Christmas atmosphere in the Geopark

Come to the Geopark and enjoy quiet nature by a campfire. Visit the cafés and restaurants in the area. From the boutiques you will buy the most wonderful gifts for Christmas. Feel the peaceful Christmas atmosphere of the Geopark!

Calm down in the Geopark

Forget the hurry in nature in the Geopark. Take a hike and explore the destinations that tell the unique story of the Geopark. The scenery tells about the development of the area from an ancient mountain range to the present landscape with vast open mires.

Photo: Ismo Nousiainen / Taikapolku, Kauhaneva, Kauhaneva-Pohjankangas National Park

The springs of Hämeenkangas which are open throughout the year, the enchanting spruce gorge of Katikankanjoni, the frosty mires and numerous other magnificent Geopark sites call you for a visit.  Lauhanvuori and Kauhaneva-Pohjankangas National Parks, for example, are great excursion destinations even in winter. In Lauhanvuori National Park you can even meet Finnish forest deers!

Photo: Ismo Nousiainen / Taikapolku, Lauhanvuori National Park

 

Neva-Lyly is a favorite destination for families with children. Take a hike on the duckboard trail and get to know the story of Wilpertti Gnome who lives in a tiny hut. Eat snacks by a campfire in lean-to or by the lake. In Neva-Lyly you may even heat up the sauna!

Photo: Terttu Hermansson, Neva-Lyly

Mountainbikers enjoy riding a bike on the GeoBike route (in Finnish) in Lauhanvuori National Park, on the needle paths of the ridges on Hämeenkangas (in Finnish), the route (in Finnish) in the cultural and forest landscapes of Kauhajoki from Hyyppä valley’s landscape area to Kauhaneva-Pohjankangas National Park and on the wilderness route (in Finnish) from Pyhäniemi to Käsyvuori. The routes are easy to ride and suitable for beginners, too.

Photo: Pasi Talvitie, Lauhanvuori National Park

You can rent a bicycle from our area (the links in Finnish):

Photo: e-bike Holidays, Pyhäniemi

When there is little snow, the Geopark’s routes and destinations are in use and accessible. However, the Lauhanvuori observation tower will be closed for the winter for safety reasons. When there is enough snow, the Geopark has great opportunities for skiing and sledding.

 Learn more about the Geopark’s destinations and routes on our Discover pages.

Photo: Terttu Hermansson, Kylmänmyllynlähde, Hämeenkangas

Experience the local culture

In the Geopark you will also discover the fascinating culture of the area. Take a tour in the villages and chat with the locals. For example, the host of Kammi-kylä may tell you stories about former inhabitants of the area. Get to know e.g. the Circle of Art and admire the Geopark’s cultural sites and landscapes in their winter outfits. Learn more about Geopark’s cultural landscapes and significant buildings.

Learn more about the Geopark’s destinations and routes on our Discover pages.

Photo: The town of Kauhajoki, Hämes-Havunen

CALM DOWN IN THE GEOPARK

Enjoy the services and your stay in the Geopark

The companies in our area offer high-quality services to travelers in the area. Check out the wide range on our Services page.

Photo: Ismo Nousiainen / Taikapolku

Visit the Geopark’s cafés and restaurants, where pure local ingredients such as berries, mushrooms and game are prepared to tempting delicacies. You can also buy take away snacks from cafes and restaurants and eat them in the woods.

Photo: Ismo Nousiainen / Taikapolku

In the farm stores and boutiques, you may purchase unique gifts. Buy for yourself or a loved one, for example, soft socks woven from local sheep’s wool or delicacies made from local ingredients. A gift card of a Geopark enterprice is a great gift idea!

Photo: Noora Mäkinen / Tilapuoti Dyrfinna

Take a local guide with you on your trip and you will enjoy Geopark to the fullest. With a local guide, the tour is comfortable and safe, you will find the best routes and the most fascinating destinations and hear stories. Information on local guides can be found on our Activities page.

