Online route planning tools

Screenshot of the sailmate.fi service.

Screenshot of the sailmate.fi service.

Seems there are two types of sailors and boaters. One type likes to plan their trips well ahead and at least half of the fun is the planning. The other half travels with a rough idea of where to go and then plays it by the ear. If you are of the planning kind, here are some suggestions for online route planning tools for planning your perfect sailing trip to Finland.

The good news is that Finland is a perfect sailing and boating destination regardless of which type of boater you are. If you are not much into planning, the short distances and intricate channels systems of the inland lakes and the archipelago are just perfect for the sailor that gets up on the morning, listens to the weather forecast and then decides on the program for the day.

For the boater who likes planning, over 10000 nautical miles of marked channels and hundreds of marinas and other sailing destinations provides planning opportunities like no other country. But how to do the planning? Here are a few suggestions.

sailmate.fi

There is one superb online service in Finland for route planning, called sailmate.fi. It offers route planning based on the best charts in the world for Finland, those produced by the local maritime authorities. It also includes comprehensive information on marinas, places of interest as well as natural harbors. As sailmate.fi is based on real charts, it is the only online service that should be used for any kind of route selection.

Sailmate can also be installed as an application on your Android pad or iPad. Find Sailmate on the Google Play store here or for iPad here. Both versions are free but with premium features available in-app.

excursionmap.fi

Screenshot of the excursionmap.fi service shows examples of natural harbors.

Screenshot of the excursionmap.fi service shows examples of natural harbors.

Another very nice service is excursionmap.fi. This service is maintained by the Finnish Forrestry Service, Metsähallitus. The Forrestry Service manages Finnish national parks but there are also a lot of government owned land that is reserved for recreational use. And the service is available in English!

Excursionmap.fi is not specifically targeting boaters but it has a few of very interesting features. One is that is shows natural harbors and anchorages on publicly owned land. A number of really nice destinations for your sailing can be found here. In the Map layers menu in the service, select Excursion services -> Boating and canoing.

The other very nice feature of excursionmap.fi is that it has a really good land map that is very well suited for making excursions on the islands. The map is basically the same map that is used to make orienteering maps. So if you want to venture inland from your anchorage, check out excursionmap.fi.

The third nice feature of the excursionmap.fi is that it shows protected areas so that you don’t accidentally land on a nature reserve or other location with restricted access.

visitsaaristo.net

Screenshot of the guestharbours.fi service.

Screenshot of the guestharbours.fi service.

Did you know there are a whopping 240 marinas along the Finnish coast and over 150 marinas on the three main inland lake systems: Lake Saimaa, Lake Päijänne and Lakes Pyhjärvi and Näsijärvi? Most of these can be found with good description on the visitsaaristo.net site. So you definitely need to check it out.

Pro tip: To find boating services on the numerous smaller lakes, use the excursionmap.fi service!

dokk.fi capital region service directory

dokk boating services map

Screenshot of the dokk.fi capital region boating services map.

The Dokk.fi charter service offers a very nice and detailed service map for the Helsinki capital region. You can find the map here: dokk.fi/en/helsinki-boating-service-directory. The directory contains over 130 boating related services and destinations including marinas, 24/7 boating emergency service, restaurants accessible with boat and much more! And to help you plan your trip you can use also a Navionics chart as a backdrop!

The service is tailored for your mobile device where you can also allow that the map uses your location to correctly place you on the map! A must-have tool for anyone visiting or boating in the capital region!

Happy planning!