Vilsandi National Park

Baltic Sea coastline

Vilsandi National Park is on and outside Saaremaa, Estonia's largest island. The park includes the island of Vilsandi, 160 other islands and islets, parts of Western Saaremaa and the Harilaid peninsula.

Understand

Vilsandi National Park was developed from the Vaika Bird Reserve, which was formed in 1910. It covers 238 km², including 163 km² of sea and 75 km² of land.

Loona Manor houses the visitor center of the National Park, fossil museum, hotel, restaurant.

Landscape

The most characteristic to the landscape are the small islands and islets of the nature park of which Vilsandi is the only one with permanent human inhabitants.

The west and north shore is dominated by dolomite rock bank shore.

Flora and fauna

Vilsandi is an international bird sanctuary with over 250 recorded bird species (112 nesting). The most famous is the common eider, several thousands pairs nest on the islets. Even in winter you can see flocks of Steller's eiders in the park.

Get in

Vilsandi National Park is free to visit. The national park is 35 kilometers west of Kuressaare and 3 km from Kihelkonna village.

By plane

There are flights to Kuressaare – from Tallinn, Stockholm, Helsinki.

By bus

Regular buses from Kuressaare. Bus stop is 300m from the Visitor Center.

By car

Drive 35 kms west from Kuressaare, facing signs for Kihelkonna. Finally sign shows left 1 km to Kihelkonna, 4,5 km to Loona Manor, Visitor center.

By bike

Loona manor is included on an Eurovelo route.

Get around

Hikes, bike rent, boat trips to Vilsandi island and in the archipelago. Info is available at the visitor center in Loona manor.

Guided trips to Vilsandi island could be at from the visitor centre. Daily nature tours, heritage tours start from there. Maps, souvenirs, advice. Season starts from May, 01. Before that just send an e-mail or give a call. Heritage and nature tours for individuals minimum of 2 persons €23 per person.

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This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Friday, August 29, 2014. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.