21 days in Finland Itinerary

21 days in Finland Itinerary

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Route & dates

21 days in Finland Itinerary

Start: San Diego
Fly:  18​h 30​min
1
Kotka
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h
2
Imatra
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h
3
Savonlinna
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
4
Kuopio
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h
5
Koli National Park
— 3 nights
Drive:  5​h
6
Kuusamo
— 2 nights
Fly + shuttle:  5​h 15​min
7
Inari
— 2 nights
shuttle + Fly:  5​h 45​min
8
Turku
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h
9
Helsinki
— 3 nights
Fly:  17​h
End: San Diego

1
night
Kotka

Kotka ©
Kotka is a city and municipality of Finland.Kotka is located on the coast of the Gulf of Finland at the mouth of Kymi River and it is part of the Kymenlaakso region in southern Finland. Kick off your visit on the 15th (Sat): take a stroll through Linden Esplanade and then stroll through Santalahti Nature Trail. Here are some ideas for day two: explore the striking landscape of Valkmusa National Park.

For photos, ratings, and other tourist information, you can read our Kotka day trip planner.

San Diego, USA to Kotka is an approximately 18.5-hour flight. The time zone changes from Pacific Standard Time (PST) to Eastern European Time (EET), which is usually a 10 hour difference. Expect colder temperatures when traveling from San Diego in September; daily highs in Kotka reach 59°F and lows reach 46°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 16th (Sun) early enough to go by car to Imatra.

Things to do in Kotka

#Parks, #Nature, #Beaches

Side Trip

Valkmusa National Park
Find places to stay Sep 15 — 16:
Highlights from your plan
Valkmusa National Park ©
Valkmusa National Park

1
night
Imatra

Imatra ©
Although predominately an industrial town, Imatra boasts a long and impressive history of tourism, largely owing to its fierce rapids, considered to have been Finland's first ever tourist attraction.
Start off your visit on the 17th (Mon): take in the dramatic scenery at Imatra Waterfall, then step off the mainland to explore Lammassaari Island, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Lempukka Beach, and finally head off the coast to Malonsaari.

To find reviews, other places to visit, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Imatra trip website .

You can drive from Kotka to Imatra in 2 hours. Other options are to take a train; or take a bus. In September in Imatra, expect temperatures between 58°F during the day and 46°F at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 17th (Mon) so you can go by car to Savonlinna.

Things to do in Imatra

#Parks, #Nature, #Outdoors
Find places to stay Sep 16 — 17:
Highlights from your plan
Imatra Waterfall ©
Imatra Waterfall
Malonsaari ©
Malonsaari

2
nights
Savonlinna

Savonlinna ©
The picturesque town of Savonlinna sits on two islands surrounded by shimmering lakes and lush greenery.
Kick off your visit on the 18th (Tue): look for gifts at Taito Shop Savonlinna, pick up some local products at Savonlinna Market Square, don't miss a visit to Pikkukirkko, step into the grandiose world of Olavinlinna Castle, then see the interesting displays at Savonlinna Provincial Museum, and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Kerimaki Church. Keep things going the next day: explore the striking landscape of Linnansaari National Park.

To see maps, photos, where to stay, and other tourist information, use the Savonlinna driving holiday planning tool .

Getting from Imatra to Savonlinna by car takes about 2 hours. Other options: take a train; or take a bus. In September in Savonlinna, expect temperatures between 57°F during the day and 44°F at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 19th (Wed) to allow time to drive to Kuopio.

Things to do in Savonlinna

#Parks, #Nature, #Historic Sites

Side Trips

Linnansaari National Park, Kerimaki Church
Find places to stay Sep 17 — 19:
Highlights from your plan
Linnansaari National Park ©
Linnansaari National Park
Olavinlinna Castle ©
Olavinlinna Castle
Kerimaki Church ©
Kerimaki Church

1
night
Kuopio

Kuopio ©
Kuopio is a city and a municipality located in the region of Northern Savonia, Finland. On the 20th (Thu), buy something for everyone on your list at Matkus Shopping Center, contemplate the waterfront views at Valkeisenlampi, then look for gifts at Pikku Pietarin Torikuja, and finally take in the architecture and atmosphere at Lutheran Cathedral.

For reviews, ratings, where to stay, and tourist information, refer to the Kuopio holiday maker site .

Drive from Savonlinna to Kuopio in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of bus and train. In September, daytime highs in Kuopio are 56°F, while nighttime lows are 46°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 20th (Thu) early enough to travel to Koli National Park.

Things to do in Kuopio

#Shopping, #Parks, #Nature
Find places to stay Sep 19 — 20:
Highlights from your plan
Matkus Shopping Center ©
Matkus Shopping Center
Lutheran Cathedral ©
Lutheran Cathedral
Pikku Pietarin Torikuja ©
Pikku Pietarin Torikuja

3
nights
Koli National Park

Koli National Park ©
Step off the beaten path and head to Patvinsuon Kansallispuisto and Ukko-Koli Hill. Get outdoors at Pielinen and Paha-Koli Hill.

