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Metsähallitus

Koli National Park 

Ukko-Koli Hill at winter. Photo: Joonas Hirvonen
Location of Koli National Park in Finland
Eastern Finland, North Karelia Region
Towns of Lieksa (www.lieksa.fi, in Finnish) and Joensuu (www.joensuu.fi), and municipality of Kontiolahti (www.kontiolahti.fi)
Area: 30 sq. km. Established in 1991.
The area is managed by the Metsähallitus.
The Emblem of Koli National Park - Slash-and-burn land birch forest

Koli is the National Park of forested hills. Koli, with its art inspiring lookout points, white quartzite cliffs, wilderness-like Lake Pielinen, slash-and-burn woodlands and traditional landscapes, as well as, its excellent hiking trails, skiing trails and versatile services, is a wonderful destination be it for a day trip or a wilderness trek.

Koli is one of Finland’s best known national landscapes. Though the area is small it is a treasure chest when it comes to natural features: rare geological features, a versatile array of animal species and an abundance of plant species. Koli also has a lot to offer cultural heritage-wise. It was used for slash-and-burn agriculture and as a place of pilgrimage for Finnish artists in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries. It was also the centre of heritage and culture for the area around it.

Traditional agricultural heritage is cherished in Koli. A part of the fields are slashed, burnt and re-cultivated and hay is cut each year. Traditional Finnish livestock breeds, cows and sheep, graze in the National Park’s meadows. Tourism and conservation have both been taken into account in the park’s care and management plan. The National Park’s main purposes are to function as a place of research and nature education.

In 2007 Koli National Park was awarded a certificate called the European Charter for Sustainable Tourism in Protected Areas (www.europarc.org), which is issued by the Europarc Federation. By committing to the programme the national park received the European Charter certificate, which is an indicator that the promotion of sustainable tourism has been observed in the park’s services and functions commendably.

This is the web page www.outdoors.fi/koli

Last updated 1/20/2014

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