Sunday, May 20, 2012

Finland’s newest national park gets a stamp 7.5.2012

The Bothnian Sea links the Bothnian Bay (called also Bay of Bothnia) with the Baltic proper. Kvarken is situated between the two. Together, the Bothnian Sea and Bay make up a larger geographical entity, the Gulf of Bothnia. The whole Gulf of Bothnia is situated between Sweden, to the West, Finland, to the East, and the Sea of Åland and Archipelago Sea to the South. The surface area of Bothnian Sea is approximately 79,000 km². The largest coastal towns, from south to north, are Rauma and Pori in Finland, and Gävle and Sundsvall in Sweden. Umeå (Sweden) and Vaasa (Finland) lie in the extreme north, near Bothnian Bay.
Bothnian Sea National Park is the 37th national park in Finland and it was established in 2011. The name of the park is Selkämeri in Finnish. It is the fifth marine national park in Finland and it stretches over a distance of 160 kilometres on the western coast of Finland. A total of 98 per cent of the national park lies under the surface: the park protects the marine nature. Lighthouse islands and the archipelago attract boaters and paddlers. Bothnian Sea Postage Stamp is the Third in the National Park Stamp Series
The most spectacular and nationally most significant landscapes have inspired postage stamp designers already for decades. The postage stamp series on national parks showcases Finland’s special natural features during different seasons. The third stamp in the series depicts the summery marine nature of Bothnian Sea National Park. The date of issue of the stamp is 7 May 2012. My friend Ella sent me this pretty First Day Cover.
The Bothnian Sea National Park first class non-value indicator stamp is sold as 10-stamp sticker sheets with information on national parks in Finnish, Swedish and English. Artist Teemu Ollikainen, who also took the picture above the sea level, designed the stamp. Marine biologist Heidi Arponen of Metsähallitus Natural Heritage Services dived to take the underwater picture. The national park postage stamp is a joint project of Itella Posti Oy and Metsähallitus. The most genuine and valuable landscape in Finland is protected as national parks. National parks are the most important safeguarders of the diversity and vitality of Finland’s nature. National parks also are the source of good spirits and health for over 2 million nature lovers every year. Many national parks offer information on nature trails, hiking routes, accommodation and natural features at their visitor centres. Finland’s marine national parks are situated in the Eastern Gulf of Finland, the Ekenäs Archipelago, the large southwestern Archipelago, the Bothnian Sea and the Bothnian Bay. The Kvarken Archipelago between the two last-mentioned is a UNESCO natural heritage site.

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