from a bark bread parish to a lively city

Saarijärvi is among the oldest settlements in Finland – a settlement over 10,000 years old has been discovered in Selänpäänjoki of Pylkönmäki. Slightly more recent settlements have been found in Eerola of Kalmari and at the northern end of lake Summasjärvi. A unique hunting pit trap system has been discovered in the region, which indicates a highly organised community.


This community spirit has lasted throughout the millennia, as the folk of Saarijärvi are a close-knit and warm community even today.


Our national poet Johan Ludvig Runeberg lived in Saarijärvi during the years 1823-1825. Here the young poet encountered a new and fascinating environment, which experience was later distilled into fine poetry. Farmer Paavo was Runeberg’s first significant poem about a Finnish-speaking man of the people. It was published in Runeberg’s first collection in 1830.


Farmer Paavo even has his own monument in Saarijärvi; the bronze Paavo statue by Heikki Varja was christened in 1961 in the church park.


Some of the nature that was around in Runeberg’s time has remained in an almost untouched state in the present-day Julmat Lammit nature conservation area. Runeberg was an avid hunter who would roam these majestic pond landscapes in search of game, which hunting trips have been described in his Saarijärvi article. The area can be explored by hiking along the Runeberg trail.


Present-day Saarijärvi is a beautiful, appealing, and healthy environment in which to grow – it is a city full of entrepreneurs, expertise, and culture in northern Central Finland.


One of our best parts is the wonderful down town area, which has been constructed on an islet in the middle of three lakes: the Saarijärvi, Lumperoinen, and Herajärvi lakes. Here, you can live by a lake and in the middle of a city at the same time!


In addition to wonderful landscapes, Saarijärvi offers its inhabitants, summer guests, and other visitors a wealth of culture services and recreational opportunities.


Our most interest culture destinations include the Stone-Age Village, showcasing the oldest settlement in Finland, the Gentry Home Museum which housed Runeberg during his visit, the Tapper family residence Juhola, and the Saarijärvi museum.

Saarijärven kaupunki / Matkailupalvelut
Sivulantie 11, PL 13,  43101 Saarijärvi