Finland has over 188 000 lakes and around 180 000 islands, many located in the Saimaa lakeland area. The Saimaa lakeland area is a blue labyrinth of lakes, islands, rivers and canals, interspersed with forests and ridges. The Saimaa area is full of beautiful scenery and roads which enables us to build an amazing route for the Saimaa Cycle Tour.
The Saimaa Cycle Tour route has been designed by three-time Elite road cycling Finnish Champion Juho Suikkari. The route is based on his former training routes.
Saimaa Cycle Tour 300 km
In 2022, both the start and the finish will be located at the Imatrankoski bridge which crosses the Imatra rapids, the very first tourist destination in Finland. The route departs west towards Lappeenranta where you will ride through the Lappeenranta harbour area, and the first service point will be situated by the giant sandcastle next to the Lappeenranta fortress.
From Lappeenranta the route continues over roads surrounded by lakes to Taipalsaari and Savitaipale. Many roads are esker roads and offer beautiful views before entering the vast forest areas. The route will turn South East just before the Mikkeli city center and you can relax at the route's furthest service point before continuing towards Puumala. On your way to Puumala you will ride over rolling hills and by the numerous lakes. The highlight of the whole route will be the Lietvesi area before Pistohiekka beach where you will ride through a picturesque road which twists in the middle of the lake from island to island.
After you have crossed the Puumala bridge you will ride through the rolling hills to the town of Ruokolahti. At Ruokolahti you will climb a church hill where you will find the last service point before turning back towards Imatra for the final stretch to the finish line.
The entire 300 kilometer route is driven along an asphalt road. There will be eighth service points of which two offer a warm meal. All service points will also offer technical assistance, massage and first aid services.
- 51 km Lappeenrannan harbour / Sandcastle
- 93 km Municipality of Savitaipale
- 122 km Suomenniemi rest stop / Salmenranta (includes a warm meal)
- 163 km Mikkeli / Kirkonvarkaus bridge
- 191 km Väätämönsalmi rest stop
- 222 km Puumala / Sahanlahti resort (includes a warm meal)
- 248 km Puumala / Old province border
- 280 km Ruokolahti - Church Hill
- 300 km Finnish - Imatra rapids
Fast Stop service points for groups will be announced later.
Jaakko's Tour 85 km
The length of Jaakko's Tour is approximately 85 kilometers. The route departs from Imatra and the finish is also situated in Imatra. The route starts is at Imatra rapids and it travels through the Ruokolahti Church Hill and and then takes a tour around the Äitsaari island. Äitsaari is the home ground of Finnish professional rider Jaakko Hänninen, who rides for World Tour team AG2R Citroën Team.
There are two service points along the route:
- 19 km Ruokolahti - Church Hill (water, coffee, nutrition, SPR first aid and bike service)
- 42 km Äitsaari - Hännilä clubhouse (water, coffee, nutrition, SPR first aid and bike service)
Ruokolahti Tour 38 km
The length of the Ruokolahti route is approximately 38 km. The route departs from Imatra and the finish is also situated in Imatra. The route starts is at Imatra rapids and it travels through beautiful Ruokolahti Church Hill before returning back to Imatra. There is a single service point along the route, where you can find water, coffee, nutrition, SPR first aid and bike service.
- 19 km Ruokolahti - Church hill