Suomussalmi Travel Guide

Discover the best places to visit, things to do, and local recommendations in Suomussalmi, Finland with this complete travel guide.

Introduction to Suomussalmi

Suomussalmi is a charming town located in the Kainuu and Eastern Oulu region in Northern Finland. Surrounded by stunning natural landscapes and rich cultural heritage, Suomussalmi offers a perfect blend of adventure and relaxation all year round. Whether you’re looking to explore Finland’s outdoors, discover its history, or simply unwind in a peaceful environment, Suomussalmi has something for everyone.

List of Places to Visit in Suomussalmi

Culturally Important Attractions: Museums and Historical Places

Suomussalmi has a fascinating history, and what better way to discover it than by visiting its museums and historical places. The Raate Museum is a must-visit spot, which tells the story of the Winter War battle that took place in 1939-1940. The exhibition showcases photographs, artifacts, and records that provide insight into the Finnish soldiers’ lives during the battle. Another interesting place to visit is the Seurasaari Open-Air Museum, which showcases the traditional Finnish way of life in the 18th and 19th centuries.

Natural Attractions of Suomussalmi: Outdoor Adventures and Scenic Views

Suomussalmi is home to some of Finland’s most beautiful natural attractions. From the Hossa National Park to the Riisitunturi National Park, there are plenty of outdoor activities to indulge in, such as hiking, fishing, kayaking, and skiing. If you’re looking for a more relaxed activity, then take a stroll in the Purolan Kukkula Arboretum, which houses over 700 species of trees and shrubs from all over the world.

Hiking/Biking Routes of Suomussalmi

Suomussalmi boasts some of Finland’s best hiking and biking trails, offering scenic routes for all levels of experience. One of the top hiking trails in Suomussalmi is the Hossa Nature Trail, which takes you through the national park’s most picturesque locations, such as the Julma-Ölkky Canyon, the Hossa Lake Area, and the Värikallio Rock Paintings. Another popular biking trail is the Kelataipale Nature Trail, which is an 8-kilometer route that takes you through forests, past lakes, and over marshes.

Best Things to Do in Suomussalmi: Activities and Tours

In Suomussalmi, there is never a dull moment, and visitors can indulge in a variety of activities and tours. Some of the top activities in the town include skiing, snowmobiling, and ice fishing during the winter season and hiking, fishing, and kayaking during the summer season. When it comes to tours, visitors can explore Suomussalmi’s history by visiting the Battle of Raate Road or taking a tour of the Hossa National Park.

Week-Long Itinerary for Suomussalmi

Suomussalmi offers plenty of things to do, and a week-long itinerary can help you explore the town’s best spots. Here’s a sample itinerary:

  • Day 1: Visit the Battle of Raate Road and the Raate Museum for a glimpse into Finland’s wartime history.
  • Day 2: Explore the Hossa National Park, hike the Julma-Ölkky Canyon, and visit the Värikallio Rock Paintings.
  • Day 3: Take a boat tour of the Hossa Lake Area and enjoy a picnic lunch by the lake’s shores.
  • Day 4: Go skiing or snowmobiling in the Vuokatti Ski Resort.
  • Day 5: Visit the Kelataipale Nature Trail and enjoy a picnic lunch by the lake.
  • Day 6: Take a guided tour of the Purolan Kukkula Arboretum and explore its 700 species of trees and shrubs.
  • Day 7: Go fishing in one of Suomussalmi’s many lakes and enjoy a traditional Finnish meal in a local restaurant.

Food and Drink Scene of Suomussalmi

Must-Try Dishes

Suomussalmi’s food scene is largely influenced by its natural surroundings, and it offers a wide array of traditional dishes that incorporate local ingredients. One must-try dish is the Kalakukko, a type of Finnish pasty filled with fish, pork, and potatoes. Another popular dish is the traditional Karelian stew, which is made with beef, pork, and barley groats.

