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Europe > Nordic countries > Finland > West Coast (Finland) > Ostrobothnia
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Ostrobothnia (Finnish: Pohjanmaa, Swedish: Österbotten) is in Finland, Western Finland.

Cities

Municipalities

Understand

Ostrobothnia is a region centered around Vaasa on the west coast of Finland consisting of 17 municipalities. It borders with the regions Central Ostrobothnia, Southern Ostrobothnia and Satakunta. Ostrobothnia is the only mainland region in Finland that has a slight majority of Swedish-speakers (about 52%), although a few places have a Finnish-speaking majority (the cities of Vaasa and Kaskinen and the municipalities of Laihia, Isokyrö and Vähäkyrö). The area is dominated by agrarian culture in difference to the forestry dominated inland. Historically Ostrobothnia was hit hard by bad economic conditions and famine during the 19th century and thousands of people left to emigrate to America.

Talk

The bigger towns, such as Vaasa and Jakobstad, are bilingual and you will get along on Swedish or Finnish with most of the population (and at least in shops etcetera). Generally only either language is spoken in rural communities. In fact, the mother tongue of most rural people in the area is some Swedish dialect, often incomprehensible to many Swedish speaking from the south, but people will change to the Swedish learnt at school (and heard from Swedish and Finnish television) when meeting them.

English is known as in other parts of the country. No problem.

Get in

  • By air from Helsinki and Stockholm to Vaasa airport. There is also an airport in Kronoby (Kruunupyy), which functions as the airport for the city of Kokkola.
  • There are train connections to Vaasa and Bennäs (the railway station of Jakobstad and Pedersöre, bus connection to central Jakobstad). Coming from Helsinki you need to transfer in Seinäjoki to get to Vaasa.
  • Buses frequently traffic main road 8 along the west coast.
  • By car along main road 8 which goes along the west coast and main road 3 that leads to Tampere.
  • Ferry to Vaasa from Umeå

Get around

See

  • Kvarken Archipelago, an UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • The ship Jacobstads Wapen in Jakobstad
  • Finland's statue of freedom in Vaasa
  • Kuddnäs, the birthplace of the author Zacharias Topelius in Nykarleby
  • Replot bridge, the longest in Finland

Do

  • Drive along the road of seven bridges from Jakobstad via Larsmo to Kokkola
  • Have fun at Tropiclandia water park in Vaasa

Eat

Drink

Go next

This region travel guide to Ostrobothnia is an outline and may need more content. It has a template, but there is not enough information present. If there are Cities and Other destinations listed, they may not all be at usable status or there may not be a valid regional structure and a "Get in" section describing all of the typical ways to get here. Please plunge forward and help it grow!