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National parks

Koli National Park is the most famous one in the region, a must place to visit in Lakeland. The reason for its popularity is the Finnish national landscape and breathtaking views opening from the top of Koli hill. There are suitable trails for day hikes, and 60 km long circuit trail for those looking for a multi-day hike. You can get trail information and buy maps from the Nature Centre Ukko located in the national park. The trails are well marked. Some vertical meters are guaranted if you start your hike from the Koli village or from the lake-side. Tip: There is a guesthouse Kolin Keidas located in the nationalpark close to the Koli village. Kolin Keidas offers rustic but charming accommodation in an old barn and a genuine Finnish sauna experience. Read more about Koli National Park

Petkeljärvi National Park is located close to the Russian border in Ilomantsi, app. 1 hour away from Joensuu. This is the smallest national park in Finland, perfect for nice day hikes. Here you walk along ridges formed by the ice-age and then walk accross beautiful marshlands. There's hiking center in the national park serving meals and trail information. The center offers rooms for accommodation and a splendid traditional sauna by the lake. Read more about Petkeljärvi National Park

In Patvinsuo National Park you find a genuine feeling of wilderness. In Patvinsuo you walk through vast marshlands, a different kind of soothing landscape. The trails pass by wildnerness lakes with beautiful sandy beaches - perfect spots to have a picnic. Most convenient way to access Patvinsuo is by car. You may also rent a canoe and spend a day paddling on crystal clear waters and have a break on a beach. This park is suitable for longer treks too, the trail network is about 80 km long. Please note that you need to bring your own camping gear and food. Read more about Patvinsuo National Park

Ruunaa Recreational Park is perfect for both hiking and fishing. Ruunaa is famous for its rivers and many rapids, lakes and wildnerness close to the Russian border. Ruunaa is suitable for day treks and longer overnight hikes as well. From the rivers you may catch trout and grayling. In Ruunaa you can choose to stay in cosy cottages or in a camping area. Once in Ruunaa, you should try some river rafting too! Read more about Ruunaa