Cycling Holiday in Lake Finland
The best of Lake Saimaa
International guided tour │ Finland │ 8 days / 7 nights │ 999 €
Finland is often called the land of thousand lakes and with a good reason: there are actually near 188 000 lakes in Finland. Finland’s Lakeland is a beautiful mosaic of vast clear waters and islands, spits and isthmuses covered with green boreal forests and birch groves. There are kilometers of shoreline cycling routes and many scenic spots along the way!
On this cycling tour we will cycle along the shores of Finland’s largest lake, Saimaa, and visit some of its best places; historical towns of Lappeenranta and Savonlinna, nature reserves and the famous Punkaharju esker ridge, one of the nominated national landscapes of Finland.
This tour offers a lot for nature lovers and outdoor people! Besides cycling there are many trails for walking and hiking, many waterways for paddling and rowing and of course many occasions for sauna, swimming and fishing.
- • Waters, islands and isthmuses of Lake Saimaa
- • Boreal forests and birch groves
- • Lappeenranta and its fortress and Sandcastle
- • Punkaharju esker ridge - National Landscape and Nature Reserve
- • Savonlinna and its Olavinlinna castle
- • Kerimäki church - world’s biggest wooden church
- • Linnansaari National Park
- • Nightless night (midsummer)
- • Delicious fish speciality Puruvesi vendace (registred as PDO and PGI by EU)
- • Finnish sauna
International guided group tour (Self-guided group tours on request)
●●○○ Moderate (but relatively short daily kms)
The tour is most suitable for adults and youngsters. The tour is most probably not suitable for children under age of 12 years.
Characteristics of the route
Terrain is undulating. The route is mostly on secondary roads and cycle paths. Daily distances from 25 km to 43 km.
Cycling paths 19 %
Side roads 78 %
Main roads 3 %
International guided group tour: 18.8. - 25.8.2019 (other dates on request for groups of min 10 persons)
Self-guided group tour: on request
Linear route. Your luggage will be transported from accommodation to accommodation (except on day 3 the luggage is transported by the customer on the train).
Minimum of participants: 10
Maximum of participants: 22
Available extra services
Transfer Oravi – Savonlinna: 15 € / person to be paid on spot (transfer booking recommended when booking the tour)
Extra nights in Helsinki, Lappeenranta, Punkaharju, Savonlinna and Oravi
Included in the price
- • Accommodation
- • Breakfast
- • English speaking biking guide (on the guided tour only)
- • Route description-map booklet (on self-guided group tours, max 1 per room)
- • Luggage transfer (from Punkaharju to Savonlinna and from Savonlinna to Oravi)
- • Steamship from Punkaharju to Savonlinna
- • Use of sauna in the apartment / cottage in Punkaharju (3 nights)
- • Destination information
- • Service-hotline (Finnish / English / Italian)
Not included in the price
- • Outward and return journey
- • Use of Veranatura bicycle (see Bicycles tab)
- • Train ticket Lappeenranta – Punkaharju (ca. 14 € - 20 € adults)
- • Saunas by lakeshore that have to be booked and paid separately on spot (in Punkaharju and Oravi)
- • Any rental equipment for paddling, rowing, fishing, etc. (prices vary)
- • Everything not specified on Included in the price
Lappeenranta (2 nights): middle class hotel | toilet and shower in the room
Punkaharju (3 nights): apartment hotel or cottage | toilet, shower, sauna and a small kitchen in the room
Savonlinna (1 night): middle class hotel or summer hotel | toilet and shower in the room
Oravi (1 night): apartment hotel or cottage | toilet, shower and a small kitchen in the room
How to get to Lappeenranta
Flight to Helsinki, train to Lappeenranta (Helsinki-Vantaa airport – Lappeenranta: 2 h – 2 h 15 min, one change), from Lappeenranta railway station local bus, walk or taxi to hotel
How to get back to Helsinki from Oravi
We recommend to book a transfer from Oravi to Savonlinna, ca. 40 min, price 15 € / person.
Otherwise there is public transport (bus), but with restricted timetable in summer. From Savonlinna take a train to Helsinki.
There is also an airport in Savonlinna (flights via Helsinki). At the moment there is no public transport to / from Savonlinna airport.
Transfer booking recommended when booking the tour.
Arrival to Lappeenranta
Independent arrival to Lappeenranta. Lappeenranta is the capital of South Karelia, a small town by Lake Saimaa near to Russian border. Lappeenranta is known as the friendliest town in Finland and for its green technology development. It has a historical old town and fortress with a great view to Lake Saimaa and also Finland’s oldest wooden Town Hall. Worth visiting is the Sandcastle exhibition with sand sculptures with annually changing theme. Lappeenranta has a lively harbour with a square and steamships that come and go from their cruises on Lake Saimaa. If you have enough time you may want to take one around Lake Saimaa or to the famous Saimaa Canal.
Lappeenranta – Taipalsaari – Lappeenranta | 43 km
Our first cycling trip is a circular route from Lappeenranta. We cycle along the shores of Lake Saimaa and past calm forests and countryside. In the small village of Taipalsaari we can visit the church and a Horse-Drawn Vehicle Museum. We may not be lucky enough to see a real Saimaa Ringed Seal during your tour as in summertime they tend to stay under water for most of the time, but at the municipal hall of Taipalsaari we have a chance to see a mounted Saimaa Ringed Seal puppy. On a sunny day we can take a swim in the lake before heading back to Lappeenranta.
