Instructions and Rules in Linnansaari National Park

Linnansaari National Park is a nature reserve intended as a public attraction. Its purpose is to preserve the authentic nature of Lake Saimaa as well as the natural habitats and cultural landscapes created by ancient forms of land use. 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 970 kt, julkaisut.metsa.fi, 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 Excursionmap.fi.

Respect Nature
Pets
Getting Around in National Park
Camping
Lighting Campfires
Litter-free Hiking
Fishing
Picking Berries, Mushrooms and Wild Herbs
Biking
Horse Riding
Other Rules and Instructions
Forbidden Activities
Peak Seasons
Safety

Respect Nature

The outdoor activities in the Linnansaari 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

Visitors are allowed to roam Linnansaari National Park independently by their own means and by watercraft, with the exception of the restricted areas:

  • In order to ensure that the Saimaa Ringed Seal remains undisturbed during its nesting period, landing and moving about on some of the islands in the national park is prohibited from 1 January to 30 April. In the area surrounding the Surmaluoto island group the access restriction also includes to the ice area extending 50 metres from the island shorelines.
  • In order to ensure that the Saimaa Ringed Seal and shorebirds remain undisturbed during their nesting period, landing and moving about on some of the islands in the national park is prohibited from 1 January to 15 July.
  • Moving about by motorised vehicles while water areas are covered by ice is prohibited from 1 January to 30 April in national park water areas marked in the map appendix (julkaisut.metsa.fi, in Finnish).

Camping

Camping in the national park is prohibited from 1 January to 30 April. Temporary camping is permitted from 1 May to 31 December only on camping sites specifically designated by Metsähallitus for this purpose.

Lighting Campfires

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). This prohibition does not apply to cooking shelters or other fireplaces with a flue in Sammakkoniemi camping area.

Litter-free Hiking

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.

Read more about Hiking without littering.

Fishing

Hook and line fishing and ice fishing are allowed under everyman's rights, except where specific restrictions apply.

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).

For trap fishing, in addition to paying the fisheries management fee, you will need Metsähallitus' trap fishing permit no 7008 for Haukivesi (eraluvat.fi, in Finnish). See also the restrictions. Permits can also be purchased by phone at +358 (0)20 69 2424.

Fishing on Lake Haukivesi is subject to various restrictions due to the endangered Saimaa ringed seal:

  • Net fishing is not permitted in state waters.
  • Many landowners' collectives also prohibit net fishing in their waters between 15 April and 30 June.
  • The use of certain kinds of traps and fishing techniques in areas favoured by the seals is also prohibited under a Decree of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (mmm.fi).

All types of fishing are prohibited in Linnansaarenlampi.

Fishers need to check the restrictions on fishing sites at kalastusrajoitus.fi (In Finnish).

Picking Berries, Mushrooms and Wild Herbs

Picking berries and edible mushrooms is allowed, except in the restricted areas.

Picking cones and seeds is only allowed with a permit granted by Metsähallitus.

It is prohibited to pick or damage other than edible mushrooms and trees, bushes or other plants or their parts. Picking wild herbs is therefore forbidden.

Biking

Mountain biking is allowed according to everyman`s rights. Always stay on clearly visible tracks and pay attention to other hikers.

Horse Riding

Horseback riding and dog-sledding is only allowed with a permit granted by Metsähallitus.

Other Rules and Instructions

Hunting elk in the national park is always subject to a permit. Metsähallitus has prepared separate guidelines and forms (metsa.fi) for applying for these permits.

Seizure of a game animal is only allowed with a permit granted by Metsähallitus.

Tourism-related activities may only be carried out with a permit granted by Metsähallitus.

Scientific activities, such as collecting plants, are only allowed with a permit granted by Metsähallitus.

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 Linnansaari 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).

Other Forbidden Activities in the Linnansaari 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.
  • 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 Linnansaari

The rules and regulations of Linnansaari National Park (Pdf 1,7 Mt, julkaisut.metsa.fi, in Finnis), ratified on 17 February 2010.

Peak Seasons

Linnansaari is popular with visitors, especially between the Midsummer (the Finnish public holiday on a Saturday around 24th of June) and the first week of August. Most visitors go to the main island, Linnansaari Island, or Mäntyluoto Island, but in the large National Park there are enough camping sites for everyone.

Safety

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.

  • When boating or canoeing, an appropriate map is always needed.
  • You may need warm and windproof clothing on the boat.
  • On an easy trail, you will be fine in runners, sandals or sneakers. For demanding terrain, you should wear sturdy waterproof shoes, such as all-terrain runners or walking boots. When selecting clothing, visitors should take into account the fact that adders (Vipera berus) have been seen on the sunny slopes of Linnansaari Island.
  • Long sleeves and trousers are also recommended. During the autumn, we recommend a head net for protection from deer flies - Linnansaari Island has a large elk population.
  • 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 Linnansaari National Park, except in some areas in the park where cliffs or forest block signals. Read more about mobile phone coverage (112.fi).
  • 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. 

Drawing of a fireplace. The drawing shows the roof, the flue and off the ground.

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.

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Download the 112 Finland application (112.fi) to your phone. When an emergency call is made through the 112 Finland application, the emergency center 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

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 (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.