Instructions and Rules in Kolovesi National Park
Kolovesi National Park was established to protect the archipelago nature and old-growth forests of Lake Saimaa. Rock paintings created thousands of years ago are found on cliff faces. In the shelter of islands, you may encounter an endangered Saimaa ringed seal. It is important to study matters dealing with the national park in advance and prepare yourself properly for your trip by reading the instructions, rules and regulations of the park (pdf, 509 Kb, julkaisut.metsa.fi, in Finnish).
Getting around in National Park
Picking Berries, Mushrooms and Wild Herbs
Other Rules and Instructions
The outdoor activities in the Kolovesi National Park are guided with the rules and regulations. When getting around in nature, let’s show respect for it. Take a look at the Outdoor Etiquette.
Please don’t share any such contents on the Internet that break the rules of the national park.
Physical exercise and use of watercraft are permitted in the National Park, with the exception of the restricted areas:
- Nahkiaissalo nature trails may be used all year round, and Mäntysalo nature trail from 1 May to 31 December. The trail is marked with orange circles.
Access has been restricted to protect endangered and rare species and their habitats:
- In the restricted area marked in the map of Kolovesi (Pieni Kolovesi) entering is not allowed at any time of the year.
- In the winter, 1.1.-30.4., it is also forbidden to enter any of the islands in the park, but in the parts which are on the mainland it is allowed to move about.
- In the winter, 1.1.-30.4. it is forbidden to use the motor vehicles on the water area belonging to the national park.
- Using motorboats, water scooters and similar watercraft is prohibited in the area marked on the map.
Camping is only permitted at designated sites.
- On the campsites which are situated on the island it is allowed to camp only during 1.5.-31.12.
Lighting a fire is allowed at the maintained campfire sites that have been marked on the map and in the terrain. You are only allowed to use the firewood that has been reserved for the purpose. The person who lights the campfire is always responsible for the fire.
The use of a portable camping stove is allowed in areas where hiking is allowed. During the forest and grass fire warning, the use of hobo stoves is not allowed, as sparks may be created.
Lighting any campfires is strictly forhibited if the forest fire warning or the grass fire warning is in effect. Always check the current warnings (en.ilmatieteenlaitos.fi). The prohibition does not apply to the covered fireplace with a flue at Kirkkoranta.
There are no waste-bins or recycling points in the park. Measures should be taken in advance to avoid taking unnecessary waste into the area. Take away everything you brought along.
You can put leftovers and other biowaste in a dry toilet at rest spots.
Small amounts of clean paper and cardboard may be used as kindling at a campfire site. Other waste, such as packages that contain aluminium foil or plastic, may not be burned in a fireplace, as they may form non-biodegradable waste and toxic gases.
Hook and line fishing and ice fishing are allowed under everyman's rights, except where specific restrictions apply.
To protect the pups of the Saimaa Ringed Seal, there is prohibition on net fishing 1.4. - 30. 6. in almost the whole area of Kolovesi. It is not possible to get net fishing permits for waters owned by Metsähallitus at Kolovesi, because the area is very important for the Saimaa Ringed Seal's reproduction.
Persons aged 18-64 years must pay the fisheries management fee (eraluvat.fi). If you fish with more than one rod, you also need Metsähallitus' angling permit no 7413 for Southern Finland (eraluvat.fi). These permits can be purchased in the web shop (eraluvat.fi).
Fishers need to check the restrictions on fishing sites at kalastusrajoitus.fi (In Finnish).
Picking berries and edible mushrooms is allowed, except in restricted areas.
Taking or damaging trees, bushes, other plants or their parts, or mushrooms other than edible ones is forbidden. Picking wild herbs is therefore forbidden.
Mountain biking is allowed according to everyman`s rights, with the exception of the restricted areas. Always stay on clearly visible tracks and pay attention to other hikers.
Elk hunting is allowed for the local hunting club subject to a permit issued by Metsähallitus on application.
As a rule, a permit issued by Metsähallitus is required for activities other than those included in everyman's rights, which may include research, organised events and the shooting of films or advertisements in the terrain. Further information on required permits: research and access permits (metsa.fi) and permits and notifications related to events (metsa.fi).
The use of the trails and structures of the Kolovesi National Park for business activities is always subject to a fee, and for frequent business use, a contract with Metsähallitus (metsa.fi) is required. The right of use fees for specific days are paid at the Eräluvat webshop (eraluvat.fi).
- Damaging soil or rock, and extraction of earth material or minerals.
- Killing, catching or disturbing wild vertebrates, or damaging their nests.
- Catching or collecting invertebrates.
- Driving motor vehicles, except on roads designated for motor vehicles.
- Leaving waste in the area, or damaging structures.
- Covering, changing, damaging, removing, violating or excavating in archaeological sites.
- Activities that disturb other people.
Rules and Regulations for Kolovesi
The rules and regulations of Kolovesi National Park (pdf 509 Kb, julkaisut.metsa.fi, in Finnish), ratified on 28 July 2014.
The wilderness-like nature of Kolovesi National Park attracts lots of visitors in July-August. In the peak season it is not easy to find a tent site there. We recommend you to make your trip in the first weeks of June or in the last weeks of August. The visit in the colourful ruska season in September-October would be also an unforgettable experience.
It is important that you get as much information as possible about your hiking destination in advance and prepare for your trip thoroughly. Knowing your route and sticking to it and knowing what the weather and warnings in effect (en.ilmatieteenlaitos.fi) has in store, will help make your trip a success.
- Sturdy shoes are needed on the rocky and difficult Nature Trails.
- Dress for hiking in colorful clothes and according to the weather. Drinking water and toilet paper are good to have along.
- Make sure you pack a first-aid kit. If you face an emergency on your hike, e.g. get lost, get injured or observe wildfire, call 112 and report an emergency. More information on how to act in an emergency.
- Mobile telephones work quite well in Kolovesi National Park, except in some areas in the park where cliffs or forest block signals. Download the 112 Finland application (112.fi) to your phone.
- Hiking in Finland
- Before your trip see also page What is New.
Check for Warnings
When forest and grass fire warnings (en.ilmatieteenlaitos.fi) are in effect, fire is only allowed at covered campfire sites that have a flue. A fire can be also lit in fireplaces at wilderness and other huts. Always use extreme caution when handling fire. The one who lights a fire is always responsible for its safe use. Please note, that making fire at these campfire sites can be banned locally.
Gathering at the campfire sites increases the risk of coronavirus infection. Guidelines concerning coronavirus COVID-19.
112 Emergency Number
If you have an emergency during your trip, such as getting lost, injured or finding a wildfire, call 112. Read more detailed emergency instructions.
Download the 112 Finland application (112.fi) to your phone. When an emergency call is made through the 112 Finland application, the emergency centre attendant is automatically informed of the caller's location.
It is recommended to keep the mobile phone warm and to bring extra food and water with you. There are many excursion locations with no mobile coverage and some mobile phones does not work in sub-zero temperatures, that is why it is always a good idea to let someone know about your itinerary and timetable.
Game and Fisheries Wardens supervising nature destinations
Wilderness supervision (eräluvat.fi) offers services and education for the benefit of Finnish nature. A Game and Fisheries Warden is responsible for supervising the legality and authorisation of operations and the use of nature in state-owned areas.
If you witness or suspect a violation, you can report your observations to the warden (eräluvat.fi). Although we would like for you to leave your contact details when filing a report, you may also file a report anonymously.