Estonia has 2222 islands, 318 of them are bigger than 1 ha, 19 of them are permanently inhabited. One of the most interesting and far away inhabited islands is Ruhnu, located in the Gulf of Riga in the Baltic Sea. Ruhnu is an Estonian island situated actually closer to Latvia than to Estonia. Until the Soviet occupation in 1944, the island was populated by ethnic Swedes who were then forced to migrate to Sweden.

  • It covers 11.9 km2; island is 5, 5 m long and 3, 5 m wide.
  • The coastline is 23, 3 km long. The terrain is flat, the highest point is Haubjerre dune ridge, 28 m above sea level.
  • Closest mainland point is Kolka cape in Kuramaa, Latvia– 37 kilometres from Ruhnu.
  • Distance to Pärnu and Riga is 96 km, Kuressaare 70 km, island of Kihnu 54 km.
  • There is only one village in the centre of the island and a few households outside the village.
  • There are 60 permanent inhabitants during winter time, in summer the number increases up to 150.
  • There is a school, museum, library, two churches, rural municipality government, society house and cultural centre, first-aid point, guest harbour and local marine rescue team.
  • There are two shops on the island, in both you can pay by card or withdraw cash from your debit card.


October - April by small airplane from Pärnu and Kuressaare.  See more www.lendame.ee

May - October by ferry from Pärnu, Roomassaare (Saaremaa) or Munalaid. No cars are allowed to, but you are welcome to take your bicycle with. See more https://www.tuuleliinid.ee/

Phone number on the board +372 530 59910

From Latvia (Mersrags) by ferry May – October. See more www.palsa.lv    info@palsa.lv

(+371) 26185164, (+371) 26441749

Arriving with your own boat.

Harbour of Ruhnu called Ringsu: 57° 46,8´ N 23° 16,3´ E http://www.saarteliinid.ee/eng/ports/ringsu/

There is a self-service petrol station for boats in the harbour. Ask more from the harbour guard (+372) 5096239.



Just wonder around by your own and explore!

Ruhnu forest is beautiful and there are many unique and protected plant species to discover. Over 180 species of birds and about 540 species of vascular plants have been registered on Ruhnu. About 60% of the territory of the island is made up by forest, about 7% by fields. The rarest species on the island is the Natter jack Toad (I conservation class) and White-tailed Eagle (I conservation class).

Ruhnu is famous for its beaches with singing sands, when you walk on this sand; it emits a kind of a high-pitched tone. Limo is one the most beautiful and popular of the island's beaches. Take a walk from Överkirke to Ringsu harbour and enjoy the scenery.

Ruhnu is home to one of the oldest wooden buildings in Estonia: the island's wooden church was built in 1644. Just a few meters from the wooden church there is a new stone church built in 1912. It is a very unique situation while those two church buildings stand couple of meters from each other.

On the highest point of the island, Haubjerre hill, there stands a unique metal lighthouse. The details of the lighthouse were ordered from a French producer Forges et Chantiers de la Mediterranee based in Le Havre. It is believed that the construction was designed by Gustave Eiffel himself. The pieces were assembled on Ruhnu in 1877 and the lighthouse is still in operation.

There is also a deepest drilled well in Estonia- 787, 4 meters. The mineral water is very salty and it is said to have curative properties.