The impacts of coronavirus in Ruka-Kuusamo area

Updated on 20.6.2020

Traveling to Finland is gradually becoming allowed again. Please check valid instructions on the website of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland

Tourism operators in Ruka-Kuusamo always act in accordance with their values, responsibly and working together. We will ensure that the area is safe to travel and that here it is safe to be. Please help us and travel responsibly and follow health guidelines. Together, we make sure we can enjoy the summer with joy!

Current information about coronavirus is available by Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare.
Guidelines for travelers by the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare
Covid-19 coronavirus and guidance for travelers to Finland by Visit Finland

Q&A Ruka-Kuusamo Summer 2020

Which services in the area are open in the summer?
Services and activities in summer can be found on Ruka-Kuusamo's summer pages. We actively collect the opening hours of our member companies and the opening hours can be found here. Opening hours can also be checked on the companies' own channels. The Ruka ski resort's summer offer can be found here.

When will Ruka Bike Park open?
The construction in the new Ruka Bike Park will start from summer 2020 and is fully completed by the end of summer 2021. Two new downhill and two cross-country routes will be completed this summer. In addition, a Family Park, area suitable for children for downhill training, and Pump Track will be built. Construction work at Pump Track have begun and other routes will follow after the snow melts. Read more about northern cycling ventures.

Are hiking trails open during summer? 
Hiking trails in Kuusamo are open including huts, fireplaces and toilets. Please follow the health guidelines as well as instructions regarding floods and forest fires. Updated information is available on nationalparks.fi and on Facebook pages regarding KarhunkierrosOulanka National ParkRiisitunturi National Park and Hossa National Park

Is it safe to travel to Ruka-Kuusamo? 
Even in this challenging situation, we serve our customers in the best possible way, of course regarding the personnel and customer safety. We are following the situation and the instructions of the authorities actively.

Are there corona infected persons in Ruka-Kuusamo area?
At the present, Kuusamo is not part of the epidemic area. If there should be infected persons, the amounts will not be announced per location, but as part of the Nothern Ostrobothnia area.

Are there events at the moment?
Based on the guidelines by the authorities, events have been postponed or cancelled. Whenever possible, we try to organize late summer events. Follow the situation in the Ruka-Kuusamo event calendar.

How can one get to Ruka-Kuusamo area? 
Ruka-Kuusamo area can be reached by car, by bus and by train + bus combination. Find flights to Kuusamo on Finnair's pages. You can also fly to Oulu or Rovaniemi and take a bus to Kuusamo.

If I decide to travel to Ruka-Kuusamo area, what should I do?
We've enhanced the level of hygiene and increased communication to customers regading their actions in this exceptional situation in order to prevent the spreading of the coronavirus in Finland and to protect the potential risk groups. This website will be updated regularly. If you deciced to travel, please be aware of your own responsibilities. Follow the recommendations of the Finnish government and instructions given in Kanta.fi (information system for social welfare services in Finland). If you have any - even mild - symptoms of flu, stay at home. When moving around in Ruka-Kuusamo area, please take extra good care of your own personal hygiene as well as for your companions. Stay within your own group and avoid contacts with others. Pay attention to given safety distance.

Instructions for summer visitors in ski resort:
Welcome to Ruka! Please use the services of the ski resort only in good health. Stay at home if you have respiratory symptoms. Please take care of your hand hygiene and wash hands often. Take advantage of the hand disinfection options available and protect your mouth when you cough with a handkerchief or sleeve.

Please keep a safety distance of at least one meter between other customers and staff in the lift queue and in the rental shop. To avoid contacts, you can buy pedestrian, summer toboggan and cyclist lift tickets in advance from online store store.ruka.fi. Please travel in the chairlift and gondola only with family members or people in the same group. We disinfected the chairlift guard rails and the summer toboggan sleds after use. If necessary, we limit the number of lift tickets sold to avoid congestion.

We handle rental car wheels and helmets for disinfectant use after. Please wear gloves when riding or handling the bike you rent.

Our ski resort staff follows all the latest instructions and precautions of the health authorities. We pay attention to efficient cleaning in all customer and staff facilities. Thank you for cooperating with us so that we can guarantee a safe and relaxing holiday for everyone!

I live in Finland and I have returned home from abroad. Can I travel to Ruka-Kuusamo area?
At the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic Finnish government  stated that Finns and permanent residents of Finland returning from abroad are advised to live in conditions that correspond to quarantine for a period of two weeks after their return. Traveling to Finland is gradually becoming allowed again. Please check valid instructions on the website of the Ministry for Foreign Affarairs of Finland

Quarantine means limiting the freedom of movement of a person potentially exposed to coronavirus to prevent spreading the virus. In quarantine, one must avoid contact with other persons except one's own family. One can go out, but not near other persons. One can not go to work, school, daycare, leisure activities or grocery store due to the risk of contacting other people.

