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Southern Sweden


A popular holiday area, with long sandy beaches, the coast is a series of wide, deep bays, where the only hazards are the occasional fishing nets which extend from the shore. Malmo is Swedens 3rd largest city, and Ystad is famous for the Inspector Wallender novels. Behind the inauspicious industrial seascape, Åhus is a little treasure, and Hanö, with its English Cemetary on the hill, is the archetypical holiday island. Karlskrona has its own little archipelago, a taster before the pleasures of the East coast.

Gislövsläge
Gisloveslage

You cannot get into Trelleborg because of the ferries, and so this makes an excellent little alternative. Minimal facilities (the inevitable Kiosk), but the resturant at the camping site, 1km away through the nature reserve, was a surprise hit. Its also worth it just to walk past and marvel at the palaces, sorry tents, that the campers bring with them.

The Marina has boxes, the end ones on each stage being allocated to visitors, as are some more under the harbour wall. About 4 showers, but adequate for the size. Nice setting. Washing machine and diesel.

Cost 100 SEK

Simrishamn
Simrishamn

Small, but pretty holiday town. Shopping was disappointing but there are many resturants. Good ICA supermarket 10 mins walk from the marina. Excellent beach 5 mins away. No boat shop (despite what they say), the nearest good one is in Skillinge, the next stop south.

There is a large new marina to port on entering. The first pontoon is alongsides mooring for big boats, and booms on the next one are for visitors, with some more further over in the marina. Marina shallows at shore end, but is well marked with both boom width, and water depth. The marina gets busy as it's a popular stop on the 'circuit'. You can stay in the fishing harbour but it is more expensive. Limited electricity connections. Diesel is at the far end of the marina.

Limited (and communal) showers for its size. Cost 110 SEK

 

Åhus
Arhus

A terrible sight from seawards gives way to lovely riverside setting. Very posh houses on one side of the river, very posh Absolut distillery (tours on Tuesdays) on the other. Buses every 20 minutes to Christianstad.

New guest harbour is to Starboard on entry and is only 2 mins walk from the shops and a supermarket, (better ICA one 10 minutes walk) but the booms are short and boats stick out into the river. A better alternative is in the proper marina (with long booms) to Port, and then it's a walk (10mins) or get a dinghy (the marina will loan you one) across. It was quiet when we were there.

Åhus is a lovely historical old town, but there are few shops. A number of resturants line both banks (one with a 'ferry' to get you across!)

One shower, but clean. Cost 100 SEK.

Hanö
Hano

Idyllic little holiday island, south of Karlsham, with the village set round a small fishing harbour. Although there is limited space, there is plenty of depth, and is well set up for yachts with half a dozen showers. Harbour is bouncy in NW-erlies, and probably untenable in a gale. There is an excellent short walk up to a Napoleonic English Naval cemetery high on a hill, with stunning views. One novel feature is that he village is completely 'caged off' like a compound with a fence to stop local deer from getting in and eating the trees. (At least that's the official reason...)

Boats lie to a kedge anchor or alongside the harbour wall, rafted in our case as the place was heaving. There is asmall resturant and a surprisingly good little shop, but few other facilities, except a Sauna (!) Enough electricity points, but drinking water was in limited places.

Karlskrona
Karlskrona from the Sea The main drag

Karlskrona has a lovely archipelago setting. The town itself is on an island, surrounded by water, and nestling in the rocks. It has an interesting history, which is reflected in its architecture.

Karlskrona was an architectural experiment by King Karl XI in the late seventeenth century, and was built to accommodate the Swedish navy. There is still a navy presence and a good museum.

Built on a grid system, around a huge square, the whole town is compact enough to walk around. You can also get a harbour tour (or use the dinghy)

Stena Ferries sail from Karlkrona for Poland, and do deals for cheap visits.

Karlskrona has a large marina set up for visitors, with over 60 guest berths. There are both booms (the nearest are 4m) and long pontoons for laying alongside. The marina is a short walk from both the town centre and the station. There is a small amount of wash from all the local motor boats, but generally is well sheltered.

Showers are communial, and require 5 SEK. There is coded access to the loos. There is a free washing facility with 3 machines. A booking system is supposed to apply.

There are a couple of chandlers on Salto Island, about 15 minutes walk from the marina

Cost : 120 SEK.

Ystad

Ystad Shopping Centre A prince in disguise

Ystad Police HQ  - Murder Capital

We were slightly worried about visiting Ystad. As any reader of the Inspector Wallander novels will know, Ystad has almost as high a murder rate as Morse's Oxford. In the end, it turned out to be a treat.

The town is a little gem. Old wooden buildings, pretty courtyards, a winding stream through the park, at every turn, it was a surprise. It even had a really quite good chandlers, in an old railway station.

It also has one really good loony feature. Every night, from 9pm to 3am, a night watchman ('council employee' in the brochure - no silly titles for the Swedes) blows an ancient horn from the top of the church in the square every 15 minutes to show all is well. If you stand underneath, you can see the horn emerge from a small window and then disappear again. We spent ages speculating what he does in between the 15 minute blowing sessions! (Hoovering?). The horn blowing canbe heard all over town - even from the marina.

Ystad is the ferry port for Bornholm and Poland, but it wears it lightly. The port is compact and easy to get away from, and even the traditional pedestrianised shopping centre has more character than most.

Predictably, there is a 'Wallander tour' where, for 30 Kronor, an ancient fire engine takes you past all the locations mentioned in the books - you can even have a 'Wallender Coffee' in the xxx Konditori, where he would sit and brood after a heavy piss-up the night before. In truth, we expected something much more dour - in the books, he is a miserable bastard after all, so the town was an unexpected pleasure.

There are a number of good restuarants, although the majority were Italian/Pizza.

Useful resources
North Sea Passage Pilot

Landsort - Skanor Excellent guide to marinas and nature harbours - in Swedish

Hafenhandbuch

Hafenhandbuch German loose leaf guide to marinas

The Baltic Sea

Baltic Sea

Contains some material on Southern Sweden

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