Cultural heritage

The Cultural value notation indicates significant densities of cultural values, the identification of which is based on a number of documents and data sets. Among other things, they include landscape areas of national value, maritime built cultural environments of national importance, underwater cultural landscapes, heritage areas of coastal fishing and entities related to maritime cultural heritage, such as military history, shipping, traditional biotopes, landscapes and coastal, archipelago and villa culture. 

When developing site complexes, it is important to take into account the preservation of their characteristics, fostering of cultural values, accessibility of the areas, ecological values, the value of the open maritime landscape, and maritime livelihoods. 

In addition, the Archipelago notation has been used to identify significant functional archipelago entities in the marine areas that combine local archipelago culture, year-round living and holiday houses, several maritime sectors, biodiversity and a cultural environment.

The vision developed for cultural heritage: 

Maritime cultural heritage will be fostered, and knowledge of it will have increased. Cultural heritage lays a foundation for preserving and enhancing biodiversity and the vitality of the coast.


Identifying entities of cultural values promotes the preservation of values related to maritime cultural heritage, also supporting the preservation of ecological values. Possibilities for synergies have been identified between protecting the cultural environment and nature conservation. For example, maintaining the embankments of island fortresses and their traditional biotopes as part of cultural entities promotes both preservation of cultural heritage and nature conservation. Recognition of cultural values may increase people’s awareness of and motivation for caring for the environment. 

On the other hand, developing value entities may increase human pressure on them, for example in the form of tourism and recreation. Increased human pressure may pose a risk to the cultural and natural environment, for example through wear and tear. Harmful impacts can be avoided through good planning and implementation based on reconciling different needs.

Viable cultural heritage may serve as a pull factor for the areas, for example in terms of housing, services and other industries. Caring for cultural value entities may create opportunities for economic activity. Showcasing underwater cultural heritage and identifying potential new sites will create new pull factors for tourism and recreation. A precondition for operating in a cultural environment is preserving its values, which may create additional costs for businesses and restrict the use of sites for certain activities. As a document with no legal effect, the Maritime Spatial Plan does not regulate activities on sites with cultural value entities, but while it can indirectly promote the preservation of cultural values, it may also have indirect impacts on the marginal conditions for operating on sites with cultural values if the planning principles set out in the Maritime Spatial Plan are followed.

The identification of cultural value entities in the plan promotes the preservation and fostering of the areas’ cultural heritage. Identification of site complexes will make it easier to recognise the special features and values of different sites and to develop them while taking cultural values into account. In addition, local identity can be strengthened. This is estimated to have mainly positive impacts on human living conditions and living environments as well as on cityscapes and landscapes. 

Identifying and caring for cultural value entities will help to maintain the urban structure of the areas by increasing their attraction, for example from the viewpoint of tourism, and the opportunities for pursuing livelihoods in the archipelago. This may further have positive impacts on the possibilities of maintaining the urban structure, for example by increasing the resources for maintenance and restoration allocated to sites, which also promotes the preservation of cultural heritage. The growing attraction of sites may increase human pressure on them, which may be seen as an increase in tourism, recreational activities and traffic, resulting in needs for infill construction and wear and tear on the terrain. These causal chains may have an impact on the landscape. The nature of these impacts will depend on the success of the planning and implementation.

Identifying culturally significant site complexes may promote a comprehensive understanding of local cultural features and values. This may promote the management of sites and better consideration of their values and characteristics in further planning and implementation of measures. 

The cultural value entities identified in maritime spatial planning are linked to the marine industries. Traditional marine industries have always been associated with the landscape and marine environment and the livelihoods they enable, such as fishing or shipping, military history, island settlements and the culture of holiday villas. The entities of maritime cultural values include marine World Heritage sites, national landscapes, landscape areas of national value, significant built cultural environments, underwater cultural landscapes, traditional rural biotopes, archaeological cultural heritage sites and national urban park areas.