Situated in southeastern Finland, Lake Saimaa is not only the largest lake in Finland but is also one of the world’s most beautiful lakes. Lake Saimaa is often overlooked in favor of other popular lakes in other parts of Europe. The lake remains one of the most underrated destinations in Finland, but hopefully, that’s going to change some day. Dotted with over 14,000 islands, Lake Saimaa boasts bountiful nature, incredible wildlife, autumnal wonders, and an array of extraordinary natural experiences. The pure, sparkling water adds to the beauty of the lake, and the incredible nature enveloping the lake just lends a sense of calmness and serenity to this absolutely stunning place.
If you ever plan or have been planning to visit Finland for whatever reason, you must make sure to visit Lake Saimaa. It is truly a stunning destination, and you certainly won’t regret visiting it. Whether visiting alone or with your family, you can have a memorable holiday at Lake Saimaa. What adds more fun to this place is the cruise that rides you through the waters and lets you admire the beauty of the lake. If you are still a bit skeptical about your visit to Lake Saimaa, we have jotted down a list of a few reasons that might convince you to visit it ASAP.
The beautiful autumn colors
The incredible beauty of Lake Saimaa can be appreciated throughout the year, but it looks the most beautiful during the spring and autumn seasons. The view of the lake looks the most spectacular in autumn when the trees surrounding the lake boast yellow, glossy orange, and crimson foliage, soaking the entire place with beautiful autumn colors. To those seeking serenity and tranquility, Lake Saimaa is the perfect destination to spend some time in solitude amidst pure and natural bliss.
The majestic Olavinlinna Castle
Savonlinna is a quaint town in Lake Saimaa, and it houses one of the most precious jewels, the historic Olavinlinna Castle. Featuring three towers and a moat, this stone castle is one of the best highlights in Lake Saimaa. Given the fact that the fortress was built in 1495, it’s quite astonishing and impressive to see the castle standing still to date. It was only in the late 1800s that the castle was turned into a tourist attraction, and ever since then, it has been drawing a lot of tourists from different parts of the world. You can take a guided tour of the castle to learn about its fascinating history.
Spot rare ring-tailed seals
Lake Saimaa boasts exciting wildlife; you can spot some of the rarest species here such as ring-tailed seals. These cute-looking creatures aren’t found in abundance in Lake Saimaa, but if you are lucky, you might be able to spot one of them basking in the sun by the shores. Ring-tailed seals are one of the only freshwater species on earth, they can be found in the Linnansaari National Park that is in close proximity to Savonlinna. The best way to spot these seals is by riding in a boat, it’s recommended to bring a local guide along in order to increase the chances of spotting a seal.
The delicious Karelian pie
Another great reason to visit Lake Saimaa is the traditional dish served here called Karelian pie. Bordering Finland, Karelia is a region in northwest Russia with a very complicated history. But as far as Karelia’s local cuisine is concerned, you will find it really interesting and delicious just like the rest of the country does. The Karelian pie is a must-try Karelian dish. This dish doesn’t really feature pies, in fact, the pies are more of baked pastries that are made of rye dough and are stuffed with sweet rice pudding. Right from its different textures and contrasting flavors, you will enjoy everything about this dish.