Korpo (Finnish: Korppoo) is one of the former municipalities in the Archipelago Sea in Finland Proper. It includes a lot of small islands, among them important destinations such as Jurmo and Utö. This guide is about the main island and a few adjacent ones.
Korpo used to be an independent municipality, including many minor islands (about 2,000 in all). This article focuses on the main island, "Korpo Kyrklandet", where the parish village Kyrkby is located. The island is big enough to host several villages, forest and agricultural landscapes, being some 10 km across.
Like in the rest of Åboland, Swedish is the main language. You will survive on English or Finnish.
Most visitors come via Turku, which is well connected. If coming from the east you can turn to Skärgårdsvägen from national road 1 (E18) or regional road 110 already in Kaarina. There are connections also from Åland.
The "Archipelago road", Skärgårdsvägen (Finnish: Saaristotie, regional road 180) leads from Kaarina outside Turku to Korpo, via Pargas and Nagu, with two road ferry passages and several bridges. The last short ferry passage is from Pärnäs in Nagu to Retais in Korpo. There is a gap in ferry services in the night. See also the Archipelago Trail, an itinerary along this route.
You can come also from the north. During the summer season there are several connections a day from Kustavi in the north to Iniö, with the route continuing through Houtskär to Galtby in Korpo. The road ferry from Iniö to Houtskär has a fee. Off season the connection is complicated, with minor ferries visiting many islands, see By boat below.
The ferry from Åland to Galtby is quite expensive. The road ferries are free, except the one between Iniö and Mossala, Houtskär. The other ferries from Iniö and Brändö to Houtskär do not take cars.
There are coaches from Turku to Korpo six to eight times a day, operated as the brand Skärgårdsbuss by TLO of Turku, and a few direct connections weekly from Helsinki by Skärgårdsvägen Ab, part of Vainion Liikenne Oy. The voyage from Turku takes about two hours. Transfers in Kaarina or Turku, if needed, as explained in Pargas. Most of the coaches visit Galtby harbour to leave or pick ferry passengers before continuing to the main village.
Almost all of the Skärgårdsbusses from Turku drive all the way to Korpoström by request. Tell the driver if you need to get there, otherwise the terminus is next to the Korpo church.
The Archipelago Trail runs through Korpo, arriving at Retais jetty and continuing from Galtby harbour. There are no separate bikeways on this part of the trail. There is a separate bikeway between the Korpo school and the main village. If using the Ålandstrafiken ferries, keep the ticket as it is valid for all the year.
There are daily ferries from Långnäs on Åland to Galtby in Korpo. The trip takes about five hours. During high season (17 June–11 Aug in 2019) you need to change ferries in Kökar. This connection (as all the ferries operated by Ålandstrafiken) is free of charge for passengers but there is a fee for carrying any vehicles. The price depends not only on the type of the vehicle, but also whether you are staying overnight off the Åland mainland (cheap fee) or are just passing through (quite expensive!).
Road ferries connect Galtby with Houtskär in the west and Norrskata in the north. These are free of charge.
It is possible to come by the ferries serving minor islands in the north, via Norrskata or Houtskär. These connections are somewhat complicated, with timetables shifting by season and day of week and often requiring advance request. They are generally free, but should not be used by car.
By a yacht, Korpo is at the main fairways from Sweden or the Baltic Sea (via southern Åland or Finnish Utö to Turku and Naantali). There are lots of other fairways crisscrossing between the islands. Guest marinas include the one in Korpoström in the south and the one in Verkan near the parish village.
Except school buses and the like, there are no local buses on Korpo. The Skärgårdsbuss coaches can be used when their schedules happen to fit. If you want to get around, you probably need a car or a bike. There are taxis.
- 1 Kyrkoby (Korpo). Parish village.
- 2 Galtby ferry harbour. Ferries to Norrskata, Houtskär and Åland leave here.
- 3 Korpoström. Guest marina. Skärgårdscentret.
- 4 Wattkast. An island connected to the main island with a bridge. Many farms with farm-gate sales. Notable for the number of oak trees.
- 5 Norrskata. Until 2008 the second largest village in Korpo. Nowadays there are hundreds of summer residents.
To get to the minor islands you take a ship-like ferry from Galtby or from 6 Pärnäs in Nagu (just across the sound), with departures once or twice a day. From Galtby you get to Norrskata and the northern archipelago, from Pärnäs to the southern archipelago, including Jurmo and Utö.
A ship-like ferry M/S Baldur (ex Eivor) servs the route Pärnäs–(Berghamn)–Nötö–Aspö–Jurmo–Utö daily during the summer season (June 7th – August 31th). Day trips to Nötö, Aspö and Jurmo are then possible in Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, but in Wednesdays there is no coach connection any more when the ferry arrives back to Pärnäs. The rest of the days you need to stay overnight on some of those islands. If you want to leave the vessel in Utö you always need to stay overnight, but you may take a day trip to Utö and back if you don't leave the vessel. M/S Eivor is free of charge, but it does not carry private cars. The vessel has a café.
- 1 Archipelago Centre Korpoström, Korpoströmvägen 832 (8 km south from the main village), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Restaurant. Exhibitions and workshops. In the summer children are invited to make marine biological research, studying what they find in the water under the microscope, and are guided on the 18th century wartime and civil life in Korpo (check the language issues: can trilingual instruction be provided?).
- 2 Korpo kyrka (Korppoon kirkko), Korpovägen 1 (in the main village), ☏ . June 1st–August 31th daily 10:00–17:00. The medieval church built in early 15th century has interesting architectonic details telling about not so peaceful history. Truly medieval looking murals and a number of medieval wooden statues. The apsidal balcony is the only one left in the Nordic countries. free.
