Instructions and Rules in Punkaharju Nature Reserve
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.
Instructions on Exploring Punkaharju Esker Nature Reserve
In the Nature Reserve, the following are
- Hiking, skiing and boating or canoeing (joy riding on water scooters etc is forbidden).
- Picking berries and edible mushrooms.
- Hook and line fishing and ice fishing. Fishers need to check the restrictions on fishing sites at kalastusrajoitus.fi (In Finnish).
- Cycling is permitted only on the area's roads and trails separately marked with bike symbols (Topeliuksen luontopolku Nature Trail, the Hakki (Nutcracker) Trail and Puulajireitti Tree Species Trail).
- Persons aged 18-64 years must pay the fisheries management fee (eraluvat.fi). Read more about fishing permits you need. Fishers need to check the restrictions on fishing sites at kalastusrajoitus.fi (In Finnish).
- As a rule, a permit issued by Metsähallitus is required for activities other than those included in everyman's rights, which may include research and organised events. Further information on required permits: research and access permits (metsa.fi) and permits and notifications related to events (metsa.fi).
- Camping and lighting fire in the open.
- Taking or damaging trees, bushes, other plants or their parts, or mushrooms other than edible ones.
- Killing, catching or disturbing wild vertebrates, or damaging their nests.
- Damaging soil or rock, and extraction of earth material or minerals.
- Mountain biking, horseback riding and landing aircrafts.
- Driving motor vehicles, except on roads designated for motor vehicles.
- Leaving waste in the area, or damaging constructions.
- Damaging research area, prehistoric artefacts, buildings, information boards and other structures.
- Any activity which could disturb other visitors in the area, as well as letting dogs, cats or other pets run free.
Mobile Phone Coverage
- Although Finland has a broad network for mobile phones, there are some areas in the park without signal. There may also be some smaller spots where there is interference. If this happens try to climb to a higher place or go into an open area. It may be worth removing the SIM card from your phone and then trying again to make emergency call. Different phones also differ in their coverage.
- We recommend that you keep your mobile phone warm at all times and take along food and drink. Certain phone models do not work when the temperature falls below zero. You should therefore let someone know your planned route. To keep your mobile phone charged, bring along a spare power source, a spare battery or an old phone with a working battery.
Equipment and Safety
- When travelling on water boaters should always have an appropriate map with them.
- 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.
- Make sure you pack a first-aid kit.
- Hiking in Finland:
The peak season in Punkaharju is during the middle of summer spanning from Mid-summer to the beginning of August.
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 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.