Treriksrøysa, Exploring Norway

Treriksrøysa, Nord-Troms – Exploring Norway

The northernmost tripoint in the world is in Norwegian known as Treriksrøysa. It is the border tripoint between Norway, Sweden, and Finland and it lies within the Arctic Circle. The site is also known by its Swedish name Treriksröset and its Finnish name Kolmen Valtakunnan Rajapyykki. In English, this is the Three-Country Cairn. The tripoint is marked by a yellow concrete block in Lake Golddajávri. Due to the Schengen Agreement, it is possible to walk around the block, visiting the three countries within a few seconds.

A Short History of Treriksrøysa

The tradition of using cairns, piles of stones, to mark the border between Norway and Sweden dates back to the 1750s. The whole border was completed in 1766. The establishment of a border tripoint happened in 1809 when Sweden lost its eastern part to Russia.

It was believed for almost a century that the border tripoint was located at Kuokimmuodka. It wasn’t corrected until 1901 when it was noticed that the border should be 150 meters to the east, in Lake Golddajávri. A new cairn was created at the tripoint at the time. The cairn was later in 1926 replaced by the current concrete structure. Kuokimmuodka is today a part of Finland.

Finland gained its independence from Russia in 1917 and Treriksrøysa has since been the meeting point of Norway, Sweden, and Finland.

Things to Do and See

There are several hiking trails around Treriksrøysa, leading to remote areas in both Norway and Sweden. The most common hikes are probably between Treriksrøysa and the village of Kilpisjärvi in Finland, the most accessible village nearby.

It is however the Three-Country Cairn itself that is the main attraction here. The steel platform makes it possible to walk out to the tripoint and walk around it. Within just a few seconds it is possible to visit three countries. The platform also offers a great view across Lake Golddajávri with the mountains of Norway in the distance.

How to Get to Treriksrøysa

Getting to Treriksrøysa is not as hard as you might think. Yes, it is in a remote part of the Nordics. It is, however not far from the Finnish village of Kilpisjärvi. From Kilpisjärvi you have two options. There is an 11-kilometer-long hike across the Malla Nature Reserve. The second option is a boat trip across the lake to the harbor of Koltaluokta on the Swedish side. From Koltaluokta it is only a three-kilometer hike to Treriksrøysa. During the winter there is also the possibility to reach the border tripoint on skies or snow scooter.

  • Flights: There are several airports in the area, but none is near. In Norway, there is Tromsø Airport (TOS), in Finland Enontekiö Airport (ENF), and Kiruna Airport (KRN) in Sweden.
  • Car: The closest accessible road is in Kilpisjärvi on the Finnish side of the border. It is the E8 that goes through the village on its way from Tromsø in the north and then south through Finland.

The driving distance to nearby Kilpisjärvi from 5 major Norwegian cities, according to Google Maps:

  • Oslo – 1577 kilometers (19 h 10 min)
  • Bergen – 1938 kilometers (25 h)
  • Trondheim – 1247 kilometers (15 h 40 min)
  • Narvik – 250 kilometers (3 h 30 min)
  • Kirkenes – 625 kilometers (8 h)

Looking to Explore more of Norway and Europe?

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