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Three people with hiking gear and backpacks walking in the tundra.
The King's Trail, Swedish Lapland
Experience the beautiful surroundings when hiking in Swedish Lapland.
Photo credit: Carl-Johan Utsi/Swedish Lapland

The King's Trail has something for everyone

Hiking the King’s Trail, Kungsleden, takes you to the far north of Sweden through scenic mountains and the beauty of the four national parks of World Heritage Site Laponia. Multiple entry and exit points mean you can easily tailor your hike.

How long is the hike?

The King's Trail (Kungsleden) is Sweden's most famous hiking trail. The entire route takes about a month to cover, but because it’s broken into sections, you can choose the length of your hike. The most popular section, which stretches between Abisko and Nikkaluokta, is about 105 kilometres long and will take absout 7 days, although if children are in your party it may take longer. This is where you’ll find stunning scenery and views of Sweden’s highest mountains. 

Where to start hiking the King's Trail

If you hike the most popular and northernmost section, Abisko to Nikkaluokta, you start at the STF Abisko Turiststation and head south. You’ll pass through Abisko National Park, along with vast open areas, plenty of lakes and streams, and some of the highest mountains in Sweden, which will still be capped in snow even during the warm summer months.

Level of difficulty of the King's Trail 

Despite being located above the Arctic Circle, the King’s Trail is suitable for quite a wide range of hikers. The relatively low altitudes and reasonably level terrain, coupled with well-maintained hiking trails, make the route suitable for most people – even children – although plan a slower pace if you bring younger kids. If you use the mountain huts, you can lighten your pack quite a bit, making the hike that much easier.

Where to stay when hiking the King's Trail

The Swedish Tourist Association (STF) has about 16 mountain cabins dotted along the trail, providing a mattress, pillow, blanket, simple cooking facilities, and food for purchase. The cabins are about 10-20 kilometres apart, perfect for each day’s hiking. While there are no STF huts between Kvikkjokk and Ammarnäs, other quite rustic cabins are available.

What to pack for hiking Sweden's King's Trail

You’ll surely encounter rain while hiking the King’s Trail, so a sturdy pair of waterproof hiking boots, a jacket and trousers are first on your list. Add walking poles to help traverse muddy sections and small streams, a waterproof tent, a sleeping mat, and a warm sleeping bag (the nights are generally cold.) 

When it comes to food, you can buy food at the many STF huts that dot the trail, but prices are higher than in the supermarkets, so pack as much dry food as you can carry. If you plan on cooking, bring a portable stove and a pan. Two water flasks (in case one break), painkillers in case you get ill, and bug-repellent: mosquitoes are notorious in northern Sweden. 

Most importantly, bring some disposable shopping bags to leave the landscape as pristine as you found it.

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Camping in Saltoluokta, the King's Trail, Swedish Lapland

Bring a waterproof tent and a warm sleeping bag to stay comfy when hiking the King's trail in Swedish Lapland.

Photo: Ted Logart/Swedish Lapland

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Two people sitting next to a tent and a camp fire. A river and mountains are in the background.

Camping in Saltoluokta, the King's Trail, Swedish Lapland

Photo: Ted Logart/Swedish Lapland

Mountain huts of the King's Trail, Swedish Lapland

Mountain huts of the King's Trail, Swedish Lapland

Photo: Gösta Fries /

A person with walking poles and hiking gear walking the King's trail.

Hiking the King's Trail, Swedish Lapland

Photo: Ted Logart/Swedish Lapland

Mountain huts by the King's trail, Swedish Lapland

Mountain huts by the King's trail, Swedish Lapland

Photo: Anders Norberg /

A pretty well-kept secret – The Southern King's Trail

In the 70s, the authorities hatched a plan to extend the King’s Trail across Sweden’s mountain chain. That didn’t happen – but out of this project came the Southern King’s Trail, which has a couple of different stretches between Sälen in the south and Grövelsjön in the north, alongside the Norwegian border. (It’s not as well visited as the other King’s Trail – so you and your friends might have the opportunity to get away from other people.)

The trails are relatively easy and suitable for most people. The most common route is about 180 kilometres long, but you can quickly adapt it for shorter and longer hikes. You can enjoy beautiful mountain views and peaceful lakes on your way, constantly taking in the genuinely Nordic nature.