Welcome to Ähtäri!

Ähtäri is situated in the middle of Finland, only 300 km north of Helsinki, a two-hour drive from the port of  Vaasa and from the Tampere airport. Ähtäri offers a wide variety of accommodation choices from hotel rooms and villas, to B&Bs and camping. Our nature is easily-accessible: we have  forests with berries and mushrooms, over 100 lakes to swim in, and nature trails of various lenghts – freely available to everyone.


Ähtäri Zoo

Ähtäri Zoo is the oldest natural environment zoo in Finland.Today, the zoo is home to over 50 animal species, with bears as the park’s best-known attraction. Most of the animals are typically found in boreal forests in the wild. Since the beginning, Ähtäri Zoo has aimed to build spacious and natural living environments for the animals. This is why the park mostly hosts animals that are a found in boreal forests on the Northern Hemisphere. The 60-hectare area with its varying terrains and vegetation has provided a wonderful setting for realizing EAZA’s (the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria) main principles of how animals should be treated in captivity. Furthermore, one of the most important goals for zoos is to help people learn more about animals and nature and to distribute educational information. Pandahouse, Zoo, Farm, Snowpanda Deli & Cafe and Zoo Shop.

Address: Karhunkierros 150, Ähtäri

Enquiries : 030 62150,

Website :

matkailualueen kuntoilureitti

Hiking tracks and nature trails at Ähtäri tourism area

The beautiful esker and lake sceneries of Ähtäri are at their finest along our hiking tracks and nature trails. There are several different nature and exercise trails in the Ähtäri tourism area.Read more




The Arpainen outdoor and hiking trail consists of more than 50 kilometres of trails in total, ranging from the Ähtäri Zoo all the way to the centre of Soini municipality. The trail network includes three shorter routes: the 3.5 km Kalevin kiekka loop, the 3.4 km Arpaiskämppä wilderness hut – Saarilampi shelter route, and the 0.4 km Arpaiskämppä wilderness hut – Arpainen lake trail. The hub for the outdoor area is the Arpaiskämppä wilderness hut, which is suitable for overnight stays and includes a fireplace, a firewood shed, an outhouse, a sauna by the river, and a firepit. Sleeping in a tent is also permitted in the area. The distance from Arpaiskämppä to Ähtäri Zoo and the centre of Soini municipality is about 28 kilometres.


Hotelli Mesikämmen Keilaus Kuva: StudioArt4you


A brand new 8-lane bowling alley was completed right next to Hotel Mesikämmen in the summer of 2019. The building has around 900 m² of floor space.


Open every day  12-22

Shoe rent 1,50€/



The longest marked boat route runs from the Ähtäri tourism area to Suninsalmi in Lehtimäki. The route is over 40 kilometres long.

There is a guest dock in the Ähtäri tourism area, right next to Ähtäri Zoo Camping and Hotel Mesikämmen, and boat slips are leased out for the boating season at the Suninsalmi marina at the northern end of Lake Ähtärinjärvi. The marina also has four cost-free guest boat slips for short-term stays. The services of café Suninsalmi are also available. The address of the marina is Soinintie 482.


Disc golf

There are three disc golf courses in the Ähtäri area. In the Mustikkavuori Sports Centre in Ähtäri you will find a 20–21-hole disc golf course with plenty of elevation changes, designed for competitions and tournaments. The course runs for mostly along the fitness track but offers a variety of different ranges and challenges. Right next to the course, there is also a significantly easier 12-hole family course which, true to its name, is perfectly suited for players of all ages. Find out more.

Kalastus Kuva:StudioArt_4You


There are 169 lakes of over one hectare in Ähtäri and a few rivers suited for white-water fishing.

River Niemisjoki

Located four kilometres towards the Ähtäri tourism area from downtown Ähtäri. Marked with signposts. The permitted fishing methods are spinning and fly fishing, whereas hook and line fishing is prohibited.
Season lasts all year round, except for the period of 10 September–15 November (brown trout spawning season).
Licences: Bookstore Honkaniemen Kirjakauppa and a fishing licence vending machine near the river
Contact person

River Pakarinjoki

The southern fishing cooperative of Ähtäri has taken over the responsibility of controlling fishing at River Pakarinjoki. Fishing licences for River Pakarinjoki are sold by the Pakarinjoki salmon division.
Special permit area = the entire river, as demonstrated with markings on the shores and on the map at the permit vending machine.
“Partner permits” for River Pakarinjoki were sold by the licence vendors



Tennis courts  are located near hotel Mesikämmen, on Tuomarniemi forestry school campus, and on the sports field in downtown Ähtäri.



There are several inviting swimming beaches around Ähtäri, and they are all freely available to the locals, summer residents, and tourists alike.

Ähtäri Zoo camping and caravan area. A dock and a water slide. City hall beach in downtown Ähtäri, by the Ostolantie road. The beach was renovated in 2017 and now includes a dock, play equipment, a beach volleyball court and a carpet washing site.

Swimming beach in the Inha factory area, Kalliolampi beach in Myllymäki and Halkoniemi beach at Lake Peränne



The Ähtäri area has a ski network with around 150 kilometres of tracks, 80 kilometres of which are traditional cross-country tracks maintained with a Paana snow groomer. There are around six kilometres of illuminated ski tracks in the Mustikkavuori Sports Centre and five kilometres in the Ähtäri tourism area.

The tracks in Mustikkavuori are demanding in places, whereas the five-kilometre track in the Ähtäri tourism area is well-suited for the whole family. There is a lean-to shelter along the track both in Mustikkavuori and in the tourism area. There are also great ski routes little further away from Ähtäri, such as the illuminated one-kilometre track in Alastaipale.


Ice skating and Nordic tour skating

Ice skating areas: sports field in the city centre, Pellonpää area, Myllymäki area, and ice rinks at the residential areas of Hömmö and Riihimäki.

There are also tour skating areas ploughed on the icy lakes in the winter.