A visit to the centre allows you to explore the entire Sooglemäe farm complex. You can discover the buildings, outdoor areas and exhibits at your own pace or together with a guide. The tour begins in the manor house, or the main building of the Mulgi Experience Centre, then progresses through the courtyard, leading into the exhibition building housed in the historic stables, and then continues across the grounds. The landscape is seamlessly woven together by shared-use paths, adorned with private activity areas and children’s playgrounds.
The Mulgi people are such a part of our nation’s fabric who, through their ingenuity, entrepreneurial spirit and the belief that challenges are but opportunities in disguise, bought themselves free and carved a path to success, all while staying true to their core values. They believed that genuine wealth should be channelled into education and real estate, rather than adornments. Moreover, they held the view that when dissatisfied with something, one should take matters into their own hands – and if need be, even take the reins of the country.
Sooglemäe Farm Complex
Nestled within an expansive farm spanning more than 7 hectares, the Mulgi Experience Centre features a variety of different buildings and facilities. The entrance building, also known as the manor house, accommodates the ticket office, service hall and information point, gift shop, office, meeting room and introductory exhibition rooms. The former stable, now transformed into an exhibition building, hosts a permanent modern exhibition on the Mulgi people and their rich heritage. The farm also includes playgrounds, outdoor classrooms, a spacious terrace with a stage, walking trails, picnic and recreation areas, as well as a dedicated area for outdoor events.
Mulgi Manor House
The manor house was erected in the late 19th or early 20th century. The following architectural elements from that era were preserved and hold significant value: log walls sealed with compressed moss, rafters with one collar beam crafted from round timber, exterior siding with corner pillars, windows equipped with hinges and crémone bolts, wide plank flooring.
The stunning verandas and vestibules of the building have been restored.
The manor house serves as both the entrance gate and main building of the Mulgi Experience Centre. You can enter on foot and with a stroller through the veranda. The building houses a service hall and tourist information point, gift shop, toilets, a staff room, and exhibition rooms introducing the historical manor and the present-day centre. The second floor of the building accommodates a meeting room, library and an office.
The Mulgi manor house serves as a gateway to Mulgimaa and Mulgi experiences through the exhibitions, room designs, interior elements, the communication style and the information shared.
The Mulgi Experience Centre presents the Mulgi heritage in an exceptionally modern and captivating manner. One of the foundational ideas behind the Experience Centre is that it is never finished: the content is interactive and features exhibitions that are continuously developed and renewed. Alongside interactivity, traditional solutions and original milieu elements have been preserved and showcased.
After purchasing your ticket, a path will guide you through the two exhibition rooms of the manor house. Here you can discover answers to questions such as: Who is a Mulk? What was a Mulgi farm like? How important was the farm to a Mulk? Upon leaving the manor house, you will step into the farm’s courtyard and from there you can proceed to explore the grounds.
The permanent exhibition in the exhibition building spans two floors. On the ground floor, in the glass gallery constructed around the stable building, you can find a timeline of Mulgimaa, highlighting the most important events from the history of the first Mulks (first Estonians) to present-day events and future predictions. In the exhibition hall on the ground floor, ‘Are you born a Mulk or do you become one?’ introduces the Mulgi language, cuisine and folk costume. On the second floor of the exhibition hall, ‘Do the Mulks rule the land and the world?’ let’s you discover the Mulks’ secrets to success and prosperity. Here you can learn about stereotypes, get to know whose word matters and meet notable Mulks.
After exploring the indoor exhibitions, you can stroll through the grounds, learn more about the historical buildings of the complex (granaries and threshing barn) and gain insights into Mulgi beliefs.
The outdoor area (approximately 7 hectares) consists of a park area interwoven with the farmyard and a meadow that stretches between the buildings and the forest. Along the trail, you can find inclusive outdoor attractions that offer possibilities for a wide range of activities.
The northernmost area adjacent to the highway and in front of the manor house features the park graced with ancient trees where you can enjoy the timeless enchantment of nature while strolling along the paths. A raised path winding through the trees leads to so-called nests that serve a variety of purposes, including seating areas, play spaces, outdoor learning areas etc.
On the eastern side, extending past the granary of flavours, there is a seating and grilling area, along with a seasonal threshing barn for hosting events. Additionally, an ancient orchard and a sacrificial stone are located nearby.
At the end of the exhibition building on its western side, there is an outdoor stage with seating on the stairs. During the summer months, a spacious outdoor tent is also set up on the terrace, providing the flexibility to host events even in bad weather. A demonstration kitchen garden has been established next to the building, featuring crops inspired by Mulgi cuisine.
Positioned in the centre is a public event area – a meadow – that serves as a recreation and picnic spot, offering ample space to host engaging public events. The area also features two children’s playgrounds. In the southern part, a hammock lounge and an observation tower will be built in the future.
Nestled in Southern Estonia, Mulgimaa allures visitors with its unparalleled natural beauty and cultural heritage.
The historical and cultural region of Mulgimaa emerged from the southern area of the ancient Sakala county and spans across the modern boundaries of Viljandi, Valga and Pärnu counties. This region coincides with the region where the inhabitants historically, and in some cases still, communicate using the Mulgi dialect.
In the past, Mulgimaa included five parishes: Halliste, Helme, Karksi, Tarvastu and Paistu.
In accordance with the regional distinctions of Mulgimaa, the Mulks also playfully divide themselves as follows: Ubamulks reside in Halliste, Undrukumulks in Helme, Korbimulks in Karksi, Kapsamulks in Paistu and Kamamulks in Tarvastu.
There are three municipalities in today’s Mulgimaa: Mulgi rural municipality, Tõrva rural municipality and Viljandi rural municipality (Mulgimaa forms the southern part of the latter).
The largest town in Mulgimaa is Tõrva which is situated in Helme parish in Valga county and serves as the seat of Tõrva rural municipality.
The nature of Mulgimaa is marked by diversity, boasting rolling hills, glacial valleys, winding rivers, lakes of varying sizes, picturesque bog landscapes and an abundance of forest areas.
Visitor programmes for groups
The Experience Centre also offers educational, cultural and entertainment programmes and workshops for different target groups, including kindergarten and school groups, families and groups of friends. Come and experience our programmes such as ‘The Tasty Secrets of Mulks’ or ‘A Day as a Mulk’ and many more.
The optimal group size is between 10 and 25 people.
All programmes are designed with varying levels of difficulty to be suitable for both kindergarteners and primary school students, basic and upper secondary school students, as well as adults.
For more information, a quote and to order a visitor programme, please fill out the request form or send your request to email@example.com.