Discover The Swedish Archipelago

Carl J Johnson By Carl J Johnson, 26th May 2013 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Guides>Nature>Habitats & Ecosystems

The Swedish Archipelago is outstanding and very Beautiful. It differs a lot from South to North. This diverse nature and fauna makes it so special. The rock and the skerries found in different parts of Sweden, makes the nature extraordinary Beautiful.

The Swedish Coast

Why do we long for the sea? We look for flexibility with food and traveling. When we think about the freedom, we need leisure time, freedom from the necessity.

Sweden has an extremely long coastline. From the south to the north, it is about 7 000 kilometers. This theme is obvious. The islands are stunning. The skerries are unique.. There are about 70 000 islands, and such an archipelago approach nowhere else in the world.

This is a story about the Swedish coast, about the islands, the sea and the shores. It begins in the far west and ends in the Gulf of Bothnia,

The West Coast

This is the Swedish border to the great seas. For centuries, this area has been the richest, mainly through trade and shipping as well as fishing. The land meeting the sailor coming from Skagerrak and Kattegatt, the seas outside Sweden, is strong and rebuffing. We look at open and treeless Archaean rocks. Then one suddenly discovers a bunch of houses in the hills, villages built among the cliffs and clefts. Very well known and one of the biggest tourist magnets in the West of Sweden, called Smogen, with the old boathouses in the bottom of the creeks. At the bridge, almost a kilometer long is almost every boathouse rebuilt to a summer house with the fun crafts moored to the piers.

Today the West Coast, is a play area. Summer guests and tourists have become a dominating industry. Those living all year round is becoming fewer. The population grows in the summer season. The frosty cliffs become inviting light places. This is quite another world. Now it is not herring, mackerel or shrimps that provide the best earnings, but adventures. The archipelago has become an amusement park.

The East Coast

The southern and middle East Sea has an archipelago of a highly varying qualities. Some time it is narrow, sometimes deep. The Archaean rocks and the thickly wooded beaches are now a common denominator. During the summertime, the heart is flourishing around.

The sand beaches of the south coast bid farewell at the level of the Listerland in Blekinge. A nature of this design is unique and is the result of the inland ice and the crumbling of the sea. The East coast has a richer fauna and fewer constructions compared to the West coast. Here are no obvious bills, except on the skerries farthest out. Outermost on the East coast is an island, called Utklippan. This island is remarkably well liked by migratory birds and the long distance sailors, because of its rich anchorage, situated in the bay of Hano.

Saint Anna is the patron saint of the seafarers. In 1383, the coastland people of Hammarkind got a permit to build a chapel to her honour. It was "Sancta Anna in scopulis". The whole archipelago in this field got the name after this saint. Saint Anna's archipelago has a slightly different perspective than that of the neighbor in the south.

Oland And Gotland

There are two beautiful islands at the East coast. These are Oland and Gotland. They have a beginning and a fauna quite different from the coast of the mainland. There are no archeon rocks on these islands. These hills are much younger. They consist of layers of clay, marl and limestone, created on the bottom of the sea during the Cambrian, Ordovician and Silurian time between sex hundred and four hundred million years ago.

Am June 27th, 1741 Carl von Linne wandered around on the beach of Kappelshamn on Gotland. He gathered petrified animals. On the other side of Kappelshamn, he found corals.

Also, the vegetation on the islands is quite unusal and differs from themainland. Only Skane has a plant life similar to this one. The Climate is dry, sunny and warm, which is most agreeable to the plants loving light and warmth. There has always been a consensus on Oland and Gotland since the time the rose from the sea Etymologically Oland means exactly what one judge, namely an island. Gotland derives from the word Gute and has nothing to do with the word good.

In the year 2000, UNESCO nominated the south of Oland to be a common heritage. They decided to keep the global cultural outlook, the rich herb meadows and the unimaginable seriousness in the nature.

Stora Karlso and Lilla Karlso are on the southwest side of Gotland. Around the upright hillsides, the guillemots and the razorbills are swarming near in Atlantic quantities.

Gotska sandon (Sand Island) 38 km north from Faro is the most impressive ground in Sweden.

