History of Meiko
Stone Age settlements
People inhabited the area around Meiko as early as the Stone Age: four Stone Age abodes are known around Vols. There are also several medieval villages near Meiko: Vols, Ingels, Kvarnby, Överby, Sjundby and Engisby, whose area of influence would have included Meiko.
Meiko’s protected areas are part of Finland's war history. Civil war battles took place in the north-east parts of the area. You can find trenches left on the shores of the Mustjärvi Lake as a memory of the battles of 1918, the so-called Sigurds’ battles.
Most of the Meiko area was included in the so-called Porkkala leased territory (1944–1956). In addition, the Meiko area bordered an area of a Soviet base, and the northern border was about half a kilometre from the northern shore of Lake Meiko. The Soviet Union gave the Porkkala leased area back to Finland after eleven years on 26 January 1956. The fortification equipment was partially destroyed by filling and blasting before the base was handed over. Some remnants of land front fortifications still remain on the northern and southern shores of Lake Meiko, such as trenches, fortifications and fire positions.
Protection of Meiko
The protection of the Meiko area started when the municipality of Kirkkonummi donated a three-hectare area located in the southeast corner of Lake Meiko to Kyrkslätts Hembygdsföreningen in 1912. The aim was to preserve the area as a "nature park". The official decision on the protection of the area was made by the Provincial Government of Uusimaa in 1965. The protection of the Meiko area intensified in the 1970s. At that time, a nature conservation area of about 70 hectares was established on the shores of Lake Meiko on lands owned by the municipality of Kirkkonummi. At the same time, the protection of privately owned areas continued.
At the end of the 1970s, the national conservation value of the Meiko area was officially recognised. The area was widely included in national nature conservation programmes (conservation programme for herb-rich forests, conservation programme for old-growth forests, mire conservation programme, bodies of water requiring special protection) with the aim of safeguarding the biodiversity of our country.
The integration of the Meiko-Lappträsk site into the Natura 2000 network strengthens its value in protecting important European habitats and species. Today, the size of the coherent nature reserve is approximately 1,400 hectares, the largest share of which is on Metsähallitus land, approximately 1,000 hectares. The area also includes the municipality of Kirkkonummi and private nature reserves.