Vormsi Landscape Reserve was founded in the year 2000 in order to protect the individual landscape of the archipelago of Western Estonia and the endangered cultural heritage landscapes characteristic to the area.
The area of the reserve is 2,423 ha, from which the sea makes up more than a half.
Since 1989, Vormsi Island with the surrounding maritime area and islands forms the West Estonian Archipelago Biosphere Reserve. The mission of the biosphere reserve is to direct the balanced development of the area, preserve the life and environment and biodiversity. The protected areas of the biosphere are internationally recognised by UNESCO as a network of areas with a purpose of connecting the conservational goals with the protection of cultural heritage and the development of the area, thereby following the principles of sustainable development.
The Arctic and little terns, Eurasian bittern, greylag goose, western marsh harrier and other birds nest in the reserve. Lake Prästvike is a habitat for the yellow-spotted and dark whiteface.
The reserve is a part of the Väinameri bird and natural area of international importance.