The Stockholm Archipelago

This is the deepest and most diversified archipelago in Sweden with the largest group of islands. Here are about 24 000 islands, skerries and islets.

During the twelfth century the area had risen so much that the island Agnefit came into an exceptionally strategical position. This was the perfect place for a capital. Stockholm is an excellent archipelago city, built on islands. The city lays between salt and fresh, between vertical Archaean rocks and deciduous forests.

Malaren, the water around Stockholm, lays only about a meter over the sea level and from time to time it happens that the East Sea rises so that the water floating through Stockholm changes direction.

The City has grown, and the city culture has in the last sixty years totally restructured the economy and the social life in the skerry islands. The biggest islands, situated in the nearest archipelago, Lidingo, Sickla, Orminge and Varmdo, are extremely densely built-up. It is a form of city archipelago, where the total archipelago company has to provide room for parks, areas for country walks and national parks. Also in the inner archipelago and the skerry islands closeness of the city has formed the character.

Where the Stockholm archipelago passes into the Sodermanland archipelago, just on the inside from Landsort, lays a thin, small and unnoticed island. Its name is Asko, one of the most central places. It has the biggest marine research laboratory on the East coast.

Between the big, town built islands in the inner archipelago and the outer skerry islands, there is a large collection of a medium sizee islands - Uto, Omo, Namdo, Runmaro, Moja, Blido and Yxlan - that are the true symbols of the Stockholm archipelago. There are still so many people living here that one can speak of functioning societies.

Once we used to say that a school, a store and a post office were necessary to protect the archipelago communities living. Now we have to include broadband and an ambulance helicopter.

The nature in the archipelago is of a multiple variety. In Sweden, there ar fifty orchid species and almost half of these are on Runmaro. The Stockholm archipelago offers powerful and unexpected beauty of nature and in a remarkably safe area. In about 50 km from the center of the city, in the outer skerry islands, one will find a wild and unin­ fluenced common history. Out there is the most dramatic, wild and unique piece of the Stockholm archipelago. From Huvudskar in the south to Soderarm in the north, a lot of recently risen islets, skerries and holms gather in flocks. They have strange names as Stora Nassa, Rodloga, Gilloga, Norrpada and Skarv. Sandhamn, one of the most well known islands of the Stockholm archipelago, is the Mecka of all sailors. From here starts also the sailboat races around Gotland and the Baltic race.

Every year, the first Wednesday in June, is the time of the skerry boat. On that day boats from every generation gather, from the M/S Vastan, built 1900 to modem jetstream boats. The skerry boats have a significant importance for the development of the archipelago. The boats transport about 1.8 million passengers every year.

The Norrland Coast

This is the wildest coastline in Sweden. It has extensive forests, steep hills and beaches filled with rocks. From Gavle to Haparanda the archipelago is small and extremely sparsely populated. Some large islands and the archipelago far north are excluded.

The most rigorous herring-fishermen in Norrland, from the middle ages and several centuries before, were the fisherman from Gavle. Gustav Wasa issued a charter 1557 that gave the anglers in Gavle city the right to fish herring along the whole Norrland coast. In return, they should pay their tithes to the crown.

There is a lot of herrings in the Gulf of Bothnia. Nowadays the shore fishing is only of marginal importance. Travelers catched almost all herring out on the sea.

Of great importance to tourists are names Jungfrukusten (The Virgin Coast) and Hoga kusten (The Tall Coast). The passage between the Gavle bay and the vertical Hornsland by the town Hudiksvall, called Jungfrukusten. The coast has gotten its name after the island and the lighthouse station Storjungfrun (The Grand Virgin). The Virgin Coast is shallow and rocky. The islands far apart, and it is only between the Axmarbay and the bay of Hudiksvall one can talk about an archipelago. Here are about 500 islands. This section of islands is also extremely sparsely populated. There are only four islands on the coast from Gavle to Sundsvall where a total of twelve persons are all year round.

One faces significant populated islands when coming to Hogakusten. They are Hemson and the north of Ulvo. They accepted the notion Hogakusten, which is the highest coast of Sweden. The land rises eight mm every year. In year 2000. Hogakusten came on the UNESCO roll over global heritages. The motivation was the actual birth process and the actual elevation of the land.

