UNESCO World Heritage Sites
Finland holds seven Unesco World Heritage sites:
Bronze Age Burial Site of Sammallahdenmäki (1999)
This Bronze Age burial site features more than 30 granite burial cairns, providing a unique insight into the funerary practices and social and religious structures of northern Europe more than three millennia ago. (© UNESCO World Heritage Centre)
Fortress of Suomenlinna (1991)
Built in the second half of the 18th century by Sweden on a group of islands located at the entrance of Helsinki’s harbour, this fortress is an especially interesting example of European military architecture of the time. (© UNESCO World Heritage Centre)
The Kvarken Archipelago
The Kvarken Archipelago (Finland)and the High Coast (Sweden) are situated in the Gulf of Bothnia, a northern extension of the Baltic Sea. The 5,600 islands of the Kvarken Archipelago feature unusual ridged washboard moraines, ‘De Geer moraines’, formed by the melting of the continental ice sheet, 10,000 to 24,000 years ago.
Old Rauma (1991)
Situated on the Gulf of Botnia, Rauma is one of the oldest harbours in Finland. Built around a Franciscan monastery, where the mid-15th-century Holy Cross Church still stands, it is an outstanding example of an old Nordic city constructed in wood. Although ravaged by fire in the late 17th century, it has preserved its ancient vernacular architectural heritage. (© UNESCO World Heritage Centre)
Petäjävesi Old Church (1994)
Petäjävesi Old Church in central Finland, was built of logs between 1763 and 1765. This Lutheran country church is a typical example of an architectural tradition that is unique to eastern Scandinavia. It combines the Renaissance conception of a centrally planned church with older forms deriving from Gothic groin vaults. (© UNESCO World Heritage Centre)
Verla Groundwood and Board Mill
Verla Groundwood and Board Mill (1996) and its associated residential area is an outstanding, remarkably well-preserved example of the small-scale rural industrial settlements associated with pulp, paper and board production that flourished in northern Europe and North America in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Only a handful of such settlements survive to the present day. (© UNESCO World Heritage Centre)
Struve Geodetic Arc
Struve Geodetic Arc (2005) is a chain of survey triangulations stretching from Hammerfest in Norway to the Black Sea, through 10 countries and over 2,820 km. These are points of a survey, carried out between 1816 and 1855 by the astronomer Friedrich Georg Wilhelm Struve, which represented the first accurate measuring of a long segment of a meridian.
Contrast is the main ingredient in Finnish cultural life, probably because everything looks and sounds different from our northern perspective.