Information about Nivala

Nivala is located on the borderline of Central and Northern Ostrobothnia, on the central course of the Kalajoki river.It is a rural town with approximately 11,000 people.The town centre is surrounded by wide, carefully managed fields.The Malisjoki river streams through the centre and the Pidisjärvi lake on the southern border offers recreational opportunities.Nivala is former sea bottom after the Ice Age.These days the post-glacial land uplift in the Nivala area is approximately 80 cm in one hundred years and is increasing to north-west.At the coast of the Bay of Bothnia, about 70 km from Nivala, this phenomenom can be recognized as a shallow beach water far to the open sea.

The first inhabitant in Nivala was Niva-Kaija who settled down in the beginning of the 16th century with her two sons by the Malisjoki river.In later stage the whole parish has got its name after her.Before Nivala’s name was established, it was Pidisjärvi; after the lake.Nivala was established in 1867 and achieved town status in 1992.

Nivala is situated on the crossroads of 27 Ylivieska-Iisalmi and 28 Kokkola-Kajaani.Bus and railway connections exist to and from Nivala, and the cycling roads reach out from the town centre.The nearest airports are in Kokkola, Oulu and Kajaani.The total area of Nivala is 549,4 km².

Distances and travelling times from Nivala:

  • Oulu 160 km 2 hours
  • Kokkola 98 km 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Kajaani 150 km 1 hour 50 minutes
  • Ylivieska 28 km 25 minutes
  • Haapajärvi 27 km 25 minutes
  • Sievi 26 km 25 minutes
  • Haapavesi 3 7 km 35 minutes
  • Kärsämäki 42 km 38 minutes
  • Kalajoki 67 km 50 minutes
  • Iisalmi 130 km 1 hour 30 minutes

About 20 percent of the people living in Nivala gain their daily bread in primary production, mainly through agriculture, slightly over 30 percent work in industry, and over half in the service fields.Main fields of industry in Nivala are high technology, wood and metal.The town has significantly invested in the fast-growing Industrial Park, the Nivala Technology Centre; Nitek.In the industrial area there are about 1000 workplaces.

Cultural events give the town extra dimension.Nivala offers its inhabitants, as well as to town visitors, public services in its library, indoor ice rink, and swimming centre.A market is held every Thursday on the market square, gathering those who enjoy markets, as well as those seeking cultural experiences.Many public events are located in the market square and the library.During the “Nivala-Week”, which takes place every year in July, the market square is booked with events.

There are 12 comprehensive schools in Nivala.Ten lower-stage comprehensive schools are located in the surrounding areas of Nivala, and two in the town centre, of which Kyösti Kallion koulu (classes 1-6) is a lower-stage comprehensive school and Niva-Kaijan koulu (classes 7-9) is an upper-stage comprehensive school.There is also a high school / upper secondary school in the centre: Nivalan lukio (classes 1-3).For vocational education Nivala offers the vocational college, and the further educational centre for adults containing about 900 students together.Also working in Nivala is the regional musical institute and the citizen institute.Higher education offered in Nivala is through the regional unit of the Oulun Eteläisen Instituutti (Oulu University, Oulu Southern Institute) which is situated in Nivala at Nitek.

Enjoy yourself in Nivala!

Important phone numbers and addresses for visitors:

nivalalaista maisemaa