Photo: Terttu Hermansson, Alkkianvuori

It is shown that staying and exercising in nature promote health and well-being. You can make the best of the well-being effects of nature under the guidance of dedicated experts. After outdoor activities, you will pamper yourself with, for example, peat treatment and bathing in the smoke sauna and the hot tub in the woods. Learn more on our Wellness page.

Photo: Laura Vanzo / Visit Tampere, Kirkkokadun Hyvän Olon Keskus

When the evening comes, it is wonderful to relax in the warmth of the fireplace in a cozy cottage. High-quality and varied accommodation options from cottages to hotels are available throughout the Geopark area. Learn more on our Accommodation page.

Photo: Pyhäniemi Wellbeing

Some gems of the current supply of companies in the area

Lauha’s Christmas delicacies and sauna experiences

Lauha offers Christmas delicacies and sauna experiences in Honkahovi and the Lauhansarvi Nature Tourist Center next to Lauhanvuori National Park. Please, make a table reservation in advance. You can also order Christmas food for your own occasions and choose the delicacies you like from several different menu options. For example, try the GEOfood menus, which are based on regional dishes such as local game, berries and root vegetables.

In Lauhansarvi, you can also enjoy a variety of sauna experiences. Book a smoke sauna, a peat sauna or a sauna with a bath for your family or group. Accomplish your sauna evening with tasty meals. Learn more on Lauha’s website (in Finnish).

Photo: Lauhatuotanto

An authentic country Christmas in Luomajärvi Horse Inn

Experience the Christmas atmosphere in the idyllic rural setting in Luomajärvi Horse Inn. The farm’s horses, ponies and other domestic animals, as well as the top-class restaurant invite you to enjoy and relax. Horse Inn offers e.g. horse rides with delicious snacks by the campfire. Also remember the gift cards (in Finnish) of the Horse Inn.

A wonderful Christmas lunch is served in the restaurant on 24th of December. Please, book your table for Christmas lunch in advance. You can also spend a memorable country Christmas in the Inn with its unique accommodations, meals and programs. Learn more on the Inn’s website (in Finnish).

Photo: Luomajäri Horse Inn

Come to the Horse Inn’s Christmas market On Sunday, December 19, 2021. In the old barn where stable lanterns twinkle, the products of local craftsmen and farms are sold. Rice porridge and Christmas pastries are enjoyed in the Christmas café, and more meaty delicacies are served in the yard. Taste also homemade Christmas glogg and glühwein. Learn more on the Inn’s Facebook page (in Finnish).

Photo: Luomajäri Horse Inn

Delicacies at Café Postelli

Pop in to the atmospheric Café Postelli located next to the famous market place in Kankaanpää! The red-brick, sympathetic, former post office built in the 1930s is an attraction in itself.

The café serves tempting savory and sweet delicacies. The pastries are made on site by Postelli’s own baker. Order the most beautiful biscuits and tasty cakes and loafs for your own Christmas table as well! Learn more on Postelli’s website (in Finnish).

Photo: Café Postelli

Meggala Winery’s Christmas shop with wines and gifts

Buy wonderful local wines, mulled wine and ciders for your Christmas table from the winery Meggala. You can also taste Meggala’s drinks in the winery’s own, atmospheric café-restaurant.

In addition to drinks, you can also buy pastries from Julia’s bakery and local handicrafts for yourself or for a gift. Meggala’s elves welcome you to the farm shop every day (except Mondays) and especially on Sat 18.12. for the winery’s Christmas market. Learn more on the Meggala Winery’s website (in Finnish).

Photo: Meggala Winery

Fabulous Christmas in Valkoinen Puu Cafe & Shop

Valkoinen Puu Cafe & Shop along the main street of the town of Kauhajoki, in the former Ollonqvist commercial house, invites you to enjoy the atmosphere and famous delicacies of the café. Sea buckthorn-meringue ​cake, Lapland’s mother’s lingonberry dream cake and numerous other wonderful pastries are handmade in the café’s own bakery from local ingredients.

