Estonian EU external border programme


New opportunities for water tourism in border areas are already a reality. In the framework of large infrastructure project „Common Peipsi 2“ the reconstructed small harbours can nowadays accept more vessels and provide new services for harbor users.

In summer 2021, festive openings of the Mustvee south pier, Vasknarva harbor and Luunja (Estonia) concrete quay took place.

In Vasknarva, the first stage of the harbour construction was completed and as a result a 6,000 square meter water area and entry channel were established;  a slip, stationary pier and crane platform were constructed and two floating piers for 16 boats were installed.

In Mustvee harbor visitors can enjoy a wonderful view of Lake Peipsi from water or land. The harbor can now also boast with 10 places for landing of boats, crane platform, fire hydrant and the south mole.

In Luunja harbor the constructed stationary pier enables mooring of both smaller and larger vessels irrespective of the water level. Bigger vessels like Jõmmu and Pegasus can now easy access the harbour. New services are offered to harbor users, including clean water and electricity, dispose bilge and wastewater.

On the Russian side two new passenger vessels were purchased and transported to Tolbitsa pier in the Pskovsky district. Each vessel can transport up to 30 passengers and will ensure reverse everyday connection between the big land and Talaby islands.

Also 3 additional pontoons, each with capacity of 30 places for private vessels, and storage hangar will improve the comfort of the water traffic in the Pskov lake for local inhabitants and tourists. Landscaping of the adjacent territory of the pier Tolbitsa is still ongoing, including the final asphalt pavement. Also an additional place with an area of 600 sq.m. will be covered by a paving stone for holding future events thus developing water tourism and entrepreneurship.

The first project CuNaHe is finalized.  On March 3, 2021 the final seminar of the two-year project “CuNaHe: Strengthening the Network of Formal and Informal Educational Institutions to Support the Preservation and Promotion of the Cultural and Natural Heritage of the Lake Peipsi Region” took place in a hybrid format in Tartu (Estonia), Stary Izborsk (Russia) and online.

During two active years, project partners – representing formal and non-formal educational institutions – cooperated across the border to develop the innovative learning methods for cultural and natural heritage teaching and increasing awareness of people on culture and nature.

Around 200 children from Pechory school (Russia) and 160 from Räpina (Estonia) visited lake shore, forests and even research stations within project events. The outdoor lessons used jointly developed integrated methodological materials on Lake Peipsi cultural and natural richness. Both schools purchased microscopes, tablets, laboratory tools, binoculars etc. in order to make interactive lessons more interesting. Estonian and Russian children also submitted together more than 300 art and science works, which were exhibited in Räpina port during Lake Peipsi festival and Pechory during Peipsi community days.

Estonian and Russian educators attended joint methodological seminars and had a study visit to St. Peterburg (Russia), also some other national study visits took place.

As second half of the project was strongly affected by COVID-19 restrictions, the digital and distance learning practice became very important. For example, when Pechory and Räpina schools organized their winter schools, a joint virtual folk dances workshop was a part of the agenda. The project is especially proud of two multilingual online quizzes, available at .  In the Peipsiland online quiz you can test your knowledge of the geography, history and culture of the transboundary Lake Peipsi area. The other quiz focuses on the services and eco-benefits of the Peipsi region ecosystem.

Another very popular event was Peipsi Pie contest, aiming to popularize the recipes of traditional cuisine in the region and organized by Pskov Lake Peipsi Project.

More information about the project 

Reconstruction of the old culture house has been a dream of Rõuge community for a very long time, tens of years. In September 2021 after a year and half of reconstruction Rõuge culture house was opened.

During the development works within the cross border project Save Smart, which focuses on energy efficiency, the old building got a completely new look both in- and outside. In addition to the beautiful interior, the people can now enjoy more stable room temperature throughout the year and improved inner climate in the house; the entire building’s heating and ventilation system was completely renewed. Instead of the previous furnace heating and absence of ventilation, the house is now heated by modern geothermal heating and there is automatic ventilation system that regulates the air quality.

The total cost to bring a new life to the culture house was approximately 1.7 million euros.

The building is functioning as a real community center: local library and post office are open five days a week. There are several hobby groups gatherings weekly, not to mention frequent concerts, theatre performances etc.

“Once my friend heron and I flew past the newly recreated park in Pskov, which was landscaped by Russian partners within BioAware project (as it is written on a display panel at the entrance of the park).

A unique historical landscape of the 17th century has been restored in this park. There is a whole island with an open ecological classroom, where children can get acquainted with the environment. Frogs say that soon in November a sundial will be installed for identifying time.

In addition, the Mirozhka riverbed was cleared and expanded. Now there is enough space for us and our friends – ducks! And we see people regularly greening this area. Last year in autumn 25 birch trees were planted. While this year in spring and autumn we saw them planting about 170 trees and shrubs, including spherical willow, lilac, barberry, viburnum and others. The atmosphere created in the park attracts more and more new birds, animals and urban residents.”