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Kvarken Archipelago, Finland
Kvarken Archipelago, Finland
Author: Wouter Breedveld (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic)




High Coast of Sweden and Kvarken Archipelago in Finland is an area on the Gulf of Bothnia, which is an extension on the northern part of the Baltic Sea.

There are approximately 5,600 islands in the Kvarken Archipelago. The islands feature a landscape of unusual ridged washboard moraines which was formed by the melting of continental ice sheet between 10,000 to 24,000 years ago. The archipelago is still rising from the sea due to glacio-isostatic uplift.

The High Coast of Sweden has a landscape characterized by glaciation, glacial retreat and the emergence of new land from the sea. Since the retreat of the ice 9,600 years ago, the uplift which is 285 meters is the highest known rebound. Together, the High Coast of Sweden and the Kvarken Archipelago of Finland provide the opportunity to understand the processes that cause glaciated and land uplift.

High Coast / Kvarken Archipelago was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site during the 24th session of the World Heritage Committee which met in Cairns, Australia, on 27 November - 2 December, 2000.

World Heritage Site Inscription Details

Location: N 63 17 60 E 21 18 0
Inscription Year: 2000
Type of Site: Natural
Inscription Criteria: VIII

Location Map of High Coast / Kvarken Archipelago

Kvarken Archipelago is number 6 on the map.


View UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Finland in a larger map

Visiting High Coast / Kvarken Archipelago

Most people start their visit at the Terranova Kvarken Visitor Centre, near the town of Vaasa. The islands of the Kvarken Archipelago have to be explored by boat.


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