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In Estonia, 38 blooming species of orchids have been counted, of them as many as 36 can be found in the wildlife in Saaremaa. This is why Saaremaa has become famous as an orchid paradise. A tourist season is opened by the people interested in these plants as June is the high time to admire them. The richest in these flowers area is located on the western coast of Saaremaa, in the area of Vilsandi National Park.
There is no need to walk around for hours to find them. It is enough to take a ten-minute walk from the city centre of Kuressaare to the Roomassaare peninsula and in the juniper fields there are a lot of them, called the heath spotted orchid (Dactylorhiza maculata). You can also walk to Loode tammik (Loode Oak Grove) in the vicinity of Kuressaare where the lady's-slipper orchid (Cypripedium calceolus), the burnt-tip orchid (Orchis ustulata) and many other species can be enjoyed. Did you know that Saaremaa has its own orchid called Saaremaa dactylorhiza (Dactylorhiza osiliensis Pikner) that was discovered by Tarmo Pikner, an orchid specialist from Saaremaa?
In June, as a tradition, Saaremaa Orchid Festival takes place, further details at www.orhideefestival.eu
Saaremaa Turismiinfokeskus, Tallinna 2, Kuressaare. Tel. +372 45 33 120, e-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org