Eastern Finland, North Karelia Region
The farm is managed by Metsähallitus and Kolin Keidas Ay.
The Mattila farm, located in Koli National Park, has been an integral part of the region's settlement and cultural history since the 18th century. Today, the grounds of the Mattila farm, including the cultural environment, are managed using traditional methods.
From Kivelä into Mattila – from a Farm into an Inn for Tourists
The Mattila farm was previously known as the Kivelä farm, which is one of the oldest farms in Koli. According to written sources, it was established as early as the mid-18th century. Kivelä was a "crown tenant farm" owned by the state until 1864, when Sakari Saarelainen, then its holder, bought it, and the farm became a family estate. People started to call it Mattila, apparently after its next owner Matti Turunen. However, according to official papers, the name of the farm was Kivelä until 1935.
By the beginning of the 20th century, the landscapes of Koli had become part of the Finnish identity, thanks to the works of the numerous artists who had visited there. In order to protect this cultural landscape, Metsähallitus purchased land in Koli, and in 1907, the Kivelä farm was also bought by the state. According to an inventory carried out the following year, the buildings on the farm were in a fairly poor condition. In 1920 at the latest, the farm was leased out to Antti Ryynänen, a teacher who built the present house. Mattila differs from other farm houses in Koli, as it was built for accommodating tourists rather than for practising agriculture.
The Mattila farm saw its golden age in the 1920s and 30s, when it attracted a large number of tourists. Some visitors were very famous, including the Finnish artist Eero Järnefelt, writer Juhani Aho, composer Jean Sibelius and musician and singer Eugen Malmstén. The decor for the house was stylish, and accommodated even the most demanding tastes. Mattila's two tiled stoves were so grand that nothing similar could be found in any other house in Koli. The farm also had vegetable patches, and Antti Ryynänen taught his pupils to grow vegetables. According to folk memory, Mattila was something of a cradle of high culture in Koli, and various events and get-togethers of villagers were organised there.
In the 1930s, Mattila became private property again, when the state transferred it to Antti Ryynänen's son. Unlike his father, he led a fairly simply life, mainly practising animal husbandry. The buildings began to deteriorate, and Mattila was no longer visited by tourists. In the 1990s, the state regained the possession of the Mattila farm from the Ryynänen heirs, and the farm was included into the newly established Koli National Park. The buildings on the farm were renovated in 2008–2010, after which the farm has again offered services for visitors. Today, the Mattila farm also provides a setting for Kolin Keidas, a company specialised in acommodation and sustainability (www.kolinkeidas.com).
The Mattila Farmyard
The Mattila grounds accommodate a main building, a granary, a sauna, a well and a dry toilet. In addition, the remains of an old cowshed can be found in the western part of the yard. North of the house, there is a chicken coop and a pasture for sheep. The Mattila farm has 3.2 hectares of old fields and meadows. The landscape of the fenced pasture is managed by a dozen of Finnsheep in summer. In other areas, the grass is cut with a scythe. The cut grass is gathered on curing poles to create a traditional atmosphere. From spring to autumn, four Finnish Hornio chickens walk around in the Mattila farmyard. Elontila is responsible for the daily care of the animals. The farmyard is graced by Elontila's impressive herb beds and other garden beds. The most recent slash-and-burn fields, as well as those to be slashed and burned in the coming years are all located around the Mattila and Ollila farms.
You can familiarise yourself with the Mattila farmyard and enjoy its charming, tranquil atmosphere year-round. In summer, there is a café in the main building (www.kolinkeidas.com). During the winter season, it is open by reservation only. Visiting the café also provides you with an opportunity to see the house from the inside.
Visiting address: Ylä-Kolintie 12 B, FI-83960 Koli, Finland
Enquiries: Kolin Keidas (www.kolinkeidas.com), Tel: +358 40 8650466, kolinkeidas (at) gmail.com
Directions and Maps
The Mattila farm can be reached conveniently from the village of Koli by foot along a marked trail. The distance is approximately one kilometre. If you are coming by car, drive the Ylä-Kolintie road from the village of Koli for a kilometre and then turn left at the sign to Mattila. Soon after the turn-off, there is a parking area for the Ollila, Mattila and Turula farms, from which it is a 700-metre walk to Mattila.
The Mattila farm is located in the northern part of Koli National Park along the marked hiking trails. For example, the Kasken Kierros Nature Trail featuring the slash-and-burn landscape runs through the farmyard. The Mattila farm is also directly connected to the other trails of the park.
The closest campfire sites are in Vaaralanaho and Turula, both at a distance of approximately 500 metres from Mattila.
Cafés and Restaurants
Café Mandala operates in the main building of the Mattila farm (www.kolinkeidas.com). The café is open in summer. In the winter season, it is open by reservation only. Meals are also available by advance booking.
Accommodation (www.kolinkeidas.com) is available in the granary or the main building of the Mattila farm.
Nature and Outdoor Activities, Training Events and Courses
The Mattila farm provides a magnificent setting for parties, meetings and training events. The events can be supplemented by nature and outdoor activities and experiences offered by Kolin Keidas. Kolin keidas also organises guided nature excursions and other programmes on order for school children and other groups.
Services for the Disabled
There are no services for the disabled in the area.
This is the webpage www.nationalparks.fi/mattilafarm