In the café’s shop, you can buy the most beautiful and delicious Christmas gifts pre-packaged. Handmade delicacies baked from high-quality, local, organic ingredients, jams and juices from a nearby farm, as well as ceramics from the café’s owner couple, are sure to delight the recipient of the gift. Also remember the gift cards of Valkoinen Puu! Learn more on the Valkoinen Puu website.

Photo: Valkoinen Puu

For Christmas, a unique Secret Garden Inn will open in Kauhajoki, in the former Äijälä parsonage, located nearby the Valkoinen Puu Café. You can see on Instagram (@salaisen.puutarhan.majatalo) the owner couple of Valkoinen Puu, Kirsi and Mark, preparing the Inn to receive the first guests.

Photo: Valkoinen Puu

Enjoy the Geopark’s high-quality services

Relax by a campfire

The Geopark has lots of great resting places where you can spend time by a campfire. There is firewood freely available to visitors in most of these sites. Campfires are only allowed at marked campfire sites. You can find some of these on the Retkikartta map service. You can find information on other campfire sites on the Geopark municipalities’ web pages.

Photo: Terttu Hermansson, Spitaalijärvi, Lauhanvuori National Park

Outdoor Etiquette

When hiking, it is always important to consider nature and other people. Respect nature in every way and keep pets in the leash. Prevent the waste in advance. Bring your debris out of the forest and sort the garbage properly. Please use marked trails and follow the rules for different modes of travel. Stay overnight only in marked camping areas.

Learn more: Metsähallitus Parks and Wildlife Finland’s Outdoor Etiquette and How to act responsibly when visiting the Geopark

Photo: Metsähallitus Parks and Wildlife Finland, Outdoor Etiquette

Please notice the valid regional corona pandemic restrictions and recommendations (Satakunta / Southern Ostrobothnia / Pirkanmaa, in Finnish) as well as Metsähallitus Parks and Wildlife Finland’s corona virus guidelines when visiting the Geopark. Please always check the realisation of events and the availability of services on the organizers’ web pages. The Geopark is not responsible for any changes.

Photo: Terttu Hermansson, Katikankanjoni, Kauhaneva-Pohjankangas National Park

Experience the Geopark through a film

Get to know the inhabitants, culture and nature of the area through the Geopark’s In a blink of an eye promotional film. What we see in a blink of an eye is the result of billions of years of geological evolution.

Watch the video on YouTube and enjoy!

Terttu Hermansson: Terttu Hermansson, Olu Bryki Raum / Suupohja Brewery in Korsukylä

Main photo: Pasi Talvitie, Hämeenkangas

Other photos: Terttu Hermansson, Pasi Talvitie

#lhgeopark #unescoglobalgeoparks #europeangeoparks #finnishgeoparks #unesco #outdoor #retkeily #luontomatkailu #hyvinvointialuonnosta #sdgs2030 #taiteidenreitti #visittampere #visitlakeus #visitpori

Welcome to the Geopark at Christmas time!

Enchanting autumn of the Geopark

In the autumn, you can experience the atmosphere of the north in the Geopark. The stunning colors of autumn, the preparation of nature for winter, the migration of birds and the sunny days call you for a hike.

Unforgettable autumn trips in the Geopark

Hiking in autumn when the air is fresh is a Geopark experience at its best. The mires are especially wonderful in the autumn. Hike the trails, cycle along the small roads or find some other way you like to explore the Geopark. You can find Geopark’s places to visit and routes on our Discover pages.

Photo: Pasi Talvitie, Kauhaneva, Kauhaneva-Pohjankangas National Park

In the fall, forests and mires offer huge amounts of wild berries such as lingonberries and cranberries, as well as a wide variety of mushrooms, which one can pick freely. In the pure nature of Geopark, you can collect these ingredients of delicious food and at the same time also benefit from the well-being effects of being in nature. Read more on our articles Mother Nature’s convenience store and Forest baths in the Geopark.

Photo: Terttu Hermansson

On a rainy autumn day or when the evenings get dark, you can just pull on the wool socks and warm up by the fireplace of the cottage. Atmospheric accommodation options in the Geopark can be found on our Accommodation page.

