Southwest Finland or, officially, Varsinais-Suomi, also known as Finland Proper (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.
landskapet Egentliga Finland
Finland Proper on a map of Finland
|Historical province||Finland Proper|
|• Total||10,910.05 km2 (4,212.39 sq mi)|
|• Density||43/km2 (110/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+2 (EET)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC+3 (EEST)|
|ISO 3166 code||FI-19|
|Regional fish||Baltic herring|
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.
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. There are around 20,000 islands near the coast.
The region of Southwest Finland is made up of 27 municipalities, of which 11 have city status (marked in bold).
|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.
|20||Bosnia and Herzegovina||394|
Results of the 2015 Finnish parliamentary election in Finland Proper:
Turku Cathedral dating back to the 13th century is Finland's national shrine and one of Finland's most recognized buildings
A typical view from Turku Archipelago, the largest archipelago (by number of islands) in the world
The Old Castle of Lieto and rural landscape
Naantali Harbour with the former Bridgettine monastery church in the background
A general view of the City of Turku from the tower of the cathedral
Bengtskär Lighthouse in Kimitoön is the highest one in the Nordic countries
The medieval Turku Castle on the banks of River Aura is one of the most influential buildings in Finnish history
A limestone quarry in Pargas
Historical salt warehouses in Uusikaupunki town centre
A bridge from 1850 in Taivassalo
Korpo Church; there are 25 remaining medieval churches in the region
May Day celebrations in Turku centre; the Arts Museum on the top of Street Aurakatu
Traffic connections between islands are mostly served with ferries in the archipelago
A street view in Turku; old wooden houses and modern block of flats
Marshland in Loimaa
Naantali Old Town has been well preserved
Pargas Old Town
- 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".
- Suomalainen paikannimikirja. Jyväskylä: Gummerus. 2007. ISBN 978-951-593-976-0.
- Turun Sanomat
- "Suomen virallinen tilasto (SVT): Väestön ennakkotilasto [verkkojulkaisu]. Tammikuu 2019" (in Finnish). Statistics Finland. Retrieved 15 March 2019.
- Statistics Finland
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Finland Proper.|
Finland Proper travel guide from Wikivoyage