Koli National Park – The face of Finland

After spending two days in Helsinki it was time for me to explore more of Finland. Together with five other bloggers I travelled north to Koli National Park. Here you’ll find beautiful forests and sceneries, and the view that used to be the face of Finland.

Koli National Park

How to get here

This was a post-trip organised by PING and sadly we flew from Helsinki. Flying within a country is something I am highly against so this did not sit well with me, but on a press trip there’s not much you can do to affect details like this unless you’re a part of it during the planning stage.

But if you like me want to travel here in a more sustainable way you take a train to Joensuu and then a bus to Koli.

Upon arrival we met up with our guide and headed into the forest. She told us the history of the place and the story behind the three hills Akka, Ukko and Paha (mother, father and child).

Koli National Park

Koli National Park

63° 5′ 47.508” N29° 48′ 19.4544” E

“In an age of rapid technological advances and the increasing exploitation of natural resources people began to yearn for the simpler pleasure of nature. This was a time of political tension, and the rise of Finnish nationalism was also reflected in the arts. Koli’s landscapes began to symbolise the face of Finland. Landscape paintings from this period also express contemporary perceptions of nature and the need for conservation.”

 

Guide in Koli National Park

Koli National Park

Koli National Park

Lake Pielinen – The Face of Finland

The view over the lake have been captured by many different artists, capturing the spirit of the place. Inspired by an artwork of Lake Pielinen by Eero Järnefelt, the head of the Finnish forest administration ensured that the hills of Koli where purchased for the state in 1907. 

Koli National Park

Koli National Park

We stopped at the top of Ukko-Koli to enjoy the view so many have seen before us, and we also had a few cups of refreshing Finnish birch water, freshly tapped from the trees.

The cups come from Kupilka – a Finnish company that produces the cups using natural fibre composite: Eco-friendly cellulose fibres from certified Finnish forests reinforce the material with FDA approved polypropylene used as an adhesive.

Hurray for sustainable options and innovations!

Koli National Park

Koli National Park

Break Sokos Hotel Koli

We stayed at a beautiful hotel only 300 meters from the forest which is precisely how I like my hotels; situated in a calm, secluded area in a nordic forest.

After our hike we all enjoyed a powerful yoga session before hitting the spa where we relaxed while the fir trees swayed outside the windows and all was silent. After traveling back and forth and attending PING it was nice to slow down with a glass of bubbel in the jacuzzi overlooking the forest.

Break Sokos Hotel Koli

Break Sokos Hotel Koli

Break Sokos Hotel Koli

After relaxing in the spa it was time for dinner.

Besides the hotel and outdoor centre, there’s is nothing but nature here (which I love!), and so dinner took place in the hotel’s own restaurant. And this I have zero complaints about since the food was outstanding and the service wonderful.

During the dinner we all spoke about our previous travels, what country we liked the most and where we’ve had our most amazing experience. The other bloggers had traveled far and wide and had a lot of amazing stories to tell.

What was my answer?

Standing outside my house in Sweden on a dark, quiet winter night watching the northern lights dance across the skies while the sound of a fox echoed through the forest.

Break Sokos Hotel Koli

Break Sokos Hotel Koli

When the dinner was done and the sun started to set, I decided to make use of the fact that the hotel is so close to the forest and the national park. I changed into my plaid, put on my hat and headed out to watch the world go to sleep together with this years first mosquitoes.

Thank you Koli National Park, you are beautiful and I understand why you were the face of Finland.

Break Sokos Hotel Koli

Sunset in Koli National Park

Sunset in Koli National Park

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

2 Comments

  1. Reply

    Helmi

    19 May, 2018

    Oh!! I have been following you in social media for ages (loved your dreadlocks back then!) and it’s crazy to see that you’ve been just around the corner here! Amazing photos as always ♥

    Greetings from Joensuu :)

    • Reply

      Northbound Journeys

      20 May, 2018

      Oh you have?! That’s so fun, thank you for following me! I am missing having dreadlocks a lot, might get them again in a year or two… I’m glad I got to visit a place near where you live, I really liked it!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.