Repovesi National Park expands with Woikoski’s new nature reserve

Repovesi National Park, in the municipalities of Kouvola and Mäntyharju, gained new land and hiking routes when Oy Woikoski Ab expanded its voluntary protection scheme to cover new areas next to the national park. The new nature reserve area is in the vicinity of the national park’s northern entrance.

Just under a decade ago, Woikoski established its first protected area, the Bertil Palmgren Nature Reserve, which was made a part of Repovesi National Park. Today, this 40-hectare area lies at the heart of the national park, which includes notable features such as the trail along the southern shore of the lake Kuutinlahti, the Löppönen cave, and several islands.

The idea of establishing a new nature reserve had been maturing in the mind of Woikoski’s owner, Clas Palmberg, for several years before the project began to move full steam ahead some 18 months ago with the mapping of all the natural features on Woikoski’s lands that should be protected. The new protected area, Woikoski Feeling Nature Sanctuary, covers about 240 hectares in the northern part of Repovesi National Park. With the establishment of the new nature reserve, approximately 10% of the Repovesi protected areas are on Woikoski’s lands.

For Woikoski, the nature reserves represent an important part of the Palmberg family’s legacy, which the company wishes to honour. Around half of the protected areas are covered by forests that are more than a century old and that have traditionally been conserved because they form an important habitat for grouse species such as the capercaillie.

In addition, the rest of the family’s lands are managed in compliance with the principles of sustainable forestry and the requirements for PEFC certification.


Facts about Repovesi National Park: Did you know...?

  • The state-owned enterprise Metsähallitus manages and monitors national parks in Finland.

  • Camping and building campfires are permitted only in designated spots. Camping for short periods is permitted under ‘everyman’s right’ also in other areas where hikers are allowed, but no campfires are to be lit there.

  • Regulations pertaining to nature conservation forbid the clearing of new paths and building of campfires in protected areas.

  • Letting pets off their lead is forbidden.

  • Cycling is allowed only on the roads and routes designated as for that purpose.

  • Hunting is forbidden in national parks.

  • If a forest fire warning has been issued, building campfires is forbidden even at designated campfire sites. As long as a forest fire warning remains in effect, fires may only be lit in campfire shelters.

Repovesi National Park is a popular and diversity-rich recreation and hiking area. It consists of the national park, the Aarnikotka Forest Nature Reserve (owned by UPM-Kymmene Oyj), and the private Bertil Palmberg Nature Reserve (established earlier by Oy Woikoski Ab) and Woikoski’s new nature reserve – which covers over 200 hectares in the northern part of the national park. The new nature reserve was named Woikoski Feeling Nature Sanctuary after the company’s travel-industry business.