Mount Errigal in Ireland. Photo: ASCENT

The objective of the project is to promote the sustainable use of the sites through international exchange of know-how and learning. Visitor surveys will be conducted at the sites and management plans will be drafted. Building methods and good practices are taught on-site in each project country. Another objective is to collect these practices and create an opportunity to put these project results to use elsewhere at a later time. Strengthening local ownership improves visitor awareness of sustainable nature tourism, with the aim being to reduce the adverse impacts brought about by use of the site.

In recent years, major construction and restoration measures have been taken at the Hossa National Park, but this kind of improvement and maintenance work is a continuous effort. The best of the methods learned during the project can be used to support the sustainable use of Hossa in the challenging situation, where visitor numbers are set to rise due to the founding of the new national park. A management plan has been drafted for the new national park and a code of conduct devised to instruct and guide visitors to the region.

Management Plan for Hossa National Park

Finland’s ASCENT site Hossa became a National Park in June 2017. Hossa’s popularity has gone through the roof after it was designated; visitor numbers have doubled and were now around 120 000 visitors on the opening year.

Management plans are made to help develop areas in a sustainable way. They guide the actions of Metsähallitus, Parks & Wildlife Finland as the owner of national parks and other protected areas. The management plan for Hossa National Park is based on the Nature Conservation Act and on the specific Act designating the National Park. The management plan brings together different forms of land use. Visitors come to Hossa to enjoy hiking, winter activities, fishing and hunting but also canoeing and diving. All activities have to be managed in a sustainable way, without causing damage to the environment and the delicate nature of the National Park. This management plan will cover the next 15 years or so.

Stakeholders, local people, NGO’s etc. have been engaged closely during the process. Several events have been organized during the process to make sure all parties involved have had the opportunity to have their say in the development and use of Hossa National Park. Hossa’s management plan was finalized during winter 2018–2019. Amendments based on comments from the public, authorities and other stakeholders have been included in the plan. The management plan has been sent to the Ministry of the Environment for ratification. The management plan was ratified by the Ministry of the Environment in July 2019.

Last updated 28 April 2020