Welcome to Canoe in Finland!
WildCanoe operates in the Eastern Finland, where Lake Saimaa is situated. It is over 300 km long enormous network of lakes and rivers. Because of the clean lakes with thousands of islands, small rivers and rich nature, it is often called "the paradise of paddlers".
Our recommended canoe tours are suitable for all. The shorter tours are propriate to the families with children and the persons who have never paddled. And if you are an adventurer there are lot of challengies like extra long tour from Iisalmi (Lake Saimaa) to Baltic Sea. The paddling technics are tested and guided before your tour. All the equipment is suitable for beginners, therefore safe and easy to use.
Some essential rules of Everyman's Right
Rule 1: For one night you can put your tent up where ever you
want, just do not go too close to the houses. We recommend you to use
marked places for tents by the canoe routes we recommend.
Rule 2: You can make fire only on marked places, but you can use a camping cooker freely.
Here is more information about the Everyman's Right. The national parks have their own special rules which we go through before your tour.
The WildCanoe season is from first of May to end of October. The early summer, about till the middle of June, is a great time. Whole nature awakes to fresh life after the long winter and is at its fairest. In the middle of the summer it is warm and light also in the night. From July until mid-August water is usually nice and warm for instance, for swimming and perfect for canoeing.
WildCanoe Base Camp at Lotjasaari Port in Anttola
The Saimaa routes start from Lotjasaari, Anttola. The address is Lotjasaari Port, FIN-52100 Mikkeli. After the canoe trip there is a possibility to pamper yourself in a spa (Anttolanhovi, 4 km from the camping place). In the center of Anttola there are a pharmacy, a bank, a ATM, a gas station, a sport shop, two supermarkets, a bakery, a restaurant, a cafe, and a pub.
Lake Saimaa is very big area and there are lot of different options to make your route. We will give you a detailed map in briefing before trip and help you with your route planning. The usual lenght of the day trip is about 10-15 km with canoe. For preplanning we advice you to use Google Maps to calculate distances etc. Orienteering on lake area is relative easy, but still capability of map reading and using compass are essential. If you bring GPS take compass with you anyway as a back-up.
We recommend the following canoeing routes: Lake
Saimaa, Michael Hennemann's Route, River Naarajoki, Squirrel Route, and for real adventures and experienced paddlers we have Extra Long Tours from Lake Saimaa to Baltic Sea and beyond. The favorite routes can be found at Google maps: WildCanoe routes.
1. Lake Saimaa
Route:Lotjasaari - Lake Back Luonteri - lake Back Lietvesi - Lake Back Yövesi (rock-paintings
in Astuvansalmi)- small canals - Lake Back Louhivesi - Lake Back Paljavesi - Village Anttola
Lenghts: 5-225 km
Profile: only lakes
Route Options: Tours along different routes and of different lengths are possible and you can design a route of your own. On Google map we have marked the Black Route that we recommend for a week tour (about 112 km). Green Route is about 65 km (3-5 days) and Blue Route 36-45 km (2-3 days). You can also canoe from Anttola to Mikkeli: the shorter route is 50 km/4 days and the longer 110 km/7 days.
Lotjasaari is an excellent starting place just next to the part of Saimaa that is especially rich in islands. Nature and water
are clean and there are also some great cultural and natural sights in the area, like Hill Neitvuori, rock-paintings in Astuvansalmi, and two canals. You can move around on the area freely and camp in the free nature according the Everyman's Right. You'll get a canoeing map on the scale of 1:50 000 on which all
the services like the best camping places, cafes, grocery stores and accommodation
2. Route Hennemann
This route is named after a German travel guide writer and photographer Michael Hennemann. He has specialized in exciting wilderness trips, especially in hiking and kayaking in Scandinavia (Sweden and Finland). He wrote a canoe guide: Südfinnische Seenplatte Canoe guidebook for southern Finland . There are some pictures of the route at his website (Kayaking in Southern Finland):
Route: Lotjasaari Port - Lake Saimaa, Bay Tikkalahti - Lake Saimaa, Bay Kokkosenlahti - Canoe carrying - Lake Korsijärvi - Lake Alajärvi - Lake Syysjärvi - Rapid Inkilänkoski - Lake Rautjärvi - Bay Karslahti - Rapid Kotukoski - Rapid Rävykoski: fishing (equipment and fishing permits are available
on the spot) - Rapid Siikakoski - Lake Saimaa, Lake Back Enovesi - Lake Saimaa, Lake Back Siikavesi - Lake Saimaa, Lake Back Luonteri - Lotjasaari Port.
