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What is a Geopark?

Geopark is a shared international brand for unique geological sites. The aim of Geoparks is to promote geotourism, the preservation of geological heritage, the teaching of science, as well as advancing business that is in line with sustainable development.

Map showing geopark locations

World's Geoparks in 2015. Background map: OpenStreetMap.

The Geopark network is administered by UNESCO. There are currently 161 UNESCO Global Geoparks in the world and two in Finland: Lauhanvuori-Hämeenkangas, who received the status in 2020, and Rokua, a UNESCO Global Geopark since 2010. In addition there are three aspiring Geoparks in Finland: Saimaa, Salpausselkä and Impact Crater Lake Geopark.

Geoparks are not conservation areas, but most of the sights, or geological sites, are protected by law either for reasons of geology or living nature or cultural heritage based on it.