- 3 Korpo Hembygdsmuseum (Local History Museum), Strömmavägen 39 (800 m from the main village's market square), ☏ . June 26th–Aug 11th: W–Su 12:00–16:00; Aug 17th–Sept 29th: Sa–Su 12:00–16:00. Historical collections from the surrounding archipelago from handicrafts to fishing gear. €4, children under 12 years free.
- 4 Skäri museet Verkan, Kabeluddsvägen 1 (at Verkan guest marina), ☏ . June 26th–Aug 11th: W–Su 12:00–16:00; Aug 17th–Sep 29th: Sa–Su 12:00–16:00. A small museum with an exhibition concentrated on bootlegging! Also some fishing and bird-hunting equipments and boat engines. €4, children under 12 years free.
- 5 Rumar hill. An observation tower, a weather radar display, and a nature and culture path
- 6 Norrskata church, Änkistentie 540. June–July: Sa–Su 12:00–18:00. A wooden church built 1932–1934. free.
- 7 Aspö (Aspö). A small and beautiful archipelago island 24 km south from Korpo main village having just 11 year-round residents. The current chapel next to the harbour is the fourth one on the island and built in 1950 after the previous one got destroyed by an autumn storm. Summer café. Nature trail. Accessible by the ferry M/S Baldur from Pärnäs. During the season a day trip is possible in Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays (no coach connection from Pärnäs at Wednesdays).
- 1 Åvensor quarry (Ahvensaaren louhos), Åvensor. An old limestone quarry filled with crystal clear water is a popular destination for scuba divers. The calcareous soil makes some rare plant species to grow on the island. Åvensor has daily ferry connection by M/S Falkö but there are no services for visitors on the island. free.
- 1 K-market Korpo Handel, Handelsmansvägen 2 (in the main village), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Summertime: M–F 8:30–18:00, Sa 9:00–15:00, Su closed. Grocery store with lots of local products. Delivery service. Cash withdrawals. Fuel.
- 2 BMA Miljö, Handelsmansvägen 6 (in the main village), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Summertime: Mon–Fri 9:00–19:00, Sa 9:00–18:00, Su 10:00–18:00. Tools, garden items, pet food, souvenirs. Postal service.
- 3 Strandboden (in Korpoström). Summertime: 9:00–19:00. Basic food, imported delicacies from Spain.
There is a very small grocery store in Verkan as well. The market square is in the middle of main village, in front of the church and Korpo handel.
Many agricultural producers in Wattkast village have direct sale to consumers including meat, vegetables, flowers etc.
Eat and drink
There are restaurants in a few of the villages.
- 1 Buffalo, Kabeluddsvägen 2 (by the Verkan guest marina), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Daily in summer. A restaurant famous for their ribs. Also lunch and brunch. There is also a small grocery store. Lunch weekdays €9, weekends €11; à la carte mains €14–30.
- 2 Hjalmars, Stabshuset, Handelsmansvägen 1 (in the middle of the main village), ☏ , , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. M–Th 11:00–21:00, F–Sa 11:00–24:00/02:00, Su 12:00–18:00; 15 June–15 Aug M–Th 11:00–22:00, F–Sa 11:00–24:00/02:00, Su 12:00–21:00. €14–30.
- 3 Cap Horn, Handelsmansvägen 6 (in the main village), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Summertime: Mon–Fri 11-14. Lunch.
- 4 Galtbyn Puoti & Terassi (Galtby Shop & Terrace), Skärgårdsvägen 6561 (Galtby harbour), ☏ . Café. Souvenirs.
- 5 Back Pocket, Österretaisvägen 45 (in Österretais, at the hotel Nestor; some 7.5 km from the main village, 2 km from the Retais ferry quay; own jetty for visiting yachts), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. lunch €15–18, menus €48–59.
- 6 Archipelago Centre Korpoström, Korpoströmvägen 832 (8 km south from the main village), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. à la carte mains €10–28.
Guesthouses or, mainly for longer stays, cottages. There is no official camping area on Korpo main islands but plenty of woods for wild camping. For staying overnight on the islands Jurmo or Utö, please see the corresponding articles.
- 1 Hotell Nestor, Österretaisvägen 45 (across the fields from Skärgårdsvägen, 2 km from the Retais ferry quai), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. A few cosy rooms in a former barn. Restaurant. In season €130, off season €90.
- 2 Faffas B&B, Österretaisvägen 23 (in Österretais by the Skärgårdsvägen), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. B&B in Österretais. Open year-round but takes no reservations. Payment by cash only! adult €40, child €30. Breakfast and linen included.
- 3 Wattkast Cottages, Wattkastvägen 425 (5 km from the Skärgårdsvägen, 11 km from the main village), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Cottages for 4 persons in the village Wattkast. weekend €280-340 / week €660-890.
- 4 Hjalmar's Hotel, Handelsmansvägen 1 (in the middle of the main village), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Hotel. Restaurant and bar. In season €110, off season €90.
- 5 [dead link] Röda Huset, Handelsmansvägen 15 (in the main village), ☏ . Guest house. single €40, double €80, family €120.
- 6 DAG-15, Korpovägen 2 (in the middle of the main village), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Two apartments. Handicrafts.
- 7 Archipelago Centre Korpoström, Korpoströmvägen 832 (in Korpoström, 8 km south from the main village), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Hotel, restaurant and a science centre. Guest marina. rooms €90-180.
- 8 Verandan, Norrskatavägen 285 (in Norrskata), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Cottages in Norrskata. Meals available only for those who stay overnight. The cottages do not have cooking facilities. June 20th-August 28th: €55-190, May 1st-June 19th and August 25th-September 30th: €50-170 (incl. linen, breakfast & sauna).
Postal code: 21710 Korpo