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Lakes & Forests Grand Tour by E-Bike
Finland is often called “The Land of Thousand Lakes”. Take this bike tour and see for yourself what it’s all about. Ride through the gently undulating country, green forests and lakes. The last ice age created this natural wonder for us to enjoy. Our route will show you the best spots of legendary Lakeland.
Lakes and Forests Grand Tour by eBike
- Start/end: Helsinki, our shop.
- Duration 13 days, 12 nights
- Highlights: Lake Saimaa, Sauna & swimming, Repovesi & Linnansaari national parks, Puumala – “summer cottage capital”, Savonlinna town, remote forest roads, boat trips, Valamo monastery
- Self-guided (GPS)
- Difficulty: Moderate, some cycling experience is required. A lot of gravel roads and hills.
- June-September, Mon-Sun, time 09:00 morning
- Price 1590 eur/person
- eBike, GPS, bike bags, other bike equipment
- Pre-planned route
- Points of Interest (POI’s)
- Train tickets from Helsinki to Lahti and from Kuopio to Helsinki
- Accommodations: Bed & Breakfast style
- 24/7 phone support
- Support level: C (see “Info”)
- Meals or drinks (breakfast is included)
- Tickets to museums, cruises or such
- Flight tickets
- Baggage transfers
CLICK THIS for daily programme
Day 1 (45 km)
We kindly ask you to arrive at our office at 8:30 in the morning, so we can prepare your ebikes and other equipment. When everything is set, we will cycle with you to Pasila station where you will hop on a local train (50 min) to Lahti, an iconic winter sports town. Cruise around Lahti for a while and have lunch. Then continue east and let your Lakeland adventure begin. Follow country roads and after some hours arrive at Vuolenkoski village. Just before the village there is a nice farm named “Kilkkilän Farmi”. It has interesting animals such as ostrichs, reindeer and alpacas. Also a cafe and home-made produce for sale. Continue to village center, where (if you are lucky) you will find a summer market in full swing. Overnight in Vuolenkoski area.
Day 2 (40-50 km)
Day starts with 20 km of cycling to Jaala town. If you are hungry, there’s a grocery store here. After Jaala the route takes you to Verla, on old cardboard factory and a Unesco Heritage Site. Wander around and check out the small shops and museum. Places like this started the industrialisation era in Finland. Also a cafe and pizza bar here. Cycle onwards to small Vuohijärvi village, with a Nature and Culture House. Chat to locals in the original village bar. TIP: A very Finnish thing would be to buy sausages from the grocery store here and grill them on open fire in Repovesi park next day. Wood and sites for grilling are provided. You need matches and sausages. Overnight south of Repovesi.
Day 3 (60 km)
Now it’s time for Repovesi National Park. Take some snacks and water and go easy on the battery! The trail twists between small lakes and steep forested hills. You might hear the typical call of the red-throated diver. Keep an eye on the old woods; there is a healthy flying squirrel population here. A quiet gravel road takes you up to Mouhu, from where it’s about 3km to a nice summer café called Linkkumylly. Check your e-bike battery and top up if necessary. Continue to Mäntyharju. Art center Salmela has interesting exhibitions. As for architecture, the wooden church is the second largest in Finland. On weekends, local award-winning craft brewery offers excellent beers.
Day 4 (60 km)
First you will cycle to Ristiina. It’s surrounded by water on three sides. Small boat harbour is busy in summer time and the nearby walking bridge takes you to a swimming beach. The hills in Linnanniemi offer good views over the Lake Yövesi. Gränna summer café is enchanting and the buns are delicious. After lunch head east. Anttola village is situated on an isthmus with lakes on east and west sides. “Poiju” restaurant has nice views over the water. Overnight in Anttola area.
Day 5 (50 km)
Buy some cinnamon buns from the local bakery and head east. At 30 km is a perfect resting point: the legendary Pistohiekka area has beautiful beaches, a dancehall and a summer café, where you can buy some basic food. Continue to Puumala town. This area is a real hot spot for summer vacationers. You can choose from swimming, sauna, SUP and canoes, etc. Ask for specifics from the town center tourist info. Most of the action is by the bridge and harbour. Be sure to visit the Saimaa Lounge roof top terrace. It’s a great place to watch the boats pass by. Overnight in Puumala area.
