Vanhankaupunginlahti, Laajalahti

An aerial view over Vanhankaupunginlahti Bay and the Helsinki City.

Vanhankaupunginlahti, Laajalahti

  • Country: 
  • Site number: 
  • Area: 
    508 ha
  • Designation date: 
  • Coordinates: 
    60°12'N 24°56'E
Materials presented on this website, particularly maps and territorial information, are as-is and as-available based on available data and do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the Ramsar Convention concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area, or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.


This Site consists of two separate bay areas in the metropolitan areas of Helsinki and Espoo, forming a wetland complex comprising shallow estuarine waters with marshlands and small ponds. Vegetation includes coastal meadows, submerged vegetation and a few forested swamps. The Site represents an important staging area during migration periods for ducks and waders. Bird species such as bar-tailed godwit (Limosa lapponica), great snipe (Gallinago media), horned grebe (Podiceps auratus) rest at the Site during the migration seasons. Both areas are of great importance for outdoor recreation and birdwatching, being within easy reach of population centres with around a million inhabitants, and a nature information centre, several birdwatching towers, nature trails and a hide have been constructed. The main adverse factors are building along the Site’s margins, and wastewater discharge. Expansion of a ring road beside Laajalahti has increased noise pollution and reduced the area of meadows and forests. The last management plan was implemented in 2016.

Administrative region: 

  • National legal designation: 
    • Waterfowl Habitat Conservation Programme
    • protected area
  • Regional (international) legal designations: 
    • EU Natura 2000
  • Last publication date: