Into the heart of Lakeland

Self-drive highlights of Eastern Lakeland

Discover a land of great lakes, lush forests and long summer days, as you drive and paddle your way through the scenic lakelands of Southern Finland, where adventure and wilderness meets comfortable cabins and traditional guesthouses. With more water than land, it is no surprise that this natural paradise is the largest lake district in Europe. Interconnected lakes, small inlets and sandy beaches provide the perfect playground for kayaking, paddle boarding or just laying back with a good book. Dotted around these lakes of fresh clear water you will find a diverse collection of towns and villages bursting with character and colour.




Day 1 Helsinki - Lehmonkarki (150km)

Welcome to Finland! Collect your hire car at the airport and let the adventures begin. Take the highway for a swift drive to your first stop at Lehmonkarki or maybe you will take the slightly longer but more scenic route along the country roads. Include a stop at one of the local supermarkets to stock up on provisions for the next couple of days. Lehmonkarki was named after the wild Linden trees that grow in the area near the shore of lake Paijanne, here your private cabin awaits. All of the cabins are set apart from each other and most have their own private beach, a rowing boat and a small pier, from which you can explore. Made from round logs in a traditional style, cabins are fully equipped with everything you will need for your stay, some even have their own sauna, a staple of Finnish life.

Staying at: Lehmonkärki

Day 2 Lehmonkarki

Whether you choose to take to the water or stay on dry land, there is so much to explore right on your doorstep. Take your rowing boat out on the lake, fishing equipment is available to rent if you wish, try your hand at frisbee golf or hike forest trails to observation points, where breathtaking views over the regions forests and lakes lay before you.

Day 3 Lehmonkarki - Tertin Kartano (150km)

Today we take the wonderful drive to the beautiful Tertin Kartano manor house. No matter the route you choose to take, you will find stunning scenery around every corner. Long bridges cross shimmering bodies of water, connecting small islands, whilst forests of tall trees provide shade from the summer sun. Dating back to the 1800’s, this charming manor offers an award-winning restaurant and delightful rooms with views across expansive gardens. With the restaurant and a working farm accompanied by a delicious cafe, where homemade cakes and sweet treats are made fresh each day, this is a little piece of foodie heaven tucked away in a unique setting.

Day 4 Tertin Kartano - Jarvisdyan Resort (85km)

Continue your journey through this land of stunning vistas, to the shores of the largest lake in Finland, Lake Saimaa, and the thrilling Jarvisdyan resort. With a lakeshore that stretches for over 14,000 kilometres and 13,710 islands scattered through the region, this is no normal lake basin. Guests have been welcomed to this location since 1658 and the welcome is as warm today as it was back then. Spend the next two nights staying in the newly opened hotel, where balcony rooms feature a decor of wood and stone that pays homage to a traditional Nordic style with inclusions of the modern day. If you feel like trying something a little different you may prefer to stay in one of scenic suites that overlook the lake or the unique houseboats that are moored on the pier. This evening savour your included dinner in Restaurant Piikatyttö before relaxing in the hotel bar with a cold drink and views of the lake for company.

Staying at: Hotel Järvisydän

Day 5 Jarvisdyan

With so much water to explore and islands to visit, it’s an early start on Lake Saimaa. Join a Stand Up Paddle Board (SUP) lesson and learn how to join this fast growing past time or try a traditional kayak or canoe session. With your new found paddle skills discover quiet inlets and isolated beaches as you explore further afield. Take a boat safari to see the endangered Ring seal, which can only be found in the Lakeland region of Finland, accompanied by a campfire lunch.

As the day draws to a close it is time to relax aching muscles with a visit to the impressive Lake Spa. A heart-shaped pool, surrounded by natural rock formations and forest plants, forms the centrepiece of the spa, whilst you can pamper yourself in several different types of sauna or book one of the many beauty treatments on offer. You can of course swim in the clear fresh waters of the lake if you wish. Dinner included this evening.

Day 6 Jarvisdyan - Anttolanhovi (100km)

We leave the resort of Jarvisdyan behind and take the road south to Anttolanhovi wellness village, where modern contemporary villas overlook further tributaries of Lake Saimaa and provide a stylish location from which to unearth more of this captivating countryside.

Why not spend the afternoon on a guided trip into the forests. Learn about the therapeutic effects and culinary uses of some of the herbs that grow there. Go foraging for fresh berries or mushrooms, learn where to find them and the tastiest to eat, depending on the season you could try wild strawberries, blueberry, wild raspberry or lingonberry. This evening let someone else combine the finest local produce and flavours, savour a delicious meal in the Lakeside restaurant. Meat from a local butcher, fish caught in nearby lakes, fruit and vegetable from neighbourhood farms, food doesn’t get much fresher than this.

Staying at: Art and Design Villas

Day 7 Anttolanhovi

It’s your last full day in the Lakeland region and you should take full advantage of the well maintained forest trails by foot, by bike or maybe try an ATV (All Terrain Vehicle). Leave the trails behind and take the path less travelled, hike just about anywhere and find those amazing views; Everyman’s Rights allows incredible freedom of movement so that you can go, see and discover as you see fit. Getting out into the woods also gives you a chance to see the varied Finnish wildlife, from the red squirrel to the enormous moose or elk, or even a brown bear (but don’t worry; they don’t usually want to be found)! Put you new found paddling skills to one last expedition on the water or maybe just jump in for a swim!

Day 8 Anttolanhovi - Helsinki (255km)

It is time to say goodbye to the land of forest and lake, making your way back to Helsinki for your onward flight. Why not add a few days in the nations capital, ask our experienced staff for some recommendations.


From £930 per person based on 2 sharing

This roughly converts to: 1,070 EUR | 1,218 USD

Remember that each trip we craft is unique, and you'll receive a personalised trip proposal based on your travel dates and preferences, and in the currency of your choice (GBP, USD, or EUR).


Additional Info

This trip has flexible daily departures

Many of trips can be tailored to your requirements and departure dates. Please get in touch with us for a tailored quotation and details of availability for your preferred travel dates. All trips and departures are subject to availability.

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7 nights

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