Our guide to kayaking in Sweden

Kayaking is one of the most popular outdoor activities in Sweden, and it is easy to see why. With thousands of lakes and mile after mile of coast to kayak and wild camp, Sweden is quickly rising to the top of kayak destinations in Europe. In fact, if you are looking for a kayak holiday in Europe, you have found the right place to go.

At the Kayak Trail we specialize in a very specific type of scandinavian outdoor adventure: kayak in the unique Swedish archipelago nature. If you want to explore our tours, you can click here or if you want to know more about kayaking in Sweden, feel free to continue to read our guide below or contact us directly and we’d be happy to help you plan your kayak tour to Sweden.

Why kayak in Sweden?

There are several reasons that outdoor people and kayakers from all over Europe and the world come to kayak in Sweden. Here are three reasons kayaking in Sweden is one of the best outdoor holidays to enjoy in Europe:

  1. Unique archipelago nature. Kayaking in the typical archipelagos such as Stockholm archipelago is truly unique, with thousands of islands to discover. When kayaking in Stockholm archipelago you have about 30 000 island in a maze. Here we have gathered some more information about kayaking in Stockholm archipelago.

  2. The right to roam gives you freedom. Kayaking in Sweden and wild camping is much easier than in many parts of the world, since Sweden has the right of public access. This means you are allowed to camp on private land, as long as you are not to close to dwellings, you do not disturb and you do not harm nature. Read more about traceless travel policy and our work for sustainability here.

  3. The Stockholm Kayak Trail. Kayak the Stockholm Kayak Trail to explore Sweden’s largest archipelago. Kayak the best routes, the best places to visit and the most beautiful campsites. In Sweden we love the outdoor but we are not always so good at making it accessible. The Stockholm Kayak Trail is an exception, and we are proud to be the Exclusive Tour Operator for Stockholm Kayak Trail. Check out more about kayaking the Stockholm Kayak Trail here.

What is the best place to kayak in Sweden?

When kayaking in Sweden you have the luxury of choosing between many different beautiful kayak routes in the many archipelagos, on lakes and along the coast. At the Kayak Trail, we love to kayak in the archipelago type of nature, and thus we will rate a few of our favorite archipelago places to kayak in Sweden below. 

Our top 3 best places to kayak in Sweden

1. Kayak Stockholm archipelago in Stockholm

There are several reasons to why we believe that Stockholm archipelago is the best place for kayaking in Sweden, and frankly, these same reasons are why we chose to locate The Kayak Trail here. It is the largest archipelago to kayak in Sweden with some 30 000 islands to discover (and second largest in the world). With it’s many areas to discover by kayak you can find calm and sheltered kayaking for the leisure focused kayak trip, or more challenging kayak routes.

You also find many small picturesque villages and harbours where you can replenish food and experience local culture, and there are countless of nature reserves where the kayak is just the right vessel to discover the many small islands.

Oh, and one more reason we think that Stockholm archipelago is the best place to kayak in Sweden is that Stockholm city is conveniently close and easy to get to by train, plane, bus, car or boat. Why not stay an extra day and discover what Stockholm City has to offer? If you are keen on exploring options for kayaking in Stockholm archipelago, check out our kayak tour options or reach out to us!

2. St. Anna Archipelago outside of Norrköping

If you have already kayaked in Stockholm archipelago a few times (there are many different areas to see there) this small and beautiful archipelago is a hidden gem that might be what you are looking for, very popular among swedes who kayak. It is rather hard to get to unless you have your own car, but beautiful and remote.

For the more adventure savvy who does not need any infrastructure, this could be your next tour. Although The Kayak Trail does not have any services in St. Anna, please contact us if you need advice on kayaking here, we’d be happy to help! 

3. Öregrund and Gräsö archipelago west of Uppsala

Perhaps the least known and most rewarding place to go on a kayak tour. Loved by the kayak community in Stockholm, this is similarly to St. Anna archipelago a small and lush archipelago with little infrastructure and plenty of nature. If going kayaking here, bring everything you need, because after leaving the fishing village of Öregrund, there is no more civilization. If you have your own car, you can park it and rent kayaks and gear the one of the local rental services on the small islands. Let us know if you want to know more through our contact form.

Kayak tours in Sweden: different kayak tour options

In Sweden, there are some typical kayak tours to choose from when you plan your kayak trip here. Kayak tours in Stockholm for example are often either offered as a self-guided kayak tour, a guided kayak tour, a special kayak tour or a kayak rental or kayak hire. We offer some of these kayak tours, but we will go through all of the different kayak trips for your convenience.

Self guided kayak & wild camp tours are typically kayak tours where everything you need for your kayak trip is included. At the Kayak trail, for example, all kayak gear and comfortable camping equipment is included, you can order a food package, return transfer to/from Stockholm city is included and you have your own guide to give you a proper 2-3 hour introduction before you set out on your trip. We make sure you have everything you need to go out and explore. You also get a 24/7 phone number to a guide-on-call if you need support during the trip. All you need to do is to book the self-guided kayak tour, and we take care of the rest! Check out our self-guided kayak tours here.

Guided kayak & wild camp tours are kayak tours in which the guide goes with you and shows you the most beautiful parts of the archipelago. At the Kayak Trail, a guided kayak trip is always led by a certified kayak guide and is an all-inclusive kayak trip experience. The Guide will tailor the kayak tour according to your preferences and the weather conditions to make sure you get as much value out of your kayak trip as possible. Check out our guided kayak trips here.

Special guided kayak tours are kayak tours that have certain themes or are packaged together with accommodations and/or restaurants in the archipelago. If you have checked out our Grinda package, the Sandhamn package or the 3-day culinary package, these are examples of special guided kayak tours.

Kayak rental in Sweden

In Sweden, kayak rentals offer kayaks and canoes for hire together with some safety equipment and sometimes also outdoor equipment. The standards can vary a lot, so make sure to check ratings and/or to give the operator a call beforehand so that you get a feeling for the place. Make sure that you always get the safety equipment you should have, and that the staff go through safety procedures with you. We only offer self-guided, guided and special guided kayak tours. If you are not looking for a self guided kayak tour or a guided kayak tour, we can recommend the kayak rental Get Out Kayak. They have award winning service and offer rental services in the best parts of Stockholm archipelago. 

When is the best time to kayak in Sweden? 

When you choose which time to go kayak in Sweden you have to first look to yourself and ask: what type of kayak holiday or kayak trip are you looking for? If you are looking for a peak-summer kayak holiday you are best off going in mid to end july, however the archipleago will be more crowded then. If you are looking for a kayak trip in Sweden because you wish to find solitude in nature, then perhaps mid June or end of august when the Swedes have gone back to work is better for you. We have collected some information about when to go kayak in Sweden right here.

Looking for more information? Reach out to us and we will be happy to answer your questions and help you plan your kayak tour to Sweden, or see if some of the links below might be useful to you.

│  Self guided kayak tours in Sweden

 │  Guided kayak tours in Sweden

│  Special guided kayak tours in Sweden │ 

│  Kayak in Stockholm archipelago, Sweden │ 

│  Kayak Stockholm Kayak Trail │

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