Lake Paijanna, Finland

Lake Locations:

Finland - Lakeland -

Lake Paijanne is the second largest lake in Finland and probably the most popular with holiday makers. Located only a couple of hours from Helsinki, Lake Paijanne is the main lake on the Lake Paijanne water route in central Finland’s Lakeland Region. The nearly 300,000-acre lake provides water supply to nearly one million people in the Helsinki area via a 75-mile tunnel. The deepest lake in Finland, Lake Paijanne is the chosen destination of thousands of vacationers, anglers and boaters throughout the year. Over 30,000 cottages and vacation homes grace the 700-mile shoreline and many islands. Despite such heavy use, the lake still provides unspoiled views, secluded bays and miles of sandy beaches to delight the city dweller’s desire for natural surroundings.

A dam on the Kalkkinen Canal regulates the water level of the lake and others in the chain. The entire boat-accessible waterway is about 250 miles and includes Lake Vesijarvi, Lake Paijanne, Lake Keitele and Lake Kansallisvesi – all connected by canal, and in some places locks. This makes Lake Paijanne a favorite of boaters, sailors and yachtsmen: several large marinas and harbors provide for their needs, with shoreline villas, supplies, activities, bike rentals and local activities. Sailing events, regattas and races occur regularly, but casual boating likely dominates the surface activity. All water sports are permitted, including water skiing, tubing, wake boarding, jet skiing and kite surfing. For the boat-less visitor, a number of cruise options can provide both day trips to local islands and down the length of the lake, or multi-day cruises with stops at several cities, large islands and points of interest. One of the more popular harbors and marinas is located at the entrance to the Paijanne National Park on the southwest shore of the lake.

Boaters on Lake Paijanne often dock their boats at Padasjoki Kullasmarina, near the entrance to Paijanne National Park. Here they can choose from a variety of holiday rental villas, shop in the many local shops, take guided canoe trips into the many waterways inside the park itself, or hike the many trails – some lighted for night exploring. The park is also popular for wildlife viewing, mushroom picking and berry picking. Several sandy swimming beaches are available for use, including on nearby islands. Boat rentals and fishing guide services can provide beginning anglers with everything they need to try catching sport fish. Pike, perch, brown trout, zander, landlocked salmon, breem, roach, ide and burbot are all caught on the lake, but such a wide expanse of water sometimes requires a knowledgeable local guide to locate the hottest fishing spots. Ice fishing is very popular in winter, and many holiday villas are open for business year round. Visitors come to enjoy the many cross-country ski routes, snowmobiling, ice skating, curling and sledding.

At the north end of the lake, the City of Jyvaskyla warmly embraces its designation as a boating destination. Located near the canal to Lake Keitele and Lake Kansallisvesi, Jyvaskyla provides not only harbors and marinas for travelers, but a full complement of city services and points of interest. A good outdoor recreation map of the area – available at local shops and bookstores – will offer directions to nature trails, golf courses, hot-air ballooning centers, many different forms of fishing trips, white water rafting and all types of sports facilities. In winter, the Jyvaskyla area is home to cross-country ski centers, ice-skate touring and curling tournaments.

A number of cultural venues exist in Jyvaskyla, some of particular interest to families with children. The Kallio Planetaario is more than just a planetarium. Built into the native rock, the facility is more of a learning museum and includes outdoor activities year round, saunas, a restaurant, theater and offers space camp for youngsters during the summer. The Natural History Museum of Central Finland is located in Jyvaskyla with ever-changing exhibits of interest to budding naturalists and those curious about the animals of Finland. Here in Jyvaskyla, boating enthusiasts can obtain information on proceeding to the northern parts of the Lake Paijanne waterway.

The water quality of Lake Paijanne is rated very good to excellent despite all of the visitors, boaters and cities located along its shoreline. Finland has developed and protected its many waterways over a period of hundreds of years. The waterways were once used extensively for both travel and the movement of goods. Finland now derives a great deal of its electrical power from hydro-electric stations, and the waterways provide municipal water to most cities in the area. Because the country knows the importance of its magnificent water resources, every effort is made to protect them from harm while still providing recreation to residents and visitors alike.

