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Camping by a lake, Skåne
Photo: Apelöga/imagebank.sweden.se

Things to do

Kayaking and canoeing in Skåne

Paddling in the lakes and rivers of Skåne in southern Sweden allows you to get close to nature while still being close to the coast and the city of Malmö.

A paradise for kayakers 

With water on three coasts and lakes and streams inland, Skåne is a popular destination among kayakers. Go paddling in the north for a serene experience of remote wilderness, or do it the urban way, paddling the canals of Malmö, the biggest city in Skåne. Many of the lakes have islands where you can pitch your tent and spend the night.

Immeln - a lake with over 200 islands

Immeln is the third biggest lake in Skåne. Here you can follow Skåne’s most popular canoe trail through a number of different lakes in the area. In Immeln there are over 200 small islands where you can set up camp and cook that bass or bream you caught earlier during the day. Immeln is known for its rich and diverse flora and fauna and many of the islands are Special Protection Areas (SPA) for birds. You can rent everything from canoes and military tents to portable stoves and barbecues at the Canoe Center - just remember to bring cash since they do not accept credit cards. 

Ivösjön - a fresh water archipelago

Canoeing in the lake of Ivösjön in north eastern Skåne is a convenient adventure, since the trail starts and ends in the same place, at the Wetlandi Canoe Center in Axeltorp, where you can rent your boat as well your gear. Why not rent a full camping package and spend the night Robinson Crusoe style in one of the well over 40 islands in the lake, of which many are uninhabited. If you are looking to combine the nature experiences with some cultural ones you could set course for the beautiful Bäckaskog Castle, a once monastery with a history dating as far back as the 11th century. 

Rönne å river - open meadows and jungle-like greenery

The meandering river of Rönne Å is a popular canoeing destination. The landscape here vay from open agricultural landscapes to dense, lush greenery. The trail is one-way, in the sense that you can only paddle it downstream, but by bus or taxi you can easily get back to your point of departure. When you rent your gear at Kanot Centralen they will arrange for the transportation back. Since all you have to do is to follow the river, it is impossible to get lost here, which makes for a safe and family friendly paddling excursion. 

Helge å - a Unesco Bisphere reserve

Located in north-eastern Skåne around the city of Kristianstad, you will find Kristianstad Vattenrike Wetlands. This is a large area containing several nature reserves, and it has been designated a Biosphere Reserve by Unesco. Paddling on the river of Helge å is a great way to explore the vast variety of species and landscapes here, and the Naturum Visitor Centre, on the banks of Helge å in central Kristianstad is a great place to start when you plan your trip. 

Kullaberg - a coastline of dramatic cliffs

Follow the rocky coastline and admire the dramatic cliffs as the plunge into the sea, keeping your eyes peeled for everything from sea seals and porpoises to a multitude of bird species. The nature reserve of Kullaberg in north western Skåne offers plenty of opportunities for unforgettable nature experiences. At Kullakajak you can rent both single and double boats and book guided tours of different skill levels. Or try one of the popular guided night tours.

City paddling in Malmö

Why not rent a canoe in Malmö, the biggest city in Skåne? Follow the canals around town to explore the city from a unique perspective, and experience the contrasts of the changing cityscape with its beautiful parks, its bustling centre and calm residential areas. Bring a picnic basket or stop for an ice cream along the way. If you are bringing your own boat, the coast offers great paddling opportunities as well. Paddling at sunset on a tranquil summer evening, accompanied by white swans and with Turning Torso and the Öresund bridge as your backdrop, is one of the more memorable ways you can experience Malmö.

Paddling and The Right of Public Access

When you move about in the Swedish nature, generally The right of Public Access (Allemansrätten in Swedish) applies. This law is unique to Sweden and protects  every person’s right to move freely and enjoy nature. It allows you to walk on privately owned land, swim in privately owned waters and pick wild flowers, mushrooms and berries. This makes Sweden a very attractive paddling destination. Nevertheless, there are some rules to be aware of and to follow; you are not allowed to harm land or property, you are not allowed to pick protected flowers and plants and you are not always allowed to light a fire or let your dog run free. For more detailed information on what you can and cannot do.