Joensuu Attractions

Joensuu attractions include the Museum of North Karelia, Carelicum, Market Square, the city’s pedestrian center, and a cruise from Joensuu.

Museum of North Karelia ( was founded in 1917 to document and exhibit the cultural history of North Karelia.

Permanent exhibitions at the museum mostly focus on the history of the North Karelia, its folklore and traditions.

Periodically, the building also houses temporary exhibitions, ranging from local to international themes, related to the area and its history.

One way that you can visit the museum is by participating in a guided tour, which are available in English, Russian, German, Swedish, and Finnish.

Carelicum (, meanwhile, is the city’s center for culture and tourism, sharing premises with the Museum of North Karelia.

In addition to the museum and an information center for tourists, Carelicum also features:

  • children’s fairy tale city: Mukulakatu,
  • café and
  • Joensuu shop.

You can also check your email within Carelicum, as there is a freeinternet point for tourists. You can also purchase tickets from the center for events, concerts, and theater performances in the city.

Carelicum building is located adjacent to the Joensuu Market Square, which is central to the city, and world-famous as the place to sample North Karelian cuisine treats.

During the summer season, Joensuu Market Square is also a venue for a variety of performances and concerts.

For these events, the square features a covered stage next to the pedestrian walkway, Kauppakatu.

The marketplace is usually open (in the summer):

  • on weekdays from 7am-5pm, and
  • on Saturdays from 7am-3pm.

Of the Joensuu attractions, the city’s pedestrian center is located withinKauppakatu street, an area between Niskakatu ja Suvantokatu, and contains most of the city’s best shopping.

In traditional Karelian style, during the summer season, the pedestrian area often has market dances, street performers, and other entertainment.

During the winter period, the pedestrian, car-free zone is the most decorated section of the city center, featuring beautiful Christmas lights…

…while throughout the summer, the street is decorated with banners and flowers.

Finally, a cruise from Joensuu is a great way to explore the region’s nature from the many famous lakes and waterways in Northern Karelia.

Popular cruise packages include…

  • cruises that use the old steamboat route towards Liperi’s Roukalahti archipelago,
  • cruise tours to Pyhäselkä and Pielisjoki, and
  • river cruises to the Kuurna canal.

These cruises are available from, for example,  Satumaa Risteilyt (, which makes regular cruises throughout the summer season, with the ferries departing from Joensuu’s Matkustajasatama harbor.