Best fishing lakes in Finland

by gone71 N

There are 187,888 lakes in Finland and you can catch a fish in every single one of them. Finland is one of the best fishing destinations in the world and you’ll have more than enough opportunities to persue your fishing dreams. We have picked some of the best fishing lakes for your next adventure.

  • Take a look in our fishing map and find your location of interest. Dark blue fish mark some of the most important fishing lakes in Finland.
  • Choose your lake of interst in the list below and find the most common game species and general information about the respective lakes.

One of the biggest problems you’ll encounter when looking for fishing grounds in Finland is to choose from the tens of thousands of lakes in the country. There are literally fish in all of the 187,888 lakes but of course some offer especially rich fishing grounds or big trophy fish. Especially the lake district to the east of the country holds tens of thousands of lakes which are to a majority interconnected through water ways and rivers. Our selection features some of the biggest and most important fishing grounds throughout Finland.

 Lakes in Finland

Lake Ähtärinjärvi

  • Most popular game fish: pike, zander, perch

The lake is situated in the municipalities of Ähtäri, Alajärvi and Soini in the Southern Ostrobothnia region in western Finland. The lake is part of the Kokemäenjoki basin and drains through a chain of lakes that includes among others the lakes Toisvesi and Tarjanne in the Pirkanmaa region, where the lake Tarjanne in its turn drains into the Lake Ruovesi.

The area of ​​the lake is 45,1 km² and it ranks 96th in the area statistics of Finnish lakes. The average depth is 5.2 meters and the maximum depth is 27 meters.

Excellent lake for Zander fishing. Big pike and perch are also common.

Max. length29 km (18 mi)
Max. width3 km (1.9 mi)
Surface area45.1 km2 (17.4 sq mi)
Average depth6.1 m (20 ft)
Max. depth28 m (92 ft)
Surface elevation153.5 m (504 ft)
Game species
Bream
Burbot
Perch
Pike
Roach
Whitefish
Zander

Lake Höytiäinen

  • Most popular game fish: pike, zander, landlocked salmon, grayling, perch

Lake Höytiäinen is an excellent lake for pike fishing. Other species include grayling, brwon trout, perch, zander and landlocked salmon. The waters are a bit muddy (humus rich) so the visibility is limited.

Höytiäinen is located in North Karelia, in the municipalities of Juua, Kontiolahti and Polvijärvi. The area of the lake is 283 km².

The lake is very popular due to its rich stock on landlocked salmon and brown trout. They can be best catched by trolling. You can find bigger zander in the northern- and mid lake parts.

Jigging for perch can be a rewarding option too. Big perch up to half a kilo are common

Graylings are stocked in the lake.

Due to a mismanaged drainage attempt during 1859, the lake was reduced by around one third of its size and waterlevels dropped by 7 meters. It flows through a channel formed in the drainage attempt, called Höytiäisenkanava, into Lake Pyhäselkä in the province of Northern Karelia.

In the area statistics of Finnish lakes, Höytiäinen is ranked 15th. Before 1859, the ranking would have been eleventh. There are 575 islands in Höytiäinen, many of which were born in 1859. The largest is Teyrisaari, 641 ha.

Surface area

282.64 km2 (109.13 sq mi)

Max. depth

62 m (203 ft)

Mean depth

11 m (35 ft)

Surface elevation

87.3 metres (286 ft)

Shoreline

600 km (373 mi)

Game species

Brown trout

Burbot

Grayling

Landlocked salmon

Perch

Pike

Roach

Whitefish

Zander

Lake

Lake Inarijärvi

  • Most popular game fish: trouts, grayling landlocked salmon, arctic char, perch

Lake Inari is set in the middle of the tamed wilderness of Finnish Lapland. Fish are plentiful and potential game species are trouts, grayling, landlocked, salmon, arctic char as well as perch and pike.

It is the largest lake in Lapland (Sápmi) and the third largest lake in Finland. The lake freezes in winter and the ice-surface is used as a roadway to shorten distances to different destinations.

The surface covers 1,040 square kilometres (400 sq mi). It empties northwards through the Paatsjoki at the mouth of the Varangerfjord, which is a bay of the Barents Sea. Water quality is pristine (and cold) and the water is usually very clear.

Trolling is among the most popular fishing methods in the lake. Due to its size and depth salmonid fishes are often in deeper areas especially in summer.

The lake is considered one of the best fisheries for brown trout in Finland usually weighing between 1 and 3 kilos. Record trouts caught in the lake exceed even the staggering 10 kilogram mark. In summer brown trouts can be found in deeper waters ranging from 10 to 30 meters.

Lake Inari is also one of the few places in Finland where you can encounter the mighty Arctic char. In summer you’ll find them in deeper areas (30 meters).

You can also catch grayling from the shore of some of the mid lake islands by spin fishing.

Max. length

80 km (50 mi)

Max. width

50 km (31 mi)

Surface area

1,040.28 km2 (401.65 sq mi)

Average depth

15 m (49 ft)

Max. depth

96 m (315 ft)

Shore length

3,308 km (2,055 mi)

Surface elevation

118.7 m (389 ft)

Game species
Arctic char
Brown trout
Grayling
Landlocked salmon
Perch
Pike
Whitefish

Lake Kallavesi

  • Most popular game fish: pike, zander

Kallavesi is a large lake in Northern Savonia, eastern Finland located around the town of Kuopio. Combined with the lakes Suvasvesi, Juurusvesi–Akonvesi, Muuruvesi, Melavesi, and Riistavesi Kallavesi forms an 890 square kilometres (340 sq mi) lake system named Iso-Kalla.

