The new marina drew a record-breaking number of boaters to Nagu!

A new guest marina was built in Nagu this summer. A record-breaking number of visitors landed at Nagu Marina, already the most popular marina in the Archipelago Sea region, to marvel the final outcome: new piers and the seawall and the floating harbour master’s office. This year there were 35% more overnight stays than last year.

The Nagu marina underwent a million-euro renovation. The Southwest Finland EDTE Centre financed 700,000 euros of the project from the rural development programme and the rest, 300,000 euros, was taken care by the executor of the project, the town of Pargas.

Tero Sintonen, the harbour master, put his personal effort to the project by building the floating harbour master’s office. The floating office has got positive feedback all through the summer, as it is so nifty. In addition, the EDTE Centre renewed the commuter ferry harbour.

– The Nagu Marina is the main tourist attraction in our town, says Tomas Eklund, Business Manager for the town of Pargas.

To invest in the marina has given a clear benefit for tourism. This year there were 9,000 overnight stays during the summer. In 2019 there were 6,855 and 6,500 in 2018. The marina does not only provide services for boaters but also for other people. The restaurants and the fairs attract people who have summerhouses in the area, as well as people from farther away who come to town by cars, bicycles and public transport. In a normal summer more than 120,000 tourists visit Nagu.

Henrik (13 years), Anna (11 years) and their mother Satu Sjöman have a summer house in Nagu and they always visit the marina when they do groceries. Treats like ice cream and smoked fish attract them to the marina. They think that the floating harbour master’s office is absolutely precious.
70 % of the million-euro investment came from the Southwest Finland EDTE Centre.

The renovation was long overdue

The renovation of the Nagu Marina was long overdue.

– Parts of the main pier were extremely unsound, almost dangerous. The pier had been repaired many times in the past. Some parts were 50 years old or older, the rest newer. The seawall had also started to dilapidate. The sand had started to spill into the sea, and it was dangerous for the people to walk on the seawall, Eklund states.

The project included the demolition of the old piers, also the concrete pier was demolished as it prevented the water flow and thus affected the quality of the water close to the pier. Furthermore, new piers were built and a new seawall, which many consider the main attraction in the marina. The biggest expenditure in the budget was the dredging of the marina. Now even bigger boats can come to the harbour.

– Security was also invested in by adding more slip places, which are easy to use even for a beginner boater. And the new mobile services have received praise for user-friendliness, Eklund says.

Tara Roisko and Hannu Vaarama from the capital region have visited Nagu many times. They say the new marina is beautiful and symmetrical. They also praise use of flowers and decorative stones that have given the marina a new look and a sense of comfort. “Nowhere in Finland is there a better marina,” they say.
The new seawall is safe and comfortable.

From the 60s to the present

According to Tomas Eklund, the Nagu Marina has been developed since the 1960s. Nowadays boaters have good services in the marina: electricity, water, showers and sauna, waste disposal, septic tank emptying and a laundry. In the marina area there are also restaurants, one more charming than the other, a grocery store, many points of sale, a tourist information point, a mediaeval stone church and a commuter ferry harbour. All the services are at a very close at hand, and this is why Nagu has been a popular place to visit not only among the boaters but also among cyclists and motorists.

– During the high season, there is a permanent lack of parking spaces. The biggest need would be a specific area for camper vans. There are more and more camper vans and after Pargas the next camping site is in Houtskär. We don’t need a camping site in Nagu, perhaps, but some sort of an area for camper vans would be good, Eklund considers.

Eklund also hopes that in the future the marina area could be increased.

– All the points of sales are now in small cabins and there is an increasing demand for them. There are more salespeople than we have places for, Eklund says.

Nagu Marina provides good services: electricity, water, showers and sauna, waste disposal, septic tank emptying and a laundry.
Esa Ruotsalainen and Maija Strandström call themselves the unofficial beach patrol of the Nagu Marina. They have a summer house right by the marina and they take a walk in the marina almost daily. They are especially pleased about the new seawall; it is great to sit around and enjoy the views of the sea. The couple lives in Nagu all year round and especially acclaim the cultural life in Nagu.
When the old pier was demolished, some of the newer parts of the demolished pier could still be utilised in the Nagu Yach Club pier (in the front of the picture).
There is also a commuter ferry harbour in Nagu Marina with connections to Seili, Ahvensaari or Houtsala.

Janica Vilen