Photo: Korsuretket, Pikku-Itävalta

For a mire trip with children 

The Geopark has several mire sites where hiking is easy, safe and comfortable even with children. Welcome to a mire adventure in the Geopark: pack your favorite snacks in the backpack and come to duckboard trails to admire the great colors of the mires! You can find the mire sites and the best tips for children in our article.

Photo: Laura Koivumäki, Vaarinneva, Hämeenkangas

Bike in the Geopark

It is worth exploring the Geopark and its destinations by cycling either alone, with a friend or with a larger group. Enjoy the countryside on the small roads or the forests and mires on the mountain bike trails. The Geopark’s routes are easy and also suitable for inexperienced cyclists. Read more about our biking tips in the article (in Finnish).

Photo: Terttu Hermansson, Kauhaneva, Kauhaneva-Pohjankangas National Park

You can rent a bicycle from our area:

Kuva: Pasi Talvitie, bike from e-bike Holidays

Use the services and enjoy your stay

The companies in the area offer diverse, high-quality and nature-friendly tourism services for day visitors and those staying longer in the area. For further information visit our Services pages.

Photo: Pasi Talvitie, Alkkianvuori

Taste regional cuisine in the Geopark’s cafés and restaurants. Skilled bakers and chefs prepare delicacies in which wild berries, mushrooms and other local ingredients have a main role. In the farm stores and boutiques, you make unique purchases.

Photo: Terttu Hermansson, cake from Kahvila-Konditoria Postelli

On guided tours and activities, you will enjoy the Geopark deeply. You can also rent equipment for independent adventures. After the outdoors, pamper yourself with wellness services. Stay in a cosy cottage or in a small hotel. High-quality accommodation options for a wide range of needs are available throughout the area.

Photo: UK-Majoitus

ENJOY HIGH-QUALITY AND NATURE-FRIENDLY SERVICES

Picks from the current offering of our area

By the campfire in the Alpo’s savannah

Stay at the campfire site in the Alpo’s savannah ITE art park. In the campfire site only screws and nails are new. The legs of the benches are old metal and rubber rings, and the wood used is old too. The fire is made in an old pot. The firewood used to be a barrel of oil. The campfire site can be used freely as long as safety is ensured. Read more about the Alpo’s savannah and the Arts Route (in Finnish).

Come to the Alpo’s savannah campfire site on Wed 29.9. at 12 to 1pm. and make the Savannah Rose and discuss culture and rural villages. The event is part of a nationwide Rural Parliament. Read more about the event (in Finnish).

Photo: Terttu Hermansson, Alpo’s savannah

Visit the Visit Suupohja website before a trip 

The versatile and inspiring Visit Suupohja tourism website presents the offerings of Geopark’s northernmost municipalities and their surrounding municipalities also outside the Geopark area. On the website, you will find Nature Destinations and Routes in the Suupohja Region, as well as cultural sites and accommodation, food, activities and other services. Read more on the Visit Suupohja website (in Finnish).

Photo: Visit Suupohja, Hyypänjoki Valley

Probably the best chocolate cake in Finland

Is the chocolate cake of Valkoinen Puu Cafe the best in Finland? Visit the Kauhajoki café, taste this delicacy which is the most popular in the selection and decide for yourself! Baked with locally produced organic spelt, the Secret Garden’s Chocolate Cake attracts customers to Valkoinen Puu cafes up to hundreds of kilometers away.

In addition to this favorite chocolate cake, the gluten-free and lactose-free apple-caramel brita and a gluten-free, velvety chocolate dream cake suitable for vegans are also just some examples of the delicacies offered in the cafe. Read more on the Valkoinen Puu website.

Photo: Valkoinen Puu

Sauna experiences at Kirkkokatu Wellness Center

After the hike, warm up in the saunas of the Kirkkokatu Wellness Center. Children have their own fairytale sauna experience, where fun sloth, teddy bear or flower masks can be used for skin care. In the sauna for couples, you relax by candlelight and enjoy the skin-friendly complaints of organic products. Read more on the website.

