Landscape Consumption in Otepää, Estonia

  • Tõnu Oja
  • Monika Prede


Estonia’s rural development has been much affected by the economic decline during the recent transition period, which has involved land reform and a process of privatisation in almost all of Estonia. However, the Otepää region forms a specific case that is largely different from other rural areas in Estonia — while most rural areas suffer from a severe shortage of financial opportunities, Otepää belongs to the few remarkably able to attract investments, and as a result it is experiencing fast development and elevated construction activity (for example, the number of residential houses in the region has increased by 9.6 percent within the last five years. See Remm & Oja 2003). the reason for this is based on the region’s image of being “a nice place”, based on landscape as a natural value. Exploring the region’s fascinating end-moraine landscape in the interest of nature conservation resulted in a nature park, and the hilly relief makes Otepää the main winter sports center in Estonia — the landscapes have given the area a well-known recreational image. To some extent, different uses of landscape compete with each other for the same spatial resources. To some extent they are complimentary, and certain developments in infrastructure support all activities that are at the same time supported by the imagery of the region.


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tõnu Oja
    • 1
  • Monika Prede
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of GeographyUniversity of TartuEstonia

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