Getting around Stockholm’s archipelago
Island hopping, a scenic cruise or a longer stay on your favourite island? Here’s how to travel in Stockholm’s archipelago.
Stockholm’s vast archipelago starts just a short boat ride from city centre and getting there could not be easier. The closest island Fjäderholmarna is just a 30-minute boat ride from downtown Stockholm, while Dalarö and Vaxholm are both an hour away.
Most locals take the Waxholmsbolaget ferries to the islands. Waxholmsbolaget runs regular boat and ferry services across the entire region, from Arholma island in the north to Landsort, on Öja island in the south. The services are a part of the public transport system in Stockholm County and run all year round. During high season in the summer, there are several daily departures from Strömkajen in the city center, as well as departures from ports in other parts of the county.
To plan your trip, use the company’s journey planner (waxholmsbolaget.se). It’s unfortunately only available in Swedish but it's fairly easy to use if you know the names of the jetties or islands you want to travel between.
Pick a ticket that suits you
Tickets are bought on board, at the ticket counter, online at sl.se or at the self-service machine on the jetty. Save the paper receipt and hand it over to the staff when you go ashore at your destination.
You can also buy prepaid travelcards for 7 or 30 consecutive days and travel as much as you like on all Waxholmsbolaget services. These tickets are perfect for island hopping. In order to get one, you first need to buy an Access card, an electronic smart card which the ticket is loaded on. The card itself costs 20 SEK and you can re-use it on future visits to Stockholm.
These tickets and cards are sold at
- Waxholmsbolaget’s main terminals (Strömkajen, Vaxholm and Stavsnäs)
- at SL Centres, tourist information offices in Stockholm
- and at sl.se. For fares, see sl.se/en/fares--tickets.
There are other ways to travel to and within the archipelago, too. Strömma Kanalbolaget is another ferry company trafficking the area. Their focus is on cruises, activities and sightseeing tours; it’s a great choice for organized day trips and excursions in the archipelago and on lake Mälaren. You can also charter boats for your own events.
Should you want to make shorter trips between islands or need transportation outside the ferry companies’ service area, a taxi boat is a great option, especially if you’re a larger group traveling.
Thanks to bridges, tunnels and car ferries, some areas in the archipelago, such as Yxlan, Vaxholm and Muskö, can also be reached by bus or car. Most islands are however car free. The best and most enjoyable way to get around is by foot or bicycle, which can be rented on most of the main islands.