Lighthouses as a tourist product


Project background

People are still fascinated by the views from the heights, they could also be enjoyed from the lighthouses if they were open to visitors. There are currently 49 lighthouses under the administration of the Finnish Waterways Board. Due to the highly articulated coast, 90 percent of them are located on islands, which adds its own nuances and demands to the development of lighthouse tourism. That is why the lighthouses have been open to the public for only eight years. The most popular lighthouses Bengtskär, Isokari, Söderskär and Utö are included in this project.

There are 61 lighthouses in Estonia. At the moment, it is possible to visit only Kõpu, Ristna and Tahkuna lighthouses in Hiiumaa for a moderate fee. 5-10 lighthouses from Estonia have been included in the project as tourist objects of interest.

Lighthouses are unique tourist objects that are often very difficult to access. During the implementation of the project, contacts are established between the parties that manage, use and develop the lighthouses in order to facilitate access to the lighthouses in cooperation, as well as put together cross-border tourism products. Promotional materials are prepared and information boards are placed near the lighthouses. Cross-border cooperation allows you to see things at home from a new perspective and creates readiness for deeper cooperation in the field of lighthouse tourism in the future.

Goals and activities

The main goal of the project is to promote lighthouse tourism on the southern coast of Finland and in Estonia. The focus is on the most attractive lighthouses from the point of view of the tourism economy, the companies involved in their management, and other cooperation partners.

The sub-goals of the project are:

  • increasing know-how on the management and use of lighthouses and their immediate surroundings;
  • improving access possibilities, installing signs and information boards and disseminating information;
  • conducting trainings for tourism operators of both countries;
  • developing lighthouse tourism products and planning marketing measures.

In order to achieve the goals, the cooperation between the parties related to lighthouses will be strengthened both within the country and internationally, a development plan for lighthouse tourism will be drawn up, study tours will be conducted, trainings will be attended and lighthouse tourism will be promoted.

Participants and schedule

The project is managed by The University of Turku, the lead partner on the Estonian side is the NGO Eurohouse. From Finland, the municipalities of Korppoo and Kustavi and the city of Uusikaupunki, the University of Turku Foundation, the Finnish Lighthouse Society, the forestry and waterways authorities, Varsinais-Finnish environmental services and the companies Hannas Horisont, Söderskärin Majakka Oy and Wilson Marin are also participating in the project. Estonian partners are: Kaarma and Kõrgessaare municipality, Estonian Islands Collection, Waterways Board, National Nature Conservation Center Saare region, Estonian Heritage Protection Board Saaremaa Inspectorate, Tallinn University of Technology Kuressaare College and University Center Saaremaa.

The project lasts from April 1 to December 31. 2007.


The total cost of the project is 79,226 euros. The largest contribution comes from the INTERREG IIIA program of southern Finland and Estonia, domestic co-financers are the Finnish Ministry of the Interior (mediated by the Varsinais-Soome Liit) and the Estonian Ministry of the Interior, respectively. Finnish and Estonian municipalities, entrepreneurs and foundations-non-profit organizations participate in the project with self-financing.