Visitors to Northern Europe may just decide Lake Paijanne would be the ideal spot for their annual holiday. Plenty of lodgings exist in the area, from guest houses to youth hostels to holiday villas of all types and in all price ranges. Those wishing to bring a boat will find ample slip space at the many marinas around the huge lake. Hotels, cottages and caravan parks are numerous. Rough camping is available in the lean-tos and camp sites accessed only by canoe or kayak in the secluded small harbors of Paijanne National Park. Holiday-makers who fall in love with the area may be able to find real estate for sale along the lakefront; with 30,000 cottages and villas, someone will want to sell! So come and discover the recreational paradise that is Lake Paijanne. You’ll wonder why you didn’t discover it long ago!

Things to do at Lake Paijanna

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Ice Fishing
  • Boating
  • Sailing
  • Swimming
  • Beach
  • Canoeing
  • Kayaking
  • Whitewater Rafting
  • Jet Skiing
  • Water Skiing
  • Wakeboarding
  • Kite Surfing
  • Tubing
  • Golf
  • Camping
  • Hiking
  • Ice Skating
  • Snowmobiling
  • Wildlife Viewing
  • National Park
  • Museum

Fish species found at Lake Paijanna

  • Brown Trout
  • Burbot
  • Perch
  • Pike
  • Roach
  • Salmon
  • Trout
  • Zander

Lake Paijanna Photo Gallery

Lake Paijanna Statistics & Helpful Links

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Lake Type: Natural Freshwater Lake, Dammed

Surface Area: 271,816 acres

Shoreline Length: 708 miles

Normal Elevation (Full Pond): 256 feet

Average Depth: 56 feet

Maximum Depth: 322 feet

Water Volume: 14,430,695 acre-feet

Water Residence Time: 2.7 tears

Drainage Area: 9,807 sq. miles

Trophic State: Oligotrophic

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Trophic State | LakeLubbers

Trophic State measures the level of algae and nutrients in a lake.

An oligotrophic lake is very clear (blue in color) and does not support much plant or fish life. A hyper-oligotrophic lake is the clearest of all lakes, and is nearly devoid of plants and fish.

A mesotrophic lake is slightly green and supports a moderate degree of plant and fish life. A lake's most desired trophic state is generally this mid-point - the mesotrophic state.

A eutrophic lake is somewhat murky and supports a large amount of plant and fish life. A hypereutrophic lake is clouded with algae, plant life, and fish life. A eutrophic or hyper-eutrophic lake can be difficult to navigate by boat - and is often an unpleasant place to swim.

The use of phosphorus-rich and nitrogen-rich fertilizer on lawns and golf courses surrounding a lake can cause it to become eutrophic or hypereutrophic.


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Catchment or Drainage Area | LakeLubbers

This is the surrounding area that drains into a lake, including land, rivers and their tributaries. This is also known as the lake's "catchment basin".

Small lakes at the highest peaks of mountains have small drainage areas. The world's oceans have the largest drainage areas.


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Lake-Area Population | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated number of people who live in a house with a view of a lake, plus those who self-describe the lake as their home, for example: "I live at Smith Mountain Lake."


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Water Residence Time | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated time that it takes for an amount of water equal to the entire volume of a lake to flow out of - or evaporate from - the lake.

Residence Time can be as short as a few days for fast-flowing small lakes, and can exceed 100 years for slow-flowing large lakes.


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Completion Year | LakeLubbers

This is the year that a reservoir was first filled to the reservoir's normal elevation - or the year that a natural lake was first dammed. A large reservoir can take more than a year to fill after its dam is first closed.

The Grand Anicut in southern India is generally considered the world's oldest dam that still operates. Grand Anicut was constructed in the second century BC. It now impounds an irrigation network that includes roughly one million acres.

You can find many of the the world's newest reservoirs on LakeLubbers. Many of the world's oldest reservoirs appear on the last page of that list.


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Water Volume | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated volume of water that a lake contains -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. By this measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal.

You can find many of the the world's largest lakes (by water volume) on LakeLubbers.

Water Volume can be measured in acre-feet, in cubic miles, or in cubic kilometers. One acre-foot is the amount of water needed to cover one acre (43,560 square feet) to a depth of one foot. One cubic mile equals 3,379,200 acre-feet. One cubic kilometer equals 810,713 acre-feet.

1 acre-foot is equal to 325,851 US gallons. Siberia's Lake Baikal contains about 6,276,367,740,000,000 gallons of freshwater - nearly 1 million gallons for every living person on earth.

The other - and more widely used - measure of a lake's size is the lake's surface acreage. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is North America's Lake Superior.