Lenght: about 70 km, 4-5 days (if 15 km/day)
Canoe carring: about 300 m from Bay Kokkosenlahti to Lake Korsijärvi
Profile: several small lakes and rapids
3. River Naarajoki
Marked Route: Naarajoki (near Pieksänmäki) - Haukivuori
Canoe carring: 2 times (50 m in Porsaskoski and 100 m in Läsäkoski)
Profile: drop is about 16 meters
Lenght: river part about 40 km + lake part about 70-100 km, first part mostly rivers, the rest lakes
Transportation fee of canoes/canoeists: Anttola - Pieksämäki and Otava - Anttola, 180 €
Route options: 1-8 days, 22-120 km
- Lomatrio (Naarajoki) - Haukivuori, 60 km / 3-4 days
- Lomatrio (Naarajoki) - Otava, 120 km / 8 days
2 days/ 1 night
- Lomatrio - Etelä-Aapeli - Porsaskoski (22 km + 9 km)
- Lomatrio - Etelä-Aapeli - Nykälä (22 km + 19 km)
- Lomatrio - Porsaskoski - Nykälä (30 km + 10 km)
- Lomatrio - Porsaskoski - Karjalainen (30 km + 20 km)
This route begins at Lomatrio camping site (address: Kangasniementie 18, FIN-56850 Naarajärvi), not far from the town of Pieksämäki and runs through village of Haukivuori to village of Otava. The first 40 km consist mainly of rivers. This part which is completely marked takes about 1-2 days and it is suitable for families and children. Nature by the rivers is very eutrophic and beautiful. If you are lucky you may see for example a beaver. After the river part there are two large lakes, Kyyvesi and Puula that both are especially rich in islands. Lake Puula is well known because of its clear water. On the route there are several marked places for resting almost in every 10 km. Along the route you find also services like cafe and accommodation, like Koskentila tourist attraction. There are a cafe, a sauna (has to be booked before hand), old small buildings for accomodation (camping in a tent also possible) and possibilities to trout fishing.
Water situation for paddlers is usually good in Naarajoki Route. Only in dry summer there could be just enough water for Indian canoe between Porsaskoski and Nykälä.
A detailed River Naarajoki Canoe Map can be bought in Karttakeskus on-line store.
4. Squirrel Route + Lake Saimaa
Juva - Sulkava - Lake Saimaa
Lenght: The river part from Juva to Sulkava, 57 km, takes about 2 days. To paddle from Sulkava to Anttola takes 4-5 days.
Profile and canoe carring:There are various small lakes, rivers and rapids along the Squirrel Route and the scenary changes from lush to rugged. The drop is about 10 meters and usually you have to carry your canoe twice (10 m and 15 m).
Squirrel Route & Aquatic nature trail is 57 km long river route which runs between Juva and Sulkava. The Squirrel Route is especially suitable for family outings. It's also the first biologically studied Finnish aquatic nature trail marked with information boards (21 pieces) which can be seen from the canoe, as well. The boards inform about the flora and fauna of the area and about the effect water and humans have on nature.
The Squirrel Route ends to small town called Sulkava where you can continue your trip on Lake Saimaa, for ex. go from Sulkava via Puumala to Anttola.
5. Extra Long Tour
Saimaa - Åland: about 1500 km about 35 days
Saimaa - Kotka: 200 -700 km
Kotka - Helsinki: 120 km
Helsinki - Åland: 300 km
To the experienced kayak canoeists we offer the Finland's longest tour which goes through Lake Saimaa, Lake Puula and along River Kymi to Baltic Sea and it's archipelago. The ending point is an island between Sweden and Finland called Åland: Iisalmi - Kuopio - Kolovesi - Linnansaari - Savonlinna - Puumala - Anttola - Mikkeli (transportation 15 Km) Otava - Hirvensalmi - Vihantasalmi - Repovesi National Park - Valkeala - Jaala - Kuusankoski- Anjalankoski - Kotka - Loviisa - Porvoo - Helsinki- Porkkala - Tammisaari - Hanko- Saaristomeri National Park - Nauvo - Korppoo - Sottunga - Mariehamn (Åland). In Helsinki or in Mikkeli we have a compeletely new kayak (you'll select it) for you with the equipment needed. You can choose the starting/ending point yourself and you'll canoe on your own risk without a guide. But of course our guide will help you with the detailed route design, safety issues etc. The service costs 50-75% of the suggested retail price of a new kayak you'll choose.
