Wilderness estate of Tarkkala

Tarkkala’s estate in Savukoski is a unique living environment having survived the destruction of the Lapland War. It’s a culturally valuable example of the Finnish wilderness lifestyle.



A piece of local history

The story Tarkkala’s wilderness estate is intertwined with the Lappish savotta tradition. Tarkkala is one of the few buildings from the early 20th century that survived the destruction of the Lapland War. The first master of the Tarkkala was Aleksanteri Starck who arrived to the region with his wife and three children in the late 19th century. He served, among other things, as crier, mail courier and juror. Later on the estate moved to family Riikonen, when in 1921, tailor Juho Heikki Riikonen arrived with his wife Johanna, née Sieriniemi and 10 children. The estate was used year-round all the way up to the 1980’s. 

Even though Tarkkala’s estate was located in the middle of wilderness, it wasn’t originally considered remote. There wasn’t many roads in the northeast to begin with but it was here that the Sompio’s important savotta and reindeer roads were. In the close proximity of Tarkkala there were large savottas, and many reindeer herders, savotta men, hunters, mail couriers, peddlers and travellers of Ruija and Kantalahti found accommodation in the estate.

The estate was restored in a massive restoration project by the municipality of Savukoski, the Finnish Heritage Agency, labour administration and Lapland’s TE-center in 2004-2006.

Following the traditional Ostrobothnian style the yard is open, and in the middle of the yard there is the main building and barn directly across from each other. At the edge of the yard there is a firesite, and the Kuisjoki river flows next to it. There is a sauna by the river, moved there from the burnt Kotaselkä campsite.  

You can explore the Tarkkala yard on your own, but if you want to enter the main building, please contact Korvatunturin Retket/ Mikko Taipalus 044 3036062 or Anu Uusinarkaus 0400 635551. 

Savukoski village is about 25 kilometers away from Tarkkala, and the closest neighbour has been four kilometers away.


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