Credits: Kalle Kervinen


Joensuu is the capital of Finland’s easternmost province in North Karelia.

Joensuu is the lively capital of the North Karelia region of Finnish Lakeland. Established by Czar Nikolai I of Russia in 1848, Joensuu lies close to the Russian border, about 400 kilometres from Finland’s capital, Helsinki.
Credits: Kalle Kervinen

Welcome to Joensuu

Joensuu is a centre of trade, culture, education and technology. Three higher education institutions – the North Karelia University of Applied Sciences, the University of Eastern Finland and the HUMAK University of Applied Sciences – call Joensuu home.

Where in Finland?


City facts

Population: 77 000

Distance from Helsinki:

– Plane 45 minutes
– Train 5 hours
– Car 440 kilometres, 7 hours

Flight connections: Joensuu Airport is situated 11 kilometres from the city centre.


Visit Karelia
Länsikatu 15 (building 3B, 3rd floor)
80110 Joensuu
Phone +358 40 487 4897

Visit site

Metal and wood

The main business sectors are the metal, wood and forestry industries, as well as border control and cross-border collaboration.

Joensuu is the forestry capital of Europe and a stronghold of forestry research centres, including the European Forest Institute and Joensuu Science Park.

A range of cultural offerings

Joensuu is a prominent part of the Finnish cultural scene, having birthed several well-known artists and inspiring scores of film production companies to shoot in the area.

The Ilosaarirock Festival, featuring internationally acclaimed artists, is sold out every year months in advance.

The orchestra, theatre and art museum are among the local institutions catering to visitors seeking cultural experiences. Joensuu's Onni Art Museum is also an interesting place to visit. There you'll find exhibitions on European church art and much more.

Credits: Joensuu Art Museum Onni, Anna Autio

Eastern wilderness and Karelian culture

The nearby wilderness areas provide the perfect setting for nature enthusiasts. Jogging paths and a wide variety of facilities are a delight to sportsmen and women alike. The iconic Koli National Park is only an hour's drive north of Joensuu.

Joensuu believes in regional and international cooperation as vehicles for development, which is manifested in numerous projects spanning different areas of expertise.

If you'd like to know more about the lively Karelian culture, read our article about this region at

Autumn views at Koli National Park.
Credits: Julia Kivelä