Ytre Hvaler National Park consists of muddy seabeds and rocky seabottoms with its rich underwater ecosystem containing corals and kelp forest. Land areas have a varied plant and animal life with many Red Listed species, coastal woodland shaped by the wind, and rocks worn smooth by waves and ice. Many areas are grazed to preserve rare plants, insects and birds, which depend upon open landscape. Management also means taking into account the traditional use of the area. People have used the area for thousands of years. Many of the prehistoric house sites at Hvaler may date back to the Late Bronze Age. They were probably used as seasonal dwellings By people who were hunting, trapping and fishing. Shacks bear Witness to the more recent fishing history at Hvaler. There are at least 50 submarine wrecks.
THRILLS AND OUTDOOR RECREATION
Ytre Hvaler offers many opportunities for outdoor recreation and experiencing a rich and varied coastal landscape. The area attracts visitors all the year round for swimming, boatingand fishing, and offer thrilling underwater experiences.
If you want to stay overnight, Storesand and the islands of Akerøya have many fine spots for camping, and several Cabins are available for renting. Travelling by boat offers you many islands to choose between. Kayaking is an excellent way of exploring the park. Why not take a fishing rod with you?
PURPOSE OF THE PROTECTION
The Ytre Hvaler National Park was set up to preserve a distinctive, large and relatively pristine area in southeast Norway with complete ecosystems on land and in the sea. Coral reefs, varied hard- and soft-bottom communities, stretches with currents and varying depths of water are important elements in the marine natural history.
The national park is in the municipalities of Hvaler and Fredrikstad. In the south, the park borders onto the Kosterhavet Marine National Park in Sweden.
Area 354 km2,14 km2 of which are land
Maximum depth: more than 470 m.
Maximum height a.s.l.: ca. 64 m
Red Listed species: 131 all told 48 which are butterflies and moths, 32 plants and 11 beetles. Coral reef at Tisler: more than 1200 m long and 200 m broad; the largest inshore reef in Europe.
The waters between Heia and Torbjørnskjær: an important pupping area for common seals and more than 12 000 eider ducks gather here to moult.