Coastal People-Coastal Life: Using Local Empowerment for Transmission Into Smart Development

Where we are

Located on Kvarken Archipelago in Eastern Finland, the Swedish-speaking minority establishes a unique coastal community with its own traditions and heritage. The archipelago is the first (and only) Finnish natural heritage site on the UNESCO list. Some villages are inside the geographical area, some villages are a part of the fixed area. Besides the status of a natural site on the UNESCO list, most of the area is also defined as a NATURA 2000 area.


The Kvarken Archipelago is the only Finnish natural heritage on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. It forms a transboundary World Natural Heritage site together with the High Coast in Sweden. It’s considered the best place worldwide to witness the phenomenon of land uplift due to its rapid rate. Unique traces, or glacial depositional landforms, of the ice age, can also be observed in the Kvarken archipelago, as De Geer-moraines and Ribbed-moraines. These landforms add to the variety of the landscape in the region.

Rural Heritage

Joining the RURITAGE project would help the area to shift from conventional approaches of interaction with local communities to a more sustainable and smart level. Also, it would encourage the site to join the broader networks, learn more and exchange experiences with other actors especially in the work with the local communities and the work with sustainable tourism.

Progress within the RURITAGE project