Activities

Enjoy the various activities in Lappeenranta and Mikkeli region, South-Eastern Finland

There are plenty of interesting things to do for the duration of your holiday around the cottage and the surrounding towns Lappeenranta and Mikkeli. You can wind down by fishing, rowing, canoeing, walking or picking berries and mushrooms in the forest. Every cottage has its own rowing boat and canoes can be brought to the cottage upon request. We also hire out small motorboats for peaceful boating. There are excellent fish in Lake Saimaa and the waters are clean and clear. There are hiking trails and an observation tower in the vicinity.

The nearest towns – Lappeenranta and Mikkeli – offer several adventure parks, while visitors can float down a river in a dry-suit in Imatra, even in the winter. For a unique culinary experience, visitors should taste Lemi särä or a Lappeenranta vety. For children, Lappeenranta has a very large sandcastle in the summer and old historic fortifications. If you have plenty of time to spare, you could take a visa-free cruise to Vyborg or St Petersburg. Cruises depart from Lappeenranta and citizens of all countries are eligible for visa-free travel.

Enjoy paddling, rowing and fishing on the lakes

  • Tour guide Kimmo Karjalainen can bring canoes or kayaks to the cottage upon request. You can also go canoeing in Lake Suomijärvi, situated around the Suomenniemi peninsula where Kimmo’s canoeing centre is located. Kimmo can guide you by canoe along the Kuolimo route and other canoeing routes.
  • Saimaa Fishing Travels can take your group on a guided fishing trip on Lake Saimaa. Additionally, Kidus Fishing offers fishing trips on Lake Kuolimo, which has some of the clearest water in Finland.
  • We hire out motorboats equipped with Yamaha 4–20-horsepower motors for experienced boaters.
  • Every cottage has its own rowing boat. Syväjärvi has two. Let us know how many life jackets you will need when you make your booking. We will deliver the correct number in the right sizes directly to the cottage.
  • No fishing permits are required for hook-and-line fishing and ice fishing. Experience has shown that the best winter perch catches have been made from the end of the pier at the Lokkero cottage. Ask us for equipment if you do not have your own.

Enjoy views from the 14-metre-high observation tower

  • At Kauriansalmi in Suomenniemi, the members of the local village association have pitched in to build a 14-metre-high observation tower, which has become a popular tourist attraction. The tower offers breathtaking views of Lake Kuolimo. There is a lean-to and a bonfire spot near the tower. Free firewood is on offer.
  • There are endless opportunities for picking berries and mushrooms in the areas surrounding all of the cottages. Remember every man’s right: we always respect the environment and our neighbours when we are in the great outdoors. Remember to only pick edible mushrooms.
  • There is an own lean-to near the Syväjärvi and Vasikkahaka cottages! Ask us for more information.

Try floating on the river, skating and skiing

  • Imagine lying on your back with ice floating round you and the frost nipping at your cheeks. Imatra’s Vuoksi River or Lake Saimaa are surging and foaming on all sides. This is dry-suit floating. The sport can be engaged in all year round, since a watertight rescue suit keeps the floater dry, and an adequate amount of warm clothing can be worn inside it. Floating on Lake Saimaa is arranged by Saimaa Adventures and Water-SkiZoo. Water-SkiZoo, which operates on Vuoksi River and specialises in water sports, also arranges Vuoksi floats, where visitors float downstream for up to a kilometre. 
  • There are tour skating tracks in Savitaipale and Lappeenranta in the winter, ice conditions permitting.
  • Every year, a cross-country skiing track is made from the first snowfall in Imatra.