The shoreline covers an area of ​​478 square kilometers; In the area statistics of Finnish lakes, it ranks 10th and is the largest lake in the province of Northern Savonia. The average depth of the shoreline is 9.7 meters and the maximum depth is 75 meters. The deepest point is located in Hirviselä on the southwest side of Hevonperä Island. Depth of view varies from one and a half meters to four meters.

There are more than 1,900 islands in Kallavesi, the largest of which are Vaajasalo (967 ha, ranked 56th in the Finnish Lake Islands size statistics)

There is a second Kallavesi (14.0 km2) in Finland located in the Kymijoki watershed on Mäntyharju.

This lake is a very good destination for big pike and zander.

Specification

Max. length

90 km (56 mi)

Max. width

15 km (9 mi)

Surface area

472.76 km2 (182.53 sq mi)

Average depth

5–10 m (16–33 ft)

Max. depth

> 60 m (200 ft)

Surface elevation

81.8 m (268 ft)

Game species
Bream
Brown trout
Burbot
Ide
Perch
Pike
Roach
Whitefish
Zander

Lake Kiantajärvi

  • Most popular game fish: land locked salmon, brown trout

Kiantajärvi is a rather large lake in the Oulujoki main catchment area. It is located in Suomussalmi municipality, in the region Kainuu, Finland. It is the 24th biggest lake in Finland. The lake is narrow and 50 km long in north–south direction. The average depth is 7.4 meters and the maximum depth is 43 meters. The lake has been heavily regulated since the early 1960s.

There are 144 islands in Lake Kiantajärvi, the largest of which is Salonsaari, 271 ha. The most famous island in the lake can be considered the small Niettussaari (2.3 ha), where the tomb of the writer Ilmari Kianno is located.

Lake Kiantajärvi is an excellent and prestigious fishing water. Both domestic and professional fishing is practiced in abundant fishing waters. The lake has a good vendace population. Other fish species that thrive in the lake include pike, perch, whitefish, trout, lake salmon and pike. However the lake is expecially famous for land-locked salmon and brown trout, mostly catched by trolling.

Max. length

50 km (31 mi)

Surface area

187.933 km2 (72.561 sq mi)

Average depth

7.37 m (24.2 ft)

Max. depth

43 m (141 ft)

Water volume

1.385 km3 (1,123,000 acre⋅ft)

Shore length

527.719 km (327.909 mi)

Surface elevation

199.3 m (654 ft)

Game species
Bream
Brown trout
Burbot
Landlocked salmon
Perch
Pike
Roach
Whitefish
Zander

Lake Keitele

  • Most popular game fish: pike, perch, zander

Keitele is a rather large lake located in Central Finland. With the area of 493.59 km² it is the 9th largest lake in the country and the second largest in Central Finland. The lake is divided into three regions, Ylä-, Keski-, and Ala-Keitele (Lower Keitele, Central Keitel and Upper Keitele), of which Keski-Keitele is the largest. Water in the lake is clear and in excellent condition. The towns of Äänekoski and Viitasaari are located on the shores of Keitele.

The Keitele channel connects Keitele to Päijänne. This water route and area has already in prehistoric times served as a fishing and residential area to the Finnish ancestors, as evidenced by the numerous archaeological finds off the shores of Keitele. The entire canal route is characterized by fairway-like nature and open back water can only be found in Leppävesi and Saraavesi. The area is also characterized by numerous rapids that have been sought to be preserved in their natural state, as well as the many narrow straits and streams that connect different parts of the area. 

The northernmost part of the lake is called Ylä-Keitele. A big part of Ylä-Keitele belongs to Natura 2000 protection program due to its clear water and natural condition.

The clear-water of lake Keitele is very popular among fishermen: there are plenty of good fishing spots and fish stocks are healthy. There are also plenty of boat landings and sheds on the shores of the lake.  Most common species are pike, perch and zander but also different salmonides can be caught.

Surface area

498.41 km2 (192.44 sq mi)

Average depth

6.88 m (22.6 ft)

Max. depth

66 m (217 ft)

Water volume

3.4 km3 (2,800,000 acre⋅ft)

Shore length

1,461 km (908 mi)

Surface elevation

99.5 m (326 ft)

Lake Kitkajärvi

  • Most popular game fish: trout, lake salmon

Lake Kitkajärvi is a rather large lake of Finland. It is situated partly in Posio in Lapland region and partly in Kuusamo municipality in Northern Ostrobothnia region, and it belongs to the Koutajoki main catchment area. The southern part of the lake is called Yli-Kitka (meaning Upper Kitka) and northern part is called Ala-Kitka (meaning Lower Kitka). Kitkajärvi is 14th biggest lake in Finland. It is also the biggest unregulated lake, because there is not any power stations in the outflow. Rather big part of the lake is protected in the Natura 2000 protection program. The water in the lake is very clean.

Popular species are trout and wild lake salmon.

