Ailigas Fell

Ailigas Fell rises 342 m above Utsjoki parish village. It is fairly easy to reach the summit of Ailigas from where fabulous views open up of the Tenojoki and Utsjoki river valleys, Kaldoaivi and Paistunturi wilderness areas, as well as of Utsjoki parish village.

There are altogether three fells called Ailigas, i.e. ‘holy fell', in the Utsjoki area. The two others are Nuvvus-Ailiga Fell and Ailigas at Karigasniemi.

Utsjokis church huts. Photo: Jaakko Vähämäki,

Utsjoki's Church Huts

Church life began on the shore of Lake Mantojärvi during the early part of the 18th Century. The first church building was completed in 1701. The present stone church was architect Carl Ludvig Engel's (1778 - 1840) last and most northern project and it was built between 1850 and 1853. The vicarage on the shore of Lake Mantojärvi is from 1843.

The church huts were the lodgings for Sami families during church events and market days due to the long journey they had back to their own homesteads. The oldest surviving hut is from the 18th Century. The huts, restored by the National Board of Antiquities, are small and dimly lit. The stone fireplace standing in the corner was the only source of warmth and it was also where the cooking took place.

The natural meadow surrounding the church huts is gorgeous in summer: the bright blue alpine gentian (Gentiana nivalis) only opens up its petals on sunny days.

Skalluvaara Reindeer Roundup Area

You can familiarise yourself with the basics of reindeer husbandry at the Skalluvaara reindeer roundup area. Skalluvaara is located 16 km south of Utsjoki parish village. It is the most important roundup area of the Kaldoaivi Herding Cooperative. The area has huts for the reindeer herders to stay in during the roundups. The purpose of the various parts of the roundup corrals is best discovered by being on the spot during a roundup.

Geological Nature Trail

Utsjoki's geological nature trail winds around Dorgganjunni Fell's slopes, to the west of the parish village. The circular route, which passes by the Kalgujokilampi lean-to-shelter, is just over three kilometres long. The trail's information board explains the effect of the area's geology and the Ice Age on its surface forms. Fabulous views open up from along the path, especially at the boulder on the hill close to the school.