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Sweden’s archipelagoes

Lush, populated islands, deserted isles and rocky barren skerries dot Sweden’s archipelagoes from the far north in Swedish Lapland, wrapping around the coastline of the deep south, before stretching up the west coast.

  • Canoeing at St Annas archipelago, in Östergötland
  • Utfredel close to Norrtälje, Stockholm archipelago
  • Bohuslän, the archipelago at the West Coast

Canoeing at St Annas archipelago, in Östergötland

Archipelagoes in northern Sweden

Off the northern Swedish cities of Luleå and Piteå lie groups of islands in the Gulf of Bothnia, known for their natural beauty and unique cultural heritage.

Stockholm archipelago

The Stockholm archipelago fans out 80 km out from the city and is some 24,000 islands big. The nearest islands of Fjäderholmarna and beautiful fortress town of Vaxholm are less than an hour away by boat. The larger populated islands, for example; Sandhamn, Blidö and Utö have hotels, holiday homes, restaurants, marinas and offer loads of activities. Most of the islands are small and uninhabited and waiting for you to discover them, perhaps by boat, canoe or kayak. Go here for a guide to Stockholm’s fabulous archipelago.

The Östgöta Archipelago

The Östgöta Archipelago off the east coast of Sweden is actually three archipelagoes: Gryt, and Tjust, St. Anna and Arkösund. Beautiful, lush islands hug the east coast, while the outlying islands tend to be barren, rocky affairs. All are naturally gorgeous of course, with beaches, bathing spots, some with natural or guest harbours and a lively food scene. Accommodation options include hotels, guesthouses, youth hostels, campsites and camping with your own tent.

What to do?

How about a bit of sea kayaking along the coast between Arkösund and Gryt. There are plenty of places to rent from and as you paddle out to the islands you might spot sea seals and sea eagles. Wherever you go are never far from amenities. Visit these archipelagoes for their cultural heritage, for their natural beauty and laid-back lifestyle and for the nature activities on offer.

For maps and boat timetables go here

South east coast archipelago

Sweden’s south east coast archipelago is 10,000 islands strong, stretching out from coastal towns Västervik, Oskarshamn, Mönsterås and Kalmar. The biggest island here is Öland, a favourite among Swedish holidaymakers for its sun, sea and fantastic white beaches/shallow coastal waters. Öland is also famous for its windmills, Borgholm Castle and ancient sites.

For more information on the islands of this magical archipelago go here

West Coast archipelago

The West Coast archipelago in Sweden making the news around the world for its lobster and oyster seafood ‘safaris’. The West Coast and the archipelago here is full of fishing villages, beaches and bathing spots, pink granite skerries and a world first, the Kosterhavet Marine National Park. You can read more about the West Coast archipelago here.

If you are staying in or near the West Coast city of Gothenburg, go here to find out about trips to its nearby archipelago.

Please click on links above for boat and ferry time tables.

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