Surface area

285.81 km2 (110.35 sq mi)

Water volume

1.742 km3 (1,412,000 acre⋅ft)

Surface elevation

240.4 m (789 ft)

Mean Depth

6 m

Maximum depth

41 m

Shoreline

850 km

Length

50 km

Game species

Brown trout

Burbot

Grayling

Perch

Pike

Roach

Whitefish

Wild lake salmon

Lake Kivijärvi

  • Most popular game fish: Zander, pike, lake trout

Kivijärvi is a rather large lake in Finland. The name Kivijärvi is rather common and there are 121 lakes with the same name. This is the biggest of them. Kivijärvi is located in northern Central Finland and belongs to the Kymijoki watershed route. The lake is located in the municipalities of Kannonkoski, Kivijärvi and Kinnula. Most of the lake is in the municipality of Kivijärvi, and the lake divides the municipality into two parts on the west and east sides of the lake.

It is 30th biggest lake in Finland and a very good lake for fishing. For example, a 10.1 kg lake trout was caught in Kivijärvi lake in summer 2001.

The name of the lake translates as “rock lake” and characterizes the rocky shores and shallow waters.

The length of the lake is about 50 kilometers and at its widest about 10 kilometers. The deepest part of the lake is in Lintuselä with 45 meters.

In addition to rocky beaches, the shores of the lake have the widest sandy beaches in the Lake District of Central Finland. Especially in the southern parts of Lake Kivijärvi, the water quality and oxygen situation are good.

The lake is a very popular zander destination. Pike are obligatory.

Max. length

50 km (31 mi)

Max. width

10 km (6.2 mi)

Surface area

154.03 km2 (59.47 sq mi)

Average depth

8.36 m (27.4 ft)

Max. depth

45 m (148 ft)

Water volume

1.294 km3 (0.310 cu mi)

Shore length

544.5 km (338.3 mi)

Surface elevation

130.8 m (429 ft)

Game species
Bream
Brown trout
Burbot
Perch
Pike
Roach
Whitefish
Zander

Lake Konnevesi

  • Most popular game fish: Pike, perch, brown trout

Konnevesi is a rather large lake in the Kymijoki main catchment area. It is located in the regions Pohjois-Savo and Keski-Suomi in (northern-) Central Finland. In the year 2014 the Southern Konnevesi National Park was established and the area is part oft he Natura 2000 program. Quality of water is excellent.

Konnevesi has a total area of ​​about 187 km2. The lake is divided into two clearly different parts. The area of ​​Pohjois-Konnevesi is 68.5 km2 and its average depth is 7.5 meters and the maximum depth is 44 meters. The area of ​​South Konnevesi is larger, 199.5 km2, and the maximum depth of the lake is 56 meters and the average depth is 12.5 meters.

Big pike and perch up to 1 kilo are common. Big specimen of wild brown trout can also be found in the clear waters.

Surface area

189.18 km2 (46,750 acres)

Max. depth

57 m (187 ft)

Water volume

2 km3 (1,600,000 acre⋅ft)

Shore length

624 km (388 mi)

Surface elevation

95.4 m (313 ft)

Game species
Bream
Brown trout
Burbot
Grayling
Ide
Perch
Pike
Roach
Whitefish
Zander

Lake Kulovesi

  • Most popular game fish: pike, perch, zander

Kulovesi is a medium-sized lake in Finland belonging to the Kokemäenjoki basin. It is the 100th largest in Finland situated in the area of the towns Nokia and Sastamala in the Pirkanmaa region. The lake Pyhäjärvi drains through the Nokianvirta River into the Lake Kulovesi from the west and the lake Kyrösjärvi through a chain of lakes (last one being Mahnalanselkä – Kirkkojärvi) and the Siuronkoski rapids from the north. The lake gathers waters from an area of 20 822 km² that includes the whole upper part of the Kokemäenjoki basin. Lake Kulovesi drains into the lake Rautavesi which in its turn drains into the lake Liekovesi and this finally into the Kokemäenjoki River.

Together with Rautavesi, Kulovesi forms one of the best pike-fishing areas in Finland.

Whitefleshed-predatores as zander, perch and pike are the game fish number one in this area.

Surface area36.422 km2 (14.063 sq mi)
Average depth7.14 m (23.4 ft)
Max. depth36.6 m (120 ft)
Water volume0.258 km3 (209,000 acre⋅ft)
Shore length152.77 km (94.93 mi)
Surface elevation57.5 m (189 ft)
Game species
Asp
Bream
Brown trout
Burbot
Ide
Perch
Pike
Roach
Rudd
Whitefish
Zander

Lake Kuusamojärvi

  • Most popular game fish: pike, lake salmon

Kuusamojärvi is situated in the town of Kuusamo in the Northern Ostrobothnia region in northern Finland. The lake is a part of the Kem River basin that drains into the White Sea in the Republic of Karelia, Russia.

Its area is 47.4 km², in the area statistics of Finnish lakes it ranks 83rd. The area of ​​this basin is 123.6 km², which means that it already belongs to the ‘Great Lakes’ of Finland.

Main catch in lake Kuusamo area pike and also frequently stocked lake salmon.

Surface elevation

253.0 m (830.1 ft)

Area

124 km²

Length

40 km

Shoreline

437 km

Mean depth

4 m

Maximum depth

36 m

Game species
Bream
Brown trout
Burbot
Grayling
Ide
Landlocked salmon
Perch
Pike
Roach
Whitefish

Lake Kyyvesi

  • Most popular game fish: pike, zander, brown trout

Kyyvesi (transl. Viper Water) is a rather large lake in the Southern Savonia region of Finland. Despite its size (129,95 km²) it’s very shallow and extremely rocky. Motorboating on Kyyvesi is recommended only for very experienced boaters as many of the rocks have not been mapped. Canoes, kayaks and rowing boats are recommended for visitors. The water is dark for the catchment area is mostly swampy terrain. Locals claim that two sorts of zander fishes are living in the lake.

