The right of public access: flowers
You are allowed to pick wildflowers under the right of public access, but only the ones that don't have a protected status. Now here is where things might get very complicated. Some flowers are protected in one area, but not in another. Like this flower for instance, the Gullviva. In the part of Sweden where I live (Södermanlands Län) the flower is not protected as it is so common in this area. But in huge parts of Sweden this flower is protected.
One flower is easy though: the orchid. All species of orchid are protected throughout Sweden, so you are not allowed to pick those. It is also not permitted to gather mosses and lichens in large quantities.
If you are not sure about whether a flower or plant is protected or not, you can ask at the local tourist information. They will be able to help you out with some more info.
These tips have only been a few examples of what the 'allemansrätten' or 'right of public access' in practise means. On the website mentioned below, you can read much more about it, like rules for hiking, boating, fishing, making a fire, dogs, etc, etc.
More info on: http://www.naturvardsverket.se/
The right of public access: berries
Let me give you another example of the right of public access (allemanrätten). You are allowed to pick berries or mushrooms in the countryside. But do remember that in areas protected by law, like national parks, nature reserves and historical sites, special rules apply.
But in general this rule gives you a great opportunity to taste some of those delicious wild berries such as blue-, lingon- and cloudberries that you can see so much in the Swedish countryside.
More info on: http://www.naturvardsverket.se/
The right of public access: camping
The right of public access is great for backpackers and people travelling on a budget. The rules for camping are simple: It is allowed to camp in the countryside for one or two nights in the same place. But there are some restrictions. It is only allowed if you are not disturbing the landowner, or the local people. You are not allowed to put up your tent near homes, farm building, a Sami village, or on farmland. These rules do not apply for groups; they need special permission. Other exceptions to the general rule are also national parks and nature reserves. So for Abisko National Park "The Right of Public Access" does NOT apply. Camping with a caravan also has extra restrictions to these general rules.
This photo was taken at Alesjaure, but outside the area of the Mountain Hut, a perfect spot to camp for free :-)
More info on: http://www.naturvardsverket.se/Related to:
The counties of Sweden
This page is about Norrbottens Län, but if you are looking for specific info about one of the other counties (läns) you can click on these links below. On each of these pages I will give you a description of the county and places worth while visiting.
The Swedish counties from south to north:
Götaland (South Sweden):
Västra Götalands län
Svealand (Central Sweden):
Norrland (North Sweden):
Favorite thing: This area is fantastic for hiking, trekking, fishing and whatever you can think of regarding to this. Also, as it is in Sweden, it is very well organise and safe. There are plenty of sites and possibilities. Check the official site or search for more.
Län, Landskap??? The big question!
The system in Sweden is rather confusing (I think). So let me make a try to confuse you as well, LOL :-))
Three parts of Sweden
First of all Sweden is often roughly devided in three main parts and Svealand is the central part of the country. On the map you can see these three parts of Sweden.
- Götaland = South Sweden
- Svealand = Central Sweden
- Norrland = North Sweden
These three parts are further devided in several counties ("Läns" in Swedish). In total there are 21 counties of Sweden. VT uses the Län structure of Sweden, so I am using that too here in my travel pages.
But besides these "Läns" people also refer to the different part of Sweden in "Landskap" (=province). In total there are 25 "Landskap" in Sweden. I've noticed that this is a more used system when talking with Swedes and reading travel books.
So what is so confusing?
Län = Landskap --> but not always!!!
The names of Landskap and Län are often almost the same --> but not always!!!
Officially used is the "Län" system, people often still use the "Landskap" system.
For Norrbottens Län it is rather complicated. The landskap Norrbotten + half of the landskap Lappland together make Norrbottens Län. The southern half of Lappland belongs to Västerbotten Län.
Län = county = Norbottens län
Landskap = province = Norbotten + northern part of Lappland.
The "Län" or county is a replacement of the "landskap" or province, but lots of people still think in "landskap" here in Sweden. Hahaha, I guess Swedes are stubborn as they changed the system officially from Landskap till Län already in 1634 ;-) Hmmmmm..... although I have to admit that I think in Sweden in "landskap" as well ;-))
Welcome to Norrbottens Län
So far I have been concentrating on my trip to Abisko and a bit beyond. But there is much more to say about Norbottens Län than only that. So in these general tips I want to give you some general info about Norrbottens Län, its history and its culture. Let me start by giving you an idea where Norrbottens Län is located. It is in the total north of Sweden, bordering to Norway and Finland.
The right of public access in general
The right of public access (allemansrätten) is a unique right that we have in Sweden (there is a similar system in Norway and Finland). It is alike for Swedes and for from visitors from abroad. In short it means that everyone has the right to be out in the countryside. You can use and enjoy all natural spaces in Sweden, whether it is privately owned or from the government.
But the right of public access is a freedom for all. The main rule is that you don't damage the landscape or animal life, and you must show consideration for both landowners and for everyone else that is out and about in the countryside.
In short: Do not disturb, do not destroy.
So this is the right of public access in general, but what does it mean for you? I'll try to explain a little bit more about it in my next few tips.
You can read about the rules in more detail on this website: http://www.allemansratten.se/ (available in Swedish, English and German)Related to:
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