Mikkeli

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Mikkeli  is a town and municipality in Finland. It is located in what used to be the province of Eastern Finland and is part of the Etela-Savo region. The municipality has a population of 53,983 (31 August 2018) (around 34,000 in the town itself) and covers an area of 3,229.57 square kilometres (1,246.94 sq mi) of which 424.7 km2 (164.0 sq mi) is water. The population density is 31.76 inhabitants per square kilometre (82.3/sq mi) . Mikkeli was the site for the headquarters of the Finnish armed forces during World War II. In recognition of this, the town’s coat of arms incorporates a pair of crossed Marshal’s batons, and the town was awarded the Cross of Liberty, 4th class, to be displayed with the coat of arms

Access : Coordinates: 61.683333, 27.266667 / By plane :  Mikkeli airport (MIK IATA) (is located in the city area roughly three kilometers west from the city center). Currently the airport is only used for charter/business flights. Suitably calm and ideally located, Mikkeli airport is also a home for active glider and parachute enthusiasts. By train :  Mikkeli railway station is located in the city center, just one block from the market square. The city is is located on the main Savonia track between Helsinki and Kuopio. Sometimes one may have to change trains in Kouvola. Typically, there are 7 daily connections from Helsinki to Mikkeli ranging from regular express trains to slightly better equipped InterCity 2 -trains. The fastest connection are the Pendolino trains, making the trip in 2 hours and 16 minutes.

By bus :  Mikkeli has good bus connections to all main cities of Southern and Northern Finland. Buses leave from the Matkakeskus terminal integrated with the railway station. By boat : Lake Saimaa can be reached from sea through the Saimaa Canal. Boats with high masts may have to moor at Kristiina, some 15 km south of the centre.

Get around : Mikkeli has a comprehensive public transport system (buses to e.g. Anttola and Otava almost every hour). Information about local transport you can find here. You can use route planner to seek local bus routes between given locations and addresses. One-way tickets for buses in the city area cost around €3, while fares for longer routes are distance based. Taxis are also available (tel. 0600 300 55) and fares start at €5 and climb up to €1.30/km during weekdays (typically depends on the amount of passengers). Major car rental companies, such as Europcar and Hertz, are available in Mikkeli. During the summertime, one may also hop in a sightseeing bus or take a cruise in Saimaa from the Mikkeli harbor.

Attractions : During World War II, Mikkeli was the headquarters of the Finnish Army, and quite a few sights from the period remain.

1 Jalkavakimuseo (Infantry museum), Jaakarinkatu 6-8. War museum, exhibitions depicting Finnish infantry from the independence to today.
2 Paamajamuseo (Headquarters museum), Paamajankuja 1-3. Mannerheim’s Headquarters during WWII
3 Viestikeskus Lokki (Communications Centre Lokki), Vuorikatu. Mannerheim’s Headquarters’ communications centre
4 Suur-Savon museo (Suur-Savo Museum), Otavankatu 11. Regional museum
5 Naisvuoren nakotorni (Naisvuori Observation Tower). An observation tower overseeing the town of Mikkeli.
6 Kenkavero, Pursialankatu 6. An old vicarage, a summer garden, restored buildings, handicrafts to buy.
7 Mikkelinpuisto (Mikkeli Park). Summer garden by the lake, formed by several exhibitors
8 Valokuvakeskus (Mikkeli Centre of Photograpy), Puistokatu 3. Photography exhibition and research centre

Activities : Visulahti (Visulahti Travel Centre) (A couple of kilometers towards Kuopio). Water park, wax cabinet and camping.
2 XON-puisto (XON-Park) (A couple of kilometers towards Kuopio). Adjacent to Visulahti Travel Centre. Motor park, paintball and some extreme amenities like catapult and bungee jumping!
3 Urpolan luontokeskus (Nature centre of Urpola), Selannekatu 30. A nature conservation zone right next to the town centre, popular for small treks.
4 Mikkelin Ravirata (Mikkeli Racetrack). Horse racing track known for its fastness. Many trotting world records have been set in Mikkeli. St Michel Race-weekend arranged in Mid-July is one of the biggest yearly trotting events in Finland and a popular travel destination of horse racing fans.
Hiihtomaen lava, . May–Sep F 20:00–00:30, Jun–Aug also Tu 20:00–00:30, senior dances W 12:00–16:00. Dance pavillon.
Rent a canoe at WildCanoe, Operates from a base in Anttola, next to Mikkeli . Rent a canoe and or take a guided canooing tour on the pristine Saimaa lake system.
Festivals and happenings
Hummeripoikarock: 22–24 July 2016. Hummeripoikarock is a festival on the stage outside of Restaurant Hummeripoika in Haukivuori, Mikkeli
Jurassic Rock: 3–4 August 2018. Jurassic Rock celebrates its twelfth year.

Go next : Jyvaskyla / Kouvola / Kuopio / Pieksamaki / Savonlinna / Astuvansalmi rock paintings near Ristiina

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