Kyyvesi covers an area of ​​129.95 km2 and the shoreline is 857 km long. The average depth is 4.39 m and its maximum depth is 35.3 m. Kyyvesi belongs to the top waters of the Mäntyharju route. The lake is characterized by a strong northwest-southeast orientation and long, narrow peninsulas and bays.

All the main lakes in the Kyyvesi fishing area have a very abundant stock of perch, pike and roach. Due to annual plantings and natural increase, the pike stock is very abundant in Kyyvesi. Trouts are planted every year in moderate numbers.

Lake Kyyvesi is well known for a strong population of pike and zander. You can find brown trout in the muddy catchment area.

Surface area

129.947 km2 (50.173 sq mi)

Average depth

4.39 m (14.4 ft)

Max. depth

35.25 m (115.6 ft)

Water volume

0.57 km3 (460,000 acre⋅ft)

Shore length1

857.26 km (532.68 mi)

Surface elevation

100.65 m (330.2 ft)

Species

Brown trout

Burbot

Ide

Perch

Pike

Whitefish

Zander

Lake Lappajärvi

  • Most popular game fish: perch, zander

Lappajärvi is a lake in Finland, in the municipalities of Lappajärvi, Alajärvi and Vimpeli. The Lappajärvi area was struck by an asteroid about a kilometer in diameter about 75 million years ago. The explosion killed all life within a radius of 200 to 300 kilometers. The lake is situated in the 23 km (14 mi) wide, partly eroded meteorite impact crater.

Lake Lappajärvi is the largest lake in the province of Southern Ostrobothnia in the Ähtäväjoki watershed. The area of ​​the lake is 145.5 km², in the area statistics of Finnish lakes it is in 33rd place. The maximum depth of the lake is 36 meters and the average depth is 6.9 meters. It is the largest crater lake in Finland.

An island in the middle of the lake, Kärnänsaari (Kärnä Island), gives the name to the black impact melt rock (impactite) found there, locally called kärnäite. The towns on the shore are Lappajärvi and Vimpeli. Although not very near any, the nearest major city is Seinäjoki.

The dark humus rich waters are perfect conditions for zander. Perch are also very common and decent sized. The biggest can be found mid-lake.

Surface area

145.49 km2 (56.17 sq mi)

Max. depth

36 m (118 ft)

Mean depth

7 m (23 ft)

Surface elevation

69.5 m (228 ft)

Islands

56

Species

Brown trout

Perch

Pike

Roach

Whitefish

Zander

Lake Lohjanjärvi

  • Most popular game fish: pike, perch, zander

Lohjanjärvi is a lake located in the Uusimaa region of Finland and the largest lake in the Karjaanjoki watershed, with an area of 88,2 km². In the area statistics of Finnish lakes, the ranking is 49.

The lake was the home to the biggest zander caught in FInland weighing around 12 kg. The record fish was accidently hit by a boat – a rather unconventional method to catch a fish of this size. Zander season is in mainly in summer. Pike and perch can be catched all year round.

The majority of the lake is located within the borders of the city of Lohja and smaller parts in the municipality of Karjalohja and in the city of Raseborg. The lake drains into the Gulf of Finland through Mustionjoki. Together with Hiidenvesi, which drains into the gulf from the north, Lohjanjärvi is a part of the Karjaanjoki basin.

Lohjanjärvi is the largest lake in the province of Uusimaa and the Karjaanjoki watershed, with an area of 88.2 km². In the area statistics of Finnish lakes, the ranking is 49. About four-fifths of the catchment area is formed by the Väänteenjoki, through which Hiidenvesi flows into Lohjanjärvi.

Lohjanjärvi is quite deep, with an average depth of 12.7 meters. Isoselkä is 55 meters deep. As the middle surface of the lake is only less than 32 meters above sea level, the deepest point thus extends 23 meters below sea level. This is the largest cryptodepression of Finnish lakes.

Despite its depth, Lohjanjärvi has about 250 islands and islets. The largest island, Lohjansaari (1995 ha), ranks 24th in the Finnish inland island statistics. Other significant islands are Jalassaari (360 ha), Pensaari (114 ha), Huhtasaari (76 ha) and Seppälänsaari (68 ha). There is a road connection to all of them.

Surface area

88.218 km2 (34.061 sq mi)

Average depth

12.68 m (41.6 ft)

Max. depth

54.88 m (180.1 ft)

Water volume

1.119 km3 (907,000 acre⋅ft)

Shore length

331.81 km (206.18 mi)

Surface elevation

31.6 m (104 ft)

Species

Asp

Bream

Brown trout

Burbot

Ide

Perch

Pike

Roach

Rudd

Whitefish

Zander

 

Lake Muojärvi

  • Most popular game fish: lake salmon, pike, perch, ide

Lake Muojärvi to the east of Kuusamojärvi is well known for its lake salmon and a very popular trolling destination. Additoinaly you can catch pike, perch and ide up to 3 kilogram.

Muojärvi is the largest lake on the Finnish side of the Viena Kemi watershed in Kuusamo, in the province of Northern Ostrobothnia. It covers an area of ​​55 km². On the same level as Kirpistö, it forms a 76.2 km² pool pair, which ranks 59th in the area statistics of Finnish lakes.

