The Åland Archipelago is full of maritime history

The lapping of waves, the hum of the wind in the reeds and the calls of the seagulls on the horizon. The marine paradise of the Åland Archipelago is just a few hours from both Sweden and mainland Finland. The inhabitants of the Nordic countries have travelled through this difficult to navigate archipelago throughout history; from Stone Age seal hunters with their small wooden boats to us modern people on large cruise ships.

The unique nature of the thousands of islands and islets making up the Åland Islands creates a world of its own that is definitely worth a visit!

 One small tree stands on a cliff by the sea
The Åland Archipelago charms with its rugged beauty.

The beauty of the Åland Archipelago stems from the spectacular cliffs and sandy islands

The unique features of Åland include the pristine archipelago and the beautifully polished humped bedrock formations, which are reddish in colour from Åland's rapakivi (Eng. crumbly rock) granite. Nature paths meander through the flower meadows, ash forests and walnut groves of the archipelago.

On the main island of Åland, it is worth a visit to see the magnificent rocky and sandy islets that stretch from the east of Kökar island all the way to the island of Sandö. In the northeast of Åland, the Ice Age has left behind ancient erratic boulders on the shores of islands and islets, as well as under the waves.

 A girl sits on a blanket by the sea shore
The rocks of Åland are well-known for their reddish colour.

Cultural sites lead to the history of Åland

In the municipality of Sund you will find the medieval castle of Kastelholm. During its long and colourful history, the castle has housed nobles both as guests and prisoners. It has also been besieged and set on fire at night and has served as a base for the archipelago’s sea bandits.

Björkör Island is home to a traditional archipelago farm that offers a unique view of the historical life on Åland.

Perched on the rocky island of Kobba Klintar is a pilot cabin built in the mid-19th century. Pilots based here once assisted numerous ships through the archipelago reefs to the safe harbour of Mariehamn. It now represents an important chapter from Åland's maritime history.

On Lågskär Island, one of Åland's oldest lighthouse islands, visitors can still experience the lonely life of the former lighthouse guard, as well as enjoying great sea views and bird-watching.

You can explore Åland with or without your own boat

Åland Archipelago offers a variety of accommodation options, from holiday villages and guest harbours to countless beautiful natural harbours, where you can anchor overnight. Even without your own boat, you can also enjoy the many beautiful Åland islands, such as Enklinge, Kumlinge, Sottunga and Kökar, by jumping aboard the various Ålandstrafiken archipelago ferries available.

However, those travelling with their own boat should remember that Åland is full of hidden shallows, which have caused many shipwrecks over the years.

It is well worth coming to Åland for sunshine, swimming, the atmosphere and nature of the archipelago, as well as for its beautiful sunsets. Åland, the sunniest area in the Nordic countries!

 Several people sits on a cliff by the sea and look at beautiful sea and sky
With your own boat you can find a peaceful shore to watch the setting sun.