A local’s guide to nature in Tammela

Tammela

Tammela municipality is known for two national parks and many other recreation areas that provide plenty of trails for nature enthusiasts to explore. Tammela is located by Pyhäjärvi lake in the Tavastia Proper region in Finland, approximately 100 km north of Helsinki. It only has about 6000 inhabitants but the town is lively during summer months. If you are looking for a small town to visit in the peaceful countryside of Finland, Tammela is a very good option. Here are local’s tips about the best nature trails, sightseeing spots, camping areas, and events in Tammela.

Enjoy berry picking and hiking or skiing at Torronsuo National Park

Torronsuo National Park in Tammela Finland

Torronsuo National Park is known as Finland’s deepest bog. The national park has few cirle trails on the duckboards and it is a popular place for cross-country skiing in the winter. You are allowed to pick berries and mushrooms in Torronsuo National Park as Finland’s legal concept of everyman’s right gives everyone the chance to enjoy berry picking. The birdwatching tower at Kiljamo is popular especially in spring when many birds such as cranes are migrating.

Liesjärvi National Park is great for camping and family adventures

Liesjärvi Kaksvetinen cowboy coffee

A significant part of the Liesjärvi National Park’s forests are over 100 years old as this national park was established in 1956 to protect some old forests. Kyynäränharju ridge is one of the top attractions in Liesjärvi National Park. It is a low sandy shored ridge, which separates Lake Kyynärä and Lake Liesjärvi from one another. There are 3 camping sites and alltogether there are about 30 km of marked trails in Liesjärvi National Park.

Korteniemi Heritage Farm within the national park is an old forest ranger farm, which is brought back to life every summer with some animals and traditional activities. The farm, its buildings and garden have remained unchanged for over 100 years. The purpose of Korteniemi Heritage Farm is to maintain the cultural landscape, protect the old buildings, protect the traditional plants, and maintain the knowledge of traditional farming. There are three circle trails that depart from Korteniemi to Liesjärvi National Park in the south end of the park.

Korteniemi photo by Outipoppis
Korteniemi Heritage Farm photo by Outipoppis

Other nature destinations in Tammela

Saari folk park was founded in 1932 as a public recreation and leisure area and today it is a popular place especially for swimming and picnic, but it has many interesting and historical sights too. There are few short trails in the park, but you can also begin 200 km long Häme Ilvesreitti trekking trail from the park. The park has a display of some historical canoes that have been found from the nearby lakes. Old and charming Kaukolanharju observation tower within Saari park welcomes visitors in summer months to see the beautiful views at Häme Lake Uplands region. Albert Edelfelt’s famous painting Kaukola Ridge at Sunset draw inspiration from this view in 1889. The painting is currently displayed at Finnish National Gallery Ateneum in Helsinki.

Tessa at Kaukolanharju observation tower

Ruostejärvi recreation area consists of a nice beach with shallow water, some nature trails, and Häme Nature Centre (Hämeen Luontokeskus), which introduces the Häme Lake Uplands in detail. Ruostejärvi is popular especially among families with children. Ruostejärvi is connected to Liesjärvi National Park by a hiking trail. The Eerikkilä Sport & Outdoor Resort is located about 3 km away from the Häme Nature Centre, on the other side of the lake.

Ruostejärvi-beach

Lake Iso-Melkutin is a popular scuba-diving destination and a beautiful hiking and trekking area in Loppi and Tammela municipalities. It is not so common for lakes in Southern Finland to have so clear water as Melkutin lakes have. There are two lean-to shelters along the trail around Iso-Melkutin, and camping is allowed everywhere.

Melkutin peninsula

Pääjärvi recreation area is located in the border of Hämeenlinna, Tammela and Loppi municipalities. Similarly to Iso-Melkutin, 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 good location in case you are into geocaching.

Pääjärvi recreation area

Other sights in Tammela

Other main sights in Tammela municipality include Tammela church and Mustiala Manor. The Tammela church is an old greystone church from the end of the 1400s. Mustiala was established as Finland’s first agricultural college in the mid-1800s. Currently Mustiala is still one of the campuses for the Häme University of Applied Sciences. There is also a nice park, an agricultural museum and a brewery with a beer house.

Old-time atmosphere at Hakkapeliitta event

Hakkapeliitta is a historical event that is organized in Mustiala every summer. The next Hakkapeliitta event was supposed take place in August 2020, but it has been reschedule to 2021 due to Covid-19. Theme for the next event is a family of the 17th century. Hakkapeliitta is basically a handicrafts market but you can also enjoy different shows around the theme and even opt for a lunch prepared in a historical way. The name of the event refers to a Finnish light cavalryman in the service of King Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden during the Thirty Years’ War. 24 cavalrymen departed from Tammela to the war, and only 14 came back home. There is also a statue in front of the Tammela church dedicated to these cavalrymen.

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