Koiteli in english

Koiteli is an unique, nearly natural rapid area in Kiiminki, Oulu.
It’s only 25 km from Oulu city center towards Kuusamo.

Koiteli is a very popular tourist attraction with strong cultural and historical values. The special values of the area are based on the river banks, rapids, islands, beaches and characteristics of the nature.

An estimated number of annual visitors is 80 000. Koiteli is a extra-ordinary place to experience the amazing beauty of nature, to swim, fish or hike and simply to enjoy the outdoors. The roaring rapids give challenges and joy to kayakers and white water rafters.



Koiteli is located in Kiiminki. Approx 20 kilometres east-north from Oulu. From the city centre take Oulu-Kuusamo highway (number 20) to Kiiminki centre, turn at the traffic lights towards Yli-Kiiminki and Koiteli. There’s a sign Koitelinkosket 4 km. When you arrive in Koiteli you can see the parking area on the left side of the road.

By bike it takes approximately 20 minutes from Kiiminki.

The local bus (line 35) between Oulu and Kiiminki runs fluently. Check timetables here: www.oulunjoukkoliikenne.fi
Koiteli in GoogleMaps


Koitelin Tunnelmatupa

Café Koitelin Tunnelmatupa is located in the heart of the Koiteli, Island Sahasaari, in the middle of the wild white waters of Koiteli. You can buy soft drinks, ice-cream, pancakes, postcards, fishing licenses and sausages to grill inside the cosy café or outdoors in one of many Koiteli fire places. The café is open from May to September. The opening hours are updated on Tunnelmatupa homepages and Facebook. Outside summer season the building is available for private meetings and parties. There’s a data projector and wlan-connection available. For further information of Tunnelmatupa, please contact info@goarctic.fiGo Arctic! arranges also activities and events in areas of Koiteli and Oulu. Check: www.goarctic.fi Café Koitelin Tunnelmatupa homepages www.koitelintunnelmatupa.fi  (in Finnish) and www.facebook.com/koitelikahvit/ (in Finnish).

In the summertime there’s also a ice cream bar by the parking area in Koiteli.



In Koiteli one can fish, canoe, swim, make a campfire for piknik or just enjoy the nature and white waters. The nature of Koiteli is vulnerable so we wish everyone respects the natural values.

·      Take garbage to the bin located by the parking area, stubs to the ashtrays and empty bottles and cans with you. Never leave anything behind. Thank you!

·      Stay at the marked tracks and fireplaces

·      There are 7 fireplaces in free use (check the map)

·      The woodshed is located near the parking area

·      The toilets are near the parking area and Tunnelmatupa also has toilets in Sahasaari for its customers 

Koiteli elää ry. is an association to improve the cultural life of Koiteli area. The main event is annually organized music festival Koiteli elää #suomenkauneinfestivaali. For more info www.koitelielaa.fi.

Go Arctic! arranges white water rafting and white water swimming, team programs and other activities and events in KoiteliIt’s also in charge of the café, ice cream bar and the stage bookings. For more info www.goarctic.fi.

Koiteli Residenssi is a rental resort by the river. There are spaces to rent to accommodate, sauna and meetings. For more info www.residenssi.com (in Finnish).

Backwood Action is a company offering programme services in the Oulu region including river Kiiminkijoki and in Lapland, providing programs for families and small groups as well as for bigger groups. Trips from a couple of hours to overnights. For more info www.backwoodaction.fi

Kiiminkijoki ry brings together services and activities of Kiiminkijoki river. http://www.kiiminkijoki.fi/en/


Tourist info 

Oulu Tourist Info   is located in the center of Oulu, at mall Toriportti.There are helpful and professional info workers to give you tips of the best places to visit, to eat and drink or accommodate and of course the happenings of Oulu.There are computers, wlan-connection and charging point for mobile phones in free use. Brochures, maps and activities to book. From Oulu Shop you’ll get souvenirs of your visit.Visiting address:

Torikatu 18
90015 City of Oulu

+358 8 558 41330



The river Kiiminkijoki area is well suited for casting and especially fly-fishing from the banks of the river with a lightweight rod and reel. The width of the river varies between 15–90 meters and is suitably deep for wading. Fishing is allowed in the river Kiiminkijoki with a fishing license which allows anglers to catch all species of fish with a lure or fly along the 170-km main course of the river from lake Kivarinjärvi in Puolanka until the estuary in Haukipudas. Net fishing, worming, ice-fishing and crabbing are forbidden. (kiiminkijoki.fi/en/).

