From snowy forests and fells, frozen sea and aurora borealis to pristine sandy beaches, quaint towns and fishing villages, the Pohjola route offers memorable experiences all year round.
Starry skies in the city – this is Oulu
Oulu is a bustling city that offers any urban experiences your heart desires. But it is also next to vast wilderness areas and the arctic sea, both worth seeing in any season.
In the winter, Guided Aurora hunting trips by Oulu Safaris will take you to chase the Northern Lights around Oulu, in the wilderness where electric lights won’t disturb the experience.
In the summer, you can hop on a stand up paddle board or in a kayak right at the centre of the city. Lappis invites you to enjoy Oulu’s diverse water and wind sports, offering kayaking and SUP, wake and kite boarding. Equipment rental for skilled enthusiasts, and courses and guided activities for beginners are available.
For a memorable stay book your accommodation in Hotel Lasaretti – an ex-military hospital building dating from 1776, located in a historical environment by the river Oulujoki, a 15 minutes walk from the city centre.
Arctic miracles in Rokua Geopark, crafted by the Ice Age
Rokua offers a unique landscape carved out by the last ice age. The Rokua Geopark is part of the UNESCO Geopark program. The region’s unique geology has shaped a beautiful natural environment and rich cultural heritage.
Book your stay – and pamper yourself after a day out – at Rokua Health&Spa Hotel.
In the summer, the park offers fantastic opportunities for trekking, kayaking, mountain biking, and fishing. In the winter, you can ski, snowshoe, go mountain biking, or wander under a starlit sky in the dark winter night.
Try snowshoeing in the winter, or grab a mountain bike and experience the magic on wheels. Get your gear from Atteson Fishing.Read more
Go downhill by skis or bike at the southernmost fell in Syöte
Syöte offers you breathtaking experiences in any season. In the winter, the slopes and ski routes of the southernmost fell in Finland await you, and as the snow melts around May, you can admire the arctic summer going up and down the same hills on a bike.
Rent your gear and buy lift passes from Ski Resort Iso-Syöte, then head up the fell in a ski lift or go explore the bike routes with your friends or whole family. The resort has rental bikes from fatbikes to full-suspension mountain bikes and e-bikes, as well protective gear for those about to speed!
For a perfect finish to a nice day out, book your stay right on the top of the fell with magnificent views from Arctic Hilltop Boutique Hotel Iso-Syöte.Read more
Enjoy the arctic seaside under the summer sun or winter whiteness in Kalajoki
Kalajoki is an all-time favourite holiday destination to millions of Finns and Europeans. No wonder, since this modern tourist resort is surrounded by maritime nature that is hard to find anywhere else.
Biking on frozen sea? It’s an experience to remember. Rent a fatbike from Kalajoki Booking Centre, put your helmet on and head out to a vast white landscape.
In the summer, enjoy a bike ride along the sand dunes on nice, broad duckboards, admiring the sea and the Siiponjoki nature reserve.
In winter or summer, find a relaxing moment in Santa’s Spa & Hotel Sani, where the water is warm, food delicious and indulgence guaranteed no matter the weather.Read more
Have a beer in a small brewery and pub on the island of Hailuoto
The dunes stretching as far as the eye can see, quaint fishing boats as well as the rural surroundings of the village create the unique atmosphere of the largest island in the Bay of Bothnia. Hailuoto is accessible by ferry – an experience in its own. In winter, an ice road is made on the frozen sea for access by car or bike!
Hailuodon Panimo is Finland’s first organic brewery. Have a sip of their carefully crafted beverages in their pub and buy something to take home with you from their little shop.
Spot the magnificent lighthouse and find a good night’s sleep in the adjacent Arctic Lighthouse Hotel. Set in a former pilot station building, this little hotel offers great views of the fishing boats and sea gulls over the Bay of Bothnia.Read more
Meet the past in beautiful, traditional maritime town of Raahe
Old Town Raahe is one of the best-preserved 19th-century wooden towns in Finland, worth to visit in the summer or winter alike. Travel through time and visit the Langin Kauppahuone café where the staff in their historical costumes serve you pastries.
Visit the Packhouse museum to say hello to Wanha Herra, ”Old Gentleman”, the oldest surviving diving suit in the world!
In the summer, be sure not to miss the Raahe archipelago, right in the lap of the city. Rent a kayak or hop on a boat!
Thousands of birds can’t be wrong – Finland’s finest wetland in Liminka is a must-see
In the winter months, Liminka next to the Bothnian Bay offers a lot to see and experience, especially for a nature-lover. Frozen sea, blue winter sky and fresh, clear air – a combo worth experiencing.
A day out in the clean air of Liminka is unforgettable, whether you spend it on snowshoes or skis in winter, or a mountain bike, disc golfing, or watching the migratory birds in the spring and summer. Check out Hotel-Restaurant Liminka Bay for details – and a good night’s sleep afterwards!Read more
Kempele – a friendly town next to Oulu is a perfect day trip destination
Kempele is only a 15-minute car ride away from Oulu. This small town offers a friendly, rural atmosphere and memorable ways to spend a day.
If outdoors is your thing, head to Köykkyri, Finland’s smallest ski resort, with ski and snowboard slopes and first-class cross-country skiing tracks. In the summer, Köykkyri is a popular mountain biking and hiking area.Read more
Ii – a little big town with a short name and lots of culture
Ii is a municipality on the shores of the Bay of Bothnia, a half an hour by car from Oulu. One of Ii’s most popular destinations is Wanha Hamina, ”Old Port”, which used to be a busy port and trade destination of the Bay of Bothnia in the 14th century.
Have a refreshing cup of coffee in the charming old Kahvila Iin Wanha Hamina and check out the little museum upstairs!
To combine a nice walk and some culture, take a 2-kilometer-long walk along a path called Ruustinna, which runs via the Environmental Arts Park along the river.Read more
Enjoy the atmosphere of an idyllic country village in Tyrnävä
Tyrnävä offers authentic village experiences near the city: nature trails, cultural history, popular harvest season events, local delicacies and fun activities.
Enjoy the local cultural history on the atmospheric and beautifully restored Meijerikatu in the industrial milieu of the early 20th century. Experience the steep and strongly winding Ängesleväjoki canyon on an easy 10-kilometer nature trail by mountain bike or on foot.
Above all, relax and stop to enjoy the beauty and ever-changing tones of the surrounding landscape.Read more
Lumijoki - a charming little village by the sea
Lumijoki offers a fascinating combination of seaside vibes, nature experiences, cultural history and rural peace.
Visit Varjakka harbor and enjoy a cup of coffee at boat café Hailuotolaiva.
Have a photography tour and capture some beautiful, restored old buildings – like the Lakeuden risti church and the old, picturesque windmill Kyrön mylly near the Lumijoki center.
Breathe in the fresh air and enjoy the peace and quietness of this charming little village by the sea.
Arctic bucket-list experiences in Sea Lapland, Kemi
Kemi has a unique location both by the sea and in Finnish Lapland. The sweetest sea in the world enables the most exciting experiences. The sea freezes in winter, creating a unique playground of activities for visitors and locals.
Kemi is especially famous for its Icebreaker Sampo cruises. This legendary Icebreaker has been working since 1960 and offers once in a lifetime experience to the visitors.
SnowCastle of Kemi introduces services from all-year-round snow&ice exhibition to glass villas, restaurant and sauna services. The SnowCastle concept has developed over the years from the winter snow castle to a resort area with various services, that are open year-round.
Spend the night by the sea observing the sky from the comfort of your bed. Seaside Glass Villas with glass roof and huge windows allows you to be one with nature.Read more