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Maximum Depth | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated greatest depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. The world's deepest lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal; that lake's maximum depth is estimated at 5,314 feet.

You can find many of the the world's deepest lakes on LakeLubbers. If you select the last page of that list, you will find the (maximum depth of) the shallowest lakes in our database.


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Average Depth | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated average depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. If the water volume and surface area of a lake are known, an estimate of the lake's average depth can be calculated:

Water volume ÷ Surface Area = Average Depth

Example: 1,000,000 acre-feet ÷ 20,000 acres = 50 feet average depth


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Maximum Elevation | LakeLubbers

This is a lake's highest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can occur during flooding. A lake's highest possible maximum elevation is usually the top of the lake's dam or spillway.

At lakes that include residential development, government regulations usually forbid the construction of homes below a lake's maximum elevation.


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Minimum Elevation | LakeLubbers

This is a lake's lowest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can be reasonably expected to occur. Low lake levels can occur due to deliberate seasonal draw downs for irrigation or impending snow melt, reduced water inflows, drought and evaporation, residential or commercial water demands, and hydropower generation.

Some lakes' minimum and maximum elevations are virtually the same. Lakes that generate hydropower may vary by several feet - according to power demand. Lakes whose primary purpose is to prevent flooding can seasonally vary by 100 feet or more.

When some lakes reach their minimum elevation, their boat ramps may not be long enough to permit boat access - and boats docked on shallow parts of the lake may end up on dry ground. In those cases, kayakers and shore-based anglers may be among the few happy recreational users of the lake.


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Normal Elevation | LakeLubbers

This is a lake's normal water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level. For a reservoir, this water level is also known as "full pond" or "full pool".

You can find many of the world's highest-elevated lakes on LakeLubbers. Lakes with the lowest elevations (known by LakeLubbers) are shown on the final page of that list.


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Shoreline Length | LakeLubbers

This is the length of the exterior shoreline around a lake - measured at the lake's normal elevation. The shoreline length can be considerably shorter or longer when lake water levels are lower or higher than normal.

A lake with many coves has a much longer shoreline than a lake of similar surface area that is nearly circular in shape.

When known, the shoreline miles that we report in our statistics include only the lake's exterior shoreline, and exclude the shorelines of islands located within a lake's boundaries. In lakes with many islands, those islands' combined shorelines may exceed a lake's exterior shoreline.

You can find many of the world's longest-shoreline lakes on Lakelubbers.


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Surface Area | LakeLubbers

This is the area (acreage, square kilometers, etc.) of the top surface area of a lake - measured at a lake's normal elevation. The surface area can be considerably smaller or larger when lake levels are lower or higher than normal. North America's Lake Superior is the world's largest freshwater lake by this measure.

The other measure of a lake's size is the lake's water volume. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Lake Baikal in Siberia.

You can find many of the world's largest lakes (acres) on Lakelubbers. There is no widely-accepted minimum surface area that defines a lake. What Lakelubbers describes as a lake, you might call a pond. The smallest lake that Lakelubbers currently includes is Hawaii's 2-acre Lake Waiau.


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Water Level Control | LakeLubbers

This is the organization that controls water releases or outflows from the lake or reservoir. In the USA, this is often the US Army Corps of Engineers, a power company, a municipal water system, an irrigation district, or a paper manufacturing company. In the case of private or gated lakes, a homeowners' association may be the lake's controlling authority.

Many lakes cross borders, including North America's Great Lakes. The control of such lakes and their coveted freshwater may be amicably shared - or hotly disputed.

"Water wars" continue at many lakes as growing populations and crop irrigation needs compete for the freshwater that lakes contain.


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Lake Type | LakeLubbers

There are 3 basic types of lakes that are currently included on LakeLubbers. 2 types may be dammed or not dammed, producing 5 classifications.

- A Reservoir is a man-made freshwater lake that is usually created by damming rivers.

- A Natural Freshwater Lake occurs naturally - often by glacial activity - and has a salinity of less than 30 parts per thousand. It may be dammed to produce electricity or for other reasons.

- A Natural Saltwater Lake occurs naturally and has a salinity of more than 30 parts per thousand (ppt). It may be dammed.

"Brackish" water may be categorized as freshwater or saltwater, depending on its salt content (salinity). Oligohaline water has less than 15 ppt of salt. Mesohaline water has 15-29 ppt. Polyhaline has 30-335 ppt.


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