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Koitajoki – Koitere

Koitere – The lake with hundred islands

The remote location and difficult access has preserved Koitere’s islands as almost completely unbuilt. Its numerous sandy beaches and scenic landscapes across the islands offer exceptional hiking opportunities. Koitere’s nature and activities of people living in the area offer unique intangible cultural heritage experience of the area: traces of log floating history, ancient dwellings, lifting of the lake ore and regulation of water level whose traces are still noticeable on the beaches of Koitere.

Local fisherman at lake Koitere. Picture by Lauri Jänis


Koiteree islands (Natura-site)

Koitere “selkäsaaristo” can be translated to English as “Backbone islands of Koitere” The names of islands across Koitere are sourced from Koitere’s nature biodiversity, for example Yppylä, Multavieru, “Pylly islands ja Vallittu. Koitere is a fishing lake with main catch as pikeperch.  Other key fish species are whitefish, pike, and salmonids. The long stagnated herring population are also showing signs of growth. The rockyness and surprising shallow areas of the lake can be a challenging area for visitors. The vast water is challenging to cross-over when windy. Therefore, it is highly recommended that visitors with little knowledge of the area use the region’s service providers. This way stories about Koitere can raise the experience to a new level.

Patvinsuo National Park

Patvinsuo National park is situated in the northern part of Lake Koitere. The park is one of the internationally Important Bird and biodiversity Areas (IBA), and its mire landscapes offer wonderful hiking grounds. The old-growth forests in the area have stayed undisturbed for more than a hundred years. Spruce trees with beard lichen, old pine trees, are examples of species that can be spotted in the area. At the centre of the park locates Lake Suomunjärvi; surrounded with some of the finest hiking trails in North Karelia. With about ten islands in the lake with labyrinthine inlets, and approximately 24 kilometres of sandy shoreline, the park is a gem for bird watchers, hikers, and those seeking relaxation.


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