Above all, the Koli area offers experiences in nature. Here are some of the best, all of which you can reach easily!
The Koli national landscape
The landscape from Ukko-Koli is one of Finland’s national landscapes. It is also called the most photographed scenery in Finland eternalised millions of times. One generation after another visit Koli at least once to shoot a photo of themselves there. It is only 13 km to Ukko-Koli from our place.
The Koli national park
The national park is much more than the well-known landscape over Lake Pielinen. The traces of the Ice Age in the two-billion-old rock, wildflower meadows, the traces of slash and burn farming, gorgeous beaches on the islands of Lake Pielinen and the native cattle grazing will all intrigue the traveller. Have a look at the most important sights of Koli national park:
Visitor Centre Ukko
Visitor Centre Ukko serves you in the heart of the national park. It introduces Finland’s best-known national landscape as well as eastern Finnish hill country wildlife and heritage environments. There you can also get advice about hiking in the Koli national park.
The ridges of Koli are worth seeing in winter, too. The hills rising steeply from Lake Pielinen are the realm of snow packed trees. The hills of Koli are the southernmost places in Finland where snow loads the spruce trees every year. You can have a look at snow-laden scenery of Koli by clicking on “Koli tykky.”
Many visitors to Koli have missed out on seeing Räsävaara Tower. That is a pity because the landscape from the tower is certainly one of the most majestic sights in the whole area of Koli. The view overlooks the Koli national park and the chain of Koli hills. Among many viewpoints over Lake Pielinen one can see Paalasmaa Island, Finland’s highest island and the biggest one in Lake Pielinen. There is a signpost to Räsävaara Tower before the village of Koli. It is about 12 km from Koli Freetime there.
The longest in Europe: the Koli-Vuonislahti ice road
The 7-km-long ice road from Koli across Lake Pielinen to the village of Vuonislahti is the longest official inland ice road in Europe. The road is normally opened in mid-January and closed at the end of March. The 20-metre-wide road is worth seeing and experiencing even for Finns. You can read more about the opening and closing of the ice road on the web page of ELY-keskus, Pohjois-Savo, but unfortunately the information on the ice road is only in Finnish.
Koli hills from the lake side
SuviExpress takes you to a landscape cruise on the lake Pielinen. You can see a different kind of Koli from the lake side. Tours are maid daily and special cruises can be arranged.
The Koli village centre and harbour
The Koli village centre and harbour are pleasant places to visit. In the centre there is a group of old historic houses. One of them is Café Kolin Ryynänen, in whose yard you can have a look at the Koli heritage museum and artists’ residence. Opposite you can find Koli tourist information and Koli Sale, a grocery shop. The Koli harbour restaurant built of logs in 2004 is also worth a visit (especially the fried freshwater whitefish!).
The Stone Village of Tulikivi (Fire Stone)
At Nunnanlahti, on road 6 you can visit the Stone Village of Tulikivi. In this destination for the whole family there is a lot to see and experience for everybody. Soapstone parks with fountains and soapstone animal sculptures, the jungle gym, slide and sand box are children’s favourites. The whole spectrum of Tulikivi’s soap stone products are on display in the studio.