Local Beverages

Finland is known for its craft beer, and Suomussalmi offers plenty of options for beer lovers. One of the town’s top breweries is the Kuohu beer brewery, which serves up a variety of craft beers made using local ingredients. Another must-try beverage is the traditional Finnish Sima, a lightly fermented sweet drink made with lemon and sugar.

Where to Stay in Suomussalmi: Hotels, Hostels, and Guesthouses

Suomussalmi offers plenty of accommodation options for visitors, ranging from budget-friendly hostels to luxury hotels. For budget-friendly options, the Hostelli Patosalmi and the Rajan Loma Cottages offer cozy accommodations, while the Hotel Kalevala and the Hotel Vuokatti & Suites provide a more luxury experience.

What to Buy in Suomussalmi: Souvenirs and Local Products to Bring Home

Suomussalmi is known for its unique souvenirs and local products, and visitors can bring back a piece of their trip home with them. Some of the top souvenirs to consider buying include traditional Finnish handicrafts, such as woven rugs and Sami jewelry. Foodies can take home some of Finland’s specialty foods, such as cloudberry jam, smoked reindeer meat, and Finnish chocolates.

Local Culture and Customs of Suomussalmi

The Finnish culture is deeply rooted in nature, and Suomussalmi’s locals are proud of their natural surroundings. Visitors should respect the environment by keeping it clean and following the Leave No Trace principles. Additionally, visitors should also respect the local customs, which include punctuality, honesty, and direct communication.

Best Time to Visit Suomussalmi

Suomussalmi is beautiful all year round, and the best time to visit depends on the activities you want to indulge in. The summer season, from June to August, is ideal for outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, and fishing. The winter season, from December to March, is perfect for winter sports such as skiing, snowmobiling, and ice fishing.

Do’s and Don’ts of Suomussalmi


  • Respect the environment and follow the Leave No Trace principles.
  • Respect the local customs and traditions.
  • Try local dishes and beverages.
  • Carry appropriate clothing based on the season.
  • Book accommodation and tours in advance.


  • Litter or damage natural environments.
  • Be loud and disruptive in public places.
  • Ignore local customs and traditions.
  • Wear inappropriate clothing in public.

Safety and Health

Safety in Suomussalmi

Suomussalmi is a safe and peaceful town, but visitors should be aware of the risks associated with outdoor activities such as hiking and skiing. It’s recommended to carry a map and a compass when hiking and to check weather forecasts before going camping or hiking.

Health in Suomussalmi

Suomussalmi has modern medical facilities, and visitors can access medical services in case of emergency. Visitors should carry appropriate health insurance to cover any health issues that may arise during their trip.

Getting to Suomussalmi: Transportation Options and Logistics

Airports Near Suomussalmi

The nearest airport to Suomussalmi is the Kajaani Airport, which is located 83 kilometers away. From the airport, visitors can hire a taxi or take a shuttle bus to reach Suomussalmi.

Bus Stations Near Suomussalmi

The town of Suomussalmi is well-connected by bus services, and visitors can take a bus from Helsinki to reach Suomussalmi.

Other Options

Visitors can also get to Suomussalmi using a rental car or by taking a train to Kajaani and then taking a bus or taxi to Suomussalmi.

How to Get Around in Suomussalmi

Suomussalmi is a small town, and most attractions are within walking or biking distance. Visitors can also rent a car or hire a taxi to explore the surrounding areas.

Where to Go Next from Suomussalmi: Nearby Destinations and Excursions

Suomussalmi is surrounded by many other destinations worth visiting, such as the Kajaani city, which is home to a beautiful castle, and the Vuokatti Ski Resort, which is located 50 kilometers away from Suomussalmi. Additionally, visitors can take a trip to the Oulanka National Park, which is located 70 kilometers away and is famous for its hiking trails and waterfalls.


Suomussalmi is a hidden gem in Finland, offering visitors an opportunity to explore the country’s natural beauty and rich cultural heritage. With its stunning scenery, exciting outdoor activities, and warm hospitality, Suomussalmi is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to experience Finland’s best.