Southwest Finland or, officially, Varsinais-Suomi, also known as Finland Proper[1] (Finnish: Varsinais-Suomi, Swedish: Egentliga Finland) is a region in the south-west of Finland. It borders the regions of Satakunta, Tavastia Proper (Kanta-Häme), and Uusimaa. The region's capital and most populous city is Turku.

Southwest Finland
Varsinais-Suomi

Varsinais-Suomen maakunta
landskapet Egentliga Finland
Flag of Southwest Finland Varsinais-Suomi
Flag
Coat of arms of Southwest Finland Varsinais-Suomi
Coat of arms
Finland Proper on a map of Finland
Finland Proper on a map of Finland
CountryFinland
Historical provinceFinland Proper
CapitalTurku
Area
 • Total10,910.05 km2 (4,212.39 sq mi)
Population
 (2011)
 • Total470,880
 • Density43/km2 (110/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+2 (EET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+3 (EEST)
ISO 3166 codeFI-19
NUTS183
Regional birdJackdaw
Regional fishBaltic herring
Regional flowerOak
Websitevarsinais-suomi.fi

The area comprising the southwest is largely the same as the historical province of Finland Proper, so named because it is the original home of the tribe known as the Finns.

Contents

Origin of the nameEdit

The name of Finland Proper has a historical function. In historic times, in the area of the present southern Finland lived three tribes, which were the Finns, the Tavastians and the Karelians. The southwestern part of the country, the province where the Finns lived, was called simply Finland (Finnish: Suomi). In the 17th century the name began to be used to refer to the whole land and a specified name for the lesser Finland was required. The first notes Fennigia specialiter dicta and Fennigia presse dicta were recorded in Latin in the 1650s and the Swedish Finland för sig sielft and Egenteliga Finland later in the 18th century the modern form Egentliga Finland being in official use at the end of the century. The Finnish term Varsinais-Suomi became established only around the 1850s.[2]

GeographyEdit

Southwest Finlands nature differs from other regions. The most notable biotopes are the Archipelago Sea and groves. 80% of Finnish insects can be found in Southwest Finland.[3] There are around 20,000 islands near the coast.[4]

The most southern point of Southwest Finland and the most southern inhabited island is Utö.[5] Highest point is 164 meters in Kiikala.[6]

 
Aurajoki is one of the most notable rivers in Finland.

Historical provincesEdit

MunicipalitiesEdit

 
Finland Proper Sub-regions, towns and municipalities

The region of Southwest Finland is made up of 27 municipalities, of which 11 have city status (marked in bold).

DemographicsEdit

YearPop.±%
1980406,360—    
1985415,899+2.3%
1990425,282+2.3%
1995435,119+2.3%
2000447,103+2.8%
2005455,584+1.9%
2010465,183+2.1%
2015474,323+2.0%
2018478,582+0.9%
Source: Statistics Finland

As of 2018, Southwest Finland had an population of 478,582, making it the third most populated Finnish region after Uusimaa and Pirkanmaa. 87.18% speak Finnish, 5.67% Swedish and 7.15% speak other languages, the most common being Russian, Estonian, Arabic, Kurdish and Albanian.

It has the most summer cottages out of any Finnish region, with 49,000 as of 2012.[8]

Nationality [9]
31 December 2017
1   Finland 444,171
2   Soviet Union 5,801
3   Estonia 4,079
4   Iraq 3,148
5   Sweden 2,746
6   Yugoslavia 2,714
7   Iran 1,855
8   Somalia 1,590
9   Vietnam 938
10   Thailand 874
11   Poland 842
12   Ukraine 834
13   China 774
14   Afghanistan 679
15   Romania 679
16   Germany 511
17   United Kingdom 436
18   Turkey 428
19   Syria 425
20   Bosnia and Herzegovina 394

PoliticsEdit

HeraldryEdit

The region uses the coat of arms of the historical province of Finland Proper.

Image galleryEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ The regional council of the region uses the name "Southwest Finland". Despite this, the Language Planning Department of Finland recommends the name "Varsinais-Suomi" as suggested in the statement by the Ministry of the Interior of Finland in 1999. The Institute for the Languages of Finland lists the official English name as "Varsinais-Suomi".
  2. ^ Suomalainen paikannimikirja. Jyväskylä: Gummerus. 2007. ISBN 978-951-593-976-0.
  3. ^ http://www.vihreapolku.info/kestava_kehitys/parempia_valintoja_-_turkulaisen_toiminta-_ja_kulutusopas/kuntoillaan_kestavasti_ja_nautitaan_lahiluonnosta
  4. ^ http://www.saaristoon.fi/
  5. ^ Turun Sanomat
  6. ^ http://www.salo.fi/ymparistojaluonto/luontojaretkeily/luontokohteetjareitit/hyypparanharjukultalahdejasaramaki/
  7. ^ "Suomen virallinen tilasto (SVT): Väestön ennakkotilasto [verkkojulkaisu]. Tammikuu 2019" (in Finnish). Statistics Finland. Retrieved 15 March 2019.
  8. ^ http://www.iltalehti.fi/mokkiextra/2013052417065336_mo.shtml
  9. ^ Statistics Finland

External linksEdit

  Finland Proper travel guide from Wikivoyage