• Kuopio – a Lakeland harbour town

    Best views in Finland

    The Puijo Tower, topped with a restaurant, offers fabulous views of the surrounding lake district. It is also the starting point for good summer trekking trails and ski routes in winter.

  • Summer market – a central hub

    Kuopio’s Town Hall forms one side of the city’s central Market Square, a focus for the annual dance festival and a colourful, thriving source of fresh Finnish produce – vegetables, berries and mushrooms – over the summer months.

  • From fish to sauna mats

    The Market Hall in Kuopio is a compact one-stop source of fresh fish, meat, bread, vegetables and other Finnish essentials – such as sauna items. Built in 1902, the quaint pink-painted building is one of the city’s longest-established, most iconic fixtures.

  • The market alley of Pikku-Pietari is a hidden treasure of Kuopio

    Pikku-Pietari is situated in idyllic old stables just a few paces away from the Market Square. The log building includes a cafe, with its own terrace, charming shops which sell hand-made items and gifts, antiques and rural furniture. It is open from June to end to August.

  • The heart of Lakeland

    The late summer sun gradually sinks over Puijo Tower and the nearby ski jumps. Kuopio’s easy-going, welcoming air crystallises the charms of the provincial Finnish summer.

  • Best views in Finland

    The Puijo Tower, topped with a restaurant, offers fabulous views of the surrounding lake district. It is also the starting point for good summer trekking trails and ski routes in winter.

  • Lakeland passenger harbour

    One of Kuopio’s main attractions as a summer destination is as a hop-on point for Lakeland cruises. During the peak season, as many as 20 daily cruises can be found on the expansive waters of Lake Kallavesi.

  • World's biggest smoke sauna

    Rauhalahti, near Kuopio, is the site of an enormous smoke sauna – claimed to be the world’s biggest. It is available to guests at the nearby hotel and, at designated times, to the general public, who make the trip out of town to bathe on summer evenings.

  • Lumberjack traditions preserved

    Traditional log-rolling skills are demonstrated near the Jätkänkämppä logging lodge at Rauhalahti, some five kilometres from Kuopio.

  • Fish and pork at their best - kalakukko

    Karelian pies are at their best from Hanna Partanen’s bakery in Kuopio, but the real speciality is kalakukko, a combination of vendace fish and pork baked in a rye bread crust and wrapped in foil. Kuopio is the spiritual home of this unique Finnish delicacy.

  • To the manor born

    The elegant Koivumäki Manor Restaurant, 12 kilometres south of Kuopio, makes a pleasant excursion from the city. The family-run restaurant is a good place to sample local berry liqueurs made by Kuopio’s Lignell & Piispanen distillery.

  • A Lakeland aristocrat

    The MS Ukko is one of a fleet of traditional passenger boats based in Kuopio. Built in 1898 and originally christened SS Teuvo, the vessel can carry as many as 175 passengers onto the lake, including 70 on its sun deck. It has a restaurant, too.

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Kuopio – a Lakeland harbour town

Like most Finnish provincial cities, Kuopio comes into its own in the summer when it plays host to a major dance festival, as well as a lively wine festival. The city’s essence, however, comes from its lakeside location on the shores of Kallavesi and its role as a harbour for lake traffic.

On a nearby ridge overlooking Kuopio is the Puijo observation tower and it offers some of the best lake views in Finland. Located in the heart of the Savo district, this delightful city boasts its own distinct dialect and is also home to the Finnish Orthodox Church, the country’s official religion.

In traditional Finnish style, a bustling market place forms the hub of the city. In the picturesque Pikku-Pietari market you can find a variety of Finland’s best delicacies, from the tiny and scrumptious freshwater vendace to a fine selection of quality handicrafts.

During the summer, Kuopio has a number of restaurant terraces down by the harbour from which you can watch steam boats chugging about on the water. Enjoying an evening cruise on a passenger steamer departing from Kuopio’s harbour is a quintessential Finnish summer experience.

One other intrinsic Finnish ritual is the smoke sauna available at nearby Rauhalahti, which is claimed by some to be the world’s biggest. It is close to the lake, providing an ideal location for both swimming and sauna sessions.


The largest Lake District in Europe: In a scarcely populated country there’s enough scenery and shoreline for all, allowing you to easily lose yourself in thought or be inspired by the vast clear lakes, intricately splintered by islands, isthmuses and green spits.

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