Sights & Culture

Sarsuinmäki artillery batteries and the museum gun

A fort artillery battery part of the Salpa Line. The battery was completed in 1940, and at the time was the 30th fort artillery battery. The gun is a French gun of the make Canet with a 7 metre long gun barrel.

Rauhanniemi Museum in Sulkava is one of the oldest local history museums in Southern Savo. It continues the traditions of the museum founded by Councillor Kaarlo Hämäläinen, founded in the 1930s. The museum area presents rural architecture and life from the 1800s to the 1900s. The main building is a smoke cabin transferred from the Summala farm, dating from the early 19th century. In addition, there are granaries, a smoke sauna, barn, stables and log driving museum, the objects of which tell about the world of log driving.

The charming centre holds a nationally significant environmental attraction; the area between the shore of Saimaa and Mikkolantie. The milieu, consisting of old buildings with their traditional courtyards, creates a unique atmosphere in the area. The peaceful and original milieu of Uitonrinne attracts visitors all year round.

Important travel destinations, such as the Sulkava rowing stadium, the Kulkemus boating centre, the Sulkava guest harbour and the Tourist info operating in coffee shop Alina, are located in the area of the Sulkava centre. In summer, Kästуöpuoti, a shop selling local handicraft, also operates in the area.

Suvorov´s canals are the oldest canals in Finland. Telakanava in Sulkava is the northernmost of the four canals. It is an interesting attraction, especially if you are interested in history.

 

Savonlinna Opera Festivals

The birth of the Savonlinna Opera Festival ties in closely with the emerging Finnish identity and striving for independence at the beginning of the 20th century. Attending a nationalist meeting in Olavinlinna Castle in 1907, the Finnish soprano Aino Ackté, already famous at opera houses the world over and an ardent patriot, immediately spotted the potential of the castle as the venue for an opera festival. The first opera festival was held in 1912. Aino Ackté directed the festival for five summers, staging four Finnish operas. 

 

The only opera by a non-Finnish composer was Charles Gounod’s Faust, with Ackté herself in the leading female role of Marguerite. In 1917 the festival ran into difficulties because of First World War, Finnish Declaration of Independence and the ensuing Finnish Civil War. For fifty years, the opera festival was dormant, but in 1967, Savonlinna Music Days decided to organise an opera course for young singers. The high point of the course was a performance of Beethoven's Fidelio in the castle. Therefore 1967 is nowadays regarded as the start of the present Festival; since then it has had steady growth of both audience and reputation.

 

The Savonlinna Opera Festival has grown into an internationally recognised festival lasting a month. Each year it performs to a total audience of around 60,000, an estimated quarter of whom come from abroad. Each year the Festival has, in addition to staging leading works from classical operatic repertoire, staged its own productions. Savonlinna Opera Festival (Finnish: Savonlinnan oopperajuhlat) is held annually in the city of Savonlinna in Finland. The Festival takes place at the medieval Olavinlinna (St. Olaf's Castle), built in 1475. The castle is located amid spectacular lake scenery. Also rock / heavy concerts in the venue!