Latvia, the midmost country among the Baltic states, consists of fertile lowland plains and moderate hills, crossed by an extensive network of rivers. There are thousands of lakes and hundreds of kilometres of seashore lined by pine forests, dunes and long white sand beaches. The typical Latvian landscape is a mosaic of vast forests interspersed by fields, farmsteads and pastures. Amid the fields of arable land, birch groves and wooded clusters constitute habitats for numerous plants and animals.
National parks, biosphere reserves, nature reserves, nature parks, protected landscape areas, protected marine areas, natural monuments and mircoreserves are the “addends” making up the total “sum” of protected areas in Latvia. There are more than 600 protected areas in Latvia covering ~19% of the total territory of the country. Including 12% terrestrial territories with the status of a European Union protected area under Natura 2000.
The implementation of a unified nature conservation policy and supervision of all nature protected areas is the responsibility of the Latvia Nature Conservation Agency (daba.gov.lv).