Island of Vilsandi gets its own literary app

The island of Vilsandi is located off the west coast of Saaremaa.
The island of Vilsandi is located off the west coast of Saaremaa. Source: Heiko Kruusi

University of Tartu student Maris Mägi defended her master's thesis on Monday, in the framework of which she created a mobile app titled "Literary Hike on Vilsandi" ("Kirjanduslik matk Vilsandil").

The goal of the app is to tie various snippets of text to different parts of Vilsandi in order to both introduce visitors to literary representations of the island as well as help bring attention to the various literary works themselves, writes regional paper Saarte Hääl (link in Estonian).

The texts date back to as far as 1920 and as recently as 2015, and according to Mägi convey the island's layered changes and landmarks as well as legends and cultural phenomena unique to Vilsandi.

Mägi said that Vilsandi has been a source of inspiration for very many writers, artists, musicians and people connected to nature, noting that novels, novellas, travel guides, popular science works and memoirs alike have all been written about the island.

When creating the app on the Navicup platform, it was important to ensure that the new literary hike she worked out lined up with the island's three main existing trails, she added.

Located off the western coast of Saaremaa, the island of Vilsandi is approximately 8.75 square kilometers (3.38 square miles) in size and makes up part of Vilsandi National Park. It has a small permanent, year-round population, but is a popular tourist destination during the summer months in particular.

Read more about the app here (link in Estonian).


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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