The island of Gotland has an area of 2,994 km About two-fifths of the island's population live in Visby.
Gotland is located about 90 km (56 mi) east of the Swedish mainland and about 130 km (81 mi) from the Baltic states, Latvia being the nearest.
In the case of Gotland, however, due to its insular position, the administrative county (län), Gotland County, and the municipality (kommun), Gotland Municipality, both cover the same territory as the province.
Furthermore, the diocese of Visby is also congruent with the province.
On 22 April 1808, during the Finnish War between Sweden and Russia, a Russian army landed on the southeastern shores of Gotland near Grötlingbo.
Under command of Nikolaus Andrejevich Bodisco 1,800 Russians took the city of Visby without any combat or engagement, and occupied the island.
It reads: "Gutenses signo xpistus signatur in agno".
The province includes the small islands of Fårö and Gotska Sandön to the north, as well as the Karlsö Islands, (Lilla and Stora) to the west, which are even smaller.
The biggest is Lake Bästeträsk, located near Fleringe in the northern part of Gotland.The coat of arms is represented with a ducal coronet.Blazon: "Azure a ram statant Argent armed Or holding on a cross-staff of the same a banner Gules bordered and with five tails of the third." The county was granted the same coat of arms in 1936.In 1409, Grand Master Ulrich von Jungingen of the Teutonic Knights guaranteed peace with the Kalmar Union of Scandinavia by selling the island of Gotland to Queen Margaret of Denmark, Norway and Sweden.The number of Arab dirhams discovered on the island of Gotland alone is astoundingly high.