Cávzo Safari in Kautokeino

After an hour in the bus from Alta we arrived Máze, in Kautokeino which is Norway´s biggest municipality in areal. Actually a quarter of Denmark´s Area.

Johán Áilu and his son John welcomed us at Máze. Both in the gákti of Kautokeino, made by the wife of Johán and mother of John. They introduced the history about Máze. Talked about the history of the village, and how the government almost ruined it when they wanted to demolish the entire village as a part of the hydropower development at the 1970´s. That was the first time the Sami-people demonstrated against the Norwegian government, and won. This event marked the beginning of the process of formation of Sami parliament in Norway.

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Henriette Næss Ebbesen © 2019
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This church spire would have been 2 meters under water if the demolish were successful. Nguyễn Linh Chi © 2019

Johán brought us on a typically riverboat for the Sami people. As they say: “The world’s longest riverboats”. He drove us to the first church witch was build in Kautokeino.

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Nguyễn Linh Chi © 2019
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Henriette Næss Ebbesen © 2019
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The fence shows how big the first church in Kautokeino was. They are now rebuilding the church. Henriette Næss Ebbesen © 2019
Henriette Næss Ebbesen © 2019

Beyond Máze, and it´s history, we also got to learn about the Sami reindeer herder family. Their tradition, strong culture and also you get the chance to joik with the family.  They brought us in their lavvu(Sami tepee) where there was reindeer skin on the ground witch we could sit on, around an crackling fire with coffee on a kettle hanging over.

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Henriette Næss Ebbesen © 2019

We were served the traditional food “Bidos”, a stew the Sami normally serve at weddings and special occasions. It consists of cooked reindeer meat, carrots, potatoes, mustard, onions, and salt and pepper. Johán told us, “The more reindeers you have, more meat you use in the stew. It was, and still is, a way of showing your wealth.

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And for dessert we got spiced caked called “Máze cake” with cloudberry cream on the side.    Henriette Næss Ebbesen © 2019


This adventure really teaches you about the real life of Sami People, and how they were and still are fighting for the Sami culture. It´s something out of the ordinary.

At their homepage, www.sautso.no, you can read more about them, and all of the adventures you can participate on.