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you, nice! Yes, we had an interesting, full day with both city, history and nature. All good, Johan.
Teresa WuUnited States
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! For me nice to see you had a good tour. Reg. Johan.
Derek EngelbrechtSouth Africa
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you. Good to see you had a nice time, welcome back. At your service 24/7. Reg. Johan.
Jean BarbourUnited States
Johan arranged a "ancestry" tour to my grandparents' home area in western Finland. Johan was very knowledgeable about the Finish culture, farming, crops & forestry. From the moment he picked us up until he brought us back to our hotel at the end of the day we felt like he was a family member showing us highlights of Helsinki and all the way to the small village of my ancestors. We highly recommend Johan to guide you on any tour of Finland.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! Yes, we had a nice and interesting day, new things also for me. Reg. Johan.
Karan M.United States
I want to personally thank Johan and Tours by Locals for a wonderful and educational private tour of Helsinki! Johan was very personable, knowledgeable and professional. He was patient with our inquisitive member, and took care of all of us when the weather turned a bit cold and rainy, even giving us a bit of time to do some shopping! Johan definitely showed us places we would not have seen on a tour bus, and taught us quite a bit about Helsinki, it's history and culture. Recommend highly!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! Nice, yes, we had a nice tour but too little time. Welcome again. Johan.
Excellent guide. Got good feedback from everyone. Recommend. Knowledgable.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you ! Nice meeting you, jess, we had a nice time. All good to you for the future. Reg. Johan.
Jill McClearyCypress, TX, United States
Linda DahlUnited States
Johan was a good guide. Perhaps there is just not much to see in Helsinki. We spent a great deal of time at a local market while he waited for us. We also spent about an hour walking in a park. Both of these we could have done on our own!
Carol G.United States
The tour exceeded our expectation. Our guide was punctual. We learned about Jean Sibelius as we listened to Finlandia. We drove past the Olympic stadium and learned about Emil Zatopek winner of three gold medals in the summer of 1952. We drove past the home where Brezhnev, and Gerald Ford met and leaned many problems were solved in the Sauna, We loved the Church in the Rock. In Porvoo our guide suggested a great lunch place by the river. Then we had time to briefly explore the center and shop .
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! On behalf of Iiro Kajaluoto, my colleague who took care of you. Reg. Johan B..
Maria Lucia BrandaoBrazil
Johan is not a guide, he is a very good teacher. He knows every detail of the city and its history. Excelent !
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you ! It is the company which makes it...........Yes, we had a nice time, all OK for the rest of your journey? Well, I like to tell others about this unknown country up here at the 60 degree north, we are not precisely the center of the world. To you all good from here close to the Arctic circle. Reg. Johan.
Stephen WorkingUnited States
He was informative and never boring. We were able to see everything we wanted to see and more . Highly recommend him . Thanks again for the great tour
Kathy NewtonUnited States
Johan took us to a church that was not yet open, gave little background information and when we asked questions, he gave brief answers, not adding any points of interest. At the conclusion of the tour he asked us to pay for parking. We also paid for our own lunch. The fee for his one day guided tour was the same as two days in St. Petersburg. The guide in St Petersburg shared a wealth of historical, cultural and general information. Johan did none of this. So you can understand our disappointment.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: I feel sorry to disappoint guests but such can happen. Everybody can of course look at the comments about me on these TbL. sides. Anyway, I learn from this. Hope though my guests gained something of the tour. Welcome back sometime. Reg. Johan B.
TOURSBYLOCALS RESPONSE: We are sorry about Kathy´s experience and we trust Johan will learn about this experience. Is important to mention that parking and lunch were mentioned as extras in the booking confirmation.
Mary LewisUnited States
On August 17 two friends and I spent a wonderful afternoon with Johann seeing and hearing about the highlights of Helsinki — churches, buildings of state, markets, and neighborhoods with additional stops to take in the physical beauty of the city and its environs, including birds, flowers, and trees (Johann is an arborist).. As a guide Johann was perfect — friendly, knowledgeable, responsive to our questions and most of all, interesting. We recommend him most highly.
Brenda GarganoUnited States
Johan proved to be a charming, patient, flexible and enlightening tour guide. We especially enjoyed Poovoo. Highly recommend Johan. Regards, B.Gargano
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you. Nice having you here. All good for future. Reg. Johan.
