Saimaa is a system of lakes in Finland with many small settlements strewn throughout. It is considered the current capital of Finland, although only a core cluster of villages are treated as the capital. Up until the year 79, it was the home of the Hotakainens.
The individual settlements are built on islands in the lakes, and range from rather small to very small. They are considered "easy" to protect against attacks - the one such settlement we've been shown had a palisade wall along the isle's shore -, but nonetheless, every now and then a village gets hit by an "outbreak" and drops off the horizon of the traders. All settlements taken together, Saimaa is home to 5500 people.
Saimaa being a system of lakes, the principal means of travel is by boat, both for trade between the settlements and to and from other parts of the world. A ship route known to exist heads South and into the Baltic Sea, splitting into one towards Pori and one towards Denmark . There likely are other routes running entirely through the Finnish lakes, but apparently not to Keuruu .
It is suggested that something bad happened to the Hotakainen family while they lived in Saimaa, and only Tuuri, Lalli, and Onni joined the military and moved to Keuruu in year 79. It is, however, yet unknown whether any other family members existed, and whether the event was another outbreak.
Natural History Edit
The Saimaa lake system is what remains of the glaciers molten at the end of the Ice Age (~9660 BC) after the Vouksi River broke through the Salpausselkä moraine in the South (~3000 BC), forming an effluent into Lake Ladoga as well as the Imatra waterfalls. The remaining water forms a multitude of shallow lakes that covers an area of 4370 km², the largest being Saimaa proper (1377 km²), Pihlajavesi (713), Orivesi (601) and Haukivesi (560). As a whole, Saimaa is the fourth largest lake in Europe, possesses 14,850 km of shoreline, and 13,710 islands with a total land surface of 1850 km². Its depth is only about seven meters on average, and 85 m maximum.
Saimaa is known for its richness in fish, the most characteristic species being the Saimaa salmon, but the animal that likely is of foremost interest post-Rash is the Saimaa ringed seal (saimaannorppa), due to it being an aquatic mammal and thus possibly turning into beasts. However, as of year 0, both species are listed as endangered ones.
| The Known World|
Countries: Denmark (capital: Rønne) - Finland (Saimaa) - Iceland (Reykjavík) - Norway (Aurland) - Sweden (Mora)
(See the countries' individual pages for a more extensive list of their settlements.)
Other: Öresund Bridge - Shetland and various other small islands