There are sea trouts, graylings, pikes, perches and planted lake trouts to catch.

Kiimingin grilli
ABC Kiiminki
Koitelin Tunnelmatupa

License prices:
Under 12-yrs, license not needed
Season 45 €
Day (24 h) 10 €
Week 20 €

For further information about the fishing area, closed seasons, licenses, tips and any other info of fishing: http://www.kiiminkijoki.fi/en/Fishing.html


The stage

There’s a stage in Sahasaari, Koiteli for rent for the needs of different events. Do you have a program or event idea, but the stage is missing? Contact us!

The future events in Sahasaari can be seen from the calendar of the main page. 

Booking information:
Go Arctic! customer service (Mon-Fri, 09:00-17:00)
Tel. +358 (0) 8 415 277 70 or info@goarctic.fi


The rocks of Koiteli

The quartzite and conglomerate rock formation of Koiteli is paleoproterozoic rock, 2093 million years old. The rock foundation has moved, which is why there are cracks and transitions, fault plans can be visible even in the Koiteli rapids.

Even though quartzite is very hard rock, but still during the glacial period 30 000-10 000 years ago the huge, many kilometers thick, ice residual mass smoothed down the rock surface. This is how these glacially abradett rocks are born, and are here for us to admire. Different grooves can tell the motion direction of the glacier. They were born from the stones that scratched the rock while the ice was moving slowly forward or backward. By observing the grooves can be seen the movements of the glaciers: the older on west-east and the younger on north-east direction. The directions of the grooves can be explored with the compass.



The flora and soil

The nature and flora of Koiteli is very polymorphous. On the one hand bryophytes, sedges and bare twigs grow from the rock grooves and the other the flora changes into tiny pine and spruce forests and copses. Near the rapids you can admire the colorful flowers such as purple loosestrifes.

There are also rare species among the over two hundred plants living in Koiteli. Moonworts are hiding in low grass sometimes for years, but if the summer gets wet and warm enough hundreds of moonworts rise up. They belong in near threatened (NT) species, which means that they are in danger of being weakened and become endangered (EN).

The soil of Koiteli is mainly of rock outcrops and rock covered with thick moraine stratum. River Kiiminkijoki has been flowing and leaving old riverbeds. There are also gravel, sand and silt found on the riversides of Koiteli, which have mostly been coming with the river.




The name of Koiteli – almost certainly known – is Sami-based, meaning “in the middle”. 

In the history of Koiteli, industry, travelling, trading and gathering together, come to prominence, but been flourishing in different eras. Koiteli has always been the centre of river Kiiminkijoki and a meaningful point of services and function. It’s more about human and natural interaction than just the nature.

Around 5000 years ago people ate fish, seals and game. So, it’s no wonder that the first people of Kiiminki has been living by the shores. There are foundations of quartzite and abodes, but also tools like axes and ice picks.

The inhabitant increased to the surroundings of rivers Iijoki and Oulujoki, but only as late as on the 16th century permanent inhabitants found Koiteli. The islands were used as pastures, not for farming. The only exception was a potato field on island Pikkusaari. The biggest islands, Myllysaari and Tulisaari were used as temporary graveyards, because of the long distance to the nearest churchyard.

Almost the whole 19th century the Koiteli rapids were tamed for the sawmill industry. Koiteli caused abacklog for timber rafting, which is why the log flume was built on the Northern riverbed. There were also plans to build a power plant in place of the sawmill, but it never came true.

Koiteli is and has always been a refreshment place for the locals. From the 50’s the refreshment use has been improved by building bridges between the islands.

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