Nestled amidst the pristine landscapes of Finland lies the vibrant city of Tampere, a place where urban culture and unspoiled natural beauty coexist in harmonious balance. As the Nordic chill whispers through the towering pines, and the lakes reflect an ever-changing sky, Tampere stands as a gateway to some of Finland’s most treasured natural wonders: its national parks.
While Tampere itself boasts a rich tapestry of attractions -ranging from the historic charm of the Finlayson area to the exhilarating Sarkanniemi amusement park-, it’s the call of the wild that beckons the true adventurers at heart. Only a short drive away, a handful of exquisite national parks await, ready to unveil their splendor to those eager to tread along their trails.
Whether you’re a seasoned hiker, a wildlife enthusiast, or simply someone in search of a peaceful escape, the natural parks near Tampere provide a diverse palette of outdoor experiences.
Seitseminen and Helvetinjärvi are the main national parks located near Tampere. In addition, Puurijärvi-Isosuo and Isojärvi national parks are also relatively close to the city.
Seitseminen National Park
Seitseminen National Park is located in the municipalities of Ylöjärvi and IkaalinenIkaalinen, about 50 kilometres from Tampere.
The national park, established in 1982, covers more than 45 square kilometres and has different types of trails, from short, short walks to day-long hikes.
If you visit the park, you should not miss the Seitseminen Nature Centre, where you will find information about the park and the different trails you can hike. You can also learn about its fauna and flora.
The Aarnipolku, Saari-Soljanen and Runokangas routes have trails of about 2 kilometres, so these are three highly recommended options to enjoy a day getting to know Finnish nature.
Helvetinjärvi National Park
Helvetinjärvi National Park, which literally translates as “Hell’s lake National Park”, is located in Ruovesi, about 50 kilometres from Tampere. The area of the park is almost 50 square kilometres.
The park is noted for its rugged landscapes and impressive gorges, such as Helvetinkolu Gorge, and its lakes surrounded by steep cliffs. All these landscapes were created millions of years ago by powerful geological movements.
The main trail in Helvetinjärvi National Park is known as Helvetistä Itään (East of Hell) and is about 4 kilometres long, from Kankimäki to Helvetinkolu. This trail runs through spruce and pine forests until it reaches the steep gorge.
Puurijärvi-Isosuo National Park
Puurijärvi-Isosuo National Park is located in the Pirkanmaa region, just over an hour’s drive from Tampere.
This national park, which covers an area of about 27 square kilometres, has the Puurijärvi Lake, about 4.5 square kilometres, and large marshy areas.
The lake is almost entirely covered by vegetation and is home to a wide variety of birds, making it a lake of international importance for birds.
Puurijärvi-Isosuo National Park offers three trails ranging from 0.5 to 2 kilometres, all of which are perfect options for a day trip.
All of these routes take you to different birdwatching towers, from where you can enjoy the wildlife and vegetation of the area.
It is possible to reach the national park by the rivers Kokemäenjoki and Ala-Kauvatsanjoki, and you can tour the park through one of the canoe and kayak routes offered in the area.
Isojärvi National Park
Isojärvi National Park is located in the town of Kuhmoinen. It is possible to reach the park in approximately one hour by car.
The national park was established in 1982 and is about 19 square kilometres. It is named after Lake Isojärvi, which is located in the park itself.
Isojärvi has different routes and trails. Most of them start from Heretty or Kalalahti. Their length ranges from 3.5 to 20 kilometres, making the park one of the largest in the Pirkanmaa region.
In the national park, forests, hills and deep ravines alternate throughout the landscape. In addition, some of the trails lead to old woodcutters’ huts and farmers’ houses.
These are the main national parks located near Tampere. All of them are in the Pirkanmaa region and can be reached by car in less than two hours. If you are thinking of taking a short trip into Finnish nature, the routes and trails in these national parks are a great option.
Images by Visit Tampere Ltd and Laura Vanzo.