Kajaani’s hiking trails and nature trails

Published: 05.04.2024

Would you like to go hiking in Kainuu on rest day of Kainuu Orienteering Week?

Kajaani's hiking trails and their introductions have been collected in this article. The kajaani.fi, visitkajaani.fi and outdooractive.fi websites have been used as a source. You can get to know the routes in more detail via the links at the end of the article.


Arppen memorial forest trail

  • Trail length: 2,2 km
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: 10 km
  • Description: The Arppen memorial forest trail runs through a protected nature reserve consisting of rare, old-growth forests resembling natural habitats. Arppen memorial forest was established at the request of Niilo Sakari Arppen, who served as the city forester of Kajaani from 1928 to 1951. The memorial forest is located approximately 8 km south of Kajaani along Highway 5. The trail features no steep inclines or declines but can be narrow in some sections. It takes about 40 minutes to walk the trail briskly. The route is suitable for day trips, including families with children, elderly individuals, and nature enthusiasts.


Eino Leino trail 

  • Trail length: 2 km
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: about 10 km
  • Description: The Eino Leino -trail starts and ends at the Eino Leino house, located on the shores of Lake Oulujärvi in Paltaniemi, approximately 10 km from the center of Kajaani. The trail is also suitable for people with disabilities and elderly individuals. Along the route, you'll encounter culturally and historically significant sites, including the Eino Leino house, Keisarintalli (imperial stable), Lainamakasiini (loan warehouse), the monument to Elias Lönnrot and the creation of the Old Kalevala, the Picture church, the Lönnbohm family grave, Lanteri's shop, and the Paltaniemi village school. During the summer, there are café services along the route.


Erkin Poloku local hiking trail

  • Trail length: 3,5 km
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: 4 km
  • Description: Erkinpolku is a nature trail located in Heinimäki, Kajaani. The starting point of the trail is north of Heinisuontie, from the illuminated Kuurna ski trail. The trail traverses the diverse terrain of Heinimäki, including swamps and meadows. Along the route, there's also a lean-to and a fireplace. The main route is 3.5 km long, but it can be extended by taking the Ketopolku path through the meadow. Hikers can also shorten their journey by utilizing shortcuts in the area. Mountain biking is permitted on the trail.


Hoikanlampi (Hoikka pond) walking trail

  • Trail length: 1,3 km
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: noin 3 km
  • Description: Hoikanlampi is a natural place located near the city of Kajaani, offering visitors shimmering water, a walking path around the pond, and fishing opportunities. Hoikanlampi serves as a local recreational area on the outskirts of Kajaani, just under a kilometer south of the Kajaani-Sotkamo road. Access to the area is convenient via pedestrian paths. The walking path around the pond is approximately one kilometer long. On the western shore of the pond, there is a rest shelter and a campfire site; visitors must bring their own firewood.

    Note! It is located in the competition area of ​​the Kainuu MTBO Week 2024, so the area is part of the practice and competition ban area. The bicycle orienteering competitions will be held on Monday, July 1. about 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.


Iso-Ruuhijärvi hiking trail

  • Trail length: 2 km
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: 14 km
  • Description: Iso-Ruuhijärvi is an outdoor and recreational fishing center located in Kajaani, and it's among the most popular recreational fishing destinations in Kainuu.


Kouta-Vuores hiking trails

  • Trail length: 1,2 - 16 km
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: about 19 km
  • Description: Kouta-Vuores hiking trails have four starting points with various route options, including a 1.2 km trail and 6-16 km routes. These trails make an excellent destination for the whole family, offering several options suitable for younger family members. Particularly, the Akkovaara cliffs and caves, as well as the Paljakkakallio cliffs with their muscovite mines, provide excellent exploration and adventure for all ages. There are a total of 18 kilometers of marked trails, with over 2/3 of the paths situated on lichen-covered flat rocks. From the heights of the trails, there are stunning views of Ärjänselkä, Finland's largest inland waterway. Along the trails, there are numerous resting areas and two fireplaces located at Akkovaara and Paljakkakallio. In the terrain of Akkovaara, there is a separate, moderately challenging adventure and nature trail for children and families, the cave tour, which winds through the landscape of large rock formations, small caves, and "pirunpelto" (devil's field).


Otanmäki hiking trail

  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: 42 m
  • Description: The Otanmäki hiking trail connects two of Vuolijoki's most well-known natural sites: the Talaskangas Nature Reserve and the Otanmäki birdpond. There are three resting places along the Otanmäki area, dividing the trail into approximately four equally long sections. Resting places include a lean-to at Parttosenkangas and a table-bench combination near Otanneva.


Pirunvaara local hiking trail

  • Trail length: about 3 km one way
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: about 3 km
  • Description: The local hiking trail starting from Lohtajan Satumaantie leads the hiker through forest paths to Pirunvaara. Upon reaching the hill, an easy path winds through a magnificent spruce forest, offering a view of Sokajärvi from the top, and hikers may discover natural caves along the way. At the fireplace atop the hill, hikers can enjoy a picnic amidst nature. Firewood is provided at the fireplace.

    The trail's length is about 3 kilometers one way. Parking is available right next to the starting point of the trail, near the intersection of Sokajärventie and Satumaantie. The trail is accessible both on foot and by mountain bike.


