Instructions and Rules in Petkeljärvi National Park

Petkeljärvi National Park is a nature conservation area intended as a public attraction. Its purpose is to preserve North Karelian esker and lake habitats. 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 76 Kb,, in Finnish).

Getting around in nature is limited in the restricted areas. Take a look at the restricted areas in the national park on Maps pages and in

Respect Nature
Getting around in National Park 
Lighting Campfires
Litter-free Hiking
Picking Berries, Mushrooms and Wild Herbs
Other Rules and Instructions
Drone Flying
Forbidden Activities
Peak Seasons

Respect Nature

The outdoor activities in the Petkeljärvi 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.

Letting pets running at large is forbidden. Dogs and other pets are welcome in the national park but only on a leash.

Getting around in National Park 

In the Petkeljärvi National Park, you may freely walk, ski, row and canoe, except for any restricted areas.

Using motorboats is only permitted in Petkeljärvi and Valkiajärvi lakes.


Camping is only permitted in the camping area.

Lighting Campfires

A covered barbecue shelter and a reservable campfire hut can be found in Petraniemi. Lighting fires is prohibited in other areas.

At Petkeljärvi Camping Ground there is a camp kitchen.

When a wild fire warning has been issued, fires may only be lit in the campfire hut. In these situations the hut will be open for everyone to use. Always check the current warnings ( 

Litter-free Hiking

The National Park's recycling point is located at Petkeljärvi Camping Ground. Biodegradable waste should be placed in a composter, and small amounts of clean paper and cardboard can be used as kindling in a campfire. 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.

Read more about Hiking without littering.


Hook and line fishing and ice fishing are allowed under everyman's rights.

Persons aged 18-69 years must pay the fisheries management fee ( If you fish with more than one rod, you also need Metsähallitus' angling permit no 7413 for Southern Finland ( Fishing permits are available from Metsähallitus' online shop (

For trap fishing, in addition to paying the fisheries management fee, you will need Metsähallitus' trap fishing permit no 7004 for Ilomantsi (, in Finnish). Permits can also be purchased by phone at +358 (0)20 69 2424.

However, all types of fishing are prohibited in Kuikkalampi, Pieni Kuikkalampi, Savulampi and Mustalampi lakes.

Fishers need to check the restrictions on fishing sites at (in Finnish).

Picking Berries, Mushrooms and Wild Herbs

Picking berries and edible mushrooms is allowed.

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. Always stay on clearly visible tracks and pay attention to other hikers.

Other Rules and Instructions

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 ( and permits and notifications related to events (

The use of the trails and structures of Petkeljärvi National Park  for business activities is always subject to a fee, and for frequent business use,  a contract with Metsähallitus ( is required. The right of use fees for specific days are paid at the Eräluvat webshop (

Drone Flying

The entire Petkeljärvi National Park belongs to the ADIZ border zone, which means that all drone operators must submit a drone flight plan to AIS Finland in advance. Flight plan preparation instructions and submission forms can be found on Fintraffic ANS's aviation information service can be found on the website of Fintraffic ANS ( You can also call customer service at the Koli Nature Centre for further information.

In the Petkeljärvi National Park, drone flying that disturbs other people or animals is prohibited. You must be especially cautious during the nesting period of birds.

Other Forbidden Activities in the Petkeljärvi National Park

  • 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.
  • Hunting.
  • Driving motor vehicles, except on roads designated for motor vehicles.
  • Landing aircrafts on the park's waters without specific permission by Metsähallitus.
  • 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 Petkeljärvi

The rules and regulations of Petkeljärvi National Park (pdf 76 Kb,, in Finnish), ratified on 3 February 1978. 

Peak Seasons

Petkeljärvi National Park is a popular destination for short hiking trips. It is most visited between Mid-Summer and the first week of August. During May school camps frequent the park.


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 ( has in store, will help make your trip a success. 

Check for Warnings

When forest and grass fire warnings ( 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 ( 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.

Outdoor Etiquette

A cartoon picture of a family walking on a summer path.

1. Respect nature.

2. Mainly use marked trails.

3. Camp only where it is allowed.

4. Light your campfire only where it is allowed.

5. Do not litter.

Read more

Game and Fisheries Wardens supervising nature destinations

Two people standing on top of a high hill, wearing snowmobile clothes. A wide, open view in the background.

Wilderness supervision (erä 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 (erä Although we would like for you to leave your contact details when filing a report, you may also file a report anonymously.