The unique Kvarken Archipelago
Kvarken Archipelago is Finland’s only Natural World Heritage Site on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Together with Sweden’s High Coast, the Kvarken Archipelago is the best place in the world to experience and understand the land uplift phenomenon caused by the last Ice Age. The land area in the archipelago increases at a rate of one square kilometre per year, which corresponds to more than 150 football fields.
Over time, the rural landscape rising from the sea has created vast lowlands, the green and golden fields that provide a peaceful horizon. In the evening, the rays of the setting sun sometimes give the landscape a glimmer only seen in storybooks, and the dusk brings a mist that gently envelops the scene. The massive boulders found in the forests tell a tale of the age when they were hurled around by giants. Or was it perhaps the ice age?
Top 5 for a nature experience in Ostrobothnia
Fäboda – The sunworshipper’s paradise
Fäboda is where stunningly beautiful nature meets gorgeous sandy and rocky beaches. No wonder this place has been the oasis of the residents of Pietarsaari-Jakobstad for decades. People come here to enjoy all kinds of outdoor activities.
But Fäboda is much more than just sandy beaches. The area’s unique nature attracts visitors all year round. Visitors can admire the smooth cliffs, breath the refreshing sea air and watch the sunset from the shore. The beautiful rocks on the beach are also a popular location both for nature photographers and for various other photo shoots.
In Fäboda there are many types of hiking trails of varying length and purpose. You can ramble along short and well-marked trail or take an up to 33 km long hike. The peaceful forests are also perfect for cross-country skiing, mountain biking and berry-picking. There are huts, an observation tower, picnic and barbecue areas along the trails. For the children there is also a nature trail in the area. Along the trail there are nature tasks, animal sculptures, and a balance course.
The iconic scenery in Svedjehamn
The rows of red boat houses and De Geer moraine formations form the iconic scenery in Svedjehamn fishing harbour. From the 20 metres high observation tower Saltkaret, you can view the both harbours and the magnificent land uplift scenery of the Kvarken World Heritage Archipelago.
Cannon Bay - Scenery carved by ice
Cannon Bay is located just five kilometres south of the city centre. The scenery is simply breathtaking, and the historic area shows signs of the most recent Ice Age everywhere. On a calm day, the rocks are warm and inviting, and on a windy day you can’t help but marvel as the sea waves display the raw power of nature. The area is teeming with seaside wildlife, and it is not uncommon to see white-tailed eagles fishing for their daily meal.
In Cannon Bay, in addition to the beautiful rocks, you’ll find charming green spaces and delightful trails. The place is well-loved, and many people come here to take a dip in the sea. Do you have a picnic basket? This is the place to enjoy a nice meal outdoors. There are two campfire sites, and the firewood is provided by the city.
Lauhanvuori – Hämeenkangas UNESCO Global Geopark
Experience the serenity and mystique of the wild mires and discover the traces of the past geological drama. The geology of Lauhanvuori – Hämeenkangas UNESCO Global Geopark has international value. All Geoparks have their own geological theme, which in Lauhanvuori – Hämeenkangas UNESCO Global Geopark is the development from an ancient mountain range to the landscape of vast open mires we see today.
The lighthouse island of Tankar
The island of Tankar is situated in the outer archipelago in the south of the Bay of Bothnia, approximately 15 km north-west of Kokkola harbour. In the 13th century, the island raised out of the sea as a result of geological uplift. For centuries the desolate island acted as a base for seal hunters and fishermen. It later became an important landmark for seafarers.
Today Tankar is a versatile place to visit, offering the traveler unforgettable nature experiences and excerpts from old archipelago life. During the summer there is regular scheduled traffic to the island from Kokkola Meripuisto.
There is no road connection to the island, but there is a variety of choices for boat connections available.