Canoe rent 2013
Summer Season: July and August (high season, usually the best weather for canoeing)
Prices include Basic Equipment and instruction only, not transportation of canoes and canoeists. Transportation is always needed if you are not starting and ending you trip to Wild Canoe Base Camp in Anttola. Transportation fee is paid on the spot. The prices include VAT. Here is a collection of our canoe models. Here is the price list in pdf.
|Days||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||+ additional days|
|Indian Canoe or
Kayak for two
|100€||130 €||160 €||190 €||220 €||250 €||280 €||310 €||35 €/day|
|Kayak for one person||55 €||80 €||110 €||135 €||160 €||185 €||210 €||240 €||30 €/day|
Green Season: May, June, September, and October
|Days||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||+ additional days|
|Indian Canoe or
Kayak for two
|90 €||115 €||140 €||165 €||190 €||220 €||245 €||270 €||30 €/day|
|Kayak for one person||50 €||70 €||90 €||110 €||130 €||150 €||170 €||190 €||20 €/day|
Basic Equipment (Indian canoe or a kayak, paddles, lifevests,
watertight packs, a route map, and a cover deck for kayak) is included in rent prices. All the equipment is suitable
for beginners, therefore safe and easy to use. Canoe wagons are not needed
because you have to carry the canoe only rarely and very short distances.
The rent includes also instructions and guiding for the route, which takes place in Anttola, Lotjasaari Port. If you have choosen River Naarajoki route introduction could be arranged in Lomatrio camping place where the route begins.
It is possible to upgrade to Tour Equipment, which consist of the basic equipment plus a tent (max. 3 persons), mattresses, a fuel cooker with spirits, a fire cooker, a shovel, a knife, and a water canister. The prices you can find in the price list (pdf).
Rent prices for extra equipment a week
|Sleepingbag||15 €||Fire cooker||10 €|
|Mattress||5 €||Tarpaulin cover||10 €|
|Tent||20 €||Shovel||5 €|
|Additional maps||10-35 €||Roof rack||20 €|
|Compass||5 €||Gasoline||5-20 €|
|Water proof bags||8 €||Fishing permit, 1 week||28 €|
|Equipment Redbox||5 €||Fish rod||20 €|
|Trangia cooker||35 €||Empty foodbox (grey)||5 €|
|Thermos||5 €||To sell|
|Water canister||5 €||Matches||1 €|
|Water proof barrel||5 €||Sprii/white casoline 1L||6 €|
|Plastic spoon and plate , tape, knife etc.||à 5 €||Washing powder, washing up liquid, sponge etc.||à 2 €|
Canoe guide services at 9 and 16 o'clock
The canoe guide will not be at the site all the time, so the guiding and renting take place at the base camp according to the reservation. You are able to start your trip at 9:00 in the morning and/or 20:00 in the evening. If you need a transport then you have to fix the time with the guide separately.
Be prepared for the transportation fees. They are not included in rent
fees. The transport of canoes and canoeists is nessessary, unless
you start and end your trip to Anttola Base Camp. The transport fee
is always paid on the spot. There are usually many changes in customers' plans (times, locations, destinations, etc.) or the weather
changes. The prices include 10 % VAT.
Transport fees (estimated travel times and prices)
|One way: Mikkeli - Anttola||30 min, 55 €|
|One way: Mikkeli - Juva||60 min, 100 €|
|One way: Anttola - Puumala||60 min, 100 €|
|Round trip: Anttola - Naarajoki (Lomatrio) and Otava - Anttola||200 €|
When you come for a canoe tour you should have with you:
- sleeping bag - comfortable outdoor leisure clothes including warm shirt - rainwear - hat that protects from the sun - jogging shoes and another pair of shoes - swimming suit and towel - personal things and needed medications - plate and mug, knife, spoon and fork - pocket knife or knife - bottle for drinking - suntan lotion - mosquito repellent - sun glasses - mobile phone in a water tight bag