Estonia Geography

By | November 12, 2021

Estonia’s land border with Latvia runs 267 km, with Russia it runs 290 km. From 1920 to 1945, Estonia’s border with Russia, established by the 1920 Tartu Peace Treaty, extended beyond the Narva River in the northeast and beyond the town of Pechory (Petseri) in the southeast. This territory, amounting to about 2,300 square kilometers, was incorporated into Russia by Stalin at the end of World War II. For this reason, the borders between Estonia and Russia are not yet defined today.

Estonia is located on the eastern coast of the Baltic Sea in the Gulf of Finland, in the northwestern part of the rising Eastern European shelf between 57.3 ° and 59.5 ° N and 21.5 ° and 28.1 ° E. The elevation Average reaches 50 meters and the highest point in the country is the Munamägi Suur in the southeast at 318 meters. There are 3,794 kilometers of coastline marked by numerous bays, straits and inlets. The number of islands and islets is estimated at about 1,500. Two of them are large enough to constitute different counties: Saaremaa and Hiiumaa. A small group of meteor craters, the largest of which is called Kaali, is located in Saaremaa, Estonia.

Estonia has more than 1,400 lakes. Most are very small and the largest, Lake Peipus (Peipsi in Estonian) is 3,555 km2. There are many rivers in the country. The longest of them are Võhandu (162 km), Pärnu (144 km), and Põltsamaa (135 km). Estonia has numerous bogs and swamps.

Estonia is shared between the Central European and Eastern European provinces of the Circumboreal Region in the Boreal Kingdom. According to the WWF, the territory of Estonia belongs to the Sarmatian mixed forest ecoregion.

Administrative divisions

The Republic of Estonia is divided into fifteen counties (Maakonnad), which are the administrative subdivisions of the country. The first documented mention of Estonia with political and administrative subdivisions comes from Henry of Livonia’s Chronicle, written in the 13th century during the Northern Crusades.

A maakond (county) is the largest administrative subdivision. The county government (Maavalitsus) is headed by a provincial governor (Maavanem), who represents the national government at the regional level. Governors are appointed by the Estonian Government for a five-year term. Several changes were made to county boundaries after Estonia became independent, notably the formation of Valga County (from parts of Võru, Tartu and Viljandi counties) and Petseri County (area acquired from Russia with the Tartu Peace Treaty 1920).

During the Soviet regime, Petseri County was annexed and ceded to the Russian SFSR in 1945, where it became one of the Pskovs districts. The counties were again re-established on January 1, 1990 on the borders of the Soviet-era regions. Due to the many differences between current and historical designs, historical boundaries are still used by ethnology, better representing cultural and linguistic differences.

Each county is divided into municipalities (omavalitsus), which is also the smallest administrative subdivision in Estonia. There are two types of municipalities: an urban municipality – linn (city), and a rural municipality – vald (parish). There is no other distinction between them. Each municipality is an autonomous government unit with its representative and executive bodies. Municipalities in Estonia cover the entire territory of the country.

A municipality may contain one or more populated places. Tallinn is divided into eight districts (linnaosa) with limited autonomy (Haabersti, Kesklinn, Kristiine, Lasnamäe, Mustamäe, Nõmme, Pirita and Pohja Tallinn).

Municipalities range in size from Tallinn with 400,000 residents to Ruhnu with just 60. As more than two thirds of the municipalities have a population of less than 3,000, many of them have seen the convenience of cooperating in the provision of services and the performance of administrative functions. There have also been calls for an administrative reform to merge the smaller municipalities together.

As of March 2008, there were a total of 227 municipalities in Estonia, 33 of them urban and 194 rural.


According to educationvv, Estonia is located in the northern part of the temperate climate zones and the maritime and continental climate transition zone. Because Estonia (and all of Northern Europe) is continuously heated by maritime air influenced by the heat content of the North Atlantic Ocean, it has a more benign climate despite its northern latitude. The Baltic Sea causes differences between the climate of the coastal and inland areas. Estonia has four seasons of almost equal length. The average temperature ranges from 16.3 ° C (61.3 ° F) in the Baltic Islands to 18.1 ° C (64.6 ° F) inland, in July, the warmest month, and -3.5 ° C (25.7 ° F) in the Baltic Islands – 7.6 ° C (18.3 ° F) inland, in February, the coldest month.

The average annual temperature in Estonia is 5.2 ° C. The average temperature in February, the coldest month of the year, is -5.7 ° C. The average temperature in July, which is considered the hottest month of the year, is 16.4 ° C. The climate is also influenced by the Atlantic Ocean, the North Atlantic Current and the Icelandic Minimum, which is a known area. due to the formation of cyclones and where the mean atmospheric pressure is lower than in neighboring areas. Estonia is located in a humid area where the amount of precipitation is greater than the total evaporation. Average rainfall in 1961 – 1990 it ranged from 535 to 727 millimeters (21.1 to 28.6) per year and was strongest in summer. There were between 102 and 127 days of rain per year, and average rainfall was most abundant on the western slopes of the Sakala and Haanja Highlands. The snow cover, which is deeper in the south-eastern part of Estonia, usually lasts from mid-December to the end of March.

Estonia Geography