Go hiking, biking, geocaching or orienteering

  • There are several hiking and cycling routes in Savitaipale measuring a few kilometres in length. They are suitable for light activity and hiking. Examples include Orrainpolku, which passes by two lean-tos. You may choose spend a night in a lean-to. The Saarajärvi route is closest to Lake Syväjärvi and Vasikkahaka. The Mikkeli region boasts several natural attractions.
  • Repovesi National Park and the connected Aarnikotka forest conservation area form a mosaic of rugged rocks and water. The imposing Olhavanvuori cliff and the observation tower on Mustalamminvuori are popular tour destinations. There are approximately 45 km of signposted routes in the summer (Korppi route: 4.5 km, Ketunlenkki with suspension bridges and ferries: 5 km, Kaakkuri route: 26 km). There are canoeing and cycling routes to Mäntyharju and other destinations. In February and March there is an excellent network of tracks for cross-country skiing.
  • Geocaching is also popular in this area. You may also ask us about possibilities to go orienteering.

Plan your holidays by exploring the local tourist information web sites

Find more activities, sightseeing and services on the local tourist information web sites and social media

The sand castle and other activities in downtown Lappeenranta

  • The sand castle in Lappeenranta is a great destination for families with children. Beautiful sand sculptures offer something for older visitors, while there are bouncy castles, miniature trains, pedal cars and more to keep children amused for hours on end.
  • Nestled beneath the Lappeenranta water tower you will find a children’s traffic park. In the summer, children can enjoy guided pedal car rides and instruction on traffic rules.
  • The Myllysaari area contains a children’s play park, a field for ball games, a parkour track, a fitness and climbing area, a Flowpark, a toboggan run, a swimming pool with diving towers and a beach café. You can catch the street train from Myllysaari in the summer.
  • The street train is a relaxing way of seeing the sights in Lappeenranta. It is also a handy way to get around.

Family activities in Kouvola region

  • Tykkimäki in Kouvola is a theme park with plenty to do for people of all ages. The Aquapark water park has water slides, water play pools and a full-length pool for serious swimmers.
  • Repovesi is also an unforgettable destination for children. A suspension bridge takes visitors from Lapinsalmi to the bonfire and picnic spot. For slightly older visitors, there are several hiking trails a few kilometres in length travelling through the beautiful landscapes of the Finnish national park.
  • The House of a Thousand Tales in Luumäki offers the opportunity to see a wide variety of animals.

Enjoy views from the 14-metre-high observation tower

  • At Kauriansalmi in Suomenniemi, the members of the local village association have pitched in to build a 14-metre-high observation tower, which has become a popular tourist attraction. The tower offers breathtaking views of Lake Kuolimo. There is a lean-to and a bonfire spot near the tower. Free firewood is on offer.
  • There are endless opportunities for picking berries and mushrooms in the areas surrounding all of the cottages. Remember every man’s right: we always respect the environment and our neighbours when we are in the great outdoors. Remember to only pick edible mushrooms.
  • There is an own lean-to near the Syväjärvi and Vasikkahaka cottages! Ask us for more information.

Water games and other fun in Mikkeli

  • Visulahti in Mikkeli is home to a water park, climbing and adventure parks, and dinosaurs. You can also see classic cars and waxworks. There is an indoor play park called HyperDino for children under 12.
  • The Ski Tornimäki skiing centre in Mikkeli offers downhill skiing (a hill, not mountain wink), snowboarding, cross-country skiing and sledging.
  • Iiro Seppänen’s Xon park, featuring a bungee jump and human catapult, will get the adrenaline flowing in Mikkeli.
  • In the summer, there are daily guided tours aboard the Mikke train. The street train tours Mikkeli’s sights. You can hop off at any stop you like and hop back on when the train comes back round.
  • Viihdeuimala Rantakeidas in Rantakylä, Mikkeli is a swimming pool with a water slide, a play pool and several saunas.

Adventures in the Lappeenranta Region

  • The Saimaa Angry Birds Activity Park, located in Rauha, Lappeenranta, is a refreshing indoor theme park for the whole family.
  • Atreenal Adventure Parks Saimaa offers climbing and other adventure courses for visitors of all ages. Children under 130 cm in height can visit the Lastenmaa children’s park with their parents.
  • Flowpark is similar to Atreenal – adventure courses have been made in living trees. Tracks for visitors aged 7 and over.
  • Sometimes it can be fun to splash around somewhere other than the lake. Visit Imatra Spa in Imatra and Holiday Club Saimaa in Lappeenranta. They both offer a good range of wellness services.
  • The Päivölä riding stables offer riding on Icelandic horses. Also suitable for beginners. There are several great places for horse-lovers to visit in Ristiina and Mikkeli.
  • You can go on a reindeer sleigh ride in Rauha, Lappeenranta. You can warm up, eat some food or enjoy hot mulled wine in a traditional Lapland hut. Reindeer sleigh rides are great for the younger members of the family as well as adults. 

