Iisalmi - the capital of Ylä-Savo region!

In Ylä-Savo, people live at the headwaters of two great Finnish lake systems, Saimaa and Päijänne. There has been settlement in this area since the early Stone Age. It is believed that the original inhabitants were Laplanders, but at the beginning of the 16th century people from the Savo and Häme tribes also found their way to the area. The city of Iisalmi was founded in 1891 and incorporated into the rural commune in 1970.

Iisalmi, a vibrant Savo town surrounded by lakes and rivers, is the functional centre of the 60 000 inhabitant Ylä-Savo region.  The 21 600 inhabitants of the town can enjoy living in a safe and inspiring environment close to nature. The city centre is encircled by lakes, rivers and hilly terrain.

The jovial attitude of Savo is thoroughly present in the area of Iisalmi. People tend to have a good sense of humour and their regional dialect of Savo can be heard in their Finnish and English accents. That’s the main reason why people of Savo are described by other Finns to have “a glint in their eye”.

Iisalmi is also the heart of the Ylä-Savo economic zone. There are businesses from many different industrial sectors and leading companies are export-oriented.

The most renowed companies of Iisalmi include the brewery Olvi, sound system manufacturer Genelec, thermal wood modificator Lunawood, construction equipment producer Normet, forestry vehicle and machinery corporation Ponsse and special vehicle developer Profile Vehicles.

Iisalmi is a place for skills where business partnerships create outstanding added value. Local skills are also transferred to the world market in the form of audio-visual technology and specialized vehicles. Iisalmi and the whole of the Ylä-Savo region utilize the EU structural funds in developing the area and the economy.

Iisalmi cherishes its high-quality elementary school system. We want to be forerunners in developing digital learning methods. By investing in quality teaching we hope to attract parents’ attention and encourage families to move in Iisalmi.

In a historical aspect, Iisalmi is known for the battle of Koljonvirta, a battle on the Virta Bridge between Swedish and Russian troops, which took place during the Finnish war in 1808. The battle was the last Swedish victory on Finnish soil.

The heart of the town’s culture life is located in Iisalmi Cultural Centre. And did you know that we have the world’s smallest restaurant, Kuappi? Also ice hockey team Iisalmen Peli-karhut plays in Mestis Hockey league, which makes it the number one team in our town.

Inhabitants (31th December 2017) 21 639

Total area km² 872,18

Water area km² 109,21

Waterfront (lakes, rivers and islands) 746,48 km

Municipal tax rate % 20,50
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