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Freetime activities

Facts about Iisalmi

In terms of Finnish towns, Iisalmi is quite an old town, over a hundred years old with a population of about 22,600 inhabitants. The town is the administrative, commercial and educational centre for a large mainland area and an important road and rail transport link in Central Finland. Situated between two lakes and surrounded by natural forest, the town gives an opportunity for a quality of life much appreciated by both those who live there and those who occasionally visit there.

The export industries in the area can be said to represent the Finnish industry in general, brewing, food processing, forestry, metal, textiles and high technology. Service industries are also well represented and the town has a good range of hotels, restaurants, department stores and specialised shops.


There is a cinema in Iisalmi. Films are shown in their original language with Finnish and Swedish subtitles. The tickets usually cost € 5 - 10.

City Library

This library is open to the public. However, you need a library card to be able to borrow books. You must present proof of identity and fill out an application form to get one. It takes about 3 weeks to get the card. You will get a temporary card while waiting for the permanent one. If the books are not returned by the date they are due, a fee will be charged.

The City Library Iisalmi has a music library where you can listen to music or borrow tapes and records etc.The reading room gives you the opportunity to read Finnish and several foreign newspapers and magazines.


The Iisalmi museums (Juhani Aho Museum, Iisalmi Nature Museum, Brewery Museum).

Music & Theatre

Music is a truly international language, Iisalmi has modern concert hall, Kultturikeskus in Iisalmi. The Iisalmi Theatre is an attractive amateur theatre. Even if you do not understand the language (all the shows are in Finnish) this important part of Finnish life is still worth of seeing.


Sauna is an essential part of Finnish culture. There are public saunas available in swimming halls, sports halls and hotels. Most student dormitories has a common sauna which can be booked for weekly private use and which have free of charge separate hours for women and men once a week.


You can play virtually any sport you wish in Iisalmi. Winter sport facilities are excellent: downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, ice hockey, skating. And in summer there are facilities for swimming, jogging, hiking, orienteering, cycling, sailing, canoeing, etc. You can play tennis, badminton, football, Finnish baseball, basketball, golf, etc. PLUS practice aerobics, yoga, dancing, tai chi, self-defence, shooting, roller-skating, horse riding, etc. There are great opportunities to practice anything you want. The City of Iisalmi have an office, which provides information on sports facilities.

If you want more information, please call +358 17 830 1447 (Iisalmi) and ask for "Liikunnanohjaaja".

Friends and family

Every exchange student gets a Finnish friend family. It is up to the student and the family which kind of activities they want to have. Usually the students are invited to spend a weekend in a Finnish family. This way the students get to know the Finnish culture and way of life.

Savonia UAS

Savonia is one of Finland's biggest and most versatile universities of applied sciences. Our campuses are situated in Kuopio, Iisalmi and Varkaus. There are almost 6000 students and 600 employees at Savonia. In education we implement Open Innovation Space (OIS), where we combine learning, development, research, and teaching.