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The recent tourist, part II

August 5, 2015

Back in July we took a holiday in the southwest archipelago in here Finland. This was a part of our “discover” series, that when we are in Finland in the summer, we go somewhere we have never been before. So, we were in Iniö. We stayed in a cabin on the island of Jumo for a week and was lucky enough to have found it through the wildly popular Airbnb.

In fact Helsinki Times featured an article about the Iniö region earlier this year, have a read.

The visitor harbour at Iniö was completely redone and opened in 2013 with the assistance of the EU. (And what timing, the Mr. subscribes to Vene Lehti, the magazine for boaters and there was a feature article about Iniö!)

We keep an old version of Lonely Planet Finland in our car (the very guide that was my survival package when I came here the first time in 1997) and it described Iniö as such, “The isolated island world of Iniö, a municipality of 250 inhabitants, offers some of the most desolate archipelago scenery. At Norrby, the main settlement on the main island, you’ll find a stone church from 1801. You can overnight in a guesthouse at the harbour.

Needless to say that description is very inaccurate today – isolation and quiet is what we wanted on this holiday and we got it. We thoroughly enjoyed our time in and around Iniö. Finland’s best pizza is found at Leonella’s Cafe in Iniö – I absolutely guarantee it! 🙂 We also explored the islands of Jumo, Iniö (did a little hike) and Keistiö. When we left to head home, it was the Mr.’s idea to complete the Archipelogo Road, since we were already on it. Travelling here means being attentive to the ferry schedules and planning, especially if you’re on a tight schedule! See more on the FinFerries web site.

The Archipelago Road, which is about 250km in total, is wildly popular with tourists (cyclists, motorcyclists, carvaners and drivers alike), so be prepared for line-ups especially if you enter the archipelago from the Parainen end. We decided to have a Saturday to Saturday trip knowing full well it would be an absolute zoo on a Sunday. When we got off the boat in Korppo there was a crush of vehicles waiting to get on boats going to both Ahvenanmaa and to Houtskari. I am so glad we got off the ferry before the bus did because we would have been stuck behind it.

The Archipelago Road is a good day trip, but if you really want to enjoy it, take your time!

In any case, the pictures speak more than words do, so enjoy!

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P.S. Janne Gröning takes fantastic pictures, check out his work.

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