Finland's coastline is very rugged made up of thousands of islands, which make the stand up paddling routes both beautiful, as well as protected from winds and waves. There are many recreational islands to which you can paddle to and even camp out in. When you move inland the pristine lake systems and connecting rivers provide endless opportunities for SUP adventures. Moreover, many of the cities are in a close proximity to water, allowing easy paddling access and fun ways to explore cities from the water.
These 8 reasons explain why Finland is a paddling paradise and worthy of your next SUP adventure!
If you look at the map of Finland, you will notice that most of the land is forests and lakes, with few cities scattered here and there. Not only is nature very close to our everyday lives, it is very clean as well. Finland has one of the purest air, cleanest lakes in the world and there are lots of fresh goodies to be enjoyed straight from the nature. So for your next paddle take with you your fishing gear, pick healthy forest berries of the bushes for quick energy or take a dip in the pristine water!
A large part of Finland is made up of water, in fact across the country you'll find over 180 000 lakes! Varying in size and shape, there are plenty of opportunities to explore and chances are that there wont be too many others sharing the same waterways. Our favorite paddling experience was all the way up North in Lapland, at the Lake Pallas, where we paddled throughout the night in the midnight sun and slept on a remote red sand beach. If you are a beginner in SUP touring, it might be a good idea to get started with paddling in closed lake systems before heading over to the archipelago and open seas!
Many of the Finnish cities are built in the proximity of the sea, lakes or rivers and provide fun opportunities to observe the cities from the water. In the capital region of Helsinki, you can paddle across the city or to the islands off shore for a day trip. The waterways inside the city tend to get busy during the summer days, but early mornings and evenings the boat traffic eases, thus making it a nice time to head out in the water. Enjoy coffee on the coastal cafes, take a night paddle across the city or enjoy picnic at the offshore recreational islands.
The rugged coastline along the Baltic Sea stretches from the Russian border in the south east, approximately 1250 km up north to the Swedish border. Along this way fits thousands and thousands of islands forming the vast Finnish archipelago. More experienced paddlers would want to look for great paddling routes along the archipelago, moving from one place to another with overnight camping gear and perhaps enjoying a bit of down winding as well. Less experienced paddlers find great opportunities for day trips for example in the Espoo archipelago. One of our favourite is Iso Vasikkasaari, which is a great summer paddling get away!
One of the unique things about Finland is the 'Everyman's right', what this means is that even if the land is owned by someone you are still allowed to enjoy the Finnish nature freely, access remote islands and camp in the wilderness. (Respecting the nature, the property, privacy and obeying rules of course) This presents endless opportunities for wondering around in the wilderness either on foot or a paddle board. Check out the site for Finnish National parks for more tips and recommendations for places to go to.
Paddling in Finland compared to many other countries is really safe if you gear up right, plan your paddling route well and check the latest weather conditions before embarking on a journey. We have no strong currents or tides, and the shore break on a regular day is nonexistent. You can plan your paddling route in shelter from the winds and waves thanks to our archipelago. Moreover, maybe the best part is that we have no dangerous animals living in the water! Because of these conditions, Finland is a really good place for SUP touring and downwind paddles, however one must wait for the optimum conditions for SUP-surfing.
Finland is located in the North, way North and this comes with an advantage during the summer months: it doesn't get dark. In the northern part of Finland, the sun literally shines through the night and at the south when the sun has set, it starts rising immediately. The wind usually calms down at night time and the light is quite magical. If you plan a stand up paddling trip to Finland during the summer, a midnight paddle on the 'to-do' list is a must.
For the past years SUP has taken over the nordics and great SUP schools and rental venues have been established around the country. Head over to the closest rental venue, get geared up and ask about their favorite paddling routes. These places are our favourites and will make sure you have a great time, as well as provide you with quality gear:
West Helsinki: TwentyKnots (https://twentyknots.fi/)
East Helsinki: Natura Viva (http://www.naturaviva.fi/en/)
Loviisa: Strömfors Outdoor (http://stromforsoutdoor.com/)
Tampere: Suppaa Tampere (https://www.suppaatampere.com/)
Kuusamo: Outdoor Passion (http://www.outdoorpassion.fi/en/)
Vaasa: SUP Station Vaasa (http://www.supstation.fi/vaasa/)
Turku: SUP Rental Turku (http://www.suprental.fi/)
Lahti: KiteTirri (http://www.kitetirri.fi/)
TwentyKnots SUP adventures and take-away rentals:
For experienced paddles we offer take-away SUP-rentals for independent exploration, but also offer guided tours to our favorite destinations. Don't hesitate to ask us for advice on paddling routes or enquire about upcoming paddling tours in the Helsinki region! Read more