Eating and handicrafts in Suomenniemi

  • In Suomenniemi, tasty food and home-made pastry products are available from the Kiesilä tavern in Kiesilä village just off Main Road 13. Smoked fish and flowers are also sold in the summer.
  • Salmenranta is a small café/restaurant in Suomenniemi and there is also a small grocery store.
  • Next to the Salmenranta restaurant there is a small hut where handicraft workers from Suomenniemi sell their wares in the summer.
  • A local handicraft expert can explain how rugs and other creations are woven using looms. You can try your hand at weaving. Contact us for more information.

Plan your holidays by exploring the local tourist information web sites

Find more activities, sightseeing and services on the local tourist information web sites and social media

Enjoy the Finnish sauna traditions

  • The grounds of Loma-Väkkärä's Syväjärvi cottage include a smoke sauna made from an old barn. The owners will be happy to heat up the sauna for you upon request. The old sauna, black with soot, has a unique atmosphere. It has delighted sauna-goers since the beginning of the 21st century, quite an achievement considering smoke saunas usually only survive for about five years.
  • About 50 metres from the Lokkero cottage stands the old sauna belonging to Outi, the owner. It is made from an old hut and it has served sauna-goers for decades, occupying the same position right by the lake. There is an electric sauna in the Lokkero cottage.
  • Taking a sauna with a birch whip represents Finnish tradition at its most genuine. When you make your booking, you can also order ready-made birch whips for the cottage in June and July.

Row a boat, go hook-and-line fishing or for a short hike

  • Every cottage has its own rowing boat. Syväjärvi has two. Let us know how many life jackets you will need when you make your booking. We will deliver the correct number in the right sizes directly to the cottage.
  • Near cottages Syväjärvi and Vasikkahaka there's our own lean-to with a fireplace in front. Ask us for more information!
  • There are several hiking and cycling routes in Savitaipale measuring a few kilometres in length. They are suitable for light activity and hiking. Examples include Orrainpolku, which passes by two lean-tos. You may choose spend a night in a lean-to. The Saarajärvi route is closest to cottages Syväjärvi and Vasikkahaka.
  • The Mikkeli region boasts several natural attractions.
  • No fishing permits are required for hook-and-line fishing and ice fishing. Experience has shown that the best winter perch catches have been made from the end of the pier at the Lokkero cottage. Ask us for equipment if you do not have your own.

Plan your holidays by exploring the local tourist information web sites

Find more activities, sightseeing and services on the local tourist information web sites and social media

Visit St Petersburg or Vyborg, Russia, without a visa

  • Visitors of all nationalities are able to travel by boat from Lappeenranta to Vyborg, Russia along the Saimaa canal without needing a visa. Trips of different lengths are available, from 24-hour visits to journeys of several days.
  • It is also possible to take a three-day trip to St Petersburg from Lappeenranta without a visa. The journey takes in the historic Saimaa canal to Vyborg, and continues by minibus to St Petersburg. Note that you should send copies of your passport to the offices of Saimaan Matkaverkko at least three working days before the trip. Find out more about Matkaverkko’s visa-free cruises.

Try floating on the river, skating and skiing

  • Imagine lying on your back with ice floating round you and the frost nipping at your cheeks. Imatra’s Vuoksi River or Lake Saimaa are surging and foaming on all sides. This is dry-suit floating. The sport can be engaged in all year round, since a watertight rescue suit keeps the floater dry, and an adequate amount of warm clothing can be worn inside it. Floating on Lake Saimaa is arranged by Saimaa Adventures and Water-SkiZoo. Water-SkiZoo, which operates on Vuoksi River and specialises in water sports, also arranges Vuoksi floats, where visitors float downstream for up to a kilometre. 
  • There are tour skating tracks in Savitaipale and Lappeenranta in the winter, ice conditions permitting.
  • Every year, a cross-country skiing track is made from the first snowfall in Imatra.

