The Stockholm Archipelago is Sweden’s largest archipelago and one of the largest in the Baltic Sea. In the past, the archipelago’s tiny population consisted mostly of fishermen. As it has morphed into a popular holiday destination at present, the Stockholm Archipelago Foundation was founded to spearhead efforts in preserving the environment and culture of the archipelago.
The archipelago consists of around 30,000 islands and islets. Whether be it summer or winter, masses of visitors take the boats and ferries to explore or just sail around.
The following are the islands and destinations most popular with the archipelago’s visitors:
Located in the outer area of the archipelago, Sandhamn popular among sailors and yachting enthusiasts. The Royal Swedish Yacht Club is here as well as inns, hotels, restaurants and bars. During the summer, Sandhamn has a bustling party scene. Those who are peaceful and nature-inclined may visit during the off-season.
Accessible all year by boat or bus, this town boasts of well-preserved wooden houses from the late 19th century. One can explore the town or just hang around at the Vaxholm Hotel or the town’s restaurants and cafes.
This island used to be a quarantine station in the 1800s during the height of the cholera epidemic in Europe. Today, it is a popular stop for kayakers and rowboat enthusiasts. It is best visited during the summer.
Lying near the outer part of the archipelago, this wooded island is perfect for hiking and swimming. One can stay here for a few days and just explore the island. Accomodations range from campgrounds to a tavern and hostel. Cafes and bike and boat rentals are available.
The archipelago’s largest sand beach is in Nåttarö. One of the best places to swim in the entire archipelago, the island also provides for those who want to go biking and boating. Rentals are available in the vacation village.
Wherever one plans to go, it is recommended to depart from central Stockholm and ride the classic white ferries, where some are still in operation from the 19th and 20th centuries, for a truly magical experience.