Hiking Etiquette and Everyman's Rights

Everyman's rights refer to everyone's right to access and enjoy nature, regardless of land ownership or tenure. In nature reserves, these rights may be restricted for conservation purposes.


  • Walking in nature, skiing, snowshoeing, and cycling.
  • Temporary stay and overnight camping in designated areas.
  • Picking wild berries, non-protected plants, and mushrooms.
  • Swimming, bathing, boating, and walking on ice.
  • Fishing and ice fishing, except in restricted areas (kalastusrajoitus.fi).


  • Walking on yards, cultivated fields, or planted areas.
  • Cutting down, damaging, or taking trees.
  • Taking moss and lichen.
  • Making open fires on someone else's land.
  • Littering.
  • Driving off-road with motor vehicles.
  • Fishing and hunting without necessary permits.
  • Disturbing or harming animals.

Read more about everyman's rights on the Ministry of the Environment's website.

Being in nature has been scientifically proven to improve well-being and reduce stress levels. In addition to being a vital source of well-being for people, nature is home to many animals and plants. Let’s act in nature so that we do not intentionally or accidentally cause unnecessary harm to the environment or disturb others.

  • Favor existing routes and paths: When moving in nature, use established trails and paths to prevent erosion.
  • Respect other nature enthusiasts: Be considerate of others and avoid disturbing them.
  • Beware of restrictions: Be aware of any restrictions in the area, such as bird nesting seasons or forbidden areas.
  • Follow rules: Learn and follow the rules for different types of movement (such as hiking, cycling etc) specific to your destination.
  • Avoid moving near residences: Be mindful of private property and respect the regulations regarding privacy.
  • Do not disturb other campers: Respect the camping areas of fellow hikers.
  • Maintain distance on water: When on water, keep a sufficient distance from residential areas and cottage shores.

  • Temporary camping and overnight stays in the wild are permitted under everyman's rights where movement is allowed (note possible regional restrictions and bans).
  • Temporary overnight stays are allowed in wilderness huts.
  • Check the rules of the huts to see if dogs are allowed inside.
  • Day-use huts are intended for day use only.
  • You always need the landowner's permission to make an open fire.
  • Make fires only at designated fire pits.
  • The person who starts the fire is always responsible for its safety.
  • Ensure that fires are completely extinguished before you leave.
  • Making open fires is prohibited during a forest fire warning. Please see current warnings from the Finnish Meteorological Institute's website.

A dog can be a wonderful hiking companion. However, please ensure that your dog is properly leashed and does not disturb the peace of nature or other hikers. Dogs must never be let off-leash without the landowner's or hunting rights holder's permission. According to the Hunting Act, dogs must be kept on a leash or immediately leashed from March 1st to August 19th, even if you have the landowner's permission. This leashing period applies to areas outside of urban zones. In urban areas, the Public Order Act requires dogs to be always kept on a leash.

  • Always keep your dog on a leash while hiking in the wild.
  • Ensure your dog has sufficient food and water.
  • Make sure your dog does not disturb wildlife.
  • Make sure your dog does not disturb other hikers.
  • Check if dogs are allowed in huts.
  • Do not take your dog to public swimming beaches.

Rovaniemi's forest roads and trail network offer diverse opportunities for mountain biking enthusiasts. The specially designed trails and downhill tracks on Ounasvaara Hill provide excellent facilities right near the city center. In summer, the extensive network of ski trails allows for a variety of trail combinations.

For safe and enjoyable mountain biking, the Finnish Outdoor Association (Suomen Latu), Metsähallitus, and Tukes (Safety and Chemicals Agency) have published guidelines that should be followed.

By adhering to etiquette, both mountain bikers and other users can enjoy the most popular routes without compromising the natural environment.

  • The trail is shared, and nature belongs to everyone. Be considerate of all users.
  • Use existing trails and routes. Avoid riding around wetlands and lock braking to reduce erosion.
  • Familiarize yourself with the area and trail rules, and adhere to them.
  • Remember your responsibility. Do not litter or harm trees and saplings.
  • Maintain a safe speed appropriate for the situation. Slow down when passing or at intersections, and use a bell or voice.
  • It is everyone's duty to assist the injured. Use the 112 emergency app or call for help if needed.

According to the law, places protected by privacy include, among others, residences, holiday homes, tents, caravans, inhabited boats, private yard areas, and their immediately adjacent buildings. Unauthorized entry into people's yard areas is prohibited. Privacy also protects residences from waterfront areas. Dock areas should not be approached, and access to privacy-protected areas via waterways should only be done when absolutely necessary.

Privacy is violated by anyone who unlawfully:

Intrudes or enters surreptitiously or under false pretenses into a place protected by privacy,
Conceals oneself in such a place,
Disturbs another's privacy by making noise, throwing objects, making phone calls, or in any similar manner.


Photography in public places is permitted. However, photography is restricted in places protected by privacy and public peace. If you photograph people outside public places, always ask for permission. Never photograph people's residences without permission.




Parking your vehicle is subject to specific rules and regulations to ensure safety and orderliness. Here are some guidelines:

  • Park only in designated parking areas or spots.
  • Avoid blocking driveways, entrances, or emergency exits.
  • Respect parking signs and markings, including time limits and restrictions.
  • Ensure your vehicle does not obstruct pedestrian paths or access to utilities.
  • Use parking meters or pay-and-display systems where required.
  • Do not park in areas designated for emergency vehicles, disabled persons, or loading zones unless authorized.
  • Always lock your vehicle and secure valuables to prevent theft.
  • Following these guidelines ensures efficient use of parking spaces and contributes to a safer environment for everyone.

Proper waste management is essential when hiking to preserve the natural environment and ensure enjoyable experiences for all. Here are some guidelines to follow:

  • Pack it in, pack it out: Take all waste, including food wrappers, bottles, and any other trash, back with you when leaving the trail.
  • Use designated bins: Dispose of waste in designated trash bins or recycling containers at trailheads or designated rest areas.
  • Minimize waste: Reduce waste by packing items with minimal packaging and reusable containers.
  • Avoid littering: Never leave trash or items like cigarette butts behind. Even biodegradable items can disrupt ecosystems or harm wildlife.
  • Respect nature: Leave natural items like rocks, plants, and artifacts undisturbed for others to enjoy

By adhering to these principles, hikers can help preserve the beauty and cleanliness of natural areas for future visitors and wildlife.