For the history-lovers to study

  • The 5000-year-old rock paintings in Astuvansalmi in Ristiina are the largest in the Nordic region and they can be reached by boat from Lokkero and Nuottakallio
  • The Lappeenranta fortifications are the “old town” of Lappeenranta. Work began to build the fortifications in the 1720s. Nowadays, the fortification offers visitors a feeling of history, as well as a range of varied events from one year to the next. The fortifications are also a popular tourist attraction. The fortifications contain museums, an Orthodox church and handicraft boutiques. Most of the buildings in the fortifications are from the period of Russian rule in the 18th and 19th centuries.
  • In the Second World War, Mikkeli played host to the headquarters of the Finnish defence forces and the city still houses interesting museums from the period including the Headquarters Museum and the Lokki Communication Centre.
  • Suomenniemi church was built from wood in the neogothic style in 1866. There are regular Evangelical Lutheran services.
  • The historical fortifications of Kärnäkoski are located near the Fisherman’s Huts close to Partakoski.
  • The Lyytikkälä home museum in Suomenniemi is one of the best preserved examples of its type in Etelä-Savo.
  • The old Verla paper mill is an interesting UNESCO World Heritage Site. The mill last operated in 1964. A tour will guide you round the mill.
  • The Vellamo Maritime Centre in Kotka is home to the Maritime Museum of Finland as well as the Museum of Kymenlaakso.

Beautiful handicrafts

  • Kenkävero, situated near central Mikkeli, has a large range of Finnish handicrafts on sale. There are also several handicraft boutiques in the Lappeenranta fortification area.
  • A local handicraft expert can explain how rugs and other creations are woven using looms. You can try your hand at weaving. Contact us for more information.
  • Next to the Salmenranta restaurant there is a small hut where handicraft workers from Suomenniemi sell their wares in the summer.

Sightseeing and wellness

  • The well-known Salmela Art Centre in Mäntyharju welcomes visitors for top-class art exhibitions in the summer.
  • The shows that are put on at Imatrankoski rapids in the summer, complete with music and lights, are a joy to behold. The rapids are located in the immediate vicinity of the traditional Valtionhotelli hotel.
  • The Church of the Three Crosses in Imatra was designed by famous Finnish architect Alvar Aalto.
  • There are guided bus tours of Imatra with commentary available in English.
  • Lappeenranta Spa and Valtionhotelli in Imatra offer wellness services.
  • There's a local hairdresser in Suomenniemi who also offers peat treatments. Contact us for more information.

Traditional dishes "Lemi särä", "Hydrogen" and "Atom"

  • Lemi särä is a traditional dish of lamb and potatoes that was made in the South Karelia area for more than a thousand years but Lemi is the only place where the tradition has persisted into the 21st century. There is a särä café in Lappeenranta.
  • Vety (Hydrogen) and Atomi (Atom) are special local foods available at the market square. They make a hearty snack or lunch. Stuffed meat pasties were created at the request of customers at the beginning of the 1960s. The pasties are made to a secret recipe by the Kesämäki bakery.
  • In addition to the smoke sauna and animals, the House of a Thousand Tales also serves food for groups of 8 or more, but remember to make a reservation.
  • The old vicarage known as Kenkävero, close to central Mikkeli, is a charming wooden villa with fine carvings. Stop by and enjoy a cup of coffee or a buffet serving local foods. It is also a good place to shop for Finnish handicrafts.
  • Tertti Manor is a high-quality restaurant in beautiful mansion surroundings in Mikkeli. In addition to operating as a tourist destination, the estate is still a working farm that sells its own products in its shop. The Tertti Manor has been owned by the Pylkkänen family for more than 120 years.

Plan your holidays by exploring the local tourist information web sites

Find more activities, sightseeing and services on the local tourist information web sites and social media

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