Area:

124 km²

Length:

40 km

Shoreline:

437 km

Mean depth:

4 m

Maximum depth:

36 m

Game species
Bream
Brown trout
Burbot
Grayling
Ide
Landlocked salmon
Perch
Pike
Roach
Whitefish

Lake Näsijärvi

  • Most popular game fish: zander, pike, perch, brown trout, landlocked salmon.

The lake is one of the most popular fishing sites in Finland but can be challanging due to its depth.

Näsijärvi is the biggest lake in the Tampere area at 256 square kilometres (99 sq mi) in size. The city of Tampere was built along the Tammerkoski rapids, through which the lake drains into Pyhäjärvi. The water quality of the lake has improved as forest industry has decreased the amount of waste water.

Lake Näsijärvi is the largest lake in the Kokemäenjoki watershed and in the province of Pirkanmaa, with an area of ​​255 km². In Finnish lake statistics, it ranks 16th. The average depth is 13.7 meters and the maximum depth is 61 meters.

The majority of the inflow comes from routes above Murole, with a total area of ​​6,102 km². Smaller watercourses flowing into the lake are Keihäsjoki (192 km²), Jakama (157 km²) and Karjulanjoki (138 km²). The large backs of Lake Näsijärvi are Vankavesi, Koljonselkä and Näsiselkä from north to south. There are 598 islands, the largest of which are Iso-Otava (113 ha), Onniansaari (49 ha), Muurainen (47 ha), Taninsaari (38 ha) and Iso Leppisalo (31 ha). However, the most famous island is Siilinkari off Tampere, where the steamship ‘Kuru’ was wrecked on September 7, 1929. 138 people drowned in this most devastating accident in Finnish inland waters.

Max. length

40 km (25 mi)

Surface area

256.12 km2 (98.89 sq mi)

Max. depth

63 m (207 ft)

Mean depth

14 m (40 ft)

Surface elevation

95.4 m (313 ft)

Islands

646

Species

Bream

Brown trout

Burbot

Landlocked salmon

Perch

Pike

Roach

Rudd

Whitefish

Zander

Lake Nilakka

  • Most popular game fish: pike, lake trout, grayling, rainbow trout

Nilakka is a lake belonging to the Rautalammi route of the Kymijoki watershed in the municipalities of Pielavesi, Keitele and Tervo in Northern Savonia. The lake has an area of 168 km² and an altitude of 102.3 meters above sea level.

Pike, lake trout, grayling, rainbow trout and vendace have been planted in the water.

On the northwest side of the Nilaka main bank, in the Keitele area, is the narrow and long Vuonamonlahti, into which the Sulkavanjoki and Kangasjoki rivers flow from the north. In addition, the Koutajoki River flows into the lake from the west. From Nilaka, the waters flow south through the Äyskoski and Kolu canals to Iisvesi Rasvanki. Nilakka is more than 40 km long in the northwest-southeast direction and more than 10 km wide in its central parts. There are about 170 islands in the lake. The largest number of islands is in the southern parts of the lake, of which Elosaari, Kaija and Inginsaari are worth mentioning.

The lake is shallow, with an average depth of only 4.86 meters and a maximum measured depth of just over 21 meters. The coastline is 357 kilometers. Nilaka’s water quality is good in general.

Max. length

over 40 km (25 mi)

Max. width

max 10 km (6.2 mi)

Surface area

168.51 km2 (65.06 sq mi)

Average depth

4.86 m (15.9 ft)

Max. depth

21.74 m (71.3 ft)

Water volume

0.821 km3 (666,000 acre⋅ft)

Shore length

357.81 km (222.33 mi)

Surface elevation

102.2 m (335 ft)

Game species

Bream

Brown trout

Burbot

Ide

Perch

Pike

Roach

Whitefish

Zander

 
 

Lake Oulujärvi

  • Most popular game fish: pike, zander, brown trout, landlocked salmon.

The lake is especially well known for its big pike and 10+ kg are not uncommon. Every year the championship of pike trolling takes place in Oulujärvi where you have to catch a total over 100 kg of pike to claim the victory.

Oulujärvi is a large lake in Finland located in the Kainuu region. With an area of 928 square kilometres (358 sq mi) it is the fifth largest lake in the country after Lake Saimaa, Lake Päijänne, Lake Inari and Lake Pielinen. The lake is drained by the Oulu River, which flows northwestward from the lake into the Gulf of Bothnia. Its nickname is the “Kainuu sea“, and it is bordered by three municipalities: Vaala, Paltamo and Kajaani.

With an average depth of 7.6 meters, the lake is remarkably shallow even for a Finnish lake (Finnish lakes are generally shallow). The maximum depth of the lake is 35 meters. The water is oxygenated and clean, providing an ideal breeding environment for many aquatic life.

There are 665 islands in Lake Oulujärvi, which is quite a small number compared to the area of ​​the lake. Manamansalo (7507 ha) is the fifth largest lake island in Finland, Käkisaari (2035 ha, 23rd place) also reaches the list of the top 100.

Surface area

928.09 km2 (358.34 sq mi)

Average depth

ca. 7 m (23 ft)

Max. depth

38 m (125 ft)

Shore length

1,201.17 km (746.37 mi)

Surface elevation

120.9–123.6 m (397–406 ft)

Game species

Bream

Brown trout

Burbot

Ide

Perch

Pike

Roach

Whitefish

Zander

Lake Päijänne

  • Most popular game fish: pike, perch, zander.

There are plenty of potential pike areas along the shores. In spring and autumn landlocked salmon and brown trout can be catched by trolling in the mid-lake area.

