If you’ve already checked out the biggest and most spectacular rapids at Imatrankoski, one other nice nature place to go to at Imatra is Malonsaari island. Popular among the many locals, the peaceable and small 1km-long Malonsaari is among the many islands situated simply exterior of Imatra. I visited it on a Sunday afternoon, and I gave myself a variety of time to benefit from the expertise.
I drove to a carpark on Somertie at Imatra as a result of I felt it was the very best place to start out off. A little bit path with none indicators begins off proper subsequent to some previous boat homes, which sit calmly aspect to aspect alongside the lake shore.
It was a crisp early winter day with none rain however because the path is simply subsequent to a lake, the cobbled rocks on the forest flooring have been undoubtedly slippery sufficient to warrant my mountain climbing boots.
A sure-fire option to know if a nature space is clear or not is to search for usnea, which is also referred to as “previous man’s beard” or “beard lichen”: usnea is extraordinarily delicate to air air pollution, particularly sulphur dioxide, so any space the place you discover usnea, undoubtedly has very clear and good air. And, lo and behold, there was usnea so far as the attention may see close to Malonsaari! I finished to admire the superbly fragile and lengthy lichen hanging from the pines and spruces. An ideal place to only breathe in deeply as a result of you understand it’s good for you.
Going previous the boat homes, I quickly reached a fork within the path with duckboards main in direction of Malonsaari island. Because it was not wet, the duckboards appeared extreme, however I assume this space would flood simply if the lake floor rises shortly. The path is marked solely with blue dots on timber which lead you to the fitting path, so discovering the duckboards did reassure me that I used to be moving into the fitting path. I did find yourself discovering a correct signal for Malonsaari however solely after I truly reached the flip for the island itself.
The bridge from the mainland to Malonsaari island is admittely a bit scary. It was solely in-built 2012, but it surely has suffered its share of damage and tear: it measures about max. 1.5m (5ft) width-wise and it has a platform within the center. I made positive I held on to each railings after I crossed it, and on the finish I used to be glad I did: one of many 4 2×Four planks had collapsed so I ended up penguin-walking on the outer-most planks till I reached the opposite shore. Must have been hilarious to look at!
Malonsaari in brief
Malonsaari is barely about 1km (0.62mi) in size. Unlike elsewhere alongside the Saimaa lakes, there aren’t any summer time cottages on Malonsaari island. This quaint little island presents solitude for everybody but it surely additionally means there aren’t any amenities and even the paths are in a extra pure state than elsewhere on extra standard areas.
There are additionally massive glacial erratic rocks each by the bridge after which halfway on the island. All in all, there are a variety of glacial erratic rocks on this space so be sure you cease to admire them!
The round route across the island is about 2.5km (1.5mi) lengthy, and relying on how briskly you go, it takes anyplace from 30minutes to 1h to stroll round.
If you marvel why there’s a massive open patch of area in the course of the island, it was created in 2013 when clearcut logging was completed on the island. These areas could create nice areas for raspberry selecting, however on small islands on Saimaa lakes, they appear devastating. Still, jap Finland is “promised land” for giant bio-industry firms which profit from the large swaths of dense forest… and admittedly, Finland has undoubtedly made its fortunes with forests.
From begin to end, my journey to Malonsaari and again to the boat homes took about 1.5h complete. What a beautiful option to spend time within the crisp, clear air and by strolling beneath the shady inexperienced fir canopies stretching so far as the attention can see.
Address: Malonsaari, Imatra.
How to get there: You can get to Malonsaari by automobile, by bicycle or by public transport.
Car: There are two attainable areas the place automobiles might be parked.- Shortest strolling distance: Somerkuja 9-11, Imatra. This has a bigger higher carpark space however there may be additionally a couple of spots downhill near the lake shore for automobiles.
– Longer stroll: Hosseinlahdentie 139, Imatra. This is subsequent to a restaurant so the carpark could also be fuller.
Accessibility: The island can solely be accessed by crossing fairly a slender bridge. The bridge has 5 steps each methods and is barely 4 (4) planks huge (approx. 1.5m). The island has devoted trails that are nonetheless very rocky at locations. Not appropriate for wheelchairs, kids’s buggies, or these arduous of strolling.
When to go: You can go to the realm at any time of the 12 months. Make positive you might be cautious as a result of there isn’t a winter maintenance (no snow removing) and a variety of the extra difficult rocky areas might be hidden by snow. Also be aware that there aren’t any lights within the space so be sure you go to the realm when there may be sufficient mild.
What to put on: Hiking footwear are good however regular sneakers will suffice so long as they’ve a very good grip on them. Mosquito repellent in the summertime as there are a variety of mosquitoes.
Facilities: There aren’t any amenities within the space. There is a campfire website on the mainland in addition to on the island however they’ll solely be used when there isn’t a forest fireplace warning on. If you wish to make a hearth, be sure you deliver firewood with you.