Just north of Hogakusten is the remarkably compact and shallow shore at the North Kvarken. It is the most narrow part of the Gulf of Bothnia. There are only 80 kilometers between Umea in Sweden, and Vasa in Finland. The water depth is only thirty meters. A mountain ridge is

stretching through the water and it rises every year. In 3 500 years, one can walk from Sweden to Finland without getting wet feet.

Holmon is a stunning island, in the middle of Kvarken. It is an old seal-hunting society. It is famous for an extensive salmon-fishing. The east part of Holm on is today a nature reserve. There is no hunting or fishing any more. There is a school, a day-care and a service-house. One can also make a fair and a bar.

In the inner of the Gulf of Bothnia, one will find an unusually large archipelago with many islands. There are about 3000 islands, skerries and islets. The islands, as well as the coast on the inside, have a room that rarely is higher than twenty meters. It is quite a naive archipelago. The archipelago between Lulea and Haparanda with its soft sand skerries surrounded by spruce from Norrland belong to the strangest of the coast. About thousand years ago here were only sandbanks and moraine stacks under the water.

The South Coast

This is the only coast in Sweden where there is no archipelago and where the Archaean rocks only exceptionally direct. Between Varberg in Halland and Ahus in Skane there are many sand beaches, dunes and reefs. The coast is small and transient. The beaches in Skane no longer reproduce themselves from the sea, now the importance of the land has ceased. On the contrary, the water gnaws sand-cliffs and embankments, takes off coastlines and moves them to the east. Nowhere else along the Swedish coast one will get as much erosion as in the south of Halland and around Skane. The south coast has a truly open environment. It gives an impression of bath and beach. The beach can sometimes be a nuisance, and this is because of the lack of trees. The sea creeps up into the land. Sun-worshippers love to come here. Many of the fishing villages have the reputation of a seaside resort today.

In the southwest part of the coast, on a tongue of land the sea and the sand has made an excellent pattern called Maklappen. As far as we know, this process has been there ever since the Bronze Age. It varies through all the time, some times it has the appearance of a round island, sometimes the appearance of a bow.

Hallands Vadero, situated on Hallandsasen, is unique. This place has the mildest climate in Sweden. In this island are forests of oaks, lime trees and beeches. Sparkling beaches, meandering sand-hills and icy winds from the sea have attracted people from all over Europe to come to Skane and Halland. The Vadero is somehow an ancient monument, a living memory of how the Skane shore once was.

South of the Bjare-peninsula one feels the strong conture of Kullen reaching out in Kattegatt. This is also the border between the salt West Sea and the sea-approach to the brackish water in the East Sea. North of Kullen there is ocean water with a salinity of3.5%, whereas south of Kullen in Oresund, there is a salinity just over 1%. Two kinds offish domi­ nate the fish market in the south: The herring and the eel. Today the fisheries of herring and eel on the South coast is pretty insignificant. The eel is the most valuable species seen out of economical perspective. It is not to discover if there is a moonlight. One must fish when there is a new moon or when it is quite dark.

One of the most exciting buildings of today is the Oresund Bridge with the mighty pylons,

204 meters high and with free sailing height of 57 meters. The mayor of Malmo inaugurated the link in the year 2000. It has now become a tremendously vital resource for the Oresund region. There is another,highly entertaining building in Malmo, the Turning Torso that has become
the supercilious seamark.

The Winter Coast

The winter in the archipelago is oft extremely windy and cold, locked up and expectant. On the other side, it can be exciting and beautiful. The waters rarely freeze over on the West Coast. In the northern part of the coast, the ice is thick. In a time when the ice does not bear nor
break, the islands in the archipelago are more isolated than the most remote mountain villages.

The archipelago can be beautiful in the wintertime, but one should visit Sweden in the spring or in the summer, when the weather is suitable, and nature is at its best.


Archipelago, Cliffs, Holms, Skerries, Swedish

Meet the author

author avatar Carl J Johnson
Born in Turku, Finland. Now living Sweden. A criminal defence lawyer for almost 40 years. Now retired. Fond of writing and reading. Spears. Swedish, Finnish, German and English.

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