Passenger Line in Finland Kouvola to Kotka

Across Finland’s vast unpopulated woodlands stretch thin steel lines of railway tracks. While the country does not have giant locomotives able to handle freight traffic on a stupendous scale and heavy graded mountain routes completed only after Herculean feats of perseverance, it has many fine modem machines that would do credit to any nation.

The route

Kouvola is a small, centrally-located city. Local transport is provided by 19 bus lines, with a new line connecting the city with Lappeenranta and another one to Vyborg and beyond. There is also a train connection to Helsinki-Vantaa Airport.

Before the turn of the century, the Savo line leading north out of Kouvola and the Kotka line south of it turned the peaceful station village into a vibrant railway community. In 1922, it separated from Valkeala as its own municipality and received town rights the following year.

Although Finland does not yet have a long express passenger train like the British “Flying Scotsman”, “Royal Scot” or “Cornish Riviera Limited”, it does have fine modem trains and good infrastructure. The main lines connect the lake district with Kuopio and Mikkeli, and the connections between Kouvola and the inland towns are extensive. A lot of work is being done to improve the capacity on these routes. In addition, there is a strong emphasis on securing the operational preconditions of the main line to Helsinki.


The station at Kouvola is an important railway junction. It is connected to Hamina, Helsinki and Kotka via the Savo and Kotka lines. Bus connections to other cities are also available. The fastest bus journey to Helsinki center takes 2 hours and 10 minutes on a fast service, while the route to Jyvaskyla lasts up to 3 hours and 30 minutes.

The line from Kouvola to Kotka is part of the VR commuter traffic network. If you have a multi-ticket for this route, the remaining journeys will be refunded if you switch to use the commuter train.

The station in Kouvola is an important crossing point station for trains from Finland and Sweden. A large number of buses stop at the station together with the train, making it an ideal travel centre. A variety of local goods are available here, including the popular Finnish candy salmiakki, which has a strong ammonium chloride flavour. A savory black sausage called mustamakkara is also available, served with lingonberry jam and potato mash.


Kouvola is the tenth largest city in Finland and is popular with tourists for its natural beauty, UNESCO world heritage sites, and cultural attractions. It is also home to the newspaper Kouvolan Sanomat and the third largest amusement park in the country, Tykkimaki.

The main station is served by local and express trains, as well as Pendolino services to Vyborg and St Petersburg. It is also one of the busiest border control points in Finland with direct trains to both Russia and Xi’an in China.

The renewal of the signalling system on the Kouvola-Kotka-Hamina line is a vital project for Southern Finland, improving railway network safety and reliability as well as increasing the efficiency of freight transport. It will help improve the competitiveness of Finnish export industries, while reducing energy consumption and enhancing the environmental impact of the rail sector. Thales will design, deliver, install and test the new ETCS L2 signalling solution as part of this project.


Getting around Kouvola is easy with the extensive bus network run by Kouvola City Transport (Kouvola city liikenne in Finnish). The town also has great train connections with Finland’s main railway operator VR. A taxi is another option if you prefer not to take public transit.

The line between Kouvola and Hameenlinna is a busy route, especially during peak hours. This route serves as the main connection for commuter traffic in the region.

In addition, this route is important for freight transport, as it is the most used connection to Russia and the southern border crossing of Vainikkala/Buslovskaya. The port of Kotka is an important exporter in the area, and cargo traffic is increasing.

Local trains from Helsinki stop in Kouvola on their way to Myllykoski and Inkeroinen along the track toward the Kotka port. The city has a rail connection to Koria in the west and Kaipiainen in the east. It is also a gateway to the long haul to Xi’an in China.

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