Things to Do and See in Kuhmo Visitor Centre Petola

The teddy bear watches from its small nest. A wooden bear stands in the background of the Nest.


  • At the Predators on the Prowl exhibition, you can study Finland's large carnivores – bears, wolves, lynxes and wolverines. You will discover how large a bear is, how a pack of wolves act, what a lynx eats, how a wolverine moves, how to identify their tracks, and you will hear the sounds of the predators. Read more.
  • In the Info Section, you will find comprehensive information on the relationship between large carnivores and man, the current state of the large carnivore populations, research and monitoring. Read more.
  • Temporary exhibitions present a large variety of themes ranging from fascinating nature photographs to handicraft. You can find more detailed information on the Petolas What's New page.
  • Finland's large carnivores are also comprehensively presented on

A photo exhibition on the wall of the nature center. Pictures of the animals are printed on the plywood boards.

Guided Group Tours

Please book the guided tours in advance. During opening hours, guided tours cost 50€/hour/group.

  • The Predators on the Prowl exhibition
    • Duration 1 hour.
  • Petola Nature Trail (0.5 km)
    • Presents the living habits and senses of large carnivores. On this action-packed trail, you can compare your own jumping ability to the leap of a hunting lynx, look for the places where wolverines hide their catches, communicate like wolves and compare your own strength to that of a bear.
    • Duration 30–45 min.
    • The Petola Nature Trail is also accessible by wheelchair and pram.

Adult and three children in a pine forest. The children are standing on the path. The adult is next to the path.

Films at the Auditorium

  • The films (10-15 min.) belong to the series called Nature Unlimited (Audio: Finnish, English, Russian). Author: Kari Kemppainen.
    • Large Carnivores in the Border Region
    • The Friendship Park
    • Life in Old-Growth Forests
  • Moments in Nature (7 min.). Author: Kari Kemppainen
    • A short non-spoken film about animals and nature in the Kainuu region.
  • Wild Forest Reindeer (11 min. Audio: Finnish, English, Russian). Author: Kari Kemppainen.
    • A short presentation of the life of wild forest reindeer.
  • Hossa Timelaps (5 min.). Author: Riku Karjalainen
  • Animation film Movement Across a Border (7 min., available in Finnish and English). Author: Osuuskunta Animaatiokopla
    • An animation of the life in the border region throughout the history of independet Finland
  • There are also other films on offer, such as Wilderness Nature on the Kainuu – Viena Karelian Border (12 min.) and Nature knows no bounds (50 min.).

Northern lights over calm Lake.

Hiking info - Outdoors in Kainuu

  • The Outdoors in Kainuu -section gives the best tips for recreation in nature in the whole Kainuu region.
  • At the hiking info there is an access to the sites
  • Also access to sites (large carnivores) and

The Reference Library at the Info Section

  • The Info section boasts comprehensive volumes of large carnivore literature as well as magazines on the subject.

A shelf against the wall with books. The plush wolverine peeks off the shelf.

Events at the Visitor Centre

  • Kuhmo Culture Celebrates Winter is a serie of events organised in January by cultural actors in Kuhmo. Read more on site
  • Children's Kuhmo Jolly July provides a wide variety of events for young people, families with children, grandparents and children at heart throughout the whole of July. In Jolly July, the visitor centre has plenty of large carnivore themed activities. Read more
  • The Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival cooperates with Metsähallitus. For many years, one of the chamber music festival's concerts has been held at the visitor centre. Read more
  • Sommelo is a music festival that is held in Kainuu and in Viena Karelia, Russia, where the star turns are runosongs as well as old and new forms of folk music. Some of the Sommelo events take place at the visitor centre. Read more

Happy kids going to run when the game starts. In the background a pine forest and a building.

Trails Connecting the Visitor Centre

Petola Nature Trail (0.5 km)

On the Petola Nature Trail, you will learn about the senses and habits of large carnivores. This action-packed trail gives everyone a chance to compare their jumping ability to the leap of a hunting lynx, look for places where wolverines hide their prey, communicate without words like wolves and find out how strong they are compared to a bear. Also included is folklore about the origins of large carnivores. In addition, you can test your wits by trying to solve a few riddles related to predators. Walking along the trail, you will encounter silhouettes of predators in natural size, and you can focus your camera on the not-so-traditional information boards: they are cut-out boards where you can have your picture taken standing by a large carnivore.

The trail is circular and some 0.5 km long, and it is provided as part of the services of the Kalevalankangas Tourist Centre in Kuhmo. The Petola Nature Trail is meant for the customers of the Visitor Centre and the tourism businesses operating in the Kalevalankangas area, and it invites visitors to learn about the senses of carnivores.

The best way to explore the trail and its various levels is to take part in a guided tour.

The trail can also be accessed by wheelchair and with a pram or pushchair.

Four children try to bend an iron bar. In the background pines and a lake.

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