The scenic valley of the Salaca River with outcrops of sandstone, the legendary Burtnieku Lake, rich in fish, the Vidzeme seashore with littoral meadows and steep cliffs, castle mounds, marshes, sacred sites and charming small towns. Ziemeļvidzeme Biosphere Reserve includes all of it. One of the largest complexes of unspoilt high marshes in the Baltic States is situated in the territory of the Reserve. The littoral or randu meadows are the largest complex of littoral meadows in Latvia.
Ziemeļvidzeme Biosphere Reserve (ZBR) is the only specially protected nature territory of this kind it Latvia. It is a vast territory in which nature and landscape treasures of international significance are being preserved, ensuring sustainable social and economic development.
The territory of the ZBR covers 457 600 ha of land and 16 750 ha of the sea. It was established in 1997 and already on 15 December 1997 was recognised as a protected territory of international significance in the framework of UNESCO’s MaB (Man and the Biosphere) program. The goal of the Biosphere Reserve on the national and international level is to reach a balance in the protection of natural diversity, foster economic development and safeguard of cultural values.
Valuable historical monuments are also situated in the territory of the Reserve, for example, one of the first human settlements in Latvia – the Fishermen’s settlement and the burial ground ( the 5th – 2nd centuries B.C.), as well as the Riņņu mountain settlement on the left bank of the Salaca River.