Island of Vartiosaari is one of the most beautiful nature locations in Helsinki. Visit this fascinating island – rent your kayak from Natura Viva.
You will embark on this journey heading southwest along the Ramsinniemi peninsula shoreside. There’s a calm bay after Hotel Rantapuisto, a perfect spot for a breather and regaining your paddling powers on windy weather conditions.
Along the Ramsinniemi you will spot interesting villas, one of them drawn by the famous Finnish architect Alvar Aalto. At the tip of the peninsula you will pass the Rahakirstu island, and in front of you, on the other side of the Ramsinsalmi strait, lies Vartiosaari, a unique nature location in Helsinki. As the strait is a boat lane, observe the traffic and pass the boat lane here, as the speed limit for boats is only 10 km/h.
As you continue the paddling along the Vartiosaari shoreline towards Vartiokylänlahti bay you will reach a sandy beach, a perfect spot to go ashore. From the beach there’s a trail leading uphill, and after a ten minutes' hike you'll arrive on the top of the cliff Viikinkikallio – just enjoy the beautiful scenery over Eastern Helsinki. From the cliff you can also enter the trail leading around Vartiosaari, with its many points of interest. Read more about Vartiosaari.
The paddling route around the island heads towards north from the beach. You’ll circle around Tervaluoto and Vasikkaluoto islets, the Marjaniemi district on your northern side and the Strömsinlahti boat depot to your northwest. On the left hand side of the boat depot there’s a channel leading around Tammisalo district, another interesting paddling route.
Continue your paddling trip around Vartiosaari towards southwest, past Vasikkaluoto cape and Jatasalmi strait. Vartiosaari stays all the time on your left hand side. After Jatasalmi head south towards Reposalmi strait. There’s a busy boat lane here, so be alert and stay close to the island. After Paloluoto rock You will already see the Ramsinniemi peninsula and the way back towards Vuosaari Paddling Center. If you want to prolong your return, turn to south and head to the Kotiluoto and Villaluodot recreational islands for a breather or a picnic.
When the wind is from southwest, this paddling trip is ideal: first you will encounter headwind but as you turn back towards the Paddling Center, you will enjoy a nice tailwind for there rest of the trip. Furthermore, The Vartiosaari Island can be circled around on both directions.
Length: 10 km
Approximate duration: 2–4 h