The sea and its more than 150 islands, islets, and rocks form over two-thirds of Vilsandi National Park. One of the largest resting sites of grey seals in Estonia is located here, and thousands of waterfowl winter or stop here.
Vilsandi is rich in seabirds – among others you will find the Common Eider (Somateria mollissima), the Barnacle Goose (Branta leucopsis), the White-Tailed Eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla) and the Turnstone (Arenaria). The rare Steller’s Eider (Polysticta stelleri) also winters here.
There are many rarities among the plants that grow on the juniper-covered heritage landscapes and forests – over 30 species of orchids, as well as an endemic species of rattle (Rhinanthus osiliensis) and ivy (Hedera helix), for which this is the northernmost limit of its range.
People interested in geology will find outcrops of Silurian limestone containing plenty of fossils and fossilised corals on the west coast and on Vilsandi.
Those who are not afraid of longer walks will find small sand dunes on Harilaid Peninsula; the changing shape of these dunes is unique in Estonia. The Kiipsaare lighthouse, once situated in the centre of the peninsula, could be found on its eastern shoreline many years ago, but is now located in the sea near its western shoreline.
The visitor centre of Vilsandi National Park can be found in the Loona Manor complex, where you can take a look at fossils and a permanent exhibition about the national park, as well as watch films about sea life and local nature. In summer, hikes are organised every day. Be sure to make use of the opportunities of water tourism and bicycle rides to explore the national park!