Punkaharju is also the name of the ridge north of the town centre that nearly divides Lake Saimaa. The iconic ridge is one of the national landscapes of Finland.
- Punkaharju in the town centre is the southernmost station.
- Lusto further north is the station to get off if you're going to the ridge, the forest museum or the State hotel.
- Retretti still further north towards Savonlinna, get off here for the Retretti gallery and Kesämaa amusement park.
Buses between Parikkala and Savonlinna stop in Punkaharju.
Highway 14 between Parikkala and Savonlinna passes through the town, and continues along the ridge.
Driving is the quickest way to go from one place to another.
By foot or bike
The more leisurely way to get around, popular in the summer, is walking or cycling. There are good paths for these activities in the area.
- 1 Lusto forest museum (Lusto Suomen Metsämuseo), Lustontie 1, ☏ , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Learn about Finland's forests and forestry.
- 2 Retretti Art Center, Tuunaansaarentie 3. An art gallery for modern art where the exhibitions are located in caves underground!
- 1 Punkaharju ridge and Punkaharju Nature Reserve. Walk or bike along the paths, climb it, drive on the highway along it, see it from a rowing boat or from the observation deck of Punkaharju water tower. Part of the ridge is a nature reserve with trails, lookout points, camp fire site and rental cabin.
- 2 Kesämaa, Kesämaantie 2, ✉ email@example.com. Basically a water-themed playground geared towards younger children.
- 3 [dead link] Canoeing on Lake Saimaa (Punkaharjun Tuunaanportti), Tuunaansaarentie 2 (next to the road 14, at the petrol station), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Rent a kayak and accessories and take a trip on Lake Saimaa. It is easy and enjoyable even for beginners. The rental should be booked in advance during the summer season. They will also lend you a waterproof map in the rental and suggest trip options. Other equipment that can be rented includes: bikes, skike roller skates, scooters, rowing boats, motor boats, ... If you plan to stay over night, the accommodation can be booked in comfortable cottages, which are quite similar to those of Punkaharjun lomakeskus. A single kayak: 30 €/day.
- 1 Punkero Baari, Kuusitie 1.
- 1 Maatilamatkailu Mannila, Koskelontie 127, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. B&B on a farm on Vaahersalo island north of the ridge.
- Punkaharjun lomakeskus, Tuunaansaarentie 4 (Near Retretti), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. A resort offering accommodation in cottages and apartment-style rooms.
- 3 Punkaharjun valtionhotelli (Punkaharju State Hotel), Harjutie 596, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. The oldest hotel in Finland, built in 1845 by decree of the Russian tsar. The luxurious hotel is an attraction in itself even if you don't stay there. Open only in the summer months.