People have lived in Hossa for thousands of years, which can be seen as a multi-layered cultural heritage of the national park.
Burned bones, campfire stones and chips of the stones that have been worked into tools are traces of the oldest dwelling sites in Hossa. The oldest bones, burned 8,000 years ago, were found on the shore of Lake Kenttäjärvi. One thousand years later, someone broke a pot on the shore of Lake Lounaja. The Värikallio rock paintings were completed about 4,000 years ago. There are written sources concerning the Hossa area from the 17th century onwards. The first house in Hossa was built in the 1670s.
Hossa has provided the hunting and fishing grounds for the local inhabitants. In Hossa, people went fishing and hunting, they burned tar and collected hay from mire meadows for the cattle. The growing reindeer herds roamed in the area. When tar-burning activities ceased in the early 20th century, logging and log floating started in the area. The first tourists arrived in Hossa in the 1950s. The hiking area was established in 1979.
For thousands of years, water routes were the only actual travelling routes. According to an information source from the 1650s, the best boat route from Oulu (in Finland) to Kem (in Viena) ran via Iijärvi and Sarvijärvi to the east. The first road to Hossa was constructed in 1923. The connection from Hossa to Kuusamontie Road was completed in 1958.