Kosta Travel Guide

  • Kosta
    by Trekki
  • Kosta glass factory
    Kosta glass factory
    by Trekki
  • Kosta glass factory
    Kosta glass factory
    by Trekki

Kosta Things to Do

  • Trekki's Profile Photo

    by Trekki Updated Aug 13, 2013

    Visiting the Kosta factory was different compared to my other glass factory visits. Maybe my expectations were too high because of their famous name or maybe they just didn’t make any exciting stuff. On the other hand, the factories are not there to entertain us but to work what is demanded and on the production plan. And if it is utility glasses, then it is utility glasses, like during the day when I was there. Of course, given the fame and size of Kosta, the production hall is huge. But I was still amazed that we all could walk around almost as we wanted. They had a little watching area next to the drinking glass making sites, which was nevertheless also interesting to watch. Photography was no problem and I have added mine into several albums about making vases, glasses and showroom exhibition.

    Entry to the factory: no fee with glass pass, 30 SEK without (Aug. 09).

    General recommendations about visiting glass works factories:
    * Look at their websites first to get an idea of what they are famous for. Then it is easier to choose which one you would like to visit.
    * Take into account that the workers work from 7 a.m. to latest 4 p.m., so you might like to get up early in case you want to visit several during one day.
    * Plan some time for shopping. Make notes of what you would like to buy before you go. You will be overwhelmed by the selections anyhow, so it is good to know what to expect.
    * When you visit a factory, please ask if it is allowed to take photos. In several cases it is not allowed due to the legitimate fear of the usual “dragonland” counterfeits. If you take photos, use the “sport” setting on your camera. Be aware that the light conditions inside the factories are often not good for taking photos. Try and avoid flash when the guys are working on the objects (it distracts them).
    * Wear light clothes: it can be very hot inside. And don’t wear your Sunday dress and shoes, it might be dirty inside. The workplaces are cleaned in the evening but not every hour or so.
    * Consider to buy the Glass Pass, in case you want to visit more factories. It costs only 95 SEK (status of 2011) and allows you free entrance to any of the glass factories, a 10% discount on any purchase above 500 SEK, plus discounts at many other shops, museums, accommodation, restaurants, activities (like blowing glass on your own).

    Location of Kosta on Google Maps.

    © Ingrid D., April 2011 (So please do not copy my text or photos without my permission.)

    Kosta glass factory Kosta glass factory Kosta glass factory Kosta glass factory Kosta glass factory
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  • Sjalen's Profile Photo

    by Sjalen Updated May 29, 2007

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    Let's face it - this is what you'll visit for. and on a day when the furnace is open to the public you will not be disappointed. Sweden's oldest glassworks still in use started in 1742 when the County Chiefs of Kronoberg and Kalmar respectively, were asked by King Fredrik I to set up glassworks similar to those seen in other European countries. They did so in the little village of Dåfvedshult, right in between their county capitals of Växjö and Kalmar where there was lots of forests for their furnaces, and this is how Kosta got its name as the village was renamed in honour of the two: Mr KOskull and Mr STAel von Holstein. As simple as that.

    Today, you can visit a building with an exhibition of Kosta glass from different times and the production currently produced, and here you can also learn the history of Kosta and a bit about its top designers. Then you can see glass being made, even if it is now quite modern and handmade might not always mean handblown with all the tools used. Still, it is a fascinating procedure as you can see in the travelogues below. Using the website on my intro page, you can also visit the many nearby glassworks if you have a car so you are a bit flexible. These include Orrefors, Boda, Strömbergshyttan and Hovmantorp to name some.

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Kosta Restaurants

  • Sjalen's Profile Photo

    by Sjalen Updated May 30, 2007

    To be ctd. You can meet the real thing not only in the forest but also in Grönåsens Moose Park just outside the village (signposted from the Lessebo crossing) if you're visiting summertime - see "other" link below.

    Mmm...moose!
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  • Sjalen's Profile Photo

    by Sjalen Updated May 29, 2007

    Also a hotel in the village and with glass-trip packages on offer, Björkängen is the company Kosta uses for its "hyttsill" evenings. These are traditional events which have now become a tourist thing, but still a very nice one. It involves dining on pickled herring, Småland sausages and other things in a glass furnace, since that was originally a good place for heating your food, and is common in the main glassworks around the region. Hyttsill generally is not served every day so you need to check either the site below or with Kosta itself and it involves advance booking.