To find reviews, photos, ratings, and other tourist information, read Koli National Park sightseeing app .

Drive from Kuopio to Koli National Park in 2.5 hours. In September, daytime highs in Koli National Park are 56°F, while nighttime lows are 44°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Sun) so you can travel to Kuusamo.

Things to do in Koli National Park

#Parks, #Outdoors, #Trails
Find places to stay Sep 20 — 23:
Highlights from your plan
Patvinsuon Kansallispuisto ©
Patvinsuon Kansallispuisto
Ukko-Koli Hill ©
Ukko-Koli Hill

2
nights
Kuusamo

Kuusamo ©
Kuusamo is a town and municipality in Finland. On the 24th (Mon), trek along Pieni Karhunkierros Trail, take in the dramatic scenery at Kiutakongas Rapids, and then stop by Shopping Center Kumpare. Keep things going the next day: relax in the rural setting at Palosaari Reindeer and Fishing Farm, then head outdoors with Karhunkierros, and then examine the collection at Hannu Hautala Nature Photography Centre.

To find where to stay, reviews, and more tourist information, read Kuusamo road trip site .

Traveling by car from Koli National Park to Kuusamo takes 5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly. In September, plan for daily highs up to 52°F, and evening lows to 40°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 25th (Tue) so you can travel to Inari.

Things to do in Kuusamo

#Outdoors, #Parks, #Trails

Side Trip

Pieni Karhunkierros Trail
Find places to stay Sep 23 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Kiutakongas Rapids ©
Kiutakongas Rapids
Karhunkierros ©
Karhunkierros

2
nights
Inari

Inari ©
Escape the urban bustle at Lemmenjoki National Park and Inari Reindeerfarm. Explore hidden gems such as Reindeer Farm Petri Mattus and The Sami Cultural Centre Sajos.

To find maps, ratings, traveler tips, and tourist information, refer to the Inari trip maker website .

Traveling by combination of flight and shuttle from Kuusamo to Inari takes 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In September, daytime highs in Inari are 52°F, while nighttime lows are 39°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 28th (Fri) early enough to travel to Turku.

Things to do in Inari

#Outdoors, #Tours, #Parks

Side Trip

Lemmenjoki National Park
Find places to stay Sep 25 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
Lemmenjoki National Park ©
Lemmenjoki National Park
Siida ©
Siida
Reindeer Farm Petri Mattus ©
Reindeer Farm Petri Mattus

2
nights
Turku

Turku ©
Sitting at the mouth of the Aura River, Turku is one of Finland's quaintest and most historically rich towns.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Teijo national park and Turku Castle. Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Turku Cathedral and Ett Hem Museum. Go for a jaunt from Turku to Poytya to see Kurjenrahka National Park about 56 minutes away. There's still lots to do: buy something for everyone on your list at Kauppakeskus Mylly, get lost in a book at Turku City Library, and stroll through Ispoinen Beach and Sauna.

To find maps, reviews, traveler tips, and other tourist information, use the Turku trip planner .

Getting from Inari to Turku by combination of shuttle and flight takes about 6 hours. Other options: do a combination of shuttle, flight, and train; or drive. When traveling from Inari in September, plan for somewhat warmer days in Turku, with highs around 60°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 44°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 1st (Mon) early enough to drive to Helsinki.

Things to do in Turku

#Outdoors, #Parks, #Wildlife

Side Trips

Kurjenrahka National Park, Teijo national park, Kauppakeskus Mylly
Find places to stay Sep 28 — Oct 1:
Highlights from your plan
Kurjenrahka National Park ©
Kurjenrahka National Park
Turku Castle ©
Turku Castle
Turku Cathedral ©
Turku Cathedral

3
nights
Helsinki

Helsinki ©
Finland's largest and most populated metropolis, the maritime town of Helsinki boasts varied architecture, a lively cafe culture, and plethora of picturesque natural delights.
Give yourself a bit of retail therapy at Hakaniemi Market and Marimekko. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Seurasaari Island and Open-Air Museum and Stockmann's Department Store. There's lots more to do: brush up on your military savvy at Fortress of Suomenlinna, pause for some serene contemplation at Helsinki Cathedral, admire the masterpieces at Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma, and contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Rock Church.

For ratings, more things to do, and tourist information, read our Helsinki tour itinerary planning app .

Drive from Turku to Helsinki in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. In October, plan for daily highs up to 48°F, and evening lows to 35°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Thu) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Helsinki

#Museums, #Shopping, #Historic Sites
Find places to stay Oct 1 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Fortress of Suomenlinna ©
Fortress of Suomenlinna
Rock Church ©
Rock Church

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