69°54'33.9"N 27°01'42.9"E


Village embraced by fells

About Utsjoki

Utsjoki is the northernmost municipality in Finland and Finland’s only municipality with a majority of Sámi population. There are only about 1.000 inhabitants in Utsjoki, but more than 10.000 reindeer. Utsjoki offers an opportunity to experience modern, everyday Sámi culture: a culture you can live, see, hear, taste and feel. Utsjoki is a place where the traditional Sámi dress “Gákti” is still worn at many festivals and events. In the municipality of Utsjoki, there are three lively villages – Utsjoki, Karigasniemi and Nuorgam. All destinations can be enjoyed year-round. As the northernmost region in Finland, here both the polar night and the midnight sun are the longest. The Northern Lights can be seen dancing on the sky from September to early April.

Travelers tips

  • The only Sámi majority municipality in Finland
  • Vast selection of hotels and other accommodation where you can stay in aurora igloos, rooms, apartments and cottages
  • Must see sights: Parish huts, Ailigas fell, Sámi bridge, River Teno, Kevo strict Nature Reserve and Paistunturi and Kaldoaivi Wilderness areas
  • During summer in you can e.g. hike, bike, paddle, SUP-board and fish
  • During autumn you can e.g. hike, paddle, pick berries and mushrooms, fish and hunt
  • Winters activities are e.g. reindeer safaris, husky safaris, snowmobile safaris, snowshoeing, trips to the Arctic Ocean, skiing and much more
Reindeer herding is a traditional livelihood of the Sámi

Bordering Norway

Utsjoki is the northernmost municipality in Finland, located alongside the Norwegian border. Multiculturalism is very much present, as in addition to Finnish, you are sure to come across North Sámi and Norwegian languages. (Or more precisely, you are sure to hear Finnish and Norwegian languages in addition to the original Northern Sámi language spoken in the area.) Settlements in are mainly located along the banks of the River Teno – the river that marks the border between Finland and Norway. The closeness to Norway can be seen both in cross-border trade and in the landscape. The route to the Arctic Ocean, Nordkapp and the Varanger fjord runs through Utsjoki.

The best way to reach Utsjoki is by car or bus. The closest airports are in Ivalo and in Norway, Kirkenes. Many accommodation companies have a pickup service from and to the airport, and rental cars are available at the airport. There are bus connections from Rovaniemi and Ivalo to Utsjoki.

Local sights

Teno river valley, from fell Nuvvus-Áilegas

River Teno

The River Teno is one of the largest and best salmon rivers in Europe. The first fly-fishing enthusiasts discovered the river in the 19th century, which can be considered as the beginning of recreational fishing tourism. Teno River (“Deatnu” in Northern Sámi) is also the border of Finland and Norway and therefore forms also the northern border of the whole European Union. Teno has played an important role in the development of the municipality of Utsjoki, and has been a major thoroughfare throughout the history of the area, used both in winter and summer. For the indigenous Sámi population, Teno has historically acted more as a link between the two countries than as a divider.

The beautiful river valley of Teno with its secret sandy beaches is overlooked by rugged fells, creating unforgettable arctic scenery.

The most beautiful road in Finland

Road 970 takes you from Karigasniemi, following the 100 km journey alongside the River Teno, continuing all the way to Nuorgam. “Route Teno” has been given the title of the most beautiful route in Finland. The road travels alongside the river, through breath-taking river valley with rolling fells rising on Finnish and Norwegian side of the river – you cannot find anything like it elsewhere in Finland.

OFB in Paistunturi Wilderness Area

Wilderness Areas

Utsjoki is a location with largest areas of untouched nature in Finland, and is a must-visit destination for any traveler yearning for breath-taking sceneries of untouched nature. With 3000 km2 of deep river valleys to gentle fell slopes, Kaldoaivi is the largest wilderness area in Finland. Paistunturi is a 1500 km2 large wilderness area. Stunning sceneries after another are exposed, as the gentle rolling fells are crossed by deep carved river valleys. From the highest fell tops, you get a great view over the entire wilderness area, as far as to the fells in Norway. Wilderness areas have several trails, of which some are marked and others used mainly by locals when engaging in traditional livelihoods: reindeer herding, hunting, gathering, fishing.

Kevo Strict Nature Reserve in Paistunturi area, with its magnificent 40 km long canyon-like valley, is among the most rugged hiking attractions in Finland. In Kevo Nature Reserve it is allowed to walk only on marked trails and on spesific times of the year.

view from Nuvvus AIligas

Ailigas fells

The municipality has three fells named Ailigas, all of which are located near the River Teno. The highest of the three is located in Karigasniemi, near the area where the river Inarijoki turns into River Teno. This particular Ailigas stands an impressive 620 metres high. The second highest fell rises straight up from the shore of the Teno River by the Nuvvus village. Indeed, this 535-metre high fell goes by the name of Nuvvus-Ailigas. The smallest of the three fells stands at 342 metres in height, protecting the village centre of Utsjoki. The view from top of all Ailigas fells is stunning, as the vast wilderness continues as far as the eye can reach and all the way to Norwegian fells.

Church huts, Utsjoki

Parish huts and Utsjoki Church

The Utsjoki parish village consists of 14 huts dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries. Sámi families owned the huts, and they were inhabited up to the 1930s during market days and church ceremonies. The buildings are located on a beautiful spot on the shores of Lake Mantojärvi, 6km from the Utsjoki village along the highway 4. These church huts and the Utsjoki stone church are the most important cultural-historical sites in the Utsjoki region. The Utsjoki church was built upon the commission of Nicholas I of Russia in 1853.

How to get here?

Inari-Saariselkä is far away in the North, yet just a few hours from Southern Finland. You can get to Lapland with multiple ways, and often the trip is an experience in itself.

{{ howToGetHere.title }}

How to get around?

When travelling through the arctic hills, you must remember that distances are quite often long. Be sure to enjoy the views while making your way from a destination to another.



  • By car {{carTime.h}}{{carTime.min}}
  • By bicycle {{cyclingTime.h}}{{cyclingTime.min}}