Lappeenranta – Punkaharju | train + optional cycling
Today we take a train to Punkaharju. We can admire the beautiful lakescapes even from the train. The train stop is near to our accommodation, in the middle of nature! Punkaharju is known internationally for the beautiful esker ridge formed by Ice Age, and has therefor been a popular tourist destination already for two hundred years. Punkaharju esker ridge is one of Finland's nominated national landscapes. Punkaharju esker ridge Nature Reserve instead, is one of the world's oldest reserves, as the area was named a crown-owned park already in 1843. There are also cultural and historical sites to explore in the esker ridge area. The esker ridge area and some of the surrounding attractions can be visited independently by bike already today. There are many trails also for walking or nordic walking. You can also go paddling, rowing or horse riding. In other words, it’s an outdoor paradise! Worth visiting is the Finnish Forest Museum Lusto. And, not to forget are relaxing sauna and swimming of course!
Punkaharju esker ridge route | 23 km
Today we cycle along the beautiful and unique Punkaharju esker ridge route. We cycle almost all the time along the ridges with old pines and lake on both sides. We pass also Punkaharju church and on a sunny day we can take a swim at the turning point before heading back to the esker ridge area again. On this day trip we reserve time for many scenic stops and photographing!
Punkaharju – Kerimäki – Punkaharju | 34 km
Today we cycle to the small village of Kerimäki where we visit the world’s biggest wooden church. As we arrive to the village, a line of red wooden boat shelters by the lakeshore appear in the view. Then we cycle back to Punkaharju.
Punkaharju – Savonlinna | Steamship + 11 km
Today we cruise on board a traditional steamship to the lively town of Savonlinna, known for its medieval Olavinlinna castle and for the annual international Opera Festival.
Savonlinna is built on islands, so water is always present. We will cycle some wonderful cycling routes in Savonlinna along the lakeshore. Experience the laid-back atmosphere at the Market square by the harbour with nostalgic steamships. If you haven’t tasted the famous and appreciated Puruvesi vendace fish yet, now it’s high time! Get your portion directly from the Savonlinna Market square or from almost any restaurant.
Savonlinna – Oravi | 42 km
Today we cycle to a small canal village Oravi situated between two national parks on a narrow isthmus. Worth experiencing is a boat trip to the biodiverse Linnansaari Island in Linnansaari National Park (independent). The landscape in the national park alternates between a labyrinth of sheltered islands and clear open waters. Linnansaari is one of the best habitats for the adorable Saimaa Ringed Seal, one of the world's most endangered and rare seals, endemic to Lake Saimaa. If you are lucky, you can see one or also an Osprey flying above the lake. On the Linnansaari Island you can do a short hike and get acquainted with the traditional slash-and-burn agriculture method. Oravi is a perfect spot for paddling trips, sauna and swimming! How does a good meal, perhaps elk meat, chanterelles and cranberries sound after an active day?
Departure or extension of your holiday
You may want to spend another day in Oravi for paddling, Savonlinna for opera or Punkaharju for any outdoor activity. Extra nights are available also in Lappeenranta and Helsinki before or after the tour.
Transfer to Savonlinna on request.
8 days / 7 nights, International guided tour
(prices per person)
Basic price, double room occupancy
Price, single room
Third person in room
Child price, up to 14 years (when travelling with two adults)
Transfer Oravi - Savonlinna
15 € / person, to be paid on spot (booking recommended when booking the tour)
(Prices per room)
Extra night in Lappeenranta, middle class hotel, breakfast included
double / twin room
Extra night in Punkaharju, apartment hotel or cottage, breakfast included
double / twin room
Extra night in Savonlinna, middle class hotel or summer hotel, breakfast included
Prices may be higher during the Opera Festival, please ask the price always from our customer service.
double / twin room
Extra night in Oravi, apartment hotel or cottage, breakfast included
double / twin room
Self-guided group tour
Prices on request
Included with the Veranatura bicycle:
- Per each party: 1 x map holder, 1 x repair kit and 1 x pump
- Per each person: 1 x waterproof pannier, 1 x bottle holder, 1 x odometer and 1 x spare inner tube
We recommend to take own personal helmet with.
Helmets can be borrowed from Veranatura with a notice fair in advance (possibly by the time of booking). Note that there are a limited number of helmets to borrow.
Trekking bicycle 21-24-speed
Women's model, free wheel, hand brakes
Price: 90 €
Trekking bicycle 21-24-speed
Men's model, free wheel, hand brakes
Price: 90 €
7-speed, low frame, freewheel, handbrakes
Price: 210 €
Booking request form
Cycling Holiday in Lake Finland - The best of Lake Saimaa
Note that we cannot quarantee availability of double bed in every accommodation
A triple room or a double room with extra bed, depending on the accomodation
The invoices and the travel information package will be sent to the person responsible for the booking. All reports and changes after the booking must be communicated to us via the person responsible for the booking.
Once you have sent us this booking request we will check the availability of the requested tour. This takes normally 1 – 2 working days. If the requested tour is available, we will send you a booking confirmation. In case the tour is not available, we will contact you and we can look for other options together.