The border between Kuusamo and Russia is 140 km long. It creates a natural travelling route straight to White Sea Karelia. We will get acquainted with the colourful history and culture of the local traditional villages, where locals will tell us interesting stories. A particularly unique destination is the Solovetsky monastery island located on the White Sea. During the trip we will learn about the monastery’s incredible history. You can choose whether you want to stay there two or three days.
Viena or White Sea Karelia is the fabled heart of Karelia, and the single richest source of the folk poetry which Elias Lönnrot used when he compiled the Kalevala epic. The Kalevala is an epic poem which compiled from Finnish folk lore in the 19th century. It is commonly called the Finnish national epic and is traditionally thought of as one of the most significant works of Finnish-language literature, and it has been translated into 49 languages. The Kalevala is credited with some of the inspiration for the national awakening that ultimately led to Finland's independence from Russia in 1917.
Even today the tradition of singing of the poems lives among old Karelian men and women.
The adventure starts with a transfer by bus to Kuusamo Suoperä, where the border will be crossed and journey to the old times begins.
After border formalities the trip continues by bus to Pääjärvi. On the way, stop in the village of Suvanto and visit to Topi and Mari, the only year round inhabitants of the village. The journey continues through Pääjärvi village towards Kalevala village (Uhtua). On the way you stop at Röhönranta for a picnic lunch. Possibility to refresh yourself by swimming in the lake.
In Kalevala you see the historical places: Lönnrotin laulupuu (the tree under which Lönnrot started to collect the poems for Kalevala) and Likopää. From Kalevala you continue to Paanajärvi. Crossing the Kemi River to the culturehistorical village of Paanajärvi, with dinner at the village with local families. Overnightaccommodation with local families.
After breakfast the bus trip continues towards Kemi village. Boat trip to Solovetsky monastery island. Possibility to see white whales during the three hour trip. Guide tour on the monastery island, dining at the restaurant on the island. Accommodation in the local Solo hotel with dinner.
After breakfast the guided tour of the Solovetsky monastery. After lunch a boat trip back to Kemi village. Sightseeing tour of Kemi. Accommodation and dinner in the local Kuzova Hotel.
After breakfast a trip to the Louhi village where you visit the marketplace and shops. Returning back to border via Louhi – Mäntykylä – Kiestinki – Sohjanankoski – Pääjärvi. Dining at restaurant Korbankov in the Pääjärvi village. Souvenirs can be bought at Pääjärvi village’s marketplace. Return to Kuusamo / Ruka, where you arrive around 20.00
Price from 845 €/person, Incl. guiding, transfers from/to Ruka, meals, accommodation, visit to Solovetski and other services mentioned in the programme. Price does not include visas.
Trips to Russia always require a visa. We are happy to handle your visa applications. For EU citizens (excluding UK and Ireland) the following documents are needed three weeks before departure (express visas are processed faster):
- passport (valid 6 months after departure)
- passport photo
- certificate of travel insurance
- contact information
Other nationalities: please contact our sales office to confirm visa procedures: safarihouse(at)rukapalvelu.fi