Päijänne is a large (1,083 km²) lake in the Kymijoki watershed. It is located in the provinces of Päijät-Häme and Central Finland. Päijänne is the second or third largest lake in Finland. At the beginning of the year, it usually covers Lake Inari, when the water levels in the south are elevated and in Lapland still in  winter mode.

The lake drains into the Gulf of Finland via the Kymi River. The largest island is Virmailansaari. The word saari means an island. The largest city on the shores of Päijänne is Jyväskylä in the North. The city of Lahti is connected to Päijänne through Lake Vesijärvi and the Vääksy canal.

An underground aqueduct, Päijänne Water Tunnel, connects the lake to Vantaa, providing the Helsinki area with water. The deepest point in any lake in Finland is located in Päijänne (95.3 m or 313 ft).

Päijänne has very clear water and its ecological status is good.

Near the Vanhanselä in northern Päijänne, in Korpilahti, Jyväskylä, is the UNESCO World Heritage Site Oravivuori Triangle Tower. It belongs to the so-called Struve chain, which in the 19th century explored the shape of the earth. Overall, the chain extends from the Black Sea to the Arctic Ocean. Squirrel Mountain is one of the six points in the chain located in Finland.

Päijänne is also an important recreational water body, with many having summer cottages on the shores and a lot of fishing. In addition, various lake cruises are organized in both North and South Päijänne.

Max. length

120 km (75 mi)

Surface area

1,070 km2 (413.13–sq mi)

Average depth

16.2–18 m (53–59 ft)

Max. depth

95.3 m (313 ft)

Water volume

18.1 km3 (4.3 cu mi)

Residence time

2.5 years

Surface elevation

78.3 m (257 ft)

 
 
 

Game species

Bream

Brown trout

Burbot

Ide

Landlocked salmon

Perch

Pike

Roach

Rudd

Whitefish

Zander

Lake Pielavesi

  • Most popular game fish: zander, perch, pike, brown trout (trolling)

Pielavesi is a large lake in the Kymijoki main catchment area in Northern Savonia, Finland. It is situated in the municipality of Pielavesi. The water quality is good. It is connected to the lake Nilakka and similar in fishing conditions.

Max. length

4–7 km (2.5–4.3 mi)

Max. width

22 km (14 mi)

Surface area

110.098 km2 (42.509 sq mi)

Max. depth

29 m (95 ft)

Shore length

419.71 km (260.80 mi)

Surface elevation

102.3 m (336 ft)

Game species

Bream

Brown trout

Burbot

Ide

Perch

Pike

Roach

Whitefish

Zander

Lake Pielinen

  • Most popular game fish: pike, zander, brown trout, landlocked salmon

Lake Pielinen is a diverse fishing destination and besides big pike and zander you can encounter landlocked salmon and brown trout.

Pielinen covers an area of almost 900 km², making the lake the fourth largest in Finland. It is the largest lake in the province of North Karelia. As is common in Finnish lakes, the water color of the lake is dark on account of the high proportion of bogs present in the catchment of the drainage basin that drains humic substances.

The lake is situated in the northernmost part of Karelia, which is the land of the Karelian peoples, a Northern European area of historical significance not only for Finland, but also for Russia and Sweden.

The maximum depth of Pielinen is 61 meters in the central part near the island of Paalasmaa; the average depth is about 10 meters. Pielinen is about 90 kilometers long, and has a maximum width of almost 30 kilometers, and at its narrowest only a couple of kilometers. Pielinen has 5,276 kilometers of coastline. There are 1491 islands in Pielinen, the largest of which are Paalasmaa (2714 ha, the 14th largest of Finland’s lake islands), Kynsisaari (1350 ha, ranked 36), Porosaari (1029, ranked 52) and Teinesaari (820, rank 71). The total area of the Pielinen Islands is more than 14,700 hectares.

Max. length

120 km (75 mi)

Max. width

40 km (25 mi)

Surface area

894.21 km2 (345.26 sq mi)

Average depth

9.9 m (32 ft)

Max. depth

60 m (200 ft)

Water volume

8.5 km3 (2.0 cu mi)

Residence time

1.9 years

Shore length

610 km (380 mi)

Surface elevation

93.7 m (307 ft)

Game species

Bream

Brown trout

Burbot

Grayling

Ide

Landlocked salmon

Perch

Pike

Roach

Rudd

Whitefish

Zander

Lake Puula

  • Most popular game fish: pike, perch, zander, trout, landlocked salmon

The waters of the Puula fishing area include all the most common fish species and there are at least 22 fish species in total, e.g.: eel, pike, perch, zander, landlocked salmon, brown trout, rainbwo trout, grayling and roach. The waters are excellent ground for vendace, which is why trout and lake salmon grow quickly. The fish population in the large clear outcrops of Puula consists almost exclusively of vendace. Perch and roach occur very little. Whitefish thrive mainly near the shores.

The most important predatory fish in the Ulappa areas are trout, landlocked salmon as well as large perch. Many many thosands of pikes, lake salmons, trouts  and zander are planted every year.

Puulavesi (Puula) is located in Southern Savonia in the areas of Hirvensalmi, Kangasniemi and Mikkeli, as well as Joutsa, which belongs to the province of Central Finland. Puula covers an area of ​​330 km² and is the 13th largest lake in Finland. The average depth of the lake is 9.2 meters and the deepest point is 62 meters. Puula receives the waters of the Kyyvesi area from the northeast through Läsäkoski. Puulavesi flows into Liekune and flows through the Kissakoski canal and power plant along the Mäntyharju route to the Kymijoki river.