Howard KristolUnited States
Howard RosenUnited States
In a word, "Excellent". Johan was knowledgeable, accommodating, and helpful. We were more than pleased with the experience, and could not have chosen a better guide to help us see Helsinki and Porvoo.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you ! Of course = nice to hear. I try to do my best and I like this. All good for the future, reg. Johan.
Johan was very punctual and very knowledgeable. He explained the complicated relationships that Finland has had with Russia, Sweden, and Germany, as well as how the Finnish language is structured, much to our delight. We saw architectural gems and statues/plaques of famous politicians, literary and musical geniuses. We saw Suomenlinna from afar, an artists' colony, went inside the Rock Church, saw Helsinki University and an historical village w/ the oldest trade crossroad in Europe. Just a great tour.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you !! Nice meeting you, we had some nice discussions and a nice tour! BUT "the old trade crossroad" was Finlands oldest, not Europe´s......sorry my unclear explanation. Hope you had a nice flight back home. All good to you. Reg. Johan.
Griffen SamplesUnited States
Wow! Johan was a superb guide, with that winning combination of being incredibly well informed - on an extremely wide range of topics, highly professional and utterly charming. We had a blast and can't imagine a better guide. We pre-planned specific activities, & had some new ideas once we landed. Johan helped us decide which we would enjoy most, and made everything possible. We can't imagine qualities needed to make a better guide. We felt like friends when we left.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Wau, thank you very much! Yes, we had a good time. New things also for me. Yes, me too felt like we were good friends, very easy to get along with you. You are interesting people with a lot of experience from around in the world. Thanks and all good to you. Welcome back anytime. Johan.
Pui Yee ShekHong Kong
I came with my family group of 5, including a 10 year kid and my 78 year old mom. The walk was a little bit tricky to my mom. But thanks to Johan's guidance, my family fully enjoyed the trip. We took good photos, picked berries, eating BBQ sausages.....and finally dipped in the lake. Although it's freezing, it was indeed an unforgettable memory! Thanks!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks, all of you! Yes, we had a great time, I ordered nice weather too and the weather gods fulfilled our wishes. Next time I will show in my hand a frog or alike more carefully and prepare people a bit better for a sample of Nordic nature, so you do not need to be so very scared...... All good, Johan.
Trycia ElstonUnited States
My son and I had a wonderful time touring Helsinki with our guide Yohan. Yohan was such a gentleman and very knowledgeable. My son didn't feel well with a cold yet wanted to see the sights. Yohan was very accommodating stopping at a drug store so he could pick up some medicine. We had a great day and would highly recommend to anyone. I give a 5 star rating
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank yoy Tricia&son. Yes, we had a nice but too short time together, next time maybe longer stay !? Sorry I cannot serve you&husband in June you asked for, booked whole summer. All good, Johan.
Tammy KoenningUnited States
This was a great tour, totally adapted to our interests. Johan could not make it, so he send his friend instead. He was great! This was part of an extensive trip, and my boys say it was their favorite day. Take the ferry to the fort in the harbor. It has lots of hidden gems that my boys loved, including a submarine and a military museum.
Shirley ScarboroughUnited States
We were on a ship execursion tour and felt as if we had miscommunicated what we wanted for this tour. We did not really care about seeing churches, govt. buildings, etc. We wanted to do something out in the countryside that would be more of a nature experience of Finland. We finally did get there but we felt as if our guide was trying to talk us out of going--mentioning how far and how long it would take to get there. He took us to a couple of churches anyway. His English skills were lacking somewhat.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you. If I recall right we started with the old town and a very brief history of Finland. We continued to the countryside along the lake where many artists had, have their houses and ateliers. I understood you agreed with that. If I remember right, you asked about going to Porvoo. As we discussed, that would have been too far with our amount of time together. I am very sorry if this tour did not fulfill all your wishes. A real nature alternative out in the wilderness would have been "Nuuksio-tour".
TOURSBYLOCALS RESPONSE: We've spoken with Johan about this review and he was quite surprised. He said he thought he was able to accommodate the traveler's request as best as possible taking in consideration the amount of time they had available and when the tour got to its end the customers sincerely thanked him for the tour.
Thanks again Johan! We enjoyed you taking us through Helsinki and Porvoo !
