Koli Ice Road is the longest inland ice road in Europe

Located in Eastern Finland, in North Karelia, a region that borders to the regions of Kainuu, Northern Savonia, Southern Savonia, South Karelia and to Russia, the scenic Koli Ice Road is said to be the longest inland ice road in Europe.

Koli Ice Road

How long is Koli Ice Road?

Lake Pielinen hosts an ice road, during most winters, between the villages of Koli and Vuonislahti. The ice road is 7 kilometres (4.3 mi) long and shortens the road distance between both towns by 60 kilometres (37 mi). The minimum thickness of fast ice is 5 cm for a person walking alone, while a snowmobile requires an ice thickness of at least 15 cm along the entire route. Moreover, the minimum thickness for a passenger car is about 20 cm of fast ice. Ice must be at least 40 cm (16 in) thick before the road may be opened. 

What’s the longest inland ice road in Europe?

Since 1980, the Koli Ice Road has been Finland’s longest public ice road and the longest inland ice road in Europe. After use, ice roads are normally closed in order to prevent access by cars as the bearing capacity of the ice is reduced. Ice roads are equipped with the necessary warning and other road signs. During peak hours, over 500 vehicles have driven the seven-kilometer ice road. 


The following limits apply to ice roads:

-Weight limit 3 t (3.0 long tons; 3.3 short tons) (may be raised if ice is thick enough)
-Speed limit 50 km/h (31 mph)
-Minimum space of 50 m (164 ft) between cars traveling in the same direction
-Overtaking is prohibited.
-Stopping is prohibited.