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Level of difficulty: Easy/average

Paalasmaa is an archipelago which consists of three islands: Pääsaari (the Head Island), Toinensaari (the Second Island) and Kolmassaari (the Third Island). The islands are connected with bridges, but the archipelago itself is reachable only by a ferry of Hirvisalmi. In addition, Paalasmaa is the highest inhabited island of the inland waterways of Finland. There is also a popular Camping Area of Paalasmaa with its wide terrace, which serves visitors from the beginning of June to the end of August. (Address: Eteläpääntie 140).

NB! Notice the legal breaks of the ferry:

  • 8.30AM - 8.50AM

  • 11.30AM - 11.50AM

  • 4.30PM - 4.50PM

  • 7.30PM - 7.50PM

 

The Archipelago route of Paalasmaa

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The archipelago route of Paalasmaa reaches the whole road from the village of Kannas to the end of the archipelago. Along the route there is four especially breath-taking landscape stops: the village of Kannas and the islands of Honkasaari, Karhusaari and Arkkusaari. While you are at the stop, you can admire the shore of Pielinen with its green birches.

Route: Turn to Nurmes, drive 2,8km and turn right to Paalasmaa. The archipelago route starts from here. The last landscape-stop, Arkkusaari, is 9,8 kilometers away from the start of the archipelago route.

 

The bird-watching tower of Kaajanlampi -pond

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At the bird-watching tower of Kaajanlampi -pond, you can stop to observe the bird populations of the archipelago. At the pond you can see especially different kinds of waterfowls, like a handsome mallard, but even magnificent swans are not unusual sight in here. In addition, there is a book of previous bird observations which are seen from the tower, and an information opus of bird species which you may see from the tower.

Route: Turn to Nurmes, drive 2,8km and turn right to Paalasmaa. Drive 2,5km and turn to Lamminkyläntie. Drive 1,7km and turn right to Salmelantie. Drive 600 meters, the path to the tower starts from the left, at a spot with a post sign.

 

The Nature trail of Paalasmaa and the observation tower of Sydänvaara -hill

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The 15 kilometers long nature trail of Paalasmaa presents its variable nature to hikers. Along the route you have an opportunity to visit the observation tower of Paalasmaa, which rises at the highest spot of the archipelago. From the observation tower you can admire the whole archipelago. At the northest spot of the route you have an opportunity use the barbeque hut of Saarenpää. While hiking the route, you can also see the village house of Paalasmaa and the chapel of Evangelical Lutherians. The route is covered with different kinds of natural flowers, like an aromatic common yarrow and a delicate spreading bellflower. The difficulty of the route is average.

Route: The nature trail starts from the yard of Paalasmaa Camping (Eteläpääntie 140). Start the route by hiking over the Paalasmaantie to the Nevalanpääntie. Hike for about 1,8 kilometers, turn left and follow the route to the observation tower. Continue your trip from the tower to Saarenpääntie, turn right and continue hiking for about 3,5 kilometers to the barbeque hut. Turn back and hike along Saarenpääntie, jump over Paalasmaantie and return to Paalasmaa Camping along Eteläpääntie

 

The area- and terrain maps of the Paalasmaa

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Paalasmaa (maastokartta)

 

Paalasmaa brochures for to watch and fold:

Watch: Paalasmaa.pdf

Fold: Paalasmaat.pdf