Are you planning to visit beautiful rural areas of Lappeenranta and Imatra region for a day trip, or would you prefer to spend an exciting multi-day vacation packed with culture and adventure? Find inspiration in the adventures available and plan your perfect holiday experience in the Lappeenranta and Imatra region.
Situated on the most southern shores of Lake Saimaa, Finland’s largest lake, Lappeenranta is the second most visited town in Finland, one rich in cultural history. About two hours from Helsinki, visitors have long been captivated by the beauty of the region’s nature. Just 25 minutes up north, Imatra is often considered the first tourist town in Finland, thanks to the 1772 visit by Russian Empress Catherine the Great and remains a popular destination even today.
Municipalities of Taipalsaari, Ruokolahti, Rautjärvi and Savitaipale are a must for a visit. Altogether Lappeenranta and Imatra region and their service providers are committed to taking care of the visitors and paying attention to cleanliness and hygiene.
Experience Saimaa – ready itineraries for you trip
If you have 1 to 3 days to spend in southern Saimaa here are some suggestions for planning your itinerary.
1 day in Lappeenranta
Enjoy the beauty of Lake Saimaa and sample its delicacies in the picturesque harbour of Lappeenranta. Enjoy a relaxing lake cruise or explore the fortress’s nature and cultural trail.
- Lappeenranta Harbor – Lake Saimaa starts from Lappeenranta along Finland’s longest beach boulevard.
- Lappeenranta Fortress – Historic centre, with museums, cafés, and boutiques. Explore Finland’s oldest Orthodox Church, dine in legendary Kehruuhuone and a take guided nature and culture trail. Be sure to grab a great selfie in the Lappeenranta frames.
- Archipelago and canal cruises – Experience the magnificent views on a cruise on Lake Saimaa as it travels through the gorgeous archipelago and the historic Saimaa canal.
- Try Vety (hydrogen) and Atomi (atom) pies, the favourite local snacks – You’ll find these local specialties on a trip to the town’s markets.
1 day in Imatra
Enjoy the raw power of the River Vuoksi and the incredible Imantrankoski rapids, sampling local delicacies along the way. Follow in the footsteps of Tsar Nicholas I through Kruununpuisto Park into existence, the oldest nature park in Finland, or try your hand at fishing.
- Imatrankoski – Finland’s oldest tourist attraction is one of the Finnish national landscapes.
- Kruununpuisto – The oldest nature park in Finland, occupying the area around the Imatrankoski Rapids, was founded in 1842 by order of Tsar Nicholas I. Here you will find viewing pavilions, historic rock carvings and giant kettles, which can also be explored on guided walking tours.
- Vuoksi Fishing Park – Versatile recreation located by River Vuoksi. Cruises, boat and fishing equipment rentals, salmon pool and a camping area.
- Ukonniemi area – A paradise for an active holiday on the shores of Lake Saimaa, where the body and mind are refreshed in spas, adventure parks, hiking trails, water activities and at the beach.
- Lammassaari Island’s Nature Trails – try the 3,7 kilometre long ‘Shore Trail’ on the shores of the scenic Lammassaari island in the Ukonniemi area.
2 or 3 days in Lappeenranta and Imatra
In your 2-3-day visit to the region, be enchanted by the gentle waves of Lake Saimaa and the untamed rapids of the Vuoksi River. Take a scenic lake cruise, kayak and row on the lakes, fish, eat and drink – enjoy the clean air and spend a hassle-free vacation
Here are more recommendations for you stay in Saimaa area:
- Cultural Sights and Nature Attractions – Options for those who are hungry for culture and long for natural peace. The landscape that opens from the top of Haukkavuori to Sarajärvi is worth the short drive (location: Rautjärvi).
- Saimaa Geopark and hiking trails – The surroundings of Saimaa Geopark create a wonderful setting for hiking. You can go hiking in the nearby destinations for a few hours, or try cycling on the Saimaa archipelago route, where there is enough to see for several days.
- Water activities – Have fun in the waters of Lake Saimaa. Is your choice floating in the Vuoksi River, canoeing, SUP boarding, water skiing, or experiencing a sauna boat?
- Holiday Club Saimaa Cirque de Saimaa and Angry Birds Activity Park – Enjoy the pools of the adventure spa, try the water slides, or spend the day at the family’s favorite Angry Birds Activity Park.
- Imatra Spa Magic Forest – Magical experiences in every weather. There are several pools and an 80-meter-long slide along the Magic River.
- Golf – Play golf at one of Finland’s most beautiful golf courses on the shores of Lake Saimaa. There are up to three full-size golf courses in the area.
- Pulsan asema café boutique, B&B is located in a small village on the premises of an old railway station from 1867. It is located only 20 km south from Lappeenranta.
- Iloisen Pässin Maalaispuoti is a restaurant and café specializing in delicious local food located near the famous Parikkalan patsaspuisto (sculpture park), on the eastern border of Finland.
- Creative Kaiku – Nature Saimaa – experience the mythical atmosphere of the nature, here, in the middle of nowhere. Have an unforgettable excursion to the true Finnish nature, hear old stories and fairytales and feel the calming effect that can only be experienced in the wilderness.
- House of Thousand Tales “Tuhannen tarinan talo” – try rural tourism at the best way at the House of Thousand Tales, where you can go to the nature eg. by riding (location: Kannuskoski).
- Lemin särä – one of Finland’s seven wonders s a must. Eat as must as you want as this lamb dish is prepared on a thousand-year-old recipe. Säräpirtti Kippurasarvi is the only restaurant in Finland serving only one dish.
1-2-3 let’s go Saimaa!