Sunset in Saimaa
Kitka river, Ruka Kuusamo
Water Sports in Finland
Discover the best water sports in Finland
Land of water
Finland is clearly a country of water. With the largest archipelago area in the world off the south and west coasts, over 185,000 lakes inland and numerous rivers, water is almost everywhere. The waters in the Nordic country are clean throughout, most of them are safe for drinking and are home to countless species of flora and fauna. In Lake Saimaa – and only here – lives the rare Saimaa ringed seal, a relic from the last Ice Age.
Most of the country's lakes are located in the so-called Lakeland in the central and eastern Finland. Wild rivers and rapids flow mainly through Lapland in the north and should not be underestimated, especially after the snow has melted. Off the south and west coast lies the world's largest archipelago with thousands of islands, islets and skerries. Some are nothing more than a bare rock, but others have forests or even inhabited houses. Many of the most beautiful natural sights in Finland are best explored from the water.
Photo: Harri Tarvainen, Visit Finland
On the way with canoe and kayak
One of the best ways of exploring Finnish waters is by canoe or kayak. Canoeing is a great way to experience the land of a thousand lakes, see breathtaking nature and discover places that can only be reached by water. In the natural silence, all you can hear is the sound of paddling and the sounds of wildlife – you might even spot a rare Saimaa ringed seal.
Whether you are a beginner on the calm lakes inland or an experienced and adventurous paddler on the rapids in Lapland and on the Baltic Sea in strong winds, Finland offers the perfect water for every level of experience. Equipment can easily be rented on-site and guided tours are also available – to learn and discover even more. The small islands should definitely be used for a break or even an overnight stay, there are so many that you can easily find a desert one.
Photo: Krista Keltanen, Visit Finland
Exploring the waters by boat
Photo: Visit Lahti
Endless fishing opportunities
Water sports in winter
- Ahvenanmaa 13 water sports
- Arctic Lakeland Kainuu 10 water sports
- Central Finland 7 water sports
- Central Ostrobothnia 4 water sports
- Kanta-Häme 11 water sports
- Lappi 16 water sports
- Northern Lakeland 15 water sports
- Nothern Ostrobothnia 9 water sports
- Ostrobothnia 8 water sports
- Päijät-Häme 6 water sports
- South Karelia 10 water sports
- Southern Savonia 15 water sports
- Southwest Finland 13 water sports
- Uusimaa 20 water sports