Photo: Ulla Keituri
Admire the stunning lake views, explore our nature trails, pack up some lunch and hike into a National Park. Jyväskylä Region offers a wealth of interesting nature experiences easily accessible with children.
Finland’s second-largest lake, Päijänne, is a big part Jyväskylä lifestyle, and nowhere is it easier to enjoy water activities and lakeside attractions than here. One fifth of the city’s area is water and the total length of the shoreline is 1,500 km. One of the most memorable experiences is the three-hour Päijänne cruise that takes you through stunning landscapes and points of interest. The slow boat gliding on the blue waters of Päijänne that continue beyond the horizon is the favourite among adults and children alike. The cruises by Päijänne Cruises Hilden Ltd. depart from Lutakko marina close to Jyväskylä city centre.
Another great way to explore the lake with kids is to go paddling: the best paddling routes are on lakes Jyväsjärvi, Tuomiojärvi, Palokkajärvi, Alvajärvi and Luonetjärvi. Several service providers in Jyväskylä Region offer paddling tours and equipment for families.
Leivonmäki National Park in Joutsa welcomes hikers and nature lovers of all ages. A number of the hiking routes are easy enough for children to walk, with plenty of places to stop for packed lunch and snacks. The Luupää route, 2.2 km, is easy but full of interesting things to see. The information board explains the traces of Ice Age evident in the area. The step-free route of Harjunjärvi is accessible with prams and pushchairs.
In Jyväskylä, pristine nature is never far away. A stone’s throw from the city centre runs the Tourujoki nature trail with its lush riverside habitats exceptional in an urban setting. One of the special treats on this trail in the early summer is nature’s own soundtrack of real nightingale song! The path is only 700 metres long but with plenty of steps and boardwalks, so it is not suitable for toddlers. Read more about the nature trails in the area.
A short distance from the city centre, Harju is a recreational park popular with the locals and visitors alike. Relax and unwind high above the busy city and stroll along the forest paths, also suitable for children to walk. The Vesilinna observation tower offers sweeping views over Jyväskylä. Vesilinna houses the Natural History Museum of Central Finland with interesting exhibits for the whole family about the biodiversity and nature habitats in Central Finland. Both the museum and the Harju obseravion tower have free admission round the year during Vesilinna Restaurant’s opening hours.