Iso-Valkee is a spectacular little lake with nature trail and lean-to shelters

An island in Iso-Valkee lake

Iso-Valkee is a beautiful little lake with sandy beaches, lean-to shelters and a nature trail. This area is especially popular among swimmers and divers, ice-skaters, dog owners and geocachers. The trail around the lake is 3,7 km long. Water in the lake is crystal clear, which is not that common in the Finnish lakes.

I went to Iso-Valkee in November, a day before the snow, and I didn't see any swimmers. The lake was partly open as it is up to 24 meters deep and has some natural springs....

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Pääjärvi recreation area has traces of the ice age

Pääjärvi recreation area

Pääjärvi recreation area is a perfect spot for day visits or short overnight stays, when you want to be out in the nature in Southern Finland. Pääjärvi provides clearly marked trails and nice resting spots around the lake. It's a good place for picking berries and mushrooms, hook and line fishing, skiing, cycling, swimming, and camping. Pääjärvi is also a multi-cache location, in case you are into geocaching.

I headed to Pääjärvi last weekend to enjoy the autumn day and have...

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The Rantaraitti seaside promenade in Espoo shows you the best of the capital area

Rantaraitti seaside promenade and waterfront walkway in Espoo, in Finland's capital area

Whether you prefer a slow, gentle stroll along the seaside or a more strenuous trail running experience, the Rantaraitti (seaside promenade or the waterfront walkway) in Espoo, Finland's second biggest city is the thing to do. It literally has it all: possibilities for berry and mushroom picking, cycling, running and walking, the sea and forests, gentle paved and accessible paths as well as demanding trails in the adjoining forests, fishing and bird watching opportunities, benches...

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Kyynäränharju is a scenic ridge in Liesjärvi National Park

Kyynäränharju

Kyynäränharju ridge is one of the top attractions in Liesjärvi national park, which is located in Tammela, approximately 95 km from Helsinki. Kyynäränharju is a low sandy shored ridge, which separates Lake Kyynärä and Lake Liesjärvi from one another. There are several hiking trails in Liesjärvi National Park and they depart from multiple locations. I recommend for example Pirttilahti parking area, from where you can reach Kyynäränharju easily.

A large part of the...

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Mustavuori caves, fortress, and WWI trenches in Vuosaari, Helsinki

Mustavuori (Black Mountain) is a place where history and natural wonders have been forever mixed together. It is one of the most exciting places outdoors Helsinki has, and it is perfectly suited for adventurers of all ages. It has to be said at this stage that children must not run around in the area because the super-exciting caves and trenches do appear out of nowhere.

We stepped onto the well-covered hiking trail just next to Itäväylä (road 170) in Vuosaari. There...

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Leafy-green Ekudden nature trail in Porvoo

In one of the most beautiful towns in Finland, Porvoo, you can also find the Ekudden (oak cape or peninsula) nature trail that showcases many of the various vistas Finland has to offer. The nature trail is located 3km (1,9mi) from the centre of Porvoo, and it is about 1,5km long. You would think that this is a short trail but it has so many wonderful distractions on its route that you should definitely give yourself 1-2h to go around it. Combining Ekudden with a visit to old Porvoo with...

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Gallträsk – a gentle nature stroll in Kauniainen, Finland’s smallest municipality

Kauniainen is Finland's smallest municipality, only 6km2 (2,3mi2) in diameter, located in the middle of another municipality, Espoo. It has a lovely small lake area that is perfectly suitable for a lazy stroll to enjoy the absolutely huge spruce trees and leafy green oak trees. The area is only about 15km from the centre of Helsinki and easily accessible by car or by public transport, so a perfect place for a quick relaxing visit.

My friend and I were in the area when we, quite literally,...

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Tepasto nature trail in Kittilä is a home for gnomes

If you happen to be driving by Tepasto village in north of Kittilä, have a little walk at Perhejärvi nature trail. There is a nice few kilometers walk to Kaakkurilampi (kaakkuri=red-throated diver, lampi=pond) and a nearby fire place. You might also encounter some gnomes in this trail!

I went to Tepasto when it had already been snowing a little, but it was still possible to walk in the forest. The moose hunting was about to start soon, so this was the perfect moment to head to the...

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Hepoköngäs – largest free waterfalls of Finland in Puolanka

Hepoköngäs waterfall

We were on a roadtrip from Jyväskylä all the way to Enontekiö in north western Lapland, and we wanted to visit Hepoköngäs along the way. We knew the largest free-falling waterfalls in Finland were somewhere in the Kainuu region just above the midriff of Finland so we took out an old-fashioned map and checked out that it was located in Puolanka, about 100km above the town of Kajaani. Yes, it was sort of along our route (it wasn't really… the detour added several hours to our travel...

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Find your inner sherpa in Kanavuori, Chicken Mountain, in Jyväskylä

Kanavuori Chicken Mountain

Kanavuori, Chicken Mountain, is a hill and nature trail located in Jyväskylä, Central Finland, and in the western part of the Finnish Lakeland. So it is not a mountain, let's be clear on that. The hill may not sound high at 197 meters, but it totally surprised us with its steepness.

Kanavuori is located in Vaajakoski about 9 km from the Jyväskylä city centre, just off from a a Finnish national road number 4. You can reach it by bus or by bike from Jyväskylä centre. Bus lines 1, 3...

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