One of the best known natural attractions and one of the best known national landscapes in Finland.
The size of the park is 3000 ha (30 km²) and it is located in the towns of Joensuu and Lieksa and the municipality of Kontiolahti. Area was established on April 10, 1991, expanded in 1996.
National Park is divided into three zones according to the main conservation objectives. National landscape and geology are considered in the zone covering the highest peaks of Koli. The cultural zone is located just outside the village. The cultural zone maintains the diversity of traditional landscapes by cutting, grazing and treating eg. mowing. The yard with its old buildings, the ranches and sheep grazing in the open air in the middle of an open birch-lined cultural landscape, are pearls of cascade culture.
Specifically, the diverse plant species require annual maintenance meadows to survive. The natural zone protects the forest of the dangers. The nature of the area is very diverse in terms of landscape and it allows for a large number of different biotopes in a small area and thus a very diverse species. The Rocky Mountains are rugged, the shady slopes is covered with old spruce or birch trees.
The most famous vantage point is Ukko-Koli, which offers a magnificent view to the east of Pielinen. In the vicinity of the peak are Nature Center Ukko and Break Sokos Hotel Koli. There is two long landscape lifts to the south and north in the summer.
How to Get There?
There are signs to Ukko-Koli Hill and Nature Centre Ukko from the main road 6 (between Joensuu and Kajaani). In Ahmovaara at Kolinportti, take turn to road 504. Ukko-Koli Hill is located 12 km and Koli village 9 km from the main road. There are signs from the village of Koli leading to Ukko-Koli.
Rantatie road, which follows the shore of Lake Pielinen, offers a beautiful scenic route. It travels 20 km in the Koli National Park and turning off the road to visit sights or trails is easy. When coming from the Ahveninen-Lieksa direction you can get onto Rantatie road by turning right from road 515 at the intersection to Herajoki. When heading to the National Park by main road 6 (running between Joensuu and Kajaani) turn onto road 515 in the direction of Ahveninen and then turn left at the intersection to Herajoki.
During winter a scenic 7-km-long ice road leads across Lake Pielinen from Vuonislahti to park.
There is a coach connection from Joensuu to Koli direction. Express bus stop is located in Ahmovaara at Kolinportti (9 km from Koli village). Type “Koli Ahmovaara” to the search field to find the connections (www.matkahuolto.fi). It is possible to use local transportation to travel from Ahmovaara to Koli.
During summer area is also accessible by boat from Lieksa.
Most visitors start their excursions from Ukko-Koli, where you can park either in the parking area P1 or P2 (Ylä-Kolintie 31, Lieksa).
The Centre also provides information on other nature destinations in the Koli–Ruunaa region, including the Ruunaa Hiking Area, Telkkamäki Nature Reserve, and Patvinsuo, Tilkkajärvi, and Petkeljärvi National Parks.
Exhibitions and picture shows.
Group tours of exhibition and on nature trails (reserved in advance).
Internet access point, a nature shop and a café Vakka serving organically grown products.
Please contact Nature Centre Ukko, we will be happy to help you in planning of your trip.
Activities in the area:Biking, Boating, Birdwaching, Canoeing, Fishing, Guided trips, Hiking, Horse riding, Pick berries and mushrooms, Sailing, Sights and scenery, Skiing, Snowshoeing, Swimming, Tenting, Walk on nature trail
City or municipality:Joensuu, Kontiolahti, Lieksa