Hi! My first time ever to this site. My daughter and I are planning a trip to North Karelia next summer (July 2006). Here are plans so far: we are flying to Joensuu and renting a cabin in Kontiolahti for two weeks. We will make day trips (driving) from the cabin to Koli, Lieksa, Nurmes, Raakkyla (Folk Music Festival), Savonlinna/ Punkaharju, Outokompu, and perhaps also Kuopio and Ilomantsi. (I may have misspelled some of the city names.) I also hope to go to some of the bird watching sites at some of the national parks. I may have some specific questions as we get closer to the travel date next summer, but for now, do any of you Finland experts have any dos/ don'ts/ advice related to any of these towns? This will be my first time ever to Finland, and my daughter's first time ever outside the USA.
Hi Gary & Welcome to TP
I haven't been to Finland, but your trip sounds Wonderful.. people are very informative on here, so you should receive some good advice!
Well... quite a place to start visiting Finland! It sound extremely interesting, I my self live in Finland so I'll tell you what I know about these places. I'm actually going to that area next week, to a cabin of ours wich is in the middle of nowhere. The places I recommend the most are probably the National parks in Koli and Suomunjärvi, and Punkaharju (the art exhibition and the 'harju' itself). I shoud warn you that some of the towns you're going to visit are rather small and they don't have lots of attractions. A tiny detail I like in the area is a 'beach'-ish place about 20km outside of Joensuu, I don't remember the name, but it's by a lake that has probably the clearest water in Finland and you can walk in lake like 500m before it get's deeper. It's a great place, one of my favourites. Anyway welcome to Finland, Hope you enjoy!
Hi Ravvy. I just got back from Helsinki, spent 2 days there, backpacking. And enjoyed every bit of it, Finns are wonderful people. Nearly everyone spoke english too. Downside is that Finland isn't cheapest country. Go for it, you'll love Finland!
Hi Ravvy and greetings from San Francisco! :-)
(This is my first time in US. :-))
But about your first time in Finland...
As Lauri said, you have an interesting, but very good,
approach to Finland. If you're interested in seeing the Finnish
nature, you're headed for the right place.
All those places are really small.
Because I'm not very familiar with all of the places you mentioned,
don't take this as the absolute truth... but I would recommend visiting Kuopio and taking a nice boat trip there on the lake.
Koli is a nice place also, so is Savonlinna.
Outokumpu, not so sure about.
I take it that you've visited the websites of these towns?
I hope you have a nice trip!