Canoeing in Lemmenjoki national park

Lemmenjoki national park in Lapland is the most northern national park of Finland. I made a canoe trip there a couple years ago down the river Lemmenjoki. Lemmenjoki river valley from Njurkulahti to Kultasatama is one of the most memorable places I have paddled. It is real wilderness though hiking trails follow the shores. It is about 22 km one way.

To Kultasatama you go upstream and in some places you have to pull your canoe from the shore. Even local long boats carrying hikers to Kultasatama go upstream though they unburden their load by letting hikers for a walk while passing streams. You better be prepared with good water shoes.

Along the river there are several tent and fire sites and a few wilderness hut, from these you can find best description on Quite many hikers go to Kultasatama by boats from Njurkulahti and then leave for the paths in wilderness. In July the weather was quite nice, with for some reason no mosquitos but even bigger horseflies.

At the start near Njurkulahti the river is wide as a lake
In July streams are quite small
A view to Viipustunturit fells from Härkäkoski bay
Ravadasköngäs waterfall
Lunch time at Morgamniva fire site
Across the river
Cable boat crossing for hikers
Clear water
Others were coming upstream, we were for a exciting ride down the river
Passing by

8 thoughts on “Canoeing in Lemmenjoki national park”

  1. Hi, I’m very glad I found this site.

    I’m traveling to Finland in the last week of August for a conference (Vassa). I’m hoping to arrive 7-9 days early to see at least a bit of Finland.

    As a huge lover of the Australian Outback (I’m from South Australia) I would love to spend some time fishing and camping in the Finnish lakeland wilderness (2-3 nights). However, I’m having trouble finding recommendations of outfitters who I can hire equipment from. I may be able to travel with a sleeping bag and tent but not with a stove, fuel, shovel etc or a rod/reel/tackle.

    Do you have any recommendations of tours whether guided or self guided? I will be traveling by myself.

    Thank you!


    1. Hi Nathan!

      I would start with pages to look for an suitable area. National parks would be good places to start with. Under Services -link you can find “Enterprises and organizations offering services in the national park”, a lot of them offer tours and equipment.

      If you’re more interested in fishing check one operator in Linnansaari np, Saimaa Holiday. Great lake area though not really for hiking. See my blog post on Linnansaari.

      For more wilderness, go east to Patvinsuo np with a smaller lake but nice hiking trails (see my blog post). Or Koli national park which has a great lake of Pielinen. Ah, there are so many nice places to choose from.

      I hope you enjoy your time in Finland!

  2. To my shame I haven’t visited Lemmenjoki yet. Is the river alltogether peaceful? I mean if I go paddling there all by myself, do the rapids pose any problems? Last summer I kayaked along Ivalojoki and would not go there all by myself. Is Lemmenjoki more approachable?

    1. There are only a few streams (niva) between Njurkulahti and Kultasatama that you have to pull your kayak up. I was there at the end of July and there were quite peaceful, I guess earlier in summer they might be faster but not like real rapids (koski). Most of the route is nice river paddling and some parts like on lakes. I think going alone would not be any problem if you can pull your kayak with a rope on those streams.

  3. Hi,
    we are going to Finlad and we would like to spend a few days by canoeing. We would like to canoe from Njurkulahti to Solojävri. When we reach Solojävri, how can we get back to Njurkulahti for our car, do they provide some transport? Do you know the price for canoe/day?

    Thank you for your tips.


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