The Kainuu region has a population of some 72,000 people living in an area almost comparable to the size of Belgium. Kainuu is situated around Lake Oulujärvi in the middle of the Finnish mainland, along highways 5 and 22. There are both an airport and a railway station in the regional capital Kajaani. There is an international border crossing point Vartius-Lyttä in Kuhmo and there also are good railway and highway connections to the international border crossing point Niirala-Värtsilä in Northern Karelia.
With its landscape dominated by hills and forests, extensive nature reserves, abundant lakes and rivers and a wide range of opportunities for culture and sports that the region is famous for make Kainuu an attractive place of residence and a tourist destination. Kainuu is one of the snowiest regions in Finland. Four distinct seasons and the wilderness typical for Kainuu nature offer spectacular sites for watching and photographing the nature and wild animals.
The abudance of natural resources and the pure nature of the region create an excellent framework for business growth in the region. Kainuu has a high level of know-how in the fields of ICT, metal industry, bio-economy, tourism, well-being, physical exercise and top-level sport, but also in the fields of gaming, eSport and data centres and education developing for example applications of virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR).
The unique combination of tourism and sports attracts tourist, sports entusiasts and top athletes to practice and spend their vacations, as well as to live and study in Kainuu. The amount of tourists visiting Kainuu annually is about 14 times the amount of permanent residents of the region.