Most of the waters in the Puula fishing area belong to the Puulavesi area of ​​the Mäntyharju route. In the northern part of the Puula fishing area, there is also a water area that belongs to the Niemisjärvi watershed of the Leppävesi-Kynsivesi route.

Special features of the lake Puula is a diverse, low-nutrient and clear-water lake chain consisting of extensive ridges. It is characterized by rugged, rocky beaches and, in many places, deciduous forests growing near the beach. Due to its water quality, diverse nature and, in many places, low population density, Puulavesi is one of the most important natural sites in the province. Its broken and rugged archipelago nature is distinctive and an excellent fishing ground.

Surface area

330.76 km2 (127.71 sq mi)

Average depth

9.2 m (30 ft)

Max. depth

62 m (203 ft)

Surface elevation

94.7 m (311 ft)

Game species

Bream

Brown trout

Burbot

Ide

Landlocked salmon

Perch

Pike

Roach

Whitefish

Lake Pyhäjärvi / Pyhäjärvi

  • Most popular game fish: zander, perch

Pyhäjärvi is a lake in southern Finland. There are 39 lakes in Finland with the same name but only one in the catchment area of River Pyhäjoki in the municipality with the same name. Although the name means in modern Finnish “holy lake”, it probably meant originally “border lake”.

The area of ​​Lake Pyhäjärvi is 121.8 km², and it ranks 38th in the area statistics of Finnish lakes. The average depth of Lake Pyhäjärvi is 6.3 m and the maximum depth is 27 m. There are 115 islands in the lake, all quite small. The total length of the coastline is 244 km.

The lake provides excellent fishing opportunities for pike and zander.

Surface area

121.8 km2 (47.0 sq mi)

Average depth

6.27 m (20.6 ft)

Max. depth

27 m (89 ft)

Water volume

770,000,000 m3 (2.7×1010 cu ft)

Shore length

244.5 km (151.9 mi)

Surface elevation

139–140 m (456–459 ft)

Game species

Bream

Brown trout

Burbot

Landlocked salmon

Perch

Pike

Roach

Whitefish

Zander

Lake Rautavesi

  • Most popular game fish: zander, perch, pike

Rautavesi is a medium-sized lake in Finland. It is located in the municipality of Sastamala in the Pirkanmaa region in western Finland. Its main inflow is the lake Kulovesi in the east and it drains into the lake Liekovesi through the Vammaskoski rapids in the west. Lake Liekovesi, in its turn drains into the Kokemäenjoki river.

Whitefleshed-predatores as zander, perch and pike are the game fish number one in this area.

Surface area

30.28 km2 (11.69 sq mi)

Average depth

4.96 m (16.3 ft)

Max. depth

26.32 m (86.4 ft)

Water volume

0.15 km3 (0.036 cu mi)

Shore length

111.94 km (69.56 mi)

Surface elevation

57.5 m (189 ft)

Game species
Asp
Bream
Brown trout
Burbot
Ide
Perch
Pike
Roach
Rudd
Whitefish
Zander

Lake Roine

  • Most popular game fish: pike, zander, perch

Roine is a medium-sized lake in Finland. The lake is located in the Pirkanmaa region, mostly in the municipality of Kangasala and for a lesser part in the municipality of Pälkäne.

The lake is part of Kokemäenjoki basin and a chain of lakes that consists of Längelmävesi, Vesijärvi, Roine, Pälkänevesi and Mallasvesi. This chain of lakes drains into Vanajavesi in Valkeakoski.

The area is 54.6 km², in Finnish lake size statistics it is ranked 75th. The average depth is 7.4 meters and the maximum depth is 38 meters. The majority of the inflow comes from Längelmävesi (2180 km²) through the Kaivanto canal, the own local catchment area comprises only small streams.

Roine is divided into the northern main basin and southern Tossanselkä. Between them is the largest island, Raronsalo (694 ha), which ranks 88th in the island statistics of the Finnish lakes. There is a road connection along which you can also get to the other three islands of Roine; the area is known as Saarikylät. The second largest island of Roine is Vänninsalo, 172 ha.

Surface area

54.587 km2 (21.076 sq mi)

Average depth

7.36 m (24.1 ft)

Max. depth

38.4 m (126 ft)

Water volume

0.402 km3 (0.096 cu mi)

Shore length

195.21 km (121.30 mi)

Surface elevation

84.2 m (276 ft)

Game species

Bream

Brown trout

Burbot

Landlocked salmon

Perch

Pike

Roach

Whitefish

Zander

Lake Ruovesi & Tarjanne

  • Most popular game fish: pike, zander, perch.

These lakes are home to one of the most famous big pike areas in Finland (Paloselkä area). Zander fishing is good too.

Lake Ruovesi & Tarjanne are medium-sized lakes. Together with Vaskivesi-Visuvesi, Palovesi-Jäminginselä and Tarjante, Ruovesi forms the 210 km² Iso-Tarjannevesi. When Finnish lake statistics interpret each flat basin as one large lake, Iso-Tarjannevesi is the 18th largest lake in Finland. It is located in the municipalities of Ruovesi and Mänttä-Vilppula and Virrat in the Pirkanmaa region in western Finland. The lake is a part of the Kokemäenjoki basin and its main inflows are the Lake Vaskivesi and the Lake Kuorevesi in the east. The lake drains into the lake Palovesi in south, which in its turn drains into the lake Näsijärvi.