Photo: Kirkkokatu Wellness Center

Experience the unique Arts Route from Kammi to Skantz

Along the Arts Route, you can visit five magnificent destinations: Kammi-kylä Village, Alpo’s savannah, Anne’s Art Café, Karvia Church and the open-air museum area, and the Skantz Cultural Center.

Each destination on the route, located in the municipalities of Kauhajoki and Karvia, has its own story. Each site is full of detailed and unique art. Take the entire 37 km route or visit individual destinations. Read more on the brochure, the map and the website (all in Finnish), and take a closer look at the Arts Route.

Photo: The Arts Route from Kammi to Skantz

Delicacies and Geonalle products in Raijanholvi

Raijanholvi offers delicious home-cooked food at the lunch buffet. Jellies and jams for the cakes are made by self from local berries. For sale are Raijanholvi’s own finalist berry meringues as well as Geonalle’s products, such as hats, kuksas, mugs, booklets and dark blueberry chocolate with Geonalle’s picture. Read more on Raijanholvi’s web pages (in Finnish).

Photo: Raijanholvi

KykyDesign’s Art Diving

Finding talent is an art that focuses on involving people. The services of KykyDesign include cultural well-being services, where the main emphasis is on promoting health and well-being.

The new concept of the autumn is an experiential Art Diving (Taidesukellus®) workshop (3 h), which is well suited for companies or hikers looking for their creativity. Now it is time to book an activity for the Christmas seasons parties as well. KykyDesigns is located in the former Yrjänäinen school in Kauhajoki, but they can also come to you if necessary! Read more on KykyDesign’s website (in Finnish).

AUTUMN IS THE BEST TIME FOR HIKING

Get yourself warm and have snacks by the campfire

Enjoy snacks by the campfire. You can also sit down to eat and admire the scenery at the beak of any stump. When sitting and eating snacks, you have time to notice even the smallest details of the environment. You can buy snacks with you from the cafés and restaurants in the area.

Photo: Terttu Hermansson, Lauhanvuori National Park

There are lots of great resting places in the geopark where you can spend time by the campfire. In most of the places there is firewood freely available to visitors. You can find most of the resting places on the Retkikartta map service. Information about other resting places you can find on the Geopark municipalities’ own websites.

Photo: Terttu Hermansson, Lauhanvuori National Park

Outdoor etiquette

When hiking, it is always important to consider nature and other people. A smart hiker respects nature in every way, keeps pets in leashes, prevents debris from forming in advance, and brings debris out of the terrain and sorts it properly.

Please use marked trails and follow the rules for different modes of travel. Stay overnight only in marked camping areas.

Photo: Metsähallitus Parks and Wildlife Finland, Outdoor Etiquette

Campfires are allowed only on marked places. Always check the Finnish Meteorological Institute’s website for current warnings. During a forest or grass fire warning, fires are strictly prohibited. Learn more about Metsähallitus Parks and Wildlife Finland’s Outdoor Etiquette.

Read more about how to act responsibly while visiting the Geopark.

Photo: Metsähallitus Parks and Wildlife Finland, Outdoor Etiquette

EXPERIENCE THE GEOPARK THROUGH A FILM

Get to know the inhabitants, the culture and the nature of the area through the Geopark’s In a blink of an eye promotional film. What we see in a blink of an eye is the result of billions of years of geological evolution.

Watch the video on YouTube and enjoy!

Photo: Terttu Hermansson, Pauliina Lilja from Lilja’s Yarn Shop is knitting mittens with glass veranda pattern, Local History Museum of Siikainen

Main photo: Mirja Koivisto / Tarinakuva, Kauhaneva, Kauhaneva-Pohjankangas National Parks

Other photos: Terttu Hermansson

#lhgeopark #unescoglobalgeoparks #europeangeoparks #finnishgeoparks  #unesco #outdoor #retkeily #luontomatkailu #pyörämatkailu #cyclingtourism #hyvinvointialuonnosta #taiteidenreitti #visittampere #visitlakeus #visitsatakunta

WELCOME TO THE AUTUMN GEOPARK!