Lake Saimaa is a lake in southeastern Finland near the Russian border. It is the largest main lake of the Great Saimaa system in Finland, and the lake water flows eastward into Lake Ladoga in Russia through the Vukshi River.
Lake Saimaa is located in the provinces of Mikkeli and Kymi and has two bays: the west branch to Iisalmi and the east branch to Nurmes. About 120 lakes and numerous streams in the lake system drain most of the surface water in southeastern Finland into the Gulf of Finland via Lake Saimaa, the Vuoksi River, and the Saimaa Canal.
Wood processing and paper manufacturing are the economic foundations of the region. The Saimaa Lake system is the important transportation of the main towns in the area. In the southern part of the lake system, especially in Imatra, Tsumi province, there are large hydroelectric power stations. This post introduces more facts about Lake Saimaa.
Lake Saimaa Introduction
Located in southern Finland, Lake Saimaa is the largest lake in Finland and the fourth largest lake in Europe. The melting of glaciers formed it during the late Great Ice Age. The main cities on the shore of the lake are Lappeenranta, Imatra, Savonlinna, Mikkeli, Valkas and Joensuu. From the map, Lake Saimaa seems to have been generated by an explosion and spread out in a net shape. There are many islands on the lake, and narrow waterways link many parts of the lake, each with its own name. The maze-like Lake Saimaa has become the most suitable place for kayaking.
The lake and the islands together form a complementary natural beauty, and visitors can choose to take a yacht from different areas to explore the magnificent scenery of the lake area. Numerous cycling routes lead to Lake Saimaa, the largest lake district in Finland. There are dozens of kilometers of cycling routes along the lake shoreline, and the route expands every year, allowing visitors to stop and enjoy the view of the lake wherever they go.
Lake Saimaa Size
- Saimaa is not a single lake but a series of lakes including Puruvesi, Orivesi, Pyhäselkä, Haukivesi, Pihlajavesi, and Suur-Saimaa. Lake Saimaa has a surface area of 443 sq mi (1,147 sq km) and is the primary lake in the Saimaa lake system, the largest system in Finland, with an area of 1,690 sq mi (4,377 sq km).
- The lake's surface is 76 m (249 ft) above sea level, and the deepest point is 82 m (269 ft).
- The lake has 14,000 islands and a total shoreline length of 8,500 miles, the longest lake shoreline in the world.
- The lake holds about 8.6 cubic miles of water. A series of canals connect Saimaa to smaller lakes in the region to form a waterway.
|Lake Saimaa Surface area||1,147 sq km (1,443 sq mi)|
|Saimaa lake system area||1,690 sq km (4,377 sq mi)|
|Surface elevation||76 m (249 ft)|
|Average depth||17 m (56 ft)|
|Max. depth||82 m (269 ft)|
|Shore length||13,700 km (8,500 mi)|
|Water volume||36 cubic km (8.6 cubic mi)|
The region's scenic mosaic of water, hills, and forests attracts many tourists. Lake Saimaa is the only habitat of the Saimaa ringed seal, one of the world's three species of freshwater seals. You are lucky if you have the chance to see this rare freshwater seal. Another endangered species living in Lake Saimaa is the Saimaa salmon.
Lake Saimaa and the lakeside forest area are popular outdoor activities all year round. The most popular summer activities are hiking, biking, fishing, kayaking and canoeing, swimming, horseback riding, sightseeing boat rides, and more. The most popular water area for kayaking on Lake Saimaa is the Linnasaari National Park, with 130 islands covering more than a hectare. Winter swimming, ice fishing, ice skating, or cross-country skiing is available when the lake freezes in winter.