Humans in harmony with nature

by | Sep 22, 2020 | Diaries, Europe, Finland

Repovesi National Park. Finland. The first of many we intend to explore in Finland.

We don’t want to write much here – you can see on our pictures what is this place about. We would only like to tell you 2-3 things about the park’s regulation, which will give you an insight in the Finnish philosophy.  

You arrive at the park by car and there are 3-4 different parking lots around it. We followed a fast gravel road which reminded us the famous special stages of the 1000 Lakes Rally of Finland. With ups and downs, yumps, fast and slower corners that make you dream you are driving a WRC machine and not a heavy – super slow Iveco camper. 

Inspired enough we were travelling at 70 km/h at some points – the speed we keep on motorway as well. 

You park at the parking lot and the road ends there – usually close to one of the lakes. From there you can only walk or take you bike. There are paths exclusively for trekking (about 40 kms long) and bike roads without car traffic. In every junction there are sign boards indicating the destinations and the remaining distance in kms (not minutes). 

The entry to the park is free, like in any other park in Finland. In every parking lot – like the one we camped for two nights – there are info boards and a detailed map. In the park there are not any garbage bins and you are informed about. 

This makes sense. You never come to a national park to throw your litter. If there were bins, there should be a system of evacuating them, which costs, while attracting animals. 

You come from your hometown. You will probably produce litter as long as you stay in the park (paper, plastic, tin, food) but you have to know that No 1 rule is you must take everything back with you and throw or recycle it properly.

According to Finnish constitution, all citizens are “free to roam” in nature. Which means you can legally walk everywhere in the woods but you are also advised to follow the paths for not spoiling the environment.

Fishing on lakes and rivers is also a constitutional right and is for free. There is no rights’ fee but there are rules for not fishing in the reproduction season and they seem to be strict. 

In Finland you can wild camp wherever you want – even on private soil if you have previously taken a permit. So, you can officially camp anywhere in Repovesi but park authorities advise you to do it in proper pic nic spaces. And it’s worth pitching a tent exactly there simply because are the spots with the best views, they are equipped with bbq and most have drinking water from a well. 

Only there you are allowed to light a fire. And what about wood? It’s strictly forbidden to collect from the forest but in anyway you don’t need to. The park authority provides wood for free next to every picnic place. There is also a saw to cut your own wood.

All picnic spots are also equipped with dry toilet – which is very eco-friendly. On the lake front, there are floating quays for your boat or canoe cayak._Akis Temperidis

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