SWEDISH ARCHIPELAGO HOLDS THE KEYS
The cluster of car-free islands that make up Gothenburg’s southern archipelago are Sweden’s answer to the Florida Keys (below). While you won’t find any Ernest Hemingway references, the area’s quaint villages, active fishing harbours, secluded woodland and abundance of flora and fauna certainly provide much to write home about. A 15-minute ferry ride from the bright lights of Gothenburg city, this is a much-loved escape destination for island-bound Swedish day trippers during the summer months. The natural beauty of these granite islands is the main attraction with sandy beaches to lie on, bird sanctuaries that are an ornithologist’s dream, fishing and sailing excursions aplenty and an active calendar of cultural events in communities that come with pavement cafes, antique shops and cycle hire stores. Hop on a bike to explore the larger islands of Brännö, Donsö Styrsö and Vrångö and eat al fresco on the pier at Isbolaget summer restaurant in Donsö or see more of the archipelago aboard the M/S Carl Michael Bellman with a smörgåsbord of herrings, meatballs, cheese and other traditional dishes. Stay overnight in one of Brännö Varv Bed & Breakfast’s maritime themed rooms overlooking the harbour (from Dh550). Getting there: Fly into Gothenburg airport from European hubs, or take a direct train from Copenhagen Airport.