Gravel biking & bike touring in the Jyväskylä Region
The Jyväskylä Region is excellent for versatile gravel biking. The Lakeland by Cycle Bikepacking routes combine the beautiful nature, historical sights and services along the best gravel and forest roads in the Jyväskylä Region. The routes offer a total of 1,100 kilometres of cycling.
Lakeland by Cycle consists of three bikepacking routes: the Old Church Gravel Loop (440 km), the Goblin’s Gorge Gravel Loop (349 km) and the Green Gold Gravel Loop (333 km). These three circular routes pass through the Lakeland landscape of the Jyväskylä Region, offering unique views of the region’s geology and nature such as moraine ridges and forested slopes. The routes are mainly easy to ride and, apart from short stretches of forest paths, the going should be relatively smooth.
Along the trails you can explore magnificent rock formations and ravines such as Hitonhauta, Karhunahas, Talkoovuoret and Vororotti. The routes also pass through Salamajärvi, Leivonmäki and Pyhä-Häkki National Parks. On the Old Church Gravel Loop, you can also visit one of Finland’s seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Petäjävesi Old Church.
In total, the three main routes offer 1,100 km of cycling. An additional six connecting routes allow you to combine and extend the main routes or divide them into smaller sections. The routes are excellent for both those staying in inns and for camping, and there are plenty of lean-tos along the routes. Public transport is easily accessible on all routes, and there are railway stations in several places, including Jyväskylä, Jämsä, Petäjävesi and Keuruu.
The best season for cycling in the Jyväskylä Region is from late May to late September.
Old Church Gravel Loop
The Old Church Gravel Loop is a circular route of 440 km along dirt and gravel roads west of Jyväskylä. You should allow 5 to 8 days to complete it. This route connects the population centres of Uurainen, Multia, Keuruu, Petäjävesi, Koskenpää, Jämsä, Korpilahti and Muurame, mainly along low-traffic and partly forgotten side roads. Along the way, you can enjoy magnificent hilly dirt roads deep in the forest. In addition to camping facilities, there are plenty of good accommodation options along the route. The route also passes by Petäjävesi Old Church. Built in 1763–1765, it is one of the seven UNESCO World Heritage sites in Finland.Photo: Timo Veijalainen
Goblin’s Gorge Gravel Loop
The Goblin’s Gorge Gravel Loop is a circular route of some 349 km along gravel roads in the heart of the Jyväskylä Region. You should allow 5 to 7 days to complete it. This route takes you to Jyväskylä, Joutsa, Lievestuore, Suolahti and Uurainen, mostly along quiet back roads. Along the route, you can visit Leivonmäki National Park and admire the Hitonhauta ravine valley, a rock and ridge area formed by ice. There are also some 20 bathing beaches, several rapids and stunning lake scenery along the way. The route starts and ends in Jyväskylä.Photo: Timo Veijalainen
Green Gold Gravel Loop
The Green Gold Gravel Loop is a 333 km route along dirt roads in the northern part of the Jyväskylä Region. You should allow 4 to 6 days to complete it. The Green Gold Gravel Loop goes through villages in northwestern Lakeland Finland, passing through the likes of Huopana trout rapids, Salamajärvi National Park and the old forest reserves of Kuivajärvi.Photo: Timo Veijalainen
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