Day 6 (50 km)
Now you will cycle to Sulkava through islands Viljakansaari and Partalansaari. There are some bridges and a ferry on the way. Not many facilities here, so bring snacks. Irina’s village store might be open. By contrast, Sulkava itself is a lively place. Walk around the old wooden houses in Uitonrinne. The neighbourhood also has a harbour and a rowing stadium, as Sulkava hosts every July the world’s largest rowing competition called Sulkavan Suursoudut. Overnight in Sulkava area.
Day 7 (45 km)
Cycle along very small roads to Savonlinna. At Pihlajanlahti (15km) there might be a kiosk open. Savonlinna is built on islands so you won’t be far from water anywhere here. Head straight for the famous market place in town centre, by the harbour. It’s easy to get into summer vibes here. Taste smoked vendace (“muikku”), “lörtsy” and “möttönen”, just to name a few local delicacies. Local craft beers can be sampled in restaurant Panimoravintola Huvila. Top attraction is probably castle Olavinlinna from the 15th century. Every July it hosts an international opera festival, “Savonlinnan Oopperajuhlat”. Spa-hotel Casino rents SUP-boards, canoes, kayaks, electric outboard motors and rowing boats. Overnight in Savonlinna area.
Day 8 (45 km)
Today’s destination is Oravi, situated on an isthmus between Linnansaari National Park and Joutenvesi conservation area. This is ringed seal territory. Sightings are rear, but you might get lucky. Oravi offers a wide selection of kayaks, canoes, motor boats, etc. Swimming and sauna, naturally. Saunayoga will calm your mind and body. Many lake cruises start from here. Food can be bought from a small shop and Restaurant Ruukinranta. Overnight in Oravi.
Day 9 (55 km)
Head north on gravel roads towards Heinävesi, renowned for its natural beauty. Cycle past the village center, climb a hill to the left and admire the huge neogothic wooden church. Beautiful views to Kermajärvi lake, which is a significant conservation area and known for its clear waters. Fly fishing is popular in the Kerma rapids about 6 km east. Overnight in Heinävesi region.
NOTE: This stretch can also be sailed aboard M/S Puijo (July – Mid Aug.). Price is about 35 eur/person and 10 eur/bike. Tickets are sold onboard. Buy a ticket to Kerma or Heinävesi, depending on where your hotel is. Departures from Oravi on MON, WED and FRI at 11:00. The route is extremely scenic and has the status of Finnish National Landscape. Duration 3-4 hours.
Day 10 (50 km)
Today you will cycle towards the only Orthodox monasteries in Nordics. Valamo for men, Lintula for women. Both offer accommodation (for men and women). Valamo also has an excellent restaurant, winery and whisky distilling. M/S Sergei sails evening cruises from Valamo; a nice way to experience the setting sun on Lake Juojärvi. Overnight in Valamo region.
Day 11 (65 km)
Now cycling west, you will have an opportunity to stop by Lintula monastery and taste some delicious coffeebreads and buns. There are also handicrafts for sale. Maybe a good idea to buy some extra buns, as the road is very small and quiet. In the afternoon you will reach a farm-style B&B. Relax and maybe have a sauna in the cool summer evening.
Day 12 (55 km)
Arrival in Kuopio, the undisputed center of tourism in Eastern-Finland. The variety of activities on offer will suit most travelers’ needs. Buy some “kalakukko” from the market place or attend a rock festival, the choice is yours. Overnight in Kuopio.
Day 13 (2 km)
Return to Helsinki (Pasila station) with the morning train. Duration about 4 hours. Cycle to our office and return the ebikes.
Happy eBikers is a registered travel agency with a security deposit as required by Finnish law.
VAT nro: FI28010729
Registration nro: 1303/16/Mj
Haagan pappilantie 3 B13
00320, Helsinki, Finland
Phone: +358 40 1937 100
Open: 8:00 – 20:00
Photos: Timo Leppäharju & Happy eBikers © Happy eBikers 2017.