Muhu Museum is located in Koguva village in three different places: Tooma farm, old school and textile house. The places are marked with the label “Muhu Museum”.

In addition, you can visit the Art Gallery, where there is a small souvenir shop and an exhibition hall.


Koguva village on the west coast of Muhu island is a remarkable example of Estonian peasant architecture, that has fascinated etnographers already in the beginning of the 20th century.
The village with exeptional history in its quaint landscape and well preserved farm buildings, for a long time has been known in Estonia as the birthplace of an Estonian writer Juhan Smuul. Koguva became a popular travel destination already during the writers lifetime and the first exhibition was opened after his death in 1971.
In 1973 Juhan Smuul”s Museum was opened as a branch of nowadays Saaremaa Museum.
In 1979 30,4ha of land was given to the museum, and the museum was renamed Juhan Smuul”s Memorial and Koguva Open Air Museum.
Since 1990 the museum is called Muhu Museum and is an institution of Muhu parish.



Juhan Smuul was born on the 18th February in 1922 on the island of Muhu as his father’s 19th child. He was supposed to be the heir of the farm and a farmer, but instead he became a sea writer, publicist and a active member of society. He died on the 13th of April in 1971 in Tallinn.

Juhan Smuul studied at the period from 1930 to 1936 in the Piiri elementary school, afterwards he studied for a short period of time in Järvamaa Jäneda agricultural school. He quit his studies when he got a cold and ended up with a glands infection to a clinic in Tartu. That ended his official education period.

In 1941 he was mobilized to the Soviet army. He was not sent to the front, because of his health. He was demobilized in the begginning of 1944. He became a literary co-worker in the editorial board of a soviet rear newspaper „Rahva Hääl“. There started his nearer acquaintance with modern Estonian literature and authors.

During the war, he wanted to fulfill his dream of many years to enter the seaschool, but he was not accepted. Then he worked for a short period of time as the substitute of the editor for Sirp ja Vasar and the editor of Pioneer in Tallinn. Since 1947 a freelance writer, 1951-1953 the vice-chairman of Writer’s Union, chairman from 1953 to 1971.   Was the member of the USSR 5th and 6th Supreme Council. Was a member of the ESSR 4th Supreme Council. Has recieved many high rewards of that time: Soviet Estonia award in 1949 and 1950; Stalin award in 1952; Lenin award in 1961; ESSR deserving writer in 1955;  On saanud mitmeid toonaseid kõrgeid autasusid ja tunnustusi: Nõukogude Eesti preemia 1949 ja 1950; Stalini preemia 1952; Lenini preemia 1961, ENSV teeneline kirjanik 1955, popular writer 1965.

All his free summer moments he spent on his home island, that is the most important starting point and source of inspiration of his creation. Significant were also the sea voyages he managed to participate as a newspaper correspondent or a writer: with a herring ship to the North-Atlantic in 1955, with a polar expedition ship to the Antartic in 1957-58; with a research ship to the Japanese sea in 1959; to the Spitzbergen in 1960. Juhan Smuul has been married with the translator Ita Saks, with the poet Debora Vaarandi and to the editor of radio broadcast Ellen Noot. He didn’t have descendants.

Tooma family in the 1930s: mother Ruudu (1882-1969) – second from the left,– third from the left, Juhan