This was an excellent experience thanks to Johan, who is a first-class guide and conversationalist. The primary purpose of the tour was to visit the house of Jean Sibelius, but we also wanted to see the very charming city called Porvoo, which was not on Johan's stated itinerary. However, Johan was extremely flexible in his approach and accommodated our request, so that we were able to visit the city, which was a highlight. All in all I would highly recommend Johan as a guide - top notch.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thanks Simon. Yes, we had a nice day! The "TOURS" has of course to be guiding, but in no means need to be slavishly followed. We do as we feel like to do. Jess, Porvoo, from 1346, is really a visit worth. Greetings, Johan.
Stefanie N.United States
We spent an enjoyable day with Johan at the sea fortress. My kids enjoyed being able to explore tunnels and climb on rocks. Nice change from a city tour. He was very knowledgable and entertaining. We would recommend him.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you Stefanie. Yes, we had a nice time, good to hear that Alex And Emily liked it! All the best, Johan.
Marina WheelandUnited States
Johan was great. Made our trip memorable and fun.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you! All the best, Johan.
Amalia OrtegaUnited States
Donna GrehnUnited States
Johan was very knowledgeable and easy to tour with. We would recommend Johan to future travelers.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you, Donna & co, nice meeting you! Johan.
Kelly AdamsUnited States
Johan was absolutely wonderful!!! He added so much to our tour, that I can't imagine trying to do this on our own. He went at a pace that we (two older females) could easliy tolerate, and filled every minute with interest and knowledge. Because of his background in biology, he was able to point out details that others would have missed, and that we would have not known to ask. If you are going to Helsinki, you will be in no better hands than those of Johan!!!
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you, it is the company which makes things going! Reg. Johan.
Alexander C.United States
A great tour with a very knowledgeable guide. Johan was able to show me some wonderful places throughout Helsinki and taught me quite a lot about each of them. Johan was very personable and I had an wonderful experience.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you Alex, we had a nice time! Reg. Johan.
Cindy BoydUnited States
Johan, our guide for two days, knocked himself out to ensure that our visit was perfectly suited to our interests. He could not have done a better job. His historical/geographic overview of the city was superb. Visits to an outlying art colony and open air museum were excellent - and very efficient, too. Perhaps most of all, he is simply a very nice man. In addition to his intelligence, knowledge and curiosity, we would call him "chivalrous." An altogether delightful experience. Highly recommended.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you very much, I am flattered. Yes, we had a very nice time, but remind, - it is the guests who make the time very nice or just nice! I found, that our psychology just fitted together very well. Your laughter is highly humorous, I get a good mood listening to it. Regards Johan.
Nancy EastlundAiea, HI, United States
Well educated and knows his Finland history. You will be pleased.
Bernie GoldMelbourne, VIC, Australia
James RobideauUnited States
We had a great morning touring Fortress Island with Johan. Johan was very knowledgable and personable. He was waiting for us at the predetermined time and place. I'm not sure about other languages but Johan spoke English very well. No glitches at all. I would highly recommend Johan as a tour guide if you are visiting Helsinki.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you, nice. German is my main language, I speak that much more often. So nice in between to speak English! Johan.
Madhu SaxenaUnited States
Tour guide was pleasant, friendly, and very punctual. I only had 3 hours, and asked the guide to show me the highlights of Helsinki - and it was very disappointing, nothing special. For the future you should focus on one or two special places that are unique and memorable. Only issue was guide expected me to pay for his lunch, and said that was part of the tour. I found that odd as I never encountered this anywhere while traveling before.
TOUR GUIDE RESPONSE: Thank you for your tour and critics, we shall learn from this. You wanted a tour from airport to city and back, in city by strolling around a bit + a small dinner. As I remember you were not interested in visiting for ex. the dome, shopping or other things. If customer wants a lunch together with me, of course OK but paid by customer. Madhu Saxena, I am sorry for this and shall be more exact in the future. Three h. airport back/forth is a short time to experience things. All good for you, regards Johan.
TOURSBYLOCALS RESPONSE: In our experience, customers typically invite the guide to join them for lunch. In that case, they would pay for the guide's lunch.
Jeannie ShawSand Springs, OK, United States
Johan was an outstanding guide on our trip to Helsinki! He was waiting for us at the ship's port with our name on a sign, as promised! He took us to market square where we saw the sites & did a little shopping. We took the ferry to the Sea Fortress which was not only interesting, but beautiful and SO MUCH fun for our 2 boys (ages 11 & 8) they never wanted to leave the island! Johan told us much about the culture in Finland & the history of the Sea Fortress! He is an excellent guide!! Thank you Johan!!