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Kosta Transportation

  • Sjalen's Profile Photo

    by Sjalen Written May 30, 2007

    The tiny private railway line which once existed here is long gone, but fear not, if you don't have a car (still the easiest if you want to visit several glassworks) you can get here by bus from Växjö and Lessebo. You are in a region where public transport is worse than in many other in the south of Sweden since it's less populated than the big city regions, but you still have a few buses a day to chose from, just remember to check return times unless you're staying the night,

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Kosta Shopping

  • Trekki's Profile Photo

    by Trekki Updated Aug 13, 2013

    Without doubt, Kosta has the biggest selection of glassware to buy in the whole Kingdom of Glass. Moreover, Kosta is not only a real Swedish village but also a tourist village. They have cottages, camping, a swimming pool of the size you find in public swimming pools. For shopping, they have a huge outlet for the glass, a separate one called Kosta Outlet, which is more like a mall with several small and bigger shops other than glass and a buildung called “Hem” (= home) with any kind of home decoration, clothes, ceramics and glass from other manufacturers (SEA mostly). Busses stop here and the parking lots have space for something like 100 busses and 1000 cars. There is a little restaurant where snacks and coffee is offered (and mjölk for the milk addicts), small huts with several handmade stuff (baskets, garden decoration), there is Kosta’s museum and a huge building which serves as showroom. Did I forget anything? Oh, yes, the glass factory, haha.

    If you want to buy any object from the Kosta, Boda or Åfors selection, this is the best place, because they seem to have sales with lower prices every once in a while. But you have to be able to cope with the masses of people who do the same: glass shopping. They also have the biggest colour selection for the glassware which comes in different colours. The Boda shop, for example, does not have this big colour selection. And the prices are a real bargain. Since there is a Kosta Boda US online shop and another shop, Crystallia, it is easy to compare prices. I bought a lot of the Mine collection, and these are the prices I paid (Kosta prices are including 10% off with glass pass):

    Tumbler: 116 SEK at Kosta, 25 USD at the US shop, 21,35 USD at Amazon and Crystallia, the one in white was even only 54 SEK at Kosta,
    Ice cream cup: 116 at Kosta, 30 USD at the US shop,
    Tealight holders: 44 SEK at Kosta, 20 USD at the US shop,
    Bowls and plates (medium size): 143 at Kosta, 30 at the US shop,
    Tulip bowl (small): 215 SEK at the Kosta shop, 85 USD at the US shop.

    I suggest to visit the showroom first, because they have not only the newly designed glass objects like the one called “Friends” with little animals looking out of the glass bottom (see photos) but also decorated tables and parts of rooms so that you get an idea how to combine colours or how the several glass objects or dishes go together on a set table. I have made several albums with photos from Kosta factory (glass blowing) and the showroom exhibits on my Kosta page.

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    Directions:
    Kosta Hytta is located east of Växjo. From Växjö, drive road 25 eastward until the village of Lessebo. Turn north (left) at the roundabout just after ICA supermarket (which is on the right/south side), direction Kosta. After approx. 12 km, turn north (left) on road 28 and then it is 500 m more northward on the right (east) side of road 28.

    Location of Kosta on Google Maps.

    © Ingrid D., April 2011 (So please do not copy my text or photos without my permission.)

    Kosta glass art Kosta glass art Kosta glass art Kosta glass art Kosta glass art
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  • Sjalen's Profile Photo

    by Sjalen Updated May 30, 2007

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    As Kosta struggled financially for a while, the New Wave Group took over shares and decided to put some life into the region as a whole and this has been done through the Kosta Outlet shops just outside the glassworks. Here you can buy discount clothes of well known brands for the entire family as well as linen and souvenirs, some toys and by 2007 also books. It wouldn't surprise me if there is even more in a couple of years. I found some things to be the bargains I'd hoped for and others the same price as at home.

    What to buy: Björn Borg sports- and underwear, Polarn & Pyret childrens wear (famous childrens wear chain and in fact owned by New Wave Group) and much more.

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  • Sjalen's Profile Photo

    by Sjalen Written May 29, 2007

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    There is plenty of glass for sale here, there's a surprise! :) Connected to the glasswork itself is the KostaBoda shop where you can buy some of that famous glass you've just seen and have it shipped to you in the rest of the World should you so wish. Next door is an outlet which also sells things from nearby Orrefors as well as other products and then there is the Factory Shop selling cheaper things such as Boda Nova, but also Finnish Iittala glass.

    What to buy: Glass!

    What to pay: From SEK 5 to thousands.

    Kosta glass
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Kosta Favorites

  • Sjalen's Profile Photo

    by Sjalen Updated Jun 4, 2007

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    Favorite thing: The best thing to do is to visit during an "Open day" when glassblowing is shown to the public a bit more than usual. Check the website below for a calendar as then you might also get to meet one of the famous glass designers whose names are widely known throughout the World on Swedish glass shelves. They will happily talk about the work in front of you and answer all the questions you might have and try to convince children that they won't get burned which is what Göran Wärff does in this picture :))). Sometimes there are special events too, such as the creation of huge glass art to see if it works, try-out courses and such.

    Fondest memory: http://www.kostaboda.se/

    G��ran W��rff
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