Hamina and Savonlinna Bastions

The Hamina fortress is located on the shore of the Gulf of Finland, and it is a key part of the centre of the city of Hamina. Hamina fortress is a so-called circular fortress. As a result of the war between Sweden and Russia (1741-43), Southeast Finland was annexed to Russia.

The border between Russia and Sweden was at the westernmost branch of Kymijoki. Sweden tried to conquer Hamina from Russia in the war of 1788-1790. After the war, South-eastern Finland was fortified by Russia with four staggered defence positions. The Hamina fortress was part of the defence system. General Aleksandr Suvorov led the construction of the fortress in 1791-92 and built the current gray stone walls. The fortress was originally surrounded by seven bastions, six of which are still in place. Six of the bastions were named after cities and one was named the Central Bastion. The names of the bastions are Central Bastion, Savonlinna Bastion, Hamina Bastion, Turku Bastion, Helsinki Bastion, Lappeenranta Bastion and Hämeenlinna Bastion. From this place, you can see the Bastion of Savonlinna on the north side of the bridge and the Bastion of Hamina on the seaside.


The defence of the bastion system was based on strong artillery and the carefully planned ground plan of the fortresses, which enabled different parts of the fortress to participate in each other's defensive battle. From the bastions of the fortress, it was possible to fire in front of the neighboring bastions, and thus there was not a single dead corner in front of the fortress where the frendly fire would not have reached. 

Although the fortresses were significantly lower than medieval castles, their walls were made high enough with the help of moats that it was not possible to take the fortresses by direct assault.

Hamina Fortress

In Hamina's symmetrical fortress model, the circle was geometrically divided by squares in such a way that an octagonal polygon was created.

There are only two such star-shaped fortresses, inside which there is a town in the shape of a circle, left in Europe: Hamina and Palmanova.

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