Petkeljärvi national park in eastern Finland – great place for paddling

Petkeljärvi national park is the most eastern national park in Finland near Russian border. It is a small park and suitable for day trips. Starting point for hiking and canoeing is in Petraniemi Outdoors Center where your can rent canoes and buy fishing permits, camp or stay at the lodge.

There are great small waters and bays you can reach from Petraniemi either by canoe or kayak. If going south by paddling beware not to enter border area, it is only 3 kilometres south-east from the park. Heading south you can paddle all the way to Mutalahti which is 20 kilometres away in south.

If you want to kayak longer trips you can paddle north towards lake Nuorajärvi and further to Koitajoki river. Paddling through meandering Koitajoki you end to lake Koitere. Before setting up this real wilderness paddling, remember that Koitajoki river is over 200 kilometres long.

The lake area near Petkeljärvi and Ilomantsi is great for paddlers. Try paddling at night in June, it does not get dark at all, just a beautiful dusk and peace. At dawn you will probably see and hear nature at it’s best.

Bay on the shore of Korkeasärkkä ridge
Pine forest in Petkeljärvi near Petraniemi
Old dead trees on Korkeasärkkä ridge
Beautiful Lesser Butterfly Orchid on Korkeasärkkä ridge in Petkeljärvi

You will most likely see and hear Black-throated diver when walking along Korkeasärkkä ridge to the tip of the peninsula and back.

View on narrow Korkeasärkkä ridge in Petkeljärvi

Another good starting point for paddling trips is near Ilomantsi, from Ruhkaranta beach. Nearby are good paddling places and beautiful ridge area along Taitajan Taival hiking trail.

Canoeing in lake Muokonjärvi in Ilomantsi
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