Virolahti
Vederlax
Municipality
Virolahden kunta
Vederlax kommun
Coat of arms of Virolahti
Location of Virolahti in Finland
Location of Virolahti in Finland
Coordinates: 60°35′N 027°42′E / 60.583°N 27.700°E / 60.583; 27.700
Country Finland
RegionKymenlaakso
Sub-regionKotka–Hamina sub-region
Government
 • Municipality managerVeli-Matti Pulli
Area
 (2018-01-01)[1]
 • Total558.92 km2 (215.80 sq mi)
 • Land372.47 km2 (143.81 sq mi)
 • Water186.97 km2 (72.19 sq mi)
 • Rank208th largest in Finland
Population
 (2023-12-31)[2]
 • Total2,927
 • Rank219th largest in Finland
 • Density7.86/km2 (20.4/sq mi)
Population by native language
 • Finnish93.6% (official)
 • Swedish0.4%
 • Others6%
Population by age
 • 0 to 1411.7%
 • 15 to 6455.3%
 • 65 or older33%
Time zoneUTC+02:00 (EET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+03:00 (EEST)
ClimateDfb
Websitewww.virolahti.fi

Virolahti (Finnish: [ˈʋiroˌlɑhti]; Swedish: Vederlax) is the southeasternmost municipality of Finland on the border of Russia. It is located in the Kymenlaakso region. The municipality has a population of 2,927 (31 December 2023)[2] and covers an area of 558.92 square kilometres (215.80 sq mi), of which 186.97 km2 (72.19 sq mi) is water.[1] The population density is 7.86 inhabitants per square kilometre (20.4/sq mi).

The municipality is unilingually Finnish.

Vaalimaa's border checkpoint along the European route E18 on the Finnish side in Virolahti

The Vaalimaa border crossing, which connects the municipality with Russia, is located in Virolahti.

History

Virolahti is named after Estonians from Virumaa who traded around the nearby bay, which is also called Virolahti. The first mention of Virolahti dates to 1336. It is mentioned as an independent parish in 1370.[6][7]

A small part of Virolahti was ceded by Sweden to Russia in the Treaty of Uusikaupunki in 1721. The border was located slightly further west than the modern Finnish-Russian border. In the treaty of Turku of 1743, the rest of Virolahti was ceded to Russia. The northern part of Virolahti became the Miehikkälä parish in 1863.[6][7]

Before World War I the Russian Emperor Nicholas II used to spend summers with his family in the archipelago of Virolahti with his yacht Standart, Finland being an autonomous province within the Russian Empire between 1809 and 1917.

Virolahti lost some of its area (over 100 km2 (39 sq mi)) to Soviet Union in Paris Peace Treaties, 1947, after World War II.

Villages in 1939

Villages marked with an asterisk (*) are now completely or partially on the Russian side:

Alapihlaja, Alaurpala*, Eerikkälä, Hailila, Hanski, Hellä (Heligby), Hämeenkylä (Tavastby), Häppilä, Järvenkylä, Kattilainen, Kiiskilahti* (now Kiyskinlakhti), Kirkonkylä, Klamila, Koivuniemi, Koskela*, Koskelanjoki, Kotola, Kurkela, Laitsalmi*, Länsikylä (Flonckarböle), Martinsaari* (Now Island of Maly Pogranichny), Mattila, Mustamaa, Nopala, Orslahti* (now Primorskoye), Paatio* (Båtö in Swedish, now Bolshoy Pogranitshny), Pajulahti, Pajusaari*, Pitkäpaasi* (Island of Gorniya Kamenya), Pyterlahti, Ravijoki, Ravijärvi, Reinikkala, Rännänen (Grennäs), Sydänkylä (Kallfjärd), Säkäjärvi, Tiilikkala, Vaalimaa (Vaderma), Vilkkilä, Virojoki, Yläpihlaja, Yläurpala* (now Torfjanovka).

Notable people born in Virolahti

References

  1. ^ a b "Area of Finnish Municipalities 1.1.2018" (PDF). National Land Survey of Finland. Retrieved 30 January 2018.
  2. ^ a b "Immigration record high in Finland in 2023". StatFin. Statistics Finland. Retrieved 25 January 2024.
  3. ^ "Demographic Structure by area as of 31 December 2022". Statistics Finland's PX-Web databases. Statistics Finland. Retrieved 6 September 2023.
  4. ^ "Population according to age (1-year) and sex by area and the regional division of each statistical reference year, 2003–2020". StatFin. Statistics Finland. Retrieved 2 May 2021.
  5. ^ a b "Luettelo kuntien ja seurakuntien tuloveroprosenteista vuonna 2023". Tax Administration of Finland. 14 November 2022. Retrieved 7 May 2023.
  6. ^ a b "SuomalainenPaikannimikirja_e-kirja_kuvallinen.pdf" (PDF). kaino.kotus.fi (in Finnish). p. 510. Retrieved January 8, 2023.
  7. ^ a b "Suomen Sukututkimusseura". hiski.genealogia.fi (in Finnish). Retrieved January 8, 2023.

Media related to Virolahti at Wikimedia Commons