Pöllyvaara local hiking trail

  • Trail length: 3 km and 5 km
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: about 1 km
  • Description: The 5-kilometer hiking trail and 3-kilometer fitness trail at Pöllyvaara offer an easy hiking destination near the center of Kajaani. Pöllyvaara features old, atmospheric pine forest and varied terrain, primarily consisting of forest paths. In the spruce forest area of Pöllyvaara, the paths can be rooty. The trail has two lean-tos maintained by the village association at Pöllyvaara and Lukkarinnurmi. Mountain biking is allowed on the trail.


The Renfors trail

  • Trail length: 9,2 km
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: downtown
  • Description: Renfors trail loops around the Kajaani riverside area via bike paths and park trails, with several resting areas along the way. The total length of the route is 9.2 kilometers. Information boards about interesting sights and historical figures are placed along the route. The trail features no steep inclines or declines, and the path is wide and even throughout. Therefore, the route is suitable for people with disabilities and elderly individuals. Walking the trail briskly takes approximately 1.5-2 hours. The route is suitable for day trips, including tourists and those interested in the history of Kajaani.


Sairaalanrinteen health forest

  • Trail length: 120 m
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: about 1,5 km
  • Description: Sairaalanrinteen Health Forest is located in the forest next to Kainuu Central Hospital. The accessible 120-meter wooden path is intended for everyone's use.

    The path leads to an accessible lean-to with a fireplace and seats at three different heights. Firewood is available at the fireplace. Along the accessible route, there is a wooden resting area with seating at three different heights, as well as a guide for sensory exercises. Additionally, there is about a 1 km long fitness trail (ski trail in winter) in the middle of the forest. The fitness trail and path are not accessible.


Talaskangas hiking trail

  • Trail length: 12 km
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: 49 km or about 63 km
  • Description: The Talaskangas hiking trail is located in the Kajaani, Sonkajärvi, and Vieremä areas. The hiking trail is in a conservation area. The area of ​​the protected area is about 3,500 hectares. The trail can be started either from Talaskangas or Jyleikönkangas. The trail is 12 kilometers long and offers easy hiking terrain through the pristine wilderness of Talaskangas conservation forest. The area is characterized by spruce-dominated forests and undrained bogs. Along the hiking trail, there are three lean-tos.


Vimpelinlampi outdoor trail 

  • Trail length: 2,5 km
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: noin 3,5 km
  • Description: The easy-to-walk outdoor trail in the Vimpelinlampi park area showcases diverse local nature at its best. The Vimpelinlampi loop, renovated in the summer of 2022, is an easy-to-walk recreational destination near the center of Kajaani. The wide, flat trail with minimal elevation changes is suitable for people with limited mobility and families with strollers. You can walk, Nordic walk, or cycle along the trail. Vimpelinlampi features a separate lean-to shelter with a fireplace and a sandy beach area with beach volleyball courts. Ensure a pleasurable break by bringing your own firewood. The loop trail around the pond has multiple access points for entry and exit.



  • Trail length: 4 km
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: about 2 km
  • Description: The diverse offerings of Vimpelinvaara entice outdoor activities! The hill features a fitness trail, a disc golf course, a downhill skiing slope, and a campfire site. Vimpelinvaara boasts a circular route of approximately 4 kilometers, which serves as a ski trail during winter. Additionally, there are several intersecting paths in the area, allowing visitors to easily plan a suitable length for their hike.

    Note! It is located in the competition area of ​​the Kainuu MTBO Week 2024, so the area is part of the practice and competition ban area. The bicycle orienteering competitions will be held on Sunday, June 30 about 10 a.m.to 2 p.m. and on Monday, July 1. about 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.


Ärjänsaari island

  • Trail length: 10 km
  • Distance from the center of Kajaani: in Oulujärvi, about 16 km as the crow flies
  • Description: Ärjänsaari is situated within the territory of Kajaani on the Ärjänselkä area of Lake Oulujärvi. It is approximately 16 kilometers from Kajaani city center to Ärjänsaari as the crow flies. Nearby boat harbors include Ruunaniemi (3 km), Koutaniemi (7.5 km), Paltaniemi (17.5 km), and Kalkkisilta in Kajaani.

    Ärjänsaari is an enchanting hiking and beach destination on Lake Oulujärvi, offering long sandy beaches and steep cliffs. The trails on Ärjänsaari are easy to walk and suitable for the whole family. Ärjänsaari is a prospective nature reserve maintained by Metsähallitus (Finnish Forest Administration) in the middle of Lake Oulujärvi. However, the island already has a long tradition of recreational use. Ärjä offers the opportunity to experience stunning natural phenomena from the island's high sand terraces. The blazing sun, thunderstorms rumbling in the distance, and gentle summer breeze are authentic experiences of paradise island life.

    Other trails provide opportunities for hikes of various lengths. Ärjänsaari has several intersecting paths. The path that circles the entire island is approximately 10 km long, but hikers can adjust the length of their trip by utilizing different route options. The trails are easy to walk, and wooden bridges have been constructed in wet areas.

Find out more about the routes and their maps on the following websites:

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