The city of Raahe was established in 1649 by Pietari (Per) Brahe, the General-Governor of Finland. Due the harbour Raahe began to grow and prosper in the 18th century. In 1791 the city was finally got the right to freedom of sailing abroad. The main export goods were tar, pitch and lumber.
in 1810 the great fire destroyed a third of all buildings in the town. In the post-fire reconstruction Raahe got the present marketplace, “Pekkatori”. Next disaster was the Crimean War in 1854-1855. British troops landed in Raahe in late May 1854 and burned the dockyard, the court of tar, 11 ships, 25 000 barrels of tar and other property. Fortunately the wind came from the mainland to the sea, which is why the city itself was spared from destruction. Despite the attack late 1800's was the heyday of city. During 1867-1875 Raahe was the largest merchant shipping city in Finland.
Today so-called Old Raahe is one of the most well-preserved wooden towns in Finland. There are about 150 old houses and 200 outbuildings mainly from the 19th century.
The city walls of Avila were built in the 11th century to protect the citizens from the Moors. They have been well maintained throughout the centuries and are now a major tourist attraction as well as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visitors can walk around about half of the length of the walls.
The layout of the city is an even quadrilateral with a perimeter of 2,516 m. Its walls, which consist in part of stones already used in earlier constructions, have an average thickness of 3 m. Access to the city is afforded by nine gates of different periods; twin 20 m high towers, linked by a semi-circular arch, flank the oldest ones, Puerta de San Vicente and Puerta del Alcázar.