Sandhamn

A couple of weekends ago we were invited by friends to stay in a cottage they had rented out on the Stockholm archipelago – the island of Sandhamn.

Leon and Maya had been invited to an overnight party, so we went just with Alfie and Ted, which worked out well as they have two children, Klara and Johnathon, who are the same age.

And it was a cottage that playwright August Strindberg had stayed in! 😄

We had a lovely time, playing hide and seek in the cottage, walking through the very green forest to the beach with the beautiful stones, and paddling in the sea.

Advertisements

Birka : A Viking Village

Our friends from England left today, and we have been busy the last few days doing some trips. Yesterday was a particularly good one, and one which we had never before done with the kids – Birka, the viking village.

One of our friends from England is currently being home educated, and is doing a project on the vikings, so it seemed like a fantastic chance for him – and all the kids had a great time.

Getting the boat from Stockholm took almost 2 hours, upon which was an English (and Swedish) narrator, who told us about the history of ‘Birka’, and about some of the historical events which happened on the surrounding sea and it’s islands. The island itself housed a fantastic museum, life-sized reconstructions of viking buildings and viking boats, and in the summer months it also has viking crafts and guided tours available (some especially for children).

The kids enjoyed playing in an old rowing boat when we first got off the boat...

The museum housed many fantastic model viking villages, as well as treasures found, and a film for children about archaeology...

... and viking shields, spears and swords...

The reconstruction of a (life sized) village was great fun to look at...

... as were the viking boats...

Dressed up characters gave guided tours and talked about their lives in viking times...

... some more ghastly than others....

You could have a lesson in archery (Leon succeeded in 'shooting' the middle three times!)...

... or make a viking coin...

Alternatively, watch a viking preparing her skins at the 'market'....

...or see the blacksmith at work...

And if all else fails, there's a little beach where the kids enjoyed a swim (and Alfie enjoyed a sleep!) before the boat came in to pick us up...

A wonderful place to visit on a warm summers’ day !

My Favourite Island : Utö

Yesterday our friends arrived from England, and shall be staying with us for a week, and so today we were off to show them ‘ Utö ‘, one of the larger archipelago islands off the Swedish east coast, just a half hour boat ride from the Årsta harbour.

I love this island. Why? Because when you get off the boat and walk through the village of old red wooden houses, you get to the edge of a little forest, and when you walk through the little forest, you get to a small but steep glacial rock, and when you climb to the top of the rock, you get the most beautiful view of smooth grey-white glacial rocks, mixed with green desert like pine trees, and red brown plants, overlooking a never ending sea, which goes all the way to Russia.

On the path through the forest...

..picking flowers and blueberries on the way....

...at the top of the rock, you can see the sea...

... look at the view....

...climb some rocks...

...throw some rocks...

...or use them to make a rainbow...

...discover a secret lake...

...have a picnic...

.... and enjoy....!