HOTELS. Patria, Kauppakatu 21, 120 Polar, Helsingintie, 117 Kylpylaitos-Spa, Ainonkatu 17,
60 Viikinkihovi, Valtakatu 41, 82 Hospiz, Valtakatu 40, 91 b.: Karelia-Park, Korpraalinkuja 1, 260 b. (June-August only). YOUTH HOSTEL. CAMPSITE.
RESTAURANTS. Sirmakka, Valtakatu 36; Prinsessa Armaada, in an old Lake Saimaa cargo boat in the harbour.
EVENTS. Folk music and dancing (June); Humppa dance marathon (July); open-air concerts three times a week and occasional open-aii theatre performances during the months of June, July and August.
SPORTS and RECREATION. Tennis, golf, bowling.
The Finnish town of Lappeenranta (Villmanstrand), on the S side of the Lappvesi, was founded by Queen Christina in 1649. It is the most southerly port of call of the boats on Lake Saimaa. In view of its exposed situation on the frontier facing the Russian Empire, it became a garrison town in the 17th c. the only town in Finland on whose history, development and layout the Finnish cavalry exerted such a large influence. Lappeenranta has the reputation of being one of the most cosmopolitan towns in Finland and is one of the most popular with visitors.
HISTORY. The town originated as a medieval trading station. In 1741 it was the scene of a decisive battle in which a Swedish- Finnish army was defeated by the Russians. Under the treaty of Abo (Turku) Lappeenranta passed to Russia in 1743; it remained Russian until 1811. There are remains of fortifications dating from the 17th18th c. as well as the Russian period. After the discovery of a radioactive mineral spring (1824), the town developed as a spa, particularly favoured by Russian nobility. Since 1974, the spa has operated throughout the year; it specialises in the treatment of cardiac and circulatory conditions and rheumatism.
Lappeenranta lies at the N end of the Saimaa Canal. Construction of the canal was planned by several Swedish kings but actually undertaken only during tfje reign of Tsar Alexander II; it was completed in 1856. Until 1944 it ran through Finnish
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