Ruovesi covers an area of ​​66.1 km² and is the 63rd largest lake in Finland. Ruovesi’s three largest backs are Ruovesi, Mustaselkä and Paloselkä. The largest island is Sotkansaari (52 ha). Tarjannevesi is located in the Kokemäenjoki catchment area in Pirkanmaa province. It covers an area of ​​54.9 km² and is the 74th largest lake in Finland. The average depth is 12.7 meters and the maximum depth is 68 meters.

Surface area

210 km2

Average depth

12.66 m (41.5 ft)

Max. depth

67.78 m (222.4 ft)

Average depth

8 m (29 ft)

Shore length

1080 km (671mi)

Surface elevation

96.1 m (315 ft)

Game species

Bream

Brown trout

Burbot

Ide

Perch

Pike

Roach

Rudd

Whitefish

Lake Saimaa

  • Most popular game fish: perch, pike, zander, landlocked salmon, grayling.

Saimaa is a lake in southeastern Finland. At approximately 4,400 square kilometres (1,700 sq mi), it is the largest lake in Finland, and the fourth largest natural freshwater lake in Europe. The lake consists of several major water areas also known as ‘lakes’. The key parts of Lake Saimaa are Lakes Suur-Saimaa, Pihlajavesi, Haukivesi, Puruvesi, Orivesi and Pyhäselkä.

An endangered freshwater seal, the Saimaa Ringed Seal, lives only at Saimaa. Another of the lake’s endangered species is the Saimaa salmon, a native form of landlocked salmon.

Surface area

4,400 km2 (1,700 sq mi) total
(1,377 km2 (532 sq mi) largest basin)

Average depth

17 m (56 ft)

Max. depth

82 m (269 ft)

Shore length

13,700 km (8,500 mi)

Surface elevation

76 m (249 ft)

Game species

Arctic char

Bream

Brown trout

Burbot

Grayling

Ide

Landlocked salmon

Perch

Pike

Roach

Rudd

Whitefish

Zander

Lake Suvasvesi

  • Most popular game fish: landlocked salmon, brown trout, pike, zander.

The stock of landlocked salmon and brown trout is considerably strong in the lake. Decent sized perch and pike are obligatory.

Suvasvesi is a lake in Eastern Finland near the town of Kuopio. Suvasvesi consists of two circular open lakes, Kuukkarinselkä in north and Haapaselkä in south. The lakes are separated by a group of islands. The lake has 688 islands in total. The area of the lake is 234 sq kilometres (90 sq mi) making it the 18th largest lake in Finland. Kuukkarinselkä is the third deepest lake in Finland measuring 89.0 metres (292.0 ft) in the deepest point.

In 2001, shatter cones were found in Kuukkarinselkä making it the 6th known impact crater in Finland. The crater, usually referred as Suvasvesi North crater, is located in the center of Kuukkarinselkä and measures about 3.5 kilometres (2.2 mi) in diameter. Haapaselkä resembles the northern counterpart and it was also suspected to be an impact crater. It has recently been confirmed and is usually referred as Suvasvesi South crater.

Surface area

233.58 km2 (90.19 sq mi)

Max. depth

89.0 m (292 ft)

Surface elevation

81.7 m (268 ft)

Islands

688

Game species

Bream

Brown trout

Burbot

Ide

Landlocked salmon

Perch

Pike

Roach

Whitefish

Zander

Other things to know about Finnish lakes

Many of the lakes have several square kilometres of surface area and if you want to fish on them a boat is highly recommended. But no worries if you do not have access to a floating vehicle, there are literally more than enough possibilities for shore fishing. A lake is btw. defined as a standing water area that is larger than 500 m2 (5400 sq ft). Around 57,000 of the Finnish lakes offer even a surface area of over 10,000 m2 (110,000 sq ft) and they make a great destination for peaceful shore fishing adventures.

White-fleshed predators like pike and perch can usually be encountered in all Finish lakes. Zander is a bit more elusive but also quite common. The best Zander populations are in the southern parts of Finland and in the Lake District. The general rule is the further ­north you go, the less likely you’ll encounter one of these predators.

Some of the bigger lakes offer the possibility to catch some landlocked salmon, trouts and grayling. Arctic char can be found in Lake Kilpisjärvi and surrounding mountain lakes. Lake Inarijärvi is also a good spot for salmonid fishes including arctic char. A boat is mandatory however to fish successfully in the latter one.

  • Lapland Lakes: Inarijärvi, Kilpisjärvi, Mountain lakes for arctic char
  • Central Finland Lakes: Lake Oulujärvi, Lake Kitkajärvi, Lake Kiantajärvi
  • Lake District: Lake Kallavesi, Lake Nilakka, Pyhävesi, Pielavesi, Konnevesi, Keitele, Lappajärvi, Ähtärinjärvi, Ruovesi & Tarjanne, Päijänne, Roine & Mallavesi & Pälkänevesi, Puula, Kyyvesi, Näsijärvi
  • Southern Finland Lakes: Lohjanjärvi, Pyhäjärvi (Säkylä)

Data on this site

Data on this site is mainly derived from the Finnish database Järviwiki, Finlands own ‘lake wiki’. The site contains basic information about all lakes larger than 1 hectar, as well as other useful ressources on riverbasins, fish sightings etc. However the service is mainly in Finnish.

Check out our other fishing ressources

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1 comment

Jan 4. Mai 2020 - 14:02

Great ressource. Thank you for sharing. Jan

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