Old Rauma is one of the best examples of traditional northern European architecture and urbanism

The town of Old Rauma in Finland is composed of some 600 buildings constructed of wood, most of which are privately owned. Old Rauma is both a commercial and a residential area comprising the town area within the toll boundaries of the city in the 19th century. The town plan structure has been maintained since the medieval period, including the irregular street network, city blocks, plots of land and courtyards. The buildings are mainly one storey tall, and date back to a period between the 18th and 19th centuries, while some cellars remain from earlier houses.

Header photo © Jussi Hellsten – VisitFinland

 

Photo © Jussi Hellsten - VisitFinland
© Jussi Hellsten – VisitFinland

The present appearance of the buildings is a result of phases of gradual changes and enlargements between the 18th and the late 19th centuries. At the end of this period, the increased wealth of the town due to ship trading resulted in the extension and modernisation of residential buildings with decorative exterior panels with Neo-Renaissance details, and the characteristic, highly decorative gates of the courtyards.

 

Photo © Jussi Hellsten - VisitFinland
© Jussi Hellsten – VisitFinland

 

Old Rauma © Jussi Hellsten - VisitFinland
© Jussi Hellsten – VisitFinland

World Heritage City

The architecturally homogenous urban area of Old Rauma is a well preserved and representative example of traditional Nordic wooden town building techniques and traditions. Old Rauma was inscribed on the World Heritage list in 1991.

See also: Scandinavia

SOURCES & CREDITS
All photos courtesy of VisitFinland.
Text source UNESCO description (License CC-BY-SA IGO 3.0)