Q&A for the past winter season

If I decide to postpone my trip, when is a good time to travel?
Ruka-Kuusamo is attractive throughout the year and a dream destination to activce travellers. In summer and autumn you can go hiking, biking, paddling, cross-country riding, do yoga, golf or just relax in the beautiful scenery. Ski Resort Ruka opens ski-season in Finland and the first slopes will be open on the 2nd of October. Then you can still hike and bike, so that's a great option to have holiday, too.

Are ski trails and snowmobile routes open in Ruka-Kuusamo?
Most rental shops are closed and routes are not maintained. Maintenance of the ski trails continues as long as the snow situation allows it. Snowshoe trails, winter walking trails and tobogganing areas are open due the snow situation.

Why did the ski resort close down?
Rukakeskus ended the ski season on 23.3.2020. There were far fewer customers in the area than normal, but closing the ski resort we aim to ensure that the number of customers did not increase. The difficult decision was made to prevent the spread of the coronavirus and to ensure the well-being of staff and customers. Read more at Ruka Ski Resort web page.

How does the closure of the ski resort impact ski passes and ski gear rentals that have already been paid for?
Unused lift tickets and rental equipment will be returned to customers. However, season passes are not refunded. For rental equipment there will also be a refund for days that are not used due to the closure of the slopes. Contact Rukakeskus by e-mail at verkkokauppa@ruka.fi.

Ruka Ski School closed. What happens to booked lessons?
Ski School lessons have been stopped from 18.3.2020 onwards as a precaution for prevanting the spreading of the coronavirus and for protecting the risk groups. Lessons that have already been paid will be refunded, please contact Ruka Ski School.

Will events be canceled? 
The Finnish government has issued a recommendation on 12.3.2020 that all events of more than 500 people should be cancelled to prevent the spreading of the Corona virus in Finland. On 13.3.2020, Regional State Administrative Agencies has decided to prohibit all events with over 500 attendees.

Based on the official guidelines by the authorities, we have decided to cancel big events from spring and summer. Many of the events will be and have already been rescheduled. See the current situation at our event calendar in Ruka.fi or in social media channels of the events.

What happens to tickets and other services that have already been purchased? Where can one apply for compensations?
Persons having made plans to attend the cancelled events shall contact the organizer or service provider of the event for more information.

How did Ruka Ski Resort prepare for corona?
Ruka Ski Resort followed the recommendations of the Finnish Ski Resort Association for ski resorts and their clients:

Consider others and head to the slopes only completely healthy, stay at home in case you feel unwell. If you have any symptoms associated with Covid-19, call a health center or hospital emergency department. The most common symptoms of coronavirus are high temperature, cough, sore throat, headache, and shortness of breath.

Two people are allowed in the T-bar lifts only when they are related or from the same party. In chair lifts a distance of at least one meter must be kept, or one must travel only with family or members of the same party. In covered chairlifts and the gondola lift travel is only allowed with family or members from the same party.

All rental gear, including helmets and poles, are cleaned with disinfectant after each use. At the moment ski goggles will not be rented.

All ski resorts under Finnish Ski Area Association will carefully follow all the latest guidelines and orders given by the health authorities. Hand disinfectant is available in all places possible. Cleaning is enhanced in all customer and staff areas. Finnish Ski Area Association recommends the Occupational Health Institute’s guidelines for cleaning to prevent the spread of Covid-19. Personnel have been advised to prioritize hygiene. Keyboards and other tools are cleaned regularly.

If necessary, the number of customer seats in restaurants will be reduced. Buffet type meals will be minimized. Ski-busses will reduce the number of customers taken on at once. If necessary, the ski resort will limit the number of ski passes sold to avoid overcrowding.

Purchasing ski passes online in advance is recommended in order to avoid any excess contact.

For the time being, any larger competitions and public events at the ski resort will be cancelled. If necessary, restaurants, cafes, rental shops and other public spaces will be closed.

If the authorities close the ski resort, the remaining share of unused Ski passes and rental equipment will be refunded to customers. In such a situation, customers should be directly in contact with the place of purchase of the ski passes and/or rental equipment. At this stage, season cards or season rentals will no longer be refunded.

Ruka Ski Resort and the Finnish Ski Resort Association actively monitor the situation and act according to the instructions of the authorities.

More information: 
Tourist information: +358 8 8600 250, info@rukakuusamo.fi
​Marja Mäenpää, Head of Marketing, Ruka-Kuusamo Tourist Association, tel. +358 40 521 5316, marja.maenpaa@rukakuusamo.fi
Mats Lindfors, CEO, Ruka-Kuusamo Tourist Association, tel. +